On September 7th, 2011 we held a webinar for Autodesk’s 2012 version of the Entertainment Creative Suites. As ever, registrations for this Autodesk webinar were plentiful, and we're delighted so many of you were able to join us on the day.
Here is my usual Weekly Round-Up of news with the stories that I have picked up over the past week. If you have suggestions for stories I missed, just drop me a line or post a comment.
Autodesk have an awesome competition running at the moment, with great prizes for the winning and runner-up entries. They are calling out for submissions of a scene or design created on either 3ds Max 2012 or 3ds Max Design 2012. The winning entry will be featured on the 3ds Max Design 2012 box cover and splash screen. Entries will not be judged on production quality, but rather on imagination, innovation and an ingenious use of the Max logo. They are looking for inventive concepts or renderings of architectural designs as well as mechanical or industrial production design. So be adventurous.
Following on from last week's announcement about our Weekly Round-Up of news, here are the stories that I have picked up over the past week. If you have suggestions for stories I missed, just drop me a line or post a comment.
Pixar, renowned for their cutting edge animation, know better than anyone the advantages of saving time where possible. The technical directors and supervisors on Cars 2 were faced with the challenge of building locations for this feature length animation. Those of you who have seen the sequel will remember that the lead character, Lightning McQueen, is being sent around the globe to race in the world Grand Prix. The challenge for the Pixar creative team was to build recognizable cities, on a very broad scale.
Ever find yourself wondering about a better alternative to your current network setup? Could there be a larger, faster and more predictable solution out there for your server / storage requirements? You are not alone in asking this question. This is fast becoming a major concern for many IT teams in the media and entertainment sector. That’s why we will be addressing this very topic at a special event being held in London on September 16th, 2011. Andy Bechtolsheim, a highly respected figure in the Information Technology industry is coming to London to share his expertise on this issue. Andy has been involved in the IT industry throughout his career. He has witnessed first-hand how computing infrastructures have scaled over the decades, and how network speeds have failed to keep up.
In a fast paced industry, where new technologies are being introduced more frequently, it can be difficult to stay on top of which products successfully aid efficiency and quality in our work. It’s great to know that some companies take an opportunity to show off their products and how they are being utilised in the industry. Last Thursday I made a special effort to attend an event for NUKE and MARI software. The torrential down pour that evening made venturing out difficult, so I was glad to see so many people were able to attend. Armed with umbrellas and rain coats well over one hundred of us braved the weather to enjoy an evening with NUKE and MARI, an event hosted by Escape Studios in collaboration with The Foundry and HP.
Our friends at Autodesk have just announced that from 27 September 2011, selected 2012 versions of Autodesk software will be available for download for subscription customers. Autodesk Subscription Advantage Packs offer early access to new product enhancements, giving you the very latest in Autodesk software. Subscriptions are available to contract managers, software coordinators or anyone who has been granted access to Autodesk product extensions.
In honour of the recently released Autodesk Entertainment Creation Suite, Escape Studios are hosting a webinar to highlight some of the nifty tools in this 2012 version. Maya guru Lee Danskin will be walking through how these artist driven tools can assist with multiple pipelines without compromising on creativity. With one click solutions that give faster results, this new edition promises to increase creativity, flexibility and productivity, and won’t burn a hole in your wallet.
I’ve been looking at the latest version of IKinema, and I reckon those of you out there who work on game animation might want to take a look at it. If you don’t know what IKinema is, the official marketing description is “A full-body animation technology that allows effortless run-time control of characters during game play to achieve full adaptation to a scene giving users a new game animation experience”.
A few weeks ago, I wrote about how buoyant the VFX industry is and how Senior NUKE Compositors are in high demand. Well, the surge in demand for mid-level and senior artists is continuing. With some of the biggest releases for 2011 and 2012 (films like The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn and War Horse) being worked on in London's Soho, the post houses have never been busier.
I met up with Jon Wadelton at The Foundry a few days ago and we had a chat about what's new in NUKE 6.3. Here's what he had to say.
We’re going to be hosting an event with The Foundry and Hewlett Packard called An Evening with NUKE and MARI in London on August 18th. The event is designed for professional artists who want to take a peek at the new features of NUKE, NUKEX and the newly launched bridge between NUKE and MARI. It will definitely be exciting to see first hand all that’s new in these products.
The Foundry just released NUKE 6.3 and there’s a lot of new stuff in the product. They’ve taken product development in a direction that allows users in all VFX industries to partake in the benefits of the product. NUKE is no longer just built for artists in the film industry, it is built to create highly visual commercials with the functionality that it now has.
I have just finished a great week teaching MARI to our new Compositing Professional class. I took them through UVing in Maya, and then taught them how to get to grips with MARI. As part of the curriculum, I also included for the first time the brand new NUKE to MARI bridge which makes the process of taking camera projections from Nuke to Mari and baking projections to UV space much quicker and more flexible.