Greg Russell

Partner | Creative Director

When XiteLabs co-founder Greg Russell graduated from Colgate University with degrees in Neuroscience and Music, he wasn’t quite sure what the future held. After gaining experience in Sony Music’s art department, he started Tandem Digital in 2000. The company then became active in film & television visual effects and title design. In the process, Tandem became a trusted resource for producers, directors, and concert video directors. They went on to create stunning concert animations for Rock & Roll giants RUSH and KISS, as well as fabrication and set designs for Neil Peart’s incredible “Time Machine” drumset.

More recently Greg directed branded experiences for some of the biggest companies in the world, including GE, Microsoft, and Disney.

Greg powerfully co-creates with his clients from the first brainstorm session to the delivery of the final, polished showpieces. Working alongside of event producers, Fortune 500 Corporations, popular music groups, and agencies, Greg maintains an unwavering focus on achieving a unique vision for each experience and brand as a whole.

Vello Virkhaus

Partner | Creative Director

XiteLabs co-founder Vello Virkhaus is a native of Kalamazoo, Michigan. After graduating from School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Vello went on to craft a niche in the  live event industry as one of the early pioneers of VJing. Creating visual content for some of the world’s largest and most well respected festivals such as Ultra, Coachella, Outside Lands, and numerous others, Vello gained a reputation as one of the world’s foremost VJs.

Through his first company V Squared Labs, Vello evolved his approach to include interactive technology, production design, and animation. He and his collaborators went on to produce some of the most influential immersive concert visuals and 3D projection mapped experiences in recent years. These included Amon Tobin’s ISAM, Blizzcon’s e-Sports Starcraft 2, NBC’s Heroes, The Skrillex Cell, Krewella’s Crystal Volcano, Infected Mushroom’s Pods, and countless other projects. Launching XiteLabs with co-founder Greg Russell, Vello leads XiteLabs’ creative team both bicoastally and internationally. 

Emile Wolsky

Media Producer

For the last 25 years, Emile Wolsky has designed and developed effective digital and award-winning productions. Emphasizing image mapping, CG animation, digital scenic, and widescreen formats, Emile constantly stays ahead of the curve in his field of expertise. His technical knowledge and understanding of the various complex live production components is evident through his video production, graphic development, and onsite media playback work.

Working in over 22 countries around the globe, Emile guides clients through the production of small and large-scale projects worldwide, with a unique ability to break down language and technology barriers. Emile’s devotion to high quality work and meeting deadlines makes him an industry go-to for many Fortune 500 clients. 

Jeremy Vannix

Technical Director | Post-Production Supervisor

In 2004, Jeremy Vannix formed Liquid Productions [LP] by teaming with a group of highly skilled industry associates. Since then, Liquid Productions has worked on a multitude of projects including national television shows, prime time commercials, and award-winning films. Throughout his professional career, Jeremy has found the most passion and success as a visual effects artist and editor. In 2010, Jeremy won the Award for “Achievement in Filmmaking” at the Las Vegas International Film Festival. He followed this up in 2012, by directing and editing the short film “Favor,” which was nominated for Best Comedy at the 168 Film Festival in Los Angeles. He later went on to supervise all visual effects and post-production for the documentary “Napa Valley Dreams,” a film finished in 4K (IMAX Resolution) with state of the art Dolby ATMOS Sound™ and the made for TV film “Miracle at Gate 213” that nationally aired Christmas Eve on NBC.

Celebrating his expertise in the area of cinematic arts, Jeremy serves as Adjunct Professor of Film at La Sierra University in Riverside and he also guest lectures at California State University Channel Islands. In his spare time, Jeremy mentors many aspiring filmmakers as he strives to instill hope in the future of cinema.

Diego Castro

Technical Director of Virtual Production & ICVFX

Diego Castro first began his career as technical creative in live performances and conferences. Working in positions such as Lead LED Tech and Lead DMX Systems with artists such as Busta Rhymes, Marshmello, Lil Uzi Vert, and Chris Lake, Diego brings his technical expertise and team player mentality to every production he works on. More recently becoming fully immersed in the virtual production game, Diego is well versed in multiple virtual production pipelines, such as nDisplay , Renderstream, and green screen. Now officially part of the XiteLabs team, Diego has played an integral role in the company’s work with Fortune 500 clients such as Microsoft and music artists such as Bryson Tiller and Lil Nas X.

Samira Bashout

Producer

Samira Bashout

Samira Bashout is a solutions oriented Experiential Events Producer in LA with over 9 years of event management & marketing experience from ideation to event execution and reporting with brand activations, strategic event programming and special events. She also serves on the Board of Directors for International Live Events Associations as their VP of Programs + Education.

Samira credits her ongoing fascination and experimentation with textures, colors, design techniques and highly organized details to her education at NewSchool of Architecture and Design, and the Event Management Program at University of San Diego. Samira’s architectural studies have been particularly instrumental in her unique perspective on event floor plans and her understanding of traffic patterns, as well as the use of unusual elements in event design.

Rodel Aragon

Unreal Engine Generalist | Game Developer

Rodel Aragon could easily be called a one man technical army. Spending the last half decade mastering computer languages such as C++, C#, and Java and programs such as Unreal Engine and Unity, Rodel is a well versed developer. Graduating in 2020 from Baker College with a degree in Game Software Development, Rodel maintained a spot on the Dean’s and President’s List throughout his time there. Upon graduation, Rodel officially began his professional career at XiteLabs.

Now an integral part of XiteLabs’ XR team, Rodel brings a high level of technical skill and creative ingenuity to everything he touches. Programming, modeling, and texturing new environments and fully immersive experiences on the daily, Rodel has since worked with clients such as Fox Sports, Microsoft, and Columbia Records. An avid gamer, Rodel dreams to one day create his own video game that brings his passion for creating alternate worlds to the forefront.

Bobbie Bunn

Graphics & Video Designer | Technical Production

Bobbie got her start in visual effects for film and media at the University of Utah. Her love of VFX and Virtual Reality led her to Los Angeles where she took an internship at a Virtual Reality studio as a Junior Compositor. Soon after she became a Video Tech at Avalon Hollywood; VJing for local and touring DJs as well as special events. She continues to create content and VJ for other EDM festivals and DJs in the LA area.

She joined XiteLabs in 2020 to assist in managing a few major projects. She now wears many hats at the studio and can be found editing videos, designing motion graphics, creating 3D assets, operating the camera jib, and assisting the Technical and Creative Directors with anything that might come up. She definitely found the perfect place to utilize her many talents!

Steve Geer

Project Manager & Producer

Originally from Central New York, Steve Geer developed a passion for AV early on. Fascinated by the technical side of the creative process, in high school Steve built and ran a recording studio where students could learn about recording arts and the music industry. Steve furthered his interest when he chose to enroll in Syracuse University in pursuit of a degree in Television-Radio-Film and then later on a master’s degree in Audio Arts. While at Syracuse University, Steve began doing freelance audio/video work and became progressively more active as a videographer/cinematographer.

Upon graduating Steve relocated to Los Angeles in pursuit of a professional career as a technical creative. He eventually landed at Yamaha Guitar Group where he played an integral role as a videographer and editor in their marketing department. While at Yamaha Guitar Group (YGG), Steve was able to help raise the production value of their video content. He also assisted with multiple successful production launches. Steve’s favorite project was a trip to Hamamatsu, Japan where he was able to explore and film different parts of Yamaha headquarters and their legendary vintage guitar archive.

Now working as a full-time project manager and producer at XiteLabs, Steve brings his positive and uplifting attitude and fresh perspective to the team. As a content creator/videographer/editor, Steve places a high value on developing and maintaining a structured and organized workflow. A forward-thinking visionary, Steve believes that XR and AR are the future of the entertainment industry. He is excited to be on the brink of this exciting field through his work at Xite.

Matt Baamonde

Unreal Engine Specialist | CG Artist

Matt Baamonde is a constant creator. With a background in music producing and film scoring, Matt earned a degree in music composition from the prestigious Berklee College of Music. After working in Hollywood for over a decade on hundreds of TV shows and movies in roles across the creative spectrum, in recent years Matt found himself working as a VFX artist and character animator.

With a tremendous passion for technology, Matt enjoys pioneering the new era of digital metaverses. He is excited to be on the bleeding edge of the new wave of media and entertainment, an area he  views as chock-full of endless possibilities.

A well-rounded creative and forward thinking visionary, Matt’s skills include visual effects, graphic design, illustration, photography, video editing, graphic design, and music production. His background in music grounds him  in rhythm and movement, key ingredients in the visual arts. Matt thrives on the ability to manifest anything he can imagine. At Xite, Matt has found a team that fully embraces a creative mindset and allows ambitious artists to excel at what they do best – create!

Brian Egan

Visual Artist | Animator | Motion Designer

Brian is one of those people that you wonder about. How is it possible for someone to be so nice and always bring a smile to the studio, yet be such a solid and creative artist? We’re still trying to figure that out. Whether it’s creating beautiful animations in C4D or building custom guitars, Brian is a true creative, and a gem of a guy.

Kevin Aguirre

CG Artist | Animator | Motion Designer

Kevin Aguirre is a Southern California native, and a wonderful CG Artist! He studied Photography and Multimedia all throughout school, eventually taking his first job with Maxon Tech Support in 1999 – 2004 where he wrote a number of training materials and demo presentations for several trade shows such as Siggraph & NAB. This led him into production work as a previsualization artist for several films, including Mission Impossible 3, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, Star Trek, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, and Justice League. Full IMBD List here
Kevin also worked in Broadcast and Sports Graphics for several years with Cake Studios doing projects for DirectTV Red Zone, the Denver Broncos, Pac12 Network, and MLS.
Kevin joined the XiteLabs team in 2019 for Blue Shield, then continued on with the Diriyah project and continues to work on our Virtual XR projects.

Pierce Cook

Director of Photography

Pierce Cook was first driven by his inspiration to work in cinema after spending the entire summer of 1993 in a theatre watching the riveting dinosaurs in Steven Spielberg’s classic film “Jurassic Park.” Fascinated by the imaginary worlds that only the cinematic arts can portray, Pierce graduated from the University of South Carolina in 2005 with a degree in film. Working as a freelance cinematographer and director since that time, Pierce has taken behind the camera roles on countless commercials, dozens of short films, and nearly half a dozen features. Working for major studios such as Warner Brothers, Universal, Sony, Disney, and ABC, his key projects include “Star Wars,” “Jurassic World,”  “Terminator,” “Friends,” “The Big Bang Theory,” and “Spiderman.” He has also worked for leading organizations and companies such as the NBA, The NCAA, and Mattel. What lights Pierce up most of all is creating high quality work with passionate people. When Pierce isn’t working, he enjoys high quality cuisine and spending time with his amazing family.

Myokung Shon

Scenic & Multimedia Designer | CG Artist

Myokyung is an international scenic, production, and multimedia designer for theatre, film, live performance, and entertainment. After earning her BA in Creative Media from the City University of Hong Kong and working on a major commercial advertisement there from 2016-2018, Myokyung then enrolled in CalArts’ prestigious MFA program in Scene Design. During her time at CalArts, Myokung found herself working in theatrical scenic design and film production design around the Los Angeles area. Myokung discovered that what fascinated her most was the emergence of live performances within virtual worlds.

Upon graduating from CalArts, Myokung officially came onboard with XiteLabs as a scenic designer where she has since worked on projects with clients such as Microsoft. Carrying extensive interdisciplinary experience across various mediums, Myokung strives to bring her unique multicultural perspective to the rapidly changing digital sphere.

Valerie Aragon

Programmer

Valerie followed her passion for computers and decided to study computer science at Baker College with a focus on programming. While at school she found that she loved the problem solving challenges of coding and enjoyed learning the nuances of different programming languages. Motivated to better herself and to find a worthwhile career, she joined XiteLabs to put her programming skills to work. She helps build more dynamic worlds made in Unreal Engine using C++. Outside of work, Valerie enjoys playing video games, listening to music, attending concerts, and reading fantasy novels.

Liam Fang

Technical Artist

Liam Fang grew up in China in the mid 2000s amidst the video game industry boom. From a young age, he was constantly fascinated by video games and 3D art. A self-proclaimed technical artist, Liam believes that game engines such as Unity and Unreal provide the perfect bridge between the art and tech worlds.

While still in his home country, Liam earned a bachelor’s degree in environmental design from the South China University of Technology, Guangzhou. Liam then finished his studies with a master’s degree from the prestigious Academy of Art University in San Francisco, where he spent the last three years studying 3D art, game engines, and programming.

A new graduate, Liam is excited to begin his professional career while delivering his unique skill set and background to the XiteLabs team. In his spare time, Liam enjoys watching fantasy films and studying art history by visiting museums. Liam strives to inspire others through his art, hoping to leave unforgettable impressions in the lives of others.

Elisa Mendoza

Studio Manager

Elisa Mendoza

Elisa started her career as a child model/actor, coming from a family of entertainment industry professionals. She continued to surround herself with talent and entertainers, learning about the business aspects of the industry and contributing to her family’s involvement. Her love of music and experience in entertainment combined in her adult professional career, as she moved into team management – streamlining workflows, enhancing productuvity and organizing crews. This experience, along with her love of team-building, led her to her current position at Xitelabs, where she runs the studio and maintains a consistently appealing and high-functioning work environment for the team who truly appreciate her and what she brings to the studio.