My, what a busy week! There are announcements from the likes of Pixar about their RenderMan software, interviews with London studios such as Pixomondo and the much more education controversy. Here's my pick of last week's more interesting stories.
Not sure how many of you picked up on this story, but a new report on the Global Animation Software market was released last month. The cost of the full report is a little steep at 3,983 Euro, but the press release did have some interesting snippets of information, which I thought I would share with you.
After the usual slow down over the festive & new year period, here at Escape Studios recruitment department we're now experiencing a big surge in demand for freelancers, right across the board.
This is possibly the moment many of you have been waiting for… HIERO, The Foundry's latest software project, has gone to beta. A closed beta ran over a short period of time for few individuals who got their name on a waiting list nice and early, and from what I’ve heard, they really enjoyed putting it to the test.
The biggest egg hunt that London has ever witnessed is taking place on the 21st February this year, all in the name of charity.
After an interesting last week in our Los Angeles studios, I have come back to what seems to have been a week dominated with announcements about the state of our education system. But my round up of news is not just about education news, and this week, there is news about what the London Olympic stadium is going to look like, details of Cinecite's internship program and lots more...
The Visual Effects Society (VES) are holding their 10th annual awards ceremony very soon, set to define the greatest VFX moments from 2011. Earlier in the week VES released their nominations for this year’s awards, a list that recognises the outstanding VFX achievements across film, animation, television, commercials and games. Regularly referred to as the “Oscars” for the visual effects world, this is a highly prestigious event for VFX professionals internationally. Receiving an award from any of the 23 categories is a great honour.
First week back at work and it's as if Xmas was months ago. The news certainly kept on coming this week, and here is a quick summary of what I picked up on this week.
Digital artist Kelly Richardson recently completed an artist’s residency at the Pixel Palace, a new digital media arts programme of the Tyneside Cinema in Newcastle upon Tyne. During her time there, she began initial research and production into an ambitious new three projection video installation entitled ‘Mariner 9’. During her residency, the Pixel Palace commissioned a short film about the work being developed where she explains some of her processes and ideas behind the new installation.
After an incredibly busy couple of months dealing with students' end of courses projects, as well as completing the first shot for my own showreel, I've found the time to work on the next episode of iNuked: my personal project to explore the possibilities of using The Foundry's professional compositing software NUKE, on my MacBook Air.
For those of you who logged into my November Free Tutorial entitled Animate a Bird and Make it Fly, you'll remember that I promised to deliver a second part to it. This tutorial uses a pre-created rig, which you can buy here and explores the mechanics of bird locomotion. It costs just $5 and trust me, it’s worth it. If you'd like a re-cap of what was in part 1, you can find all the details here.
It's been a while since my last News Round-Up... Hopefully, you will all be rested after this holiday season and rearing to go. So, to get you going, I have selected a whole bunch of news items which have been published over the last couple of weeks.
For anyone with an iPhone or an iPad here is a great app from our friends at MPC. If you are interested in entering the VFX industry, this is something which I would highly recommend. MPC's app shows the jobs they have available as soon as they are published, and is a great way of finding out about those entry level positions that aspiring artists are after.
Last Thursday, the winners of CG Whiz 2011 were announced at the much anticipated Reveal Event held at our Escape Studios headquarters in London. The room was busy with noise and champagne as Daniel Danielsson waited patiently to find out whether he had scooped first place. He needn’t have worried though as Mark Cass our General Manager and head judge Lee Danskin soon explained why Daniel deserved first place. With no professional training at all, he took it upon himself to learn all of the software that enabled him to create such a professional looking showreel. Check out the Reveal Event video, created by The Mill, to find out why Daniel was pretty much speechless when he found out.
Tweak are working hard to develop and expand their powerful playback software, RV-image and sequence viewer. Their latest development comes in the form of RV 3.12.13. With this new version you get all the usual benefits of real time reviewing software, but now with the additional support of Python to make this version the most powerful yet. This new addition to the product has been in beta for a while now, and has benefitted from extensive feedback from customers reporting rough edges and bugs. With this valuable knowledge behind them Tweak are happy to release RV with Python, confident that the results will impress all.
This will be my last Weekly Round-Up of News for this year..., hope you enjoy it. If you have suggestions for stories I missed, just drop me a line or post a comment. I'll be sure to look at your suggestion during the Xmas break.
I created this month’s free tutorial with one thing in mind: How can I help improve artists’ workflow’s? This tutorial explores Maya’s ‘Transfer maps’ tool and is designed to do just that. I’ve made sure that we cover this tool in great detail, providing valuable insight into how it works, and how you can avoid common problems. It’s a very practical, hands-on demonstration of the ‘Transfer maps’ tool and with it, you will learn how to bake a diffuse texture from multiple pieces of geometry to one individual model.
CG Whiz is over for another year, and it’s been a brilliant competition, with an incredible level of talent on show in both categories. It's now time for what you have all been waiting for, the announcement of the winners. But before I do so, I wanted to take time to give you some information on what our judges were looking for.
I thought I would let you guys into something special... A look at the truly fantastic Christmas video from The Mill's 2D department. In between working on some of the world's best VFX for commercial spots, The Mill still finds time to make a departmental Christmas video to compete at their Christmas party.
An old colleague of mine (thanks Miles!) recently posted this link on his Google+ profile and I was instantly mesmerised. Illustrator Dave DeVries has had the amazing idea of taking children’s drawings and representing them as ‘realistic’ paintings in a project called “The Monster Engine”. The results are absolutely amazing. The artist describes his initiative as “a book, a demonstration, lecture and a gallery exhibition. The premise for all three came from one single question: What would a child’s drawing look like if it were painted realistically?”