Hell's Half Acre (hells_half_acre) wrote,
Hell's Half Acre

VanCon 2014: Monday - (independent) Location Tour and the VFX NonCon

On Monday, I drove around with some friends to visit locations that the show has used, and then in the evening I attended the VFX NonCon. The VFX NonCon was once again held at the Stormcrow Tavern near my house. I got a ticket for the second sitting.

Because it was the Monday after VanCon and because I wanted to drink, I didn't take notes. So, there won't be any in-depth summary, just pictures...

The other thing you need to know is that I accidentally "permanently" deleted all my photos from Monday (because sometimes I'm an idiot). Thankfully, file-recovery software exists. I was able to get most of the photos back, but some were corrupted or unrecoverable.


First up, we went to the entrance of the Men of Letters Bunker - I've been here a few times by now. It's a nice location. It's also close to what we termed "the puking place" where Sam and Dean pull over to the side of the road with Henry Winchester, after escaping Abaddon's arrival.
That's the Ironworkers Bridge, and North Vancouver on the other side. The Men of Letter's bunker is just underneath the bridge. (please ignore the grey at the bottom of the photo - like i said, some of the pictures didn't survive the recover process intact.)

The entrance to the Men of Letter's bunker has been 'tagged' considerably since the last time I saw it! You can't see it in this photo, but someone wrote "SUPERNATURAL!!" at the top of the white P.

I actually like to imagine that it really is the entrance to the Men of Letter's bunker and Sam has taken up biking.

Next up, we went to see the Winchester's family home in Kansas. It's tricky to visit locations that are private residences, because you don't want to piss off the owners or freak them out by being a creeper who is taking pictures of their house. I snapped this really quickly:
Obviously, Dean has done a good job in keeping that lawn mowed...

Next, we went to the pier that was in the end of Road Trip, when Dean tells Sam that he hurts everyone he loves and that he should go his own way, and Sam agrees... and it is raining buckets.
In the episode, the two cars were parked on the wide part of the pier that you can see in this photo.

Next, we went to see the North side of the trestle bridge. I really love the trestle bridge.
Supernatural uses the trestle bridge a LOT... this particular angle is used in After School Special, when Sam is icing his balls while sitting on a log, and Dean is threatening to rip a ghost's lungs out.

This also happens to be where John proposed to Mary, and subsequently where Mary had to make a deal with the YED in order to save John.

This angle might be most recognizable from Hookman.

Next up, we went to Foreshore Park, where Sam spent his birthday one year with Amelia (8x03). We see this bridge in the episode:

Next, we went to the park behind City Hall in New Westminster - it's the park that they used in Bedtime Stories, way back in S3. You can tell because of the interestingly shaped water fountain that the boys walk past.

Next up, since we were looking at Bedtime Stories locations, this house was the one they used as Cinderella's house:

Next, again, right in the same neighbourhood, was what we quickly started calling "The Francis Cafe":
The "Francis Cafe" was a location all the way back in S1, another Hookman location, I believe... Dean and Sam are sitting here when they find and discuss the case at the beginning of the episode, Dean calls Sam "Francis" as a joke - even though the scene that explains WHY he's calling him "Francis" was deleted. (Sam used a stolen police-identity to get information on the case over the phone).

Next up was Castiel's laundromat:
Only one of us went inside to take pictures. I felt too weird about it. Apparently though, the owner was super nice and said that the Supernatural crew was amazing and they'd love to have them back any time.

Next, we went to more private residences...  First up, was the Campbell house:

Right around the corner from the Campbell house is Jimmy's house.  I got a picture with, what I felt, was an extremely appropriate amount of lens flare. :)

VFX Non Con:

So,  I didn't take notes. I also can't really remember anything. Ryan Curtis and Mark Maloche were the two speakers. Mark wasn't there last year, but my goodness he comes across as an absolute sweetheart.
I know they talked about the way the souls from the jars moved - how they wanted the movement to display intelligence, and the fact that the soul was a living/thinking/feeling thing. It wasn't so much in the script, but it was agreed on by VFX and Misha.

They talked about Crowley's red demon smoke, and how it was the writers who first floated the idea of red, in the form of "we were thinking maybe red, but perhaps we'll just stick to black" and VFX so loved the idea of doing smoke in another colour besides black (where you can't play with as many shadows) that they did a red version and sent it down to LA - the writers loved it.

What else... VFX on Supernatural is really great because they are in-house. So, they have full access to other departments if they need to look at wardrobe, etc, to get an effect right. Other shows/companies don't have that ability.

Mark absolutely loves what he does. He says that a lot of people on Supernatural should have probably moved on by now if they had wanted to advance their careers - but they don't want to leave the show.

They are very very very appreciative of the fans.

Mark and Ryan were super sad that they killed off Alaina, because they loved working with her.

At the beginning of the season, they usually have more than 5 weeks to work on an episode, but by the end of the season that's reduced down to only 3. Typically, they are working on up to 5 episodes at once (at various stages), so things can get a little confusing for them.

In terms of things that they've had to "save" through VFX - the first time they did the Pishtaco thing... well, it's a tube in a woman's mouth that is...throbbing... and even though LA said the first attempt was fine, Mark was horrified because to him it looked like a cock. And he had someone redo it, because yeah...

Okay, I think that's all I remember...

While Ryan and Mark talked, Adam Williams sometimes would put up commentary on the screens:
He had some really funny ones, but unfortunately, I don't think they survived the data recovery process that these pictures had to go through.

Stormcrow is a really cool tavern. And they have lots of neat stuff. This is a Mario Skytrain map that's in the hallway on the way to the bathroom:

For me, VanCon never really feels like it's over until Monday night. Even though the events that I do on Monday aren't actually associated with the Con at all... still, they're always still fangirl activities.
Tags: vancon2014

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