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Tuesday, November 24, 2009

finalRender R3 Shipping NOW!!!!


+ cebas VISUAL TECHNOLOGY Inc., makers of finalRender and ThinkingParticles, today announced the release of finalRerder R3 and finalRender R3 Studio Edition (short:SE), the long awaited 3ds Max plug-in rendering system, specifically designed to meet the needs for Roland Emmerich's record breaking motion picture “2012”, co-produced by LA based film production company Uncharted Territory. Users looking for an update from their Release 2 as well as new users interested in getting the latest in rendering technology for 3ds Max can now come over to the brand new cebas Web-Portal at www.cebas.com to order their personal copy or update of finalRender R3. With its 3rd release of finalRender, cebas introduces for the first time two flavors of finalRender for their customers to choose from. Customers with potentially large scale projects, or 3D artists heading for the ultimate in quality and flexibility will option for the new 3ds Max renderer flagship: finalRender R3 SE - it was specifically designed to meet the needs for Roland Emmerich's $200 million picture "2012", co-produced by LA based film production company Uncharted Territory. All the changes introduced into this latest release of finalRender made it the renderer of choice for Uncharted Territory.
Many first of a kind features and unique tools have been developed to cope with this extremely demanding production environment, allowing for complete flexibility and fast turnaround times from start to finish. One of the most challenging tasks was the creation of a completely new Render Passes system able to outperform the built-in system of 3ds Max. Handling of 100+ Render Elements per frame was a big task that had to be solved. 3ds Max has a built-in maximum of 32 Render Elements per frame which had to be overcome by finalRender Studio Edition, as well as addressing the problem of the extra amount of memory needed for so many Render Elements. finalRender Studio Edition is packed full of explosive power, ready to get unleashed for all of your demanding rendering tasks - waiting for you out there. finalRender SE is complete! It is the first rendering system for 3ds Max that comes with finalToon R3 and pyroCluster 3.5 and all available former finalShaders with unlimited network rendering. No other rendering system on the market offers this kind of completeness when it is about rendering large scale images.To learn more about finalRender R3 SE and about the differences to the standard version follow the link:
about finalRender R3 SE

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HQueue - Public Beta



+ Side Effects Software, an industry leader in 3D animation and visual effects software, is pleased to announce the public beta release of new artist-friendly HQueue cloud computing tools. Studios and individuals who are looking for an artist-friendly way to harness the processing power of Amazon’s EC2 compute cloud will now be able to launch renderings and simulations from right inside Houdini. While the HQueue cloud has clear benefits for Houdini users, it can also offer a path for other Digital artists. Houdini Master, Houdini Escape and Houdini Apprentice HD can all import FBX or Collada files from packages such as Maya, 3D Studio Max, Sketch-up, Z-Brush and Poser. Houdini’s Mantra renderer can then be used to render these scenes on the cloud.
More and more studios are discovering the performance benefits of Houdini Mantra and with access to cloud computing tools things will only get faster. Mantra includes micropolygon, raytraced or physically-based rendering as well as depth of field, fast motion blur, high dynamic range image support, deep raster files and high quality displacement mapping. Renderings can be distributed on up to 20 machines while simulations can be set up on a single machine. Distributed fluid simulations are planned for a future release of the cloud computing tools
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Dogs 3D Model Pack and Exceptional offer


+ N-Sided proposes a new Model Pack Pro, including five 3D multi-resolution dogs data bases. These new additional models for QUIDAM are delivered with textures, normal maps, animation skeletons, skinning... ready to be animated into any 3D software. Presented into five main morphological categories (Boxer, Greyhound, Mountain Dog, German Shepherd, Dachshund). these highly detailed bases allow artists to create a multitude of dogs! A Model Pack Cats, other 3D animals Packs as well as new Human Characters Packs will be available soon. For the fourth birthday of the first QUIDAM Beta release, N-Sided proposes an exceptional offer until the end of November: 40% OFF on the whole QUIDAM product line! It's now or never ... to discover QUIDAM, the unmatched 3D tool with high-quality content!
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Friday, November 20, 2009

Hyperfocal Design Releases New 'VHDRI Skies: Magic Hours' Collection


+ Digital Art developer Hyperfocal Design has bowed to demands for a VHDRI sunset and twilight collection by offering a huge VHDRI collection with 20 sunset and twilight HDRIs. The sky panoramas in Magic Hours weigh in at a huge 14,000 x 7,000 pixels with super high dynamic range - up to 20 stops. Magic Hours is the third product in Hyperfocal's "V Series" of products, which feature very high resolution, super high dynamic range, and industry leading image quality. Jay Weston, founder of Hyperfocal Design says, “We have been getting a lot of requests for sunset and twilight HDRs, and I'm very happy that the weather has been good to us and provided us with some breathtaking images for our customers to use." Magic Hours is available at Hyperfocal's VMstore either as a physical or downloadable product, and retails for $397 USD. Hyperfocal Design specializes in creating high end HDRIs and textures for computer graphics professionals, and prides itself on delivering only the best artwork at the highest resolutions. Hyperfocal's customers include big names such as Digital Illusions, SteeleVFX, Codemasters and Fusion Creative.
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A-tube: Animation Festival - call for entries



+ The entry forms for the Short-films contest and for “The Golden Storyboard” award, the first and only award dedicated to the Storyboard Artists are finally online. Works eligible for "The Golden Storyboard" must be related to shows released after January 1st, 2005. An exhibition of the best submitted storyboards will be part of the Festival as well. A-tube is an international animated film festival with two important prizes: the ANIMATED SHORT FILMS COMPETITION and, in a world exclusive, “THE GOLDEN STORYBOARD” PRIZE – with respective exhibition – the first and unique recognition dedicated to storyboard artists, drawing professionals who work in the live-action film-making industry and in animation. Works eligible for "The Golden Storyboard" must be related to shows released after January 1st, 2005. A-tube aims to cast new light on the art of animation, favouring its development and diffusion.

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ProUV for ZBrush - v1.1 released, with Zbrush 3.5 R2 support


+ We're proud to announce that ProUV professional UV unwrapping plug-in for ZBrush has been released in version 1.1 and is now available for download and commercial licensing.Trial version is also available for download, and is limited to 15 days of usage and at most 5000 mesh-faces per unwrapped model. All artists are welcome to download and check out the plug-in - user feedback, feature requests and bug reports can be left on our support forums. ProUV features sculpting optimized automatic UV map creation, which significantly improves upon existing GUV and AUV built-in ZBrush unwrapping solutions. Improvements can be experienced in all texture related workflows, and to demonstrate it we have provided a few examples on the plug-in web page. The plug-in is available for commercial licensing for Zbrush 3.0 / 3.1 / 3.5 R2(only Windows OS is supported). The trial version can be freely downloaded from our web home-page at www.speedy.rs/prouv. The trial is limited to 15 days of usage and at most 5000 mesh-faces per model.

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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Washington DC Motion Graphics Festival 09



+ The DC Motion Graphics Festival showcases explosive artists and motion picture creators including: Shepard Fairey, Nine Inch Nails, David Byrne, Chuck D of Public Enemy, KRS-One, Addictive TV, Digital Kitchen, The Mill, Passion Pictures, Animal Logic, Post Panic, Dvein, David Lobser and more. MGFest presents a series of audio visual art happenings featuring live performances by: Ghostly's Matthew Dear aka Audion who recently wrapped up a European tour, the multi-talented composer and instrumentalist Benn Jordan widely known as The Flashbulb, and lightrhythm visuals sought after sketch projectionist Shantell Martin from Tokyo, plus many more surprises TBA with nightly eye-opening events happening November 19th through 21st. DC Motion Graphics Festival 2009 will runs from Nov 18-22.

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Imagi’s “Astro Boy” Leaps Onto Movie Screens With Autodesk Maya Software


+ The newly released animated film “Astro Boy” brings the iconic Japanese manga character to movie theaters. Filmmaker Imagi International Holdings Limited (HKEx: 585) created “Astro Boy” with Autodesk Maya software from Autodesk, Inc. Maya was at the core of Imagi Studios’ around-the-clock production pipeline spanning Hong Kong and Hollywood. Osamu Tezuka first created the manga series about Astro Boy, a permanently youthful robot boy, in the 1950s. Quickly gaining popularity, it was developed into a black-and-white televised cartoon in 1963 -- the first Japanese TV series with an aesthetic that later became known worldwide as anime. On October 23, 2009, “Astro Boy” made its cinematic debut as a fully animated feature film.
Imagi Studios invested US$65 million to create “Astro Boy.” The company’s production pipeline included concept and character development, script writing and preliminary design work by its Los Angeles team; and a Hong Kong team of more than 400 artists focused on modeling, texturing, animation, lighting, rendering and compositing.
Francis Kao, founder and creative director of Imagi Studios, said, “We chose Autodesk Maya as our animation platform for ‘Astro Boy’ because of its openness, creative tools, and large pool of trained artists. We relied on the software’s powerful feature set, and our programmers also developed custom plug-ins for Maya, enabling us to efficiently create high-quality animation.” Imagi Studios’ principal business is the development and production of computer-generated films. Released in 2007, the company’s animated film “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” was also made with Maya. The film opened in top position at the U.S. box office -- a first for an animated film created in Asia. “For ‘Astro Boy’ foliage simulation we used the Maya software’s paint effects together with our in-house plug-in,” said Johnny Mak, head of technical operations at Imagi Studios. “Having relied on Maya for many years, we’ve seen great advancements in the software’s capabilities. It continually helps us deliver world-class animation.”

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Roof Designer version 1.4 For 3DS Max


+ Batzal Software Roof Designer version 1.4 For 3DS Max has just been released. The Roof Designer plugin saves you precious time by modeling texturing and covering your roof with tiles within seconds. Roof Designer helps you create architectural renderings with unprecedented quality. Roof Designer Version 1.4 includes several new features such as sidings and wall shingle covering support. Try it for free on www.batzal.com.

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Friday, November 06, 2009

Dosch Design presents free Tutorials and Samples


+ The new Dosch Design segment "Dosch Samples & Tutorials" has been created in order to support users in the optimal use of Dosch Design products, and for identifying solutions for specific task requirements. Delivered and presented by well-known experts, these English & German Tutorials are immediately available for illuminating complex work processes. The Tutorials are perfect for CG-novices, but will also offer a multitude of tips for advanced and professional users. Best of all, they can be downloaded anytime from our Homepage. The Tutorial series starts with several interesting topics like use of animated or non-animated Viz-Images in a scene, and specifically how to obtain very realistic results through changes in lighting and shadows. Besides there is a demonstration how "Rigged Humans for Cinema 4D" are properly used, and how Humans V2 can be animated with Cinema 4D, Maya, Softimage or 3D Studio Max.
Furthermore Dosch Design provides basic information on working with HDRI, like how highlight-reflection and realistic illuminations are created, and how objects like spheres, cars and figures can be integrated in a HDRI environment. Realistic reflections and shadows can be achieved with the help of Cinema 4D. Also included in this Tutorial are settings of a simple scene background and a photo-studio. Dosch Design has additional Tutorials on the drawing board, lending a hand with interesting and sometimes challenging topics. Quicker and better results are possible with proper guidance. Visit the homepage for useful details. Besides the Tutorials it provides numerous test-samples for various products - free of charge.
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Free Tutorials and samples

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Creature FX volume 1 (for 3ds Max)


+ Today Allan McKay announces a new 3D Studio Max Training Series Creature FX, aimed for FX animators and Technical Directors involved in Feature Film Visual FX, Game Development & TV Post Production to expand their knowledge of CGI, especially in the area of visual effects. Creature FX Volume 1, takes a case study of popular visual effects topic of character’s in film such as vampires, demons and other monsters – burning up, disintegrating or ‘ashing’ and looks heavily in depth into the creation and workflow process for building these types of visual effects shots from the ground up in a studio production environment. From initially taking the animation shot and creating all of the visual effects in form of advanced particle systems, shader development and fluid simulations, but also streamlining the process for easier distribution amongst hundreds of shots or updating and making changes more easily. Later building many of the render passes and compiling and taking the shots look to the next level through the use of Compositing Tools.
Creature FX Volume 1 is aimed at Intermediate to Advanced users but designed in a way that should be easy to follow and understand for all viewers beginner through to expert level. With over 8 hours of advanced training content recorded in crystal clear audio and high resolution video and easy to follow instructions both on core theory and methods for creating industry standard Hollywood Visual Effects, available for $79 USD from October 30 2009. Allan McKay’s previous training material includes Fume FX Advanced, Fume FX Essentials & Advanced Visual FX Volume 2 and dozens of other Autodesk Certified Training DVD’s, Master classes and Online Workshops for CG Society. All of which have been contributed to training artists for dozens of video game and feature film studios all over the world. Allan is also a frequent speaker at all Autodesk Events and SIGGRAPH Master classes each year. Allan McKay is a multi Emmy Award winning Technical Director and Autodesk Max Master working for over nearly 14 years in Visual FX working on many of today’s blockbuster Hollywood films He has worked for dozens of leading studios all over the world including Frantic Films, Blur Studio, Digital Dimension & Industrial Light + Magic.
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JOHNNY KELLY GETS INTO THE OLYMPIC SPIRIT


+ Nexus director, Johnny Kelly, has created a beautiful hand-made spot that encapsulates the spirit of the Olympic goodwill. Using an innovative technique, Johnny uses stop motion to animate hundreds of individual paper collages, each hand-cut and torn. At the first stage these were created as computer 2D and 3D animation so that complex camera movements could be planned to create effects such as the spinning earth. Each collage was then created and photographed using the computer animation as a guide.
Filmed in one continuous shot, we are taken on a journey as each Olympic symbol seamlessly segues on into the other. The subtle differences and imperfections in colour and texture that this creates infuse the spot with a warm energy that communicates in a universal way the over-riding message of the Olympics - it's a celebration for everyone, all shapes and colours. Johnny said, “This project was a lovely opportunity to engage with and contribute to the Olympic games. Being one of the least sporty people I know this was clearly my only way in. The animation is made up of 338 individual paper collages and I was lucky enough to work once more with Elin Svensson, who worked tirelessly to help create these."
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Introducing Amera S2DIO for 3ds Max


+ Amera S2DIO is unique with its functionality. It has been designed to calculate render resolution based on the user’s choice of scale and the selected viewpoint. Amera S2DIO is a utility that works with 3D Studio Max. Its aim is to create cameras that can be used to render orthographic images in scale. Since most people's renders are out of scale and because it is very important for the good presentation, we created Amera S2DIO to give you that extra feature that 3D Studio Max was lacking. Architectural visualizators will be pleased to offer scaled draft renders to their clients. Architects love to sketch on top of renders!
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i3DTutorials™ releases “Production Instruction with 3ds Max 2010: Volume I ™”


+ i3DTutorials™ announces their latest training product for Autodesk 3ds Max 2010, “Production Instruction with 3ds Max 2010: Volume I ™". This new offering from the growing i3DTutorials™ library of Autodesk 3ds Max training products, introduces 3D artists to the advanced concepts and production workflows needed to complete complex modeling projects using professional polygon modeling techniques and workflows. Emphasizing production proven techniques and taking users step by step through a demanding production scene that mimics the complex scenarios and challenges commonly found when modeling polygonal objects for production, “Production Instruction with 3ds Max 2010: Volume I ™" discloses the professional techniques and knowledge needed to begin mastering the powerful modeling tools available in 3ds Max. Key highlights include step by step instruction using professional modeling techniques with focus on speed, ease, and efficiency. New features found in 3ds Max 2010 are also covered in-depth, such as the new Graphite Modeling Toolset, which makes available an incredible amount of new polygon modeling tools and features. Volume I takes the user through every step of the process involved in modeling a complex interior environment, placing emphasis on showing techniques that are efficient, fast, and make difficult modeling tasks as easy as possible. Discover production workflows and techniques designed to take full advantage of 3ds Max’s powerful modeling tools. Addressing the need and demand for professional industry training, “Production Instruction with 3ds Max 2010: Volume I ™” teaches the techniques needed to truly take advantage of the power of Autodesk 3ds Max 2010.
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NeuroSystems SUBSTANCE


+ Stephane Marty (former author of the VirtuaLight and MetropoLight G.I. Renderers) presents SUBSTANCE for Windows XP/Vista/Seven, his brand new realtime 3D application for producing photorealistic Evolutionary and Organic Art powered by the new technologies he's worked on for the last 3 years: P.O.M.E. (Procedural Organic Modeling Engine) and P.U.R.E. (Physically-based Unbiased Rendering Engine). SUBSTANCE uses OpenGL for realtime rendering, including global illumination. A free version is available for download from NeuroSystems' website at www.neuro-systems.net

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