Fire and Ice

Well, the first two days at my new place of work – albeit for about a year – has already thrown up some interesting things.

Firstly, the first episode of this show that must remain nameless is probably going to be the hardest. I have met the animators – serious cred to these guys, they are animating in Flash and they’ve got to get up to 8 seconds a day! – and they are all really great people. And I have broken down the VFX that I have to create. There are around 183 shots in the first episode, and around 50 of these are going to be quite effects heavy; the most biggest stumbling blocks being the fact that everything begins frozen – except for the characters – and then after one thing or another there is a resolution that includes fireballs.

So, no pressure there then (gulps).

And, due to the imminent release of Maya 2010 – come on Autodesk – I have been denied a computer. Great joy. It will now be on order since, as of today at Siggraph, people now know the approximate required spec for this Matchmoving, Toxic wasteland of Autodesk’s bundled creation. So, I will be After Effecting and Dynamic making in no time. I hope so, the schedules not getting any longer.

Erk.

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Maya 2009

Well…

and I quote:

Create breathtaking 3D with Autodesk® Maya® 2009 software. Ten years since its industry-redefining launch, Autodesk Maya software continues to push the envelope, with a feature-packed release. Addressing the increasingly difficult challenges faced today by everyone from one-man shops to chief technology officers managing a complex production pipeline, Maya 2009 delivers a host of new features and enhancements intended to maximize productivity, optimize workflows, and offer new creative possibilities for users in film, television, games, and design.

Okay then, so what have they done?  Well, it all looks a bit boring to say the least, except for the inclusion of nParticles – aka realMayaFlow IMHO – and the possibility of improved render passes.

I have to say, that the steam is really going out of the advancements in CGI.  What do we have that is new to look forward too?  Pearl Harbour brought us the innovation of an occlusion pass, remember that?  Colour bleeding and caustics – real wordl simualtion – HDRI and the like, we’ve already got.  What’s left?

I am feeling more and more that Blender is offering as much as Maya.  Why should I pay through the nose for something which creates the saem results as something that costs nothing?

Open Source is the new power.

Gimp Rocks!

(ahem, excuse me…)

Siggraph Approaches

Almost here now, and what are we going to be not surprised about this year?

Hmmm, let’s see…

Autodesk Maya 2009 will be launched with some amazing new changes to the interface and not a lot else unless you are a computer programmer in which case you’ll cream your pants at the way python has made major leaps with the API.

All other software will be porting to 64 bit versions – the one’s that haven’t already, that is – , and XSI will be ICE-ing all over the place.  Oh, chills…

And, of course, a raft of white papers to float on over the sea of hair, water, cloth and skin issues that face the CGI world every day.  Cloth capture?  Why?  I want to spend the better half of a week fighting with nCloth, do you mind?

Add to that the recreation of real world dynaics such as erosion and the like and what is there for me to do but sit back and wait for these wonderful effects to cahce.  Should be done in a month or two…

You can find out the program at: http://www.siggraph.org/s2008/

Siggraph 2008 Blues

I have been getting quite a lot of emails recently about Siggraph from the various and nefarious sources of my software.

I work in Manchester in the UK.

I would love to go to Siggraph, but have neither the cash nor the time to go.  When oh when are they going to do the decent thing and put this on in the UK?  That would be just fantastic, wouldn’t it?