Check out this video of Richard Kerris and Chris Horvath from Lucasfilm/ILM discussing how Nvidia’s GPU power is speeding up simulation and render time:
Updated 02/12/2010: http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XMTQ1MzQyODk2.html
P.S. Sony employed a similar setup for Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs: http://www.nvidia.com/object/io_1254203383473.html
Very interesting and true article at IFC.com about the animation of the camera in today’s heavy visual effects movies. Here’s an excerpt:
What’s behind the craze for photographic “realism” in unreal stories? I suspect it’s not just the industry’s adoption of a cynical posture along the lines of: “Viewers today all have Attention Deficit Disorder, and they won’t sit still for anything, so the movies can’t afford to sit still, either.” I think there’s a kind of ass-backwards nostalgia operating as well — a nostalgia for cinema’s aesthetic and technical roots, roots that are all but invisible now that the analog production processes that once sustained the medium are going the way of jalopies with rumble seats.
Read the full article here: http://www.ifc.com/news/2009/09/mundane-fantastic.php
Found out there is a way to emit fluids from a texture without the use of particles. It’s a lot like emitting particles from a texture, but with fluids. Very handy for something like a match burning.
The problem is, it doesn’t work right out of the box. The Maya SDK comes with the source files to compile the simpleFluidEmitter plugin. But fortunately, I came across one’s that are already compiled for Windows and Linux:
Place the plugin file in the /bin/plug-ins folder located in your Maya folder. Open Maya and load the plugin in the Settings/Preferences/Plug-in Manager.
1) Create the emitter: createNode simpleFluidEmitter;
2) Plug it into your surface: addDynamic fluidEmitter1 “Your Object” (no quotations)
3) Create a ramp and hook that up to the emitter by using the connection editor: ramp outColor > simpleFluidEmitter texture rate (fluid emits from white)
4) Connect the emitter to the fluid using the dynamic relationship editor and make sure the emitter emits from “Surface”.
Interesting website for peeps in the industry.
From their press release:
VFXWages.com is a global tool that will help job-seekers see how they rate among other artists with similar skills and experiences in a particular location. Using the special Wages system, users can graphically compare wages and salaries around the world by typing in a city, state or zip code. Registrants can also obtain information about employment based on job title, company, start date and length of time the position will last.
The site just started a few weeks back, so it is still missing some wages. I’m sure with time, it will have lots of information.
Director Zack Snyder (“300”) and visual effects supervisor John ‘DJ’ Des Jardin discuss the creation of the CG character Dr. Manhattan.
February 17, 7:00 p.m.
1248 Third Street Promenade
Santa Monica, CA 90401
Image Quality Considerations for Cinematography and Visual Effects
The choice of an imaging system and camera has implications as never before. Choosing film or digital (or which type of digital) can have far reaching consequences on style, cost, image quality, and practicality. The Cinematographer and the Visual Effects Supervisor should be as integrally involved in these choices as they were in the selection of film stocks traditionally. This event will strive to help Cinematographers and Visual Effects practitioners find the correct balance between theory, practical implications, and current practices. Hans Kiening will present a scientifically based overview of Spatial Image Quality, Dynamic Range , and Grain & Noise. Learn how to judge what image capture systems are right for your project. Then Ray Feeney will host a panel of Cinematographers and VFX Supervisors as we look at the choices made by this years Oscar nominated cinematographers and VFX teams. Films to be discussed are: Benjamin Button , Dark Knight, Iron Man and Slumdog Millionaire. Each of these feature films made unique choices optimized for their individual projects. Never before have we had VFX and Best Cinematography nominations that cross as wide a spectrum of imaging choices — Traditional 35mm film, Imax, Viper, Silicon Imaging, etc. This promises to be an exciting (and perhaps controversial) evening of discussion.
Presenters: Dr. Hans Kiening and Ray Feeney
Claudio Miranda – DP ‘The Curious Case of Benjamin Button’
Wally Pfister, ASC – DP ‘The Dark Knight’
Matthew Libatique, ASC – DP ‘Iron Man’
Anthony Dod Mantle, BSC – DP ‘Slumdog Millionaire’
Eric Barba, VFX Supervisor – ‘The Curious Case of Benjamin Button’
(Other Panelists to be announced)
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Linwood Dunn Theater. 1313 Vine Street. Hollywood, CA 90028
6:30pm Snacks/Drinks 7:00-9:00 Event
Free for VES, ASC and Academy Members. PGA + DGA Members $10. All non-members $20
VES Members CLICH HERE to RSVP. All others please call (818) 981-7861
Lately I been collecting images of clocks and watches for my next personal project (they are a key component). I have also been testing out the new camera rig and preparing my animatic for framing shots and animation tests. Although it’s still too early to show anything, I did sketch out designs of clocks in preparation for story boarding and style frames.
Other then that, I have been packing and gathering stuff for my journey to LA tomorrow (January 28th 2009) for interviews. I’ll see if I can get a picture or two posted… maybe even document the trip. We shall see.
I am starting a new personal project and it requires some crazy camera movements. However, the default Maya camera’s suck at doing great camera moves, so I came across this badass camera rig for Maya. It’s called shotCam.
It’s a mel script Lionel Gallat wrote and can be downloaded at his website: http://seithcg.com/wordpress/
P.S. I also found this alternative here. It’s actually based on Lionel’s script and works just about the same.