SIGGRAPH: Blackmagic, Faceware, Thinkbox and More

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Blackmagic Design has totted up the numbers and announced that over 20 of this summer’s hottest films utilized its cameras and products such as Fusion Studio and DaVinci Resolve. Notable projects include VFX work in The Founder (composited by Jeremy Nelson at Moving Target), Independence Day: Resurgence (VFX plates by add’l VFX supe Douglas Hans Smith, Uncharted Territory) and The Shallows (Digital Sandbox). You can read more about Blackmagic’s impact on this year’s blockbusters here, and visit them at SIGGRAPH at booth #441.

Faceware Technologies has launched a new division, Faceware Interactive, dedicated to developing software and hardware for use in creating digital characters with whom real people can interact. The tech identifies the movement of an actor’s face from video and applies this to a CG character — in combination with Faceware’s head-mounted and stationary cameras, this system has been used on award-winning movies like The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and hit games like Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. Interactive applications include live performances with digital characters, person-driven VR and AR avatars, real-time interactive characters for kiosks, and instant animated content. Learn more at facewaretech.com or visit Booth #322.

Fabric Software is introducing “Blocks” with Fabric Engine 2.3 at the show. This powerful and flexible visual programming element enables artists to do things previously only possible by writing code, and opens up new possibilities for technical staff. Blocks are Canvas graph containers for user-provided functionality within a preset – the “block” inside a “for” loop is literally a Canvas graph. With Blocks, technical directors can create complex presets (either graphically or with code) exposing only the controls that make sense for non- technical users to modify. Users can then modify the preset by filling in the content of the blocks – visually — without needing to know all the details of the preset. Fabric Engine 2.3 is available now for download and will be shown at the Fabric Engine User Group July 26, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in Rm. 201B. Overview video here.

Thinkbox Software has teamed with VFX producer Joyce Cox (The Jungle Book, Avatar) to develop Vero, a new cloud-based VFX budgeting application that will be previewed at SIGGRAPH. Vero encapsulates Cox’s proven bidding philosophy and methodology into an accessible, easy-to-use interface that helps estimate and track VFX budgets from script breakdown to shot delivery. Users will be able to easily monitor both the details and the big picture of a project in four stages represented in the interface: Script Breakdown (with automatic scene and action breakdown and manual sequence grouping), Budget Room (manually rate shots based on complexity for better cost estimation), Market Place (create custom bid packages to share easily with vendors) and Contract Room (a central hub to manage bids, changes and contracts). Booth #449.

Nozon and Chaos Group announce a tech partnership that enables artists to create pre-rendered, volumetric VR. Using PresenZ and V-Ray, artists can design spaces with free movement and full parallax, without the help of a game engine, making full immersion that much easier to attain. “Animators, architects, designers – everyone has a need for immersive VR right now,” said Matthieu Labeau, Business Development Manager at Nozon. “Now everyone has the same opportunity to apply volumetric VR to their 360° movies.” PresenZ will be presented as part of Chaos Group’s V-Ray Days at SIGGRAPH, July 26 at 4 p.m. in Rm. 205. The app is available on Steam.

New Age Electronics, a division of SYNNEX Corporation, has signed an agreement with ZEISS Multimedia Devices to distribute the newly launched VR ONE Plus virtual reality headset to the U.S. retail channel. Designed with premium ergonomics, material quality and precise optics, the new model includes several changes that enhance the device’s functionality, including a universal smartphone tray that works with any Android or iOS smartphone with a screen size between 4.7 and 5.5 inches. This includes both the iPhone 6/6s and iPhone 6 Plus. More information www.newageelectronics.com”>online.

Faceware Interactive

Faceware Interactive