ROYAL TELEVISION SOCIETY OPENS ENTRIES FOR CRAFT & DESIGN AWARDS 2017

PRESS RELEASE

ROYAL TELEVISION SOCIETY OPENS ENTRIES FOR

CRAFT & DESIGN AWARDS 2017

 

London, 05 June 2017 – The Royal Television Society (RTS), Britain’s leading forum for television and related media, has launched the RTS Craft & Design Awards 2017. The Awards celebrate excellence in broadcast television and aim to recognise the huge variety of skills and processes involved in programme production.

 

Awards are presented in 11 categories including: Design, Make Up Design, Costume Design, Production Design, Effects, Directors, Photography, Lighting and Multicamera, Sound, Editing and Music.In addition, there are three awards given at the discretion of the Judges: Design & Craft Innovation, Judges’ and Lifetime Achievement Awards. Entries are not accepted for these categories but the RTS welcomes suggestions.

 

This year will see Lee Connolly, Creative Director at ITV Studios, take over as Chair of the awards from former Chair, Cheryl Taylor. He says, “The RTS Craft & Design Awards are an excellent way of recognising the extraordinary breadth of talent and depth of expertise we have throughout the creative content industry and I am delighted to be the new Chair.”

 

All entries must be submitted using the RTS Online Awards Entry System https://awardsentry.rts.org.uk/entrant/index.php by Friday, 1 September 2017. All entries must have been first transmitted between 1 September 2016 and 31 August 2017 and may be submitted by companies or individuals. The Awards will be presented on Monday 27 November 2017 at the London Hilton on Park Lane. For more information visit: https://www.rts.org.uk/awards/craft-design-awards.

 

THE AWARD CATEGORIES:

Design – recognises achievement in three categories: trails and packaging, programme content sequences and titles.
Make Up Design – recognises achievement in all areas of makeup, including hair styling and wigs, in two categories: drama and entertainment and non-drama productions.
Costume Design – recognises achievement in two categories: drama and entertainment and non–drama productions.
Production Design – recognises achievement in two categories: drama and entertainment and non–drama productions.
Effects – recognises achievement from any area of programme making in three categories: digital effects, special effects and picture enhancement.
Director – recognises achievement in three categories: comedy drama/situation comedy, drama and documentary/factual and non-drama productions.
Photography – recognises achievement in location based single camera work in two categories: drama and comedy, and documentary/factual and non-drama productions.
Lighting and Multicamera – recognises achievement in three categories: lighting for multicamera, multicamera work and multicamera work – sport. The Multicamera awards are designed to recognise those who work in studio based or OB multicamera programming across all genres.
Sound – recognises achievement in two categories: drama and entertainment and non-drama productions. These Awards recognise the whole sound team and both recording supervisor and mixing supervisor should be named on the entry form.
Editing – recognises achievement in four categories: drama, documentary/factual, entertainment and comedy and sport.
Music – recognises achievement in two categories: original title music and original score. The titles or score must be specially commissioned for a specific programme.

CGI 3D Animated Short Film HD: “POILUS Short Film” by ISART DIGITAL

A beautifully animated and rendered film but honestly the story left me a little wanting. I think it would have been better if it had been an alien enemy (because after all it looked nothing like another rabbit) and it was going to kill him and he played the harmonica and the enemy exploded because it couldn’t handle music, or at least if the enemy stopped attacking when it heard the music. Music soothes the savage beast sort of thing. What are your thoughts?

June Flix: Animation Nights New York program for Wed, June 14th, 2017

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Contact: Yvonne Grzenkowicz – info@animationnights.com, (347) 788-0243

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June Flix: Animation Nights New York program for Wed, June 14th, 2017

Animation Nights New York (ANNY) is a monthly animation event held in the South Street Seaport District of New York City. Our program consists of select animated short films and virtual reality animation experiences from all around the world.

Approx. run time is 80 minutes. Admission to this event is free. Refreshments are available for purchase at the venue.

Animated Short Film Program:

  • The Cold Heart. Hannes Rall. Germany, 2013. 29:00.
  • Nightlights. Katarzyna Pieróg. Poland, 2016. 2:20.
  • The Right Way. Emilio Yebra. Spain, 2015. 4:10.
  • Two Wishes. Nadav Tal. Israel, 2016. 1:00.
  • Waking Sleeping Bat. Oleksandr (Sashko) Danylenko. United States, 2015. 0:24.
  • The One Who Tamed Clouds. Nicolas Bianco-Levrin. France, 2015. 4:30.
  • You Are Not the Strongest. Emilio Yebra. Spain, 2016. 1:00.
  • The Shawy’s Fruiks Circus. Shawy. France, 2014. 0:15.
  • The Cuckoo. Mikhail Gorobchuk. Russian Federation, 2013. 12:15.
  • STADIUM N3. Renata Motyka. Poland, 2016. 2:45.
  • Dang it to Heck!. Rob Hunter, Chris Edser. Australia, 2016. 4:00.
  • LEMONS. Bonnie Mier. Netherlands, 2016. 1:57.
  • PNxKNF. Keith Kavanagh. Ireland, 2016. 2:52.
  • The Indigestion. Mathilde Remy. Belgium, 2016. 6:12.
  • The Beard. Sofya Badalova. Russian Federation, 2015. 7:03.

Virtual Reality (VR) Animation Experiences:

  • DO NOT Push the Red Button!. Peter Spence. Norway, 2016.
  • Virtual ANNY Demo. Animation Nights New York, High Fidelity, Artella. United States, 2017.

Event Details: Wed, June 14th 2017, 8pm — 180 Maiden Lane, New York, NY 10038

 

Getting to ANNY: Take the 4, 5, 6, A, C, 2, 3, J, or Z train to Fulton Street. Street parking is available.

 

RSVP: Eventbrite, Facebook, and Meetup

The Sword and the cineSync: VFX of King Arthur

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The Sword and the cineSync: VFX of King Arthur

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword feels like the logical next step in Guy Ritchie’s career – after all, who better to direct a modern reimagining of King Arthur than British film royalty? Ritchie has spent years moulding rough and rugged England into whip-smart stories of sleazy charm, and Ancient Albion feels like home turf.

Ritchie has driven a bolt of trademark energy through King Arthur’s folklore, the murky grasslands and staunch stone castles fizzling with the director’s verve. This is mythological Britain filtered through modern-day cinematic technique – not to mention some truly exceptional VFX, delivered under the watchful eye of VFX Production Supervisor Gavin Round (sadly not of the round table).

Boasting a decade of experience in visual effects, Round has worked on numerous blockbusters, chalking up visual feasts such as Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and Edge of Tomorrow. He teamed with Ritchie on King Arthur to breathe new life into the classic tale of swords, sovereigns and sorcery, corralling the project’s global VFX teams around a singular vision with support from cineSync.

“I came onto King Arthur in 2014, working with VFX Producer Alex Bicknell and VFX Supervisor Nick Davis, who I’d worked with on Edge of Tomorrow,” he explains. “Thanks to that experience, we had an established, effective workflow in place for meeting with vendors, viewing material, and of course, using cineSync. In other words, we could hit the ground running on King Arthur.”

Vendors of the round table

cineSync was key to making King Arthur’s VFX a reality, given the nine separate vendors involved in the process. Framestore stood as the lead vendor, operating out of both its London and Montreal studios. Contributions also came in from MPC’s Montreal team, Method Studios in LA and Vancouver, Scanline in Vancouver, and many more, totaling nine different studios.

Round was in the thick of the battle on King Arthur from pre to post, helping to establish Ritchie’s new kingdom of myth and magic across all studios involved.

“My duties involved managing vendors, making sure the shots came in on time and that the vendors had everything they need,” recalls Round. “cineSync enabled us to review the material constantly, so we were always aware of the status of any given shot. We could see it in real-time to discuss with the vendors.”

cineSync played a large role in creation of King Arthur’s many mythical creatures, such as a nine-foot CG villain, whose creation was split between VFX vendors Framestore and MPC.

“It was a delicate process, as we had to maintain continuity between the two vendors, who were essentially building different parts of the same being,” explains Round. “We needed to constantly review and check the material back-to-back to ensure everything transitioned correctly, no matter which vendor it came from. This is the exact kind of situation where cineSync is so useful – it saves a lot on travel!”

cineSync was used almost every day in post on King Arthur, particularly towards the end of the project. “We relied on cineSync heavily during the backend of the post schedule, at which point we were ramping up and getting most of our shots through,” says Round. “We used cineSync with all the vendors involved – we knew we could rely on it.”

The sword and the cineSync

cineSync proved to be a powerful tool throughout the filmmaking process – and one that, unlike Excalibur, anyone could wield: the entire King Arthur production team fell in love with the simplicity of cineSync – in particular, VFX Supervisor Nick Davis, who would make sure every VFX shot was reviewed, analyzed, and improved by all vendors.

“He likes to do cineSync sessions because he can pull up a shot, make marks on it, draw on it and tell the artists exactly where he wants a creature to walk,” says Round. “We did it for the big shots and small shots alike – whatever we were working on, cineSync ensured that the sequence ended up looking much better on screen.”

For Round, King Arthur revolved around the power of cineSync, ensuring that every shot was delivered to the ultimate satisfaction of all involved: “cineSync was completely intertwined in our day-to-day workflow. It was a brilliant overall tool and made my life much simpler.”

Or, as the British would put it: Bob’s your uncle!

The “deep paintings” of Warhammer 40,000K Dawn of War III

The “deep paintings” of Warhammer 40,000K Dawn of War III

Dawn of War III returns once again to the battle-scarred frontlines of Warhammer 40,000, bringing the conflict of Space Marines, Eldar and Ork to the lost planet of Acheron. Read on to learn how Axis Animation and director Abed Abonamous took inspiration from classical paintings to build the game’s brooding expository cut scenes, revealing a world where beauty and violence sit side by side…

Axis Animation first stepped into the ominous nightmare world of Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War III in early 2016. Relic Entertainment – the creator of the lauded real-time strategy series – called on the studio and director Abed Abonamous to create an announcement trailer that would challenge the expectations of the Warhammer franchise, revealing a darker take on the universe and its characters.

The result was a haunting journey through visuals inspired by the forbidding work of painters like Zdzisław Beksiński and H.R. Giger – mysterious stone structures tower behind plumes of dust; behemoths clash across corpse-strewn battlefields; and lonesome soldiers face their ultimate end with a wry smile.

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Axis and Abonamous were once again invited into the netherworld of Dawn of War III to further expand this atmosphere throughout the title’s in-game cinematics, imbuing them with the same tone and atmosphere as the trailer.

The team worked to create 14 minutes of compelling 2.5D “motion-painting” cut scenes, each exhibiting the scope and fury of Dawn of War III’s violent clashes with the same oppressive atmosphere that pervades the initial trailer.

Read on to find out how Axis approach each of these doom-laden tableaus, taking inspiration from the classical masters…

Deep paintings

As a team of Warhammer fanatics, Axis Animation stood as the studio of choice for Relic Entertainment, who knew the team would show due reverence for the beloved tabletop franchise.

Axis collaborated closely with Relic to ensure the cut scenes hit the right tonal notes from pre-production onwards, with Abonamous once again diving into the universe headfirst.

“Relic had a clear idea of the storyline; they gave us detailed scripts that covered all of the cut scenes’ narrative beats,” explains Abonamous. “They also gave presentations revealing how the scripts tied into the game’s narrative context, revealing what would happen between one cut scene and another. That was a kind of ‘narrative glue’, which we used to think of the cut scenes as part of a larger tapestry.”

Abonamous and Axis needed to make this “tapestry” feel as rich as possible, both narratively and artistically. As such the team chose to implement the cut scenes as a series of “deep paintings”. Each frame revealed an atmospheric diorama or character and environment, shrouded in the sinister atmosphere that permeates Dawn of War III.

“We broke down the scripts provided by Relic into storyboard sketches, and iteratively finessed them while discussing each with the developers,” Abonamous explains. “Relic’s scripts and briefings rarely mandated any specific compositions for each cut scene. We had a lot of flexibility in approach for the deep paintings we wanted to create, and could decide on compositions that allowed the camera to tell a story.”

Indeed, the similarity between storyboard sketches and final output can be witnessed in lead storyboard artist Paul Coulthard’s comparison reel, detailing the initial sketches alongside Dawn of War III’s final results.

A two-way street

Using Relic’s directions for the cut scenes’ narrative elements, Axis worked collaboratively with the studio to define the look, feel and approach of each short composition.

“We approached this very much in the vein of classical painters, who guide the viewer’s eye through use of composition and lighting,” explains Abonamous.

“Relic provided high-level designs for locations and characters, as we had to make sure that the cut scenes corresponded visually to the players’ in-game experiences. This wasn’t a one-way street, however, as the cut-scenes required higher resolution assets, which meant that sometimes we would design details on characters or locations, and then send them back to Relic for signoff.”

Once the rich, tactile designs were ready, each conveying the painterly style the Warhammer 40K franchise is known for, Axis worked to give the images subtle motions and a delicate seasoning of effects, then meticulously planned the camera movements through each diorama.

“Using the animated storyboards we had prepared as reference, we translated the nuance of the camera movements to the final images,” says Abonamous. “Relic gave us high-level feedback, giving us an idea of the important narrative beats. But otherwise we had a lot of creative freedom to explore visual and compositional options on our end.”

Fans first and foremost

Axis’ animated paintings were ultimately delivered as eight separate sequences, comprising 14-minutes of beautifully brutal narrative. Concept to delivery took six months, with Axis engaging in much technical and creative thinking along the way.

“The biggest challenge we faced was how to add a sense of depth to these paintings,” Abonamous recalls. “Our tech gurus came up with an approach that allowed us to use a ‘thick’ atmosphere of smoke, fog, and haze inside 2.5D compositions.

“We also had a lot of content to render, which always poses a challenge on projects of this scope,” he adds. “We streamlined the pipeline to a point where we saved time by rendering assets just once for an entire shot, regardless of the moving camera. That saved huge amounts of time and enabled us to focus on getting each sequence feeling right creatively and rhythmically.”

Beyond the technical innovations, the final animated sequences represent a deep pool of artistic talent: the sweeping panoramas glide past in amber and copper chiaroscuro, fetid Orks and bulwarked Space Marines held in moments of frozen bloodshed. It’s static poetry – taking the viewer through fragments of captured time.

“The Axis team on Dawn of War III are fans first and foremost, so they really put their all into this,” concludes Abonamous. “We’re the guys who played on tabletop for years, and now we get to find new and exciting ways to cast light on the characters and concepts we know so well. The excitement we feel for Warhammer 40K is evident in every frame.”

 

 

 

In Sequence Kickstarter

In Sequence is a new animated film from Brooklyn based artist George de Moura. The animation is executed in a fairly wonky style reminiscent of artists such as Mike Judge, Priit Parn, and Igor Kovalyov but at times utilizes a form of rotoscoping to increase the realism of the character movements and pacing. The film is part way through a crowdfunding campaign to help cover the expenses to complete the film. Professional actors will be used in the creation of the footage and audio that will be used as the foundation of the project. I hope that you can help make this project come to life by contributing or sharing through your networks.

Kickstarter – http://kck.st/2qv0QHE

Website – http://georgedemoura.com