Freezing a Muay Thai battle in time: Saddington Baynes premieres unique ‘Statue’ full-body 3D simulations

Freezing a Muay Thai battle in time: Saddington Baynes premieres unique ‘Statue’ full-body 3D simulations

You can view the entire piece here.

LONDON, UK – 12th May 2017 – With the release of its Statue project, London-based creative studio Saddington Baynes has created a frozen moment of a Muay Thai battle, utilising full-body 3D photo scans created in partnership with body-scanning experts FBFX.

Saddington Baynes is well-known for pushing the boundaries of technical innovation in the creative industry, establishing its R&D arm SBLabs to showcase this in-house ability. For Statue, SBLabs used advanced procedural displacement techniques, complex shaders and dynamic particle simulations to deliver a fierce fighting showcase. The results are already sweeping up accolades across the creative community, including a Platinum in the Creativity International Media & Interactive Design Awards.

James Digby-Jones, Executive Creative Director at Saddington Baynes, comments: “We wanted to create a project to showcase our expertise working with complex simulations and highly detailed 3D talent, while also demonstrating our imaginative storycraft and VFX capabilities. The Statue project quickly picked up a Platinum award and we’ve entered it into others. It’s a great piece that shows off a variety of high level skills, applicable to multiple market sectors.”

Scanning and capture

To achieve unparalleled detail required meticulous planning. SBLabs blocked out early concepts in Cinema 4D to explore strong poses and the choreography and to direct the camera path.

SBLabs then approached SFX costume and 3D scanning specialists FBFX, who captured key moments of the Muay Thai battle in live action, as one at a time the combatants jumped and punched and kicked, all the while being captured as high resolution point clouds and image maps from multiple cameras. Besides being martial arts enthusiasts, both models were actually part of the Saddington Baynes team – a Production Assistant and a CG artist!

Andrew White, Creative Director at Saddington Baynes, comments: “FBFX helped us build separate scan captures in ZBrush with seamless results. They were a huge asset, delivering exactly what we needed in line with our vision”

Particle simulation

Alongside these scanned models, Statue also features complex Houdini simulations. The models land blows on each other, cracking open igneous husks to reveal the searing heat below. SBLabs ran a series of customised fragmentation and tessellation processes on the geometry with look development performed in Mantra.

Andrew White, Creative Director at Saddington Baynes, comments: “We found that by outputting some custom aov passes we could create a hot metal look inside Nuke. By using holdout mattes and base beauty elements, this gave us a great way to time and control the intensity of the heat effect.”

Based out of London, Saddington Baynes has a long history of technical innovation. Besides being the original pioneers of digital retouching in 1991, Saddington Baynes were also one of the first production studios to harness the potential of CGI in-house. More recently, the team developed an Engagement Insights® service – the world-first use of neuroscience techniques to measure emotional impact of imagery. Recent commissions include Honda’s pan-European ‘Real View Test Drive’ campaign.

About Saddington Baynes

Saddington Baynes is a leading creative production agency that has produced premium imagery for advertising agencies and brand clients for 25 years.

Saddington Baynes’ mission is to create sensational imagery that inspires brand devotion, with a focus on emotional reactions and engagement. To achieve this, Saddington Baynes developed its Engagement Insights® service – an entirely new way to measure the emotional impact of imagery, using neuroscience techniques.

http://www.saddingtonbaynes.com/work/favourites/statue

3D Artist (Generalist)-Rough Draft

3D Artist (Generalist)

NOTE: This is a LOCAL job in Glendale, CA. and we have nothing to do with the hiring here. We post these only as a courtesy to our readers.
Do NOT post in the comments, follow the link HERE to apply.

Description

Award Winning Rough Draft Studios, the animation studio behind Futurama, The Simpsons Movie, Clash-A-Rama, and The Maxx is gearing up for its next big project, a new series for Matt Groening.

We are looking for talented CG Generalists to join our team of artists. If you can do it all (model, texture, rig, AND animate), we would love to hear from you!

Requirements:

2+ years professional experience with Maya.

Must have modeling, texturing, rigging, and animation expertise.

Working knowledge of Mental Ray a plus.

Good communication skills and organization.

Ability to respond positively to direction.

Need to work well as part of a team.

Strong artistic sense and technical mastery preferred.

Responsibilities:

Timely completion of CG shots from beginning to end.

Manage the progress of multiple shots simultaneously.

Model, texture, rig, animate, and render environments, effects, props and incidental characters.

Work with technical supervisor and episode director for approvals.

Handoff final rendered layers to composite group

Submission:

Please provide us with your resume and a link to your CG reel (3-5 minutes).

Please include a breakdown that indicates your involvement in each shot.

Please show us only the BEST examples of your work.

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?

Kids Entertainment Professionals For Young Refugees Fundraiser

Animators and actors, writers and composers, game designers and YA authors, producers, board artists, agents, studio and network executives – the entire international children’s entertainment community is coming together June 18-24 in an unprecedented grassroots fundraiser via Crowdrise. Help spread the word! PLEASE SHARE THIS VIDEO with friends and colleagues and SIGN UP FOR THE FUNDRAISER NOW at: https://www.facebook.com/events/114556855770817/
More information at our home page: https://www.facebook.com/kepyr/
Thank you – and Keep the Love Coming!

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.”

 

 

 

RTS Futures – VFX & Animation: Meet the Experts

Dive into the world of VFX and animation as we take you into the minds of our experienced panelists, including Alex Donne-Johnson, Creative Director at motion design studio Dazzle Ship, responsible for creating video for branding, broadcast, online and installations and Pete Allinson, Head of Design at multi-award winning broadcaster UKTV, the home of TV channels such as Dave and GOLD.

Throughout their careers, our experts have worked across a diverse range of fantastic projects spanning film, TV and advertising, utilising a range of VFX and animation techniques.

Learn how they have made it in the industry, the secrets of their career success and view some examples of their outstanding work, looking at both their creative inspiration and the “nitty gritty” of the technical and logistical aspects that come with this line of work.

This session will give you an insight into everything you need to know about making it in the world of VFX and animation, along with the chance to ask our experts any of your burning questions on the night!

Panelists:

Alex Donne-Johnson, Creative Director at Dazzleship

Pete Allinson, Head of Design at UKTV

Lindsey Watson, Founder of CANUK Productions, Head of Animation at Kindle UK and Founder of Animated Women UK

More expert panelists to be announced.

 

6:45pm for 7:00pm
Curzon Soho

Booking Details
Tickets are £10.00.
All tickets are non-refundable.
Tickets for full members of the Royal Television Society are complimentary but MUST be booked in advance – please provide your membership number when booking.

To sign up click here.