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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

KeyShot Free Plugin for Autodesk 3ds Max®

+ Luxion, a leading developer of advanced 3D rendering and lighting technology and makers of KeyShot®, the first real time ray tracing and global illumination program for 3D rendering and animation, has released an all new KeyShot plugin for Autodesk 3ds Max. This plugin is free of charge for all 3ds Max users. As a member of the Autodesk Developer Network, Luxion has developed a plugin for 3ds Max that automatically loads the model into KeyShot with all parts, groups and layers intact. From the file menu, the export is a one-click process that instantly opens the model in KeyShot. 3ds Max users now have the fastest way to bring their models into KeyShot, creating a cleaner workflow through the entire design process. With the speed of creating material and lighting variations in KeyShot, 3D artists have an increasingly efficient pipeline for rendering and animation. The new 3ds Max plugin can be downloaded here.

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RenderMask and VrayHDRITool for 3ds Max

+ Render luminance, RGB mask from selected objects. The script don't affect the scene materials, lights and render settings.RenderMask Free Script for 3Ds Max. With RenderMask you’ll be able to get antializased masks ready to be used in Photoshop. See this tutorial and start making progress in you daily work. VrayHDRITool is another useful free 3ds Max Script by Ivan Tepavicharov. VrayHDRITool is easy way to set VrayHDRI map. Select object with VrayHDRI map and run the script. 

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Saturday, November 24, 2012

CameraMan for Autodesks Maya

+ New and ingenious way of motion capture using iPhone or iPad.  CameraMan for Maya® is an iPhone app that allows you to control a camera in Maya using an iPhone. The purpose of CameraMan is to create handheld camera effects by using an iPhone or iPad as a motion capture device. CameraMan 2.0 works by using a combination of accelerometer and gyroscope data through an API Apple calls Device Motion. The data is sent to Maya via an open connection that exists between the Maya session and CameraMan app.  Using the app's joystick controller and the gyroscope hardware, you can quickly create realistic motion effects. CameraMan features Full XYZ rotation & translation using gyroscope as well as Ability to switch between rotation and translation modes. For more information, please Click here


DreamWorks openVDB for Free

+ The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Dreamworks is releasing OpenVDB for free. The studio released onto the open market one of the primary tools used to create "Rise of the Guardians," a $145 million animated film set to hit theaters Wednesday. OpenVDB is an open source C++ library comprising a novel hierarchical data structure and a suite of tools for the efficient storage and manipulation of sparse volumetric data discretized on three-dimensional grids. It is developed and maintained by DreamWorks Animation for use in volumetric applications typically encountered in feature film production. OpenVDB will be fully integrated into the next major release of Houdini, the high-end 3D animation package from Side Effects Software. This release will include a suite of nodes for sparse volume processing.
>> Download OpenVDB

Thursday, November 15, 2012

V-Ray Fundamentals: Materials, Lights and Linear Workflow

+ The Gnomon Workshop brings you V-Ray Fundamentals: Materials, Lights and Linear Workflow with Stephen DeLalla. Over the last decade, V-Ray has been widely used as a primary rendering tool on productions spanning the spectrum of the entertainment industry. In this DVD, Stephen has put together a series of lectures beginning with rendering basics and ending with production workflows. Starting with an introduction to Linear Workflow, Stephen then breaks down the Render Settings, including the Adaptive DMC. He then moves onto Lights and Materials, including the Blend Material, Sub-Surface Scattering, and Displacement. Next, he discusses the new V-Ray RT and the GPU accelerated rendering features before moving to Global Illumination and the various ways to achieve high quality GI renders quickly using advanced baking of GI maps. Lastly, Stephen discusses the production integration aspects of V-Ray which includes how to work with Render Elements, Layers, SOPs, along with the Light Select render element. This title is essential for those looking to not only learn the basics of V-Ray, but also to leverage the power of V-Ray in a real production environment.....Visit website!!


e frontier Announces Free Shade 3D for Unity for Game Development

+ e frontier, Inc. announces the official release of Shade 3D for Unity, a new, stand-alone 3D graphic software package with direct support for Unity. This new release is being offered free to the public and aimed at game developers and artists for creating characters, scenes and props within the Unity game development workflow. Shade 3D for Unity is based on the full version of Shade, a powerful 3D modeling, rendering and design software, used worldwide by illustrators, animators and designers for over 27 years. Unity currently boasts over one million registered users, so enabling that strong user base with the advanced tool set found in Shade 3D for Unity empowers game developers to seamlessly create content for Mac OS X, iOS, and Android platforms. It is available now at no cost in the Mac App Store. A Windows version will follow. For more information, Click here

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

LightWave 3D Helps Deploy “Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome”

+ Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome is a new science-fiction drama from NBCUniversal premiering tonight on Machinima Prime’s YouTube channel for 10 episodes until February 2013 when Syfy, a division of NBCUniversal, is expected to televise the pilot and also offer it on DVD, Blue-Ray, On Demand, and digital download. Throughout the history of the Battlestar Galactica franchise, LightWave 3D® software has been a constant in the show’s production pipeline for everything from otherworldly atmospheres to earth-shattering visual effects. Blood & Chrome continues the tradition, adding Cylon robots, snake creatures, and more than 20 sets constructed entirely in LightWave 3D.
Blood & Chrome was originally envisioned as an innovative Xbox project comprising nine 10-minute segments with a budget of only $2 million. “Obviously, we can’t shoot Battlestar Galactica for $2 million,” remarks Gary Hutzel, visual effects (VFX) supervisor at Universal Cable Productions and on Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome. “I suggested that we look at a radically different approach to the show: to shoot it entirely against greenscreen. As the project gained momentum and the studio realized the cost benefits of this approach, the project gained more financing and grew into a two-hour “backdoor” pilot for a potential television series.”
Hutzel and the team at Universal were faced with a formidable challenge: producing a Battlestar Galactica-quality, VFX-heavy film from scratch—with “no sets and no locations,” he recalls—at a cost far less than a typical sci-fi pilot. “The way that we accomplished that was to do the entire show on greenscreen,” Hutzel describes, “and I mean the entire show. We are breaking the mold. Right now, we have 89 minutes of content and roughly three minutes of that is filmed against a set piece. The rest of it is greenscreen or pure CGI (computer-generated imagery). That’s how we attacked the project.”
“We are not a visual effects house in the normal sense,” affirms Doug Drexler, CG supervisor on Blood & Chrome. “Gary has set up a new paradigm. In his model, visual effects is part of the production, just like the art department. We’re there to do anything needed to get the job done.”
Blood & Chrome pushes the new paradigm even further, Drexler adds. “The visual effects department art directed, built, lit, and lined up the shots, designed all the action sequences, created the mood, and drove home the intent of every single scene. What person who fancies himself a filmmaker doesn't dream of being able to do that? And what other department could even conceive of being able to? This is the kind of power that comes from that unassuming little CG package called LightWave.”
Progressive Pipelines
After the team shot the live action against greenscreen, the artists moved ahead with designing the virtual elements, including the mood and look, says Drexler. “The computer and LightWave give us a lot of freedom; we can experiment to our hearts’ content without the constraints of budget and building physical sets.”
Drexler and his team of 10 CG artists used LightWave to retrofit the Galactica, including the Battlestar’s interior sets. “Because the show was all greenscreen, we had an opportunity to expand the ship and give it greater scope.” He and the artists pushed back walls and raised ceilings, but stayed true to the original Galactica design and layout.
Extensive virtual environments permeate the entire pilot. Hutzel’s goal was to create environments that enhance the live action shots on greenscreen, without drawing so much attention that the audience is aware of them. “We have a very natural feel with some large-scale elements that are very believable,” he affirms. “LightWave was instrumental because we can work with very large, high-resolution models very quickly. The latest visualization and lighting tools really expedite that process. I can literally light on the fly, just like I would if I were lighting a set. You simply can’t do that reliably in other packages and get the kind of results that we have.”
“LightWave has increased in flexibility and quality to the point where we feel very comfortable going into a project like Blood & Chrome and saying to the director and writers: ‘Write whatever you want. It doesn’t matter. You’ve paid to have us to do every shot on your show, write anything,’” exclaims Hutzel. “That is exactly what we did on Blood & Chrome, and we’ve been successful in bringing this idea to life. VFX are no longer cost-prohibitive.”
The bulk of the VFX shots for Blood & Chrome were created using LightWave 3D software with a majority of the artists having 10 or more years experience working with  LightWave.
View the Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome trailer and watch the series on Machinima Prime.


Creative Cards Project

54 top illustrators, artists and designers team up to create a unique deck of stunning playing cards 
+ Leading digital illustrators, artists and designers from all over the globe have teamed up to create what could be the world’s most unique deck of playing cards. Selling for $32, CREATIVE CARDS is an exclusive pack and only 1000 have been made. The project was coordinated by Vlad Korzinin and Dmitry Melkov, who run the online magazine and creative community Digital Abstracts. They came up with the idea and spontaneously invited DA members to contribute, recruiting some of the world’s finest digital artists in the process. From the two of hearts by Timba Smits to the ace of spades by Fill Ryabchikov, each participant chose a card to illustrate and created a suitable image in their own trademark style. Artists involved include Joshua Davis, Sara Blake, Brand Nu, Adhemas Batista, Lunartik, Justin Maller, Shotopop, Evgeny Kiselev, Michael Cina, Design is Dead and many more.....Visit website!!