Mark Larranaga comments, “I recently got the opportunity to composite on 2012 for Uncharted Territories which gave me a whole new outlook on the software and the ways I’ve been working. The economy has put so many smaller companies out of business, and forced me to figure out more viable solutions on how to do better work while keeping overhead down. So much work is going out of state for tax breaks when there are so many smaller companies that can easily do the work here at the same cost with studio quality production. Most of these smaller companies are Supervisors from bigger effects houses that have decided to give it a go for themselves.”
Larranaga began his education as a production assistant for Encore Video in 1992 where upon ending his workday he would begin his own visual effects training. This was the start of a never-ending learning process within the constantly progressing digital world.
He evolved into working with systems such as Discreet Logic’s Flame and shined in establishments such as Digital Domain in 1997. He began to work and understand the architecture of movie making via compositing at DD. His talent for taking set photography and combining it into photorealistic images sharpened his eye for detail. At this point he was taking instructions from esteemed directors such as James Cameron, Ron Howard and the Cohen Brothers, infusing their notes into life on the screen. He worked on films such as Dante’s Peak, Fifth Element, Titanic, O’ Brother Where Art Thou and The Grinch Who Stole Christmas to name a few. Mark plunged into freelance in 1999 and worked on films such as Contact, Starship Troopers (Sony Imageworks), Sphere and Devil’s Advocate (Cinesite Hollywood).
His ambitions led him into directing and inspired him to open his own visual effects company called X1FX in 2003. They worked on films like Spider Man 2 and 3, Van Helsing, Hellboy and The Incredible Hulk. They produced commercial campaigns for such clients as Playstation and NASCAR as well as music videos for recording giants like Britney Spears and Jamiroquai to name a few.