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Today in Titanic History - with Searching
Today in
Titanic History

Friday, July 12, 2024
1941 - 1st class survivor Mrs Malvina Helen Cornell died in New York, USA at the age of 84.

1972 - 2nd class survivor Miss Kate Buss died of heart failure / disease in Independence, Oregon, USA at the age of 96.

1892 - 3rd class passenger Mr Peter Andreas Lauritz Andersen S°holt was born.

1911 - 3rd class survivor Miss Helene Barbara Baclini was born to Solomon Baclini and Latifa Qurban Baclini.

1924 - 3rd class survivor Mr Neshan Krekorian married Persa Vartanian, who was not on the Titanic.

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2000: February

Graphics sets

Copal's queue

Corey Ann's interview with Fred Tepper

Monthly Stuff

Titanic through history

Hi all of you!
Here is the February issue of Making Waves. And I must say, this is a quality issue, indeed! We've got lots of Titanic stuff.... If you have any questions, comments, or opinions about the newsletter, please go to our forum Making Waves on the Back to Titanic messageboard.

We got a new thing this month. Graphic sets! Here you can see some wonderful sets, just remember that if you are going to use any of this stuff, full credit must be given to B2T! Copal tells us how to make graphics pop! Corey Ann's interview column is of course also with us. This time she is interviewing Fred Tepper! An exiting interview....


This is something new in Making Waves. In each issue we will feature a couple of graphics sets from a particular scene. This time we chose the boarding scene! You are welcome to use these graphics if you give full credit to B2T, (provide a link) and to the person that made the graphics. You can read more about this in the B2T section, under Copyright, on the site.

A great set made by Corey Ann (
See this wonderful set here:

This graphics set was made by Ane (
See this set here:

This graphic set was made by Copal (
Stunning graphics....

This is a graphics set made by Mark(
A beautiful set!

Flopping - This scene was "flopped" since only the starboard side of the ship set was built. The scene was filmed "backward" then reversed for the movie. This required all text (on hats, trucks, buildings, etc.) to resemble a mirror image.

Use of color - Cameron mimicked the black and white to color effects of his favorite film, The Wizard of Oz. Watch the contrast between the muted colors of the present day scenes and the bright colors of 1912. Also, the bright colors worn by the first class passengers versus the drab colors of the second and third class -- accurate for 1912 clothing.

Young Rose dressed in a stunning white and purple outfit, with an
enormous feathered hat -- the large hat is symbolic of the oppression Rose
feels, as is the walk up the elevated boarding bridge a few minutes later.

This line, "ROSE: I don't see what all the fuss is about. It doesn't look any bigger than the Mauritania" -- the Mauritania was the largest luxury liner in the world prior to Titanic.

ROSE DEWITT BUKATER - Her name is not one of any passenger, James Cameron named her Rose after his Grandmother.

CALEDON HOCKLEY AND SPICER LOVEJOY - Billy Zane and David Warner also appeared together in an episode of the television show "Twin Peaks." In this episode, another cast member utters the line "I'd rather be his whore than your wife." (There is no reason to think Cameron knew this when he used the same line in this script.) David Warner has also appeared in another Titanic movie, SOS Titanic.

A man is filming with a wooden Biograph "cinematograph" camera mounted on a tripod. This is Daniel Marvin, whose father founded the Biograph Film
Studio, and who was on his honeymoon with bride, Mary. Theirs was the
first filmed wedding in history. Daniel died in the sinking. There were more
scenes filmed involving the Martins, but the scenes were eventually cut.

Jack Dawson was loosely based on writer Jack London, and on Jack Thayer, survivor if the Titanic, and the name has nothing to do with the J. Dawson
that was a stoker on the Titanic, and is buried in Halifax. This was just a
coincidence that was discovered AFTER the script was written.



This is the first article in a two-part series on the difference between average
and professional graphics. These are not necessarily simple and they may
require Photoshop or Paint Shop Pro, but I assure you that using these methods will making you happier with your creations.

To understand anti-aliasing, you have to understand aliasing first. Aliasing is
the "stair-step" effect that makes the edges of curves and angles look jagged. When you use Anti-aliasing (an option offered with many of the tools in Photoshop) you get smooth lines and curves. Aliasing is something that will immediately be apparent in graphics, something that will make the graphics and text look more amateurish.

Feathering could be described as the softening of the border on a selection.
Photoshop offers degrees of feathering from 0 (no feathering) to 16 (a very soft edge). What "soft" means in graphics terms would be the transition from one image to the next is very subtle (10-16), somewhat obvious (5-9), or plainly seen (0-4). Feathering is extremely useful with collages and seamless backgrounds when you don't want seams and breaks between pictures.


A few months back I had the pleasure of meeting Fred Tepper, whom was a very special part of "Titanic." Read further to learn some interesting tidbits
about Titanic, and what it was like to be a part of the crew.

Q: Who are you, and what part in the making of Titanic did you have?

A: I was the "Digital Ship Model Lead." I created the digital version of
Titanic that was seen throughout the film (and used elsewhere in the
making of the film).

Q: Why did you choose to work on this film?

A: I was working at Digital Domain, and I knew Jim Cameron was trying to
get a Titanic film made, so I did everything I could to be involved with
it. I created some images that ended up being used as part of the
materials Jim used for the final pitches to Fox to get the film

Q: What was your typical day like?

A: There *aren't* any typical days in visual effects. Each day brings new
questions, tasks and problems. For a few months, we were working 10am
till 3am, seven days per week. Since I was modeling the ship in the
computer, I had to provide everyone else with what they needed at any
time. If someone needed a lifeboat for the digital people to ride in, I
either had to model it or assign someone else to do it. Luckily, the
modeling team was top notch. I modeled the everything above the yellow
line (all of the decks), and Richard Payne modeled the hull. We also
had people for specific tasks when needed. For example, I didn't do the
original model of the stacks, they were done by Glen Miller, then I
modified them and remodeled parts.

Q: Was James Cameron as bad as he is said to be?

A: I never had a problem with him. He was the kind of director I like: he
knew what he wanted, and he had no trouble telling you what it was.
There are a lot of directors who want to see you do something ten
different ways, then they'll pick the one they want. That's fine for
some people, and in some situations, but I generally prefer it when the
director says "I want it to be 24 feet long, light blue, like this
picture, and I want this, this, this and this to happen on this, this,
and this frame." I'd work with him again in a second. He also said
some very nice things about my work when I wasn't there.

An example of how specific he was about what he knew he wanted: I was on
the team to do the animation of the sinking that they show to Rose near
the beginning of the film. That animation was originally one and a half
minutes (part of it was eventually cut, but appears on the CD-ROM), but
the meeting for it at Lightstorm lasted just over six hours! Plus,
there was a follow-up meeting at Digital Domain a few weeks later that
lasted another three hours! Those meetings involved going over tons of
research material to come up with a timeline and theory (like when and
how did it break?) that was as accurate as possible. They were also
attended by Marschall and Lynch. There's a lot of conflicting evidence
though, so a) it's hard to make everyone happy, and b) it's hard to know
what the *exact* truth really is for certain events.

I suspect that it's the fact that Jim knows so exactly what he wants
that makes it difficult for actors on the set, especially if they don't
really understand what he means. I don't doubt that he's tough on the

Q: How long was it until you viewed the full movie? Did you like it?

Despite talking to Jim about it right when the first rough cut was
finished, I didn't get the chance to see the complete film until the
crew screening, which was, I think, in November '97. It was difficult
watching it that first time because it was so distracting looking at the
effects. It was also distracting looking for things that were cut. I
liked it much more the second time. (Which is not to say I *didn't*
like it the first time, just that I couldn't get into it as much.)

Q: If you could have met anyone from the RMS Titanic, who would you meet and

A: That's too tough to answer. I don't think I could narrow it down.
There are certain crew members and certain passengers who I would have
liked to talk to. Maybe, off the top of my head, the list would
include: Smith, Andrews, Murdoch, Fleet, Astor, and the baker, Charles

Q: Did you have any previous interest in Titanic, or was it "just a job."

A: I had a mild interest for a long time, then when I decided to learn
computer effects, I decided to model a sunken version of Titanic. That
was in October/November '92, and I had the Lynch book, as well as a
Ballard book. I chose that to do because I was looking at getting a job
on seaQuest, which a friend of mine was building an effects company for,
and they were getting ready to do the pilot. I figured that doing
something so complex would show off my abilities quickly.
Interestingly, when I got on the show, I got to meet Ballard, who was a
consultant on it. I was able to spend a pretty good amount of time
talking to him and showing him my images. Then, on the movie, I got to
meet and work with (to some degree anyway) Don Lynch and Ken Marschall,
whose book had helped me so much years before. (And further
coincidence: Ken Marschall turned out to be the brother of a woman I was
friends with.)

That Titanic that I modeled in '92 ended up being slightly modified and
used as the "King George" in an episode of seaQuest that was centered
around an old sunken passenger ship.

Q: What was your favorite aspect of your job? Least Favorite?

A: I really enjoyed putting in all of the details on the digital ship. It
was a lot of fun showing it off to everyone. I also enjoyed all of the
people who worked on the show. Least favorite? Finishing.

Q: Did you meet any of the actors? Isn't Leo a dream? (JUST KIDDING! =) )

A: I met a few. Bill Paxton stopped by some time after the location shoot
was done (before Mexico). I met Billy Zane at the wrap party and he was
very nice; very friendly and humble. I also met Nick Cascone, but that
was fifteen years ago when we were friends in college! It was quite a
nice surprise to see him up there on the screen. I was reunited with
him at opening night at the Chinese theater in Hollywood.

Q: If you could have changed one thing in the movie, what would it be?

A: There are a few lines of dialog that, while I think they're perfectly
fine within the context of the movie, a lot of people seem to pick on as
things to complain about. I also wish that the American release had the
20th Century Fox logo instead of Paramount. Nothing against Paramount,
but to me, it was a Fox picture, not Paramount. I understand the
reasons, and I'm not faulting anyone; it's just a personal thing. I did
get to see the Fox logo on the front of it at the crew screening though.

Q: Do you have an Oscar? Have you seen one from the movie? If so, what do
you do with it?

A: We had one of the Oscars at Station X Studios for a while, but it's gone
now (it belonged to one of the supervisors, but he's gone on to other
things). It was one of the actual original ones that was handed out at
the show, not a copy. They actually do weigh a lot, so when you see
stars commenting on that, they're right!

Q: What is your favorite song from the movie, and why?

A: I think the "Nearer My God to Thee" sequence is the best within the
movie. If you want to know exactly what a director does on a movie,
that's a great sequence to watch (2 hours, 30.5 minutes in; DVD chapter
24). Watch what Cameron does with the sound and story during that
sequence. It starts in "reality", with the music and all of the
background noise, then it moves to just the music, with no sound,
showing the final "quiet" moments of the ship-- the Captain, Andrews,
the couple in bed, the "Tira Nog" story, the painting-- then, as things
get more and more hectic on the ship, the background sound starts to
creep back in, until, just when things are really crazy, you can hardly
hear it. The combination of music and visual storytelling works
wonderfully in that sequence. Whatever you think of the rest of the
film, that sequence is perfectly done. The music goes from fitting, in
terms of being quiet and moving, to ironic, in that it's such a
juxtaposition between it and the visuals, then blends into ironic _and_
fitting (because they *are* all going to be nearer to their God pretty
soon). It's sort of the bridge between the calm mannerly time and the
all hell breaking loose time. THAT is great directing. (Previous
versions of the sinking seemed to show the calm, mannerly thing for the
whole sinking, but I agree with Jim that it was probably closer to how
it is in this version.)

There was quite a bit of complaining about that song when the movie came
out. People said it was never played, or if it was, it wasn't that
version. Well, to me, it doesn't matter, because I see the movie as an
entertainment based on reality, not a completely accurate depiction. It
may not be the right song, but it's the song that "needed" to be there.

Q: When people know who you are, what is the first question they ask?

A: Well, it's not like I'm any kind of celebrity, so they don't ask
anything about me. I guess if there's anything that could be the number
one question I get asked about Titanic, it's "did you meet Leo?"

Q: Did you sell your crew jacket? Or are you planning on holding on to it?

A: I was Mr. Souvenir on Titanic, let me tell you. I have just about
everything, shirts, hats, jackets, etc. I knew the film would be hugely
successful, so not only did *I* buy things, but I convinced a lot of
other crew members that even thought they were burned out on it, they'd
regret it later if they missed out on buying these things. Of course
I'm going to hold onto this stuff. In fact, I have a light summer
jacket that I still wear constantly because it's the only light jacket
that I own (and this *is* L.A. after all, so it's always warm).

Q: Do you own the movie? What parts do you fast forward through...what parts do you watch?

A: I do have it, but I haven't watched it all the way through on video
yet. I just looked at each format (VHS, laser, DVD) in parts to see how
certain things looked.

Q: Do you regret working on Titanic?

A: Not at all!

Q: Any parting comments?

A: I'm just glad that the film was as well received as it was.

Q: OK, one last question...if you were invisible for a day while Titanic was
still in the works, what part of the process would you want to observe (I.E.
the filming, the editing, the stunts).

A: I guess I would have liked to been down in Mexico when all of the extras
were out walking around on the decks. I did get to go to the set, but
it was empty at the time. It would have been nice to see all of the
people and imagine what it must have been like in 1912.

There you have it folks, a tale from the inside! Thank you Fred, for
answering my questions, and being oh-so-wonderful-and-patient!


"I do believe you may get your headlines, Mr. Ismay!"


Rare picture

Of the twenty lifeboats launched, only one went in search of survivors after
Titanic sank. That lifeboat, under the command of Fifth officer Harold Lowe, was able to find only three living souls among the hundreds of bodies in the water. Most of Titanic's victims did not drown; they froze to death.

Book review
by Corey Ann
SOS Titanic, By Eve Bunting
Rating: 10 and up
Score: 3 1/2 out of 5

This story is spun around a fifteen year old boy's trip to America onboard the Titanic. Barry has left his grandparents whom have taken care of him for most of his young life to be reunited with his parents in America. Along with Barry is his paid guardian, Scollins. Also on board is the Flynn family, whom with Barry is acquainted with.

Barry is traveling in First class, but cannot help but keep himself from steerage where it is more exciting. Steerage also beholds Pegeen Flynn, whom Barry holds a secret crush for. However, Pegeen's brothers despise Barry for his wealth, and taint Pegeen's mind against him.

However, the iceberg strikes, and everything changes for all on board. Barry must decide if the Flynn boys are worth saving, and if he is willing to risk Pegeen's life along with her brothers. Some will live, and some will die. Much like that fateful night.

This book is a fictional work, and is not based on any true stories from any survivors. However, Barry does interact with some "real" people whom were on the ship, bringing this book to life with their anecdotes. I recommend this book to any young adult or Titanic enthusiast.


7th February 1873: Birthday of Titanic architect Thomas Andrews, Jr.

17th February 1914: President Wilson authorize U.S. Coast Guard International Ice Patrol.

26th February 1914: Launch of Titanic's sister ship Britannic

Thanks for reading this month's issue of Making Waves. We will return in March with more Titanic stuff for YOU!
See ya!

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