MINOTAUR feature image (by Emilia Schneider)


A trailer based on a Greek myth.

This trailer was the answer to a university brief aimed at building up skills in the VFX compositing software Nuke. While I was able to show that I had learnt the basics of the program, the correct spelling of the word ‘Minotaur‘ was still beyond me.


concept sketch

The Minotaur is a mythical creature with the head of a bull and the body of a man (and the result of the queen of Crete being very attracted to a majestic bull). The king of Crete secured the creature in an inescapable maze and fed it with human sacrifices from Athens. Eventually, the hero Theseus arrives and slays the Minotaur. Guided by a ball of string, gifted to him by the kings daughter, he is able to successfully track his way back out of the labyrinth.

In the myth the maze lies under the Cretan king‘s castle. I liked the idea of a gloomy space, sparsely lit by shafts of light from windows high above. The broken Greek statues symbolise those who have fallen at the hands of the Minotaur, while the strings are a nod to Theseus‘ ball of thread.

When compositing I laid out the 2D elements in a three dimentional environment and even chopped up the statues to create a parallax effect. The Minotaur shadow is being cast by a 2D cut-out and a light source placed behind a camera. To add further motion I added some layers of texture that move over the rest of the scene.


The final look has been greatly influenced by ‘theartofthetitle.com‘, a website showcasing the best title sequences in film and tv.