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Sunday
Oct302011

Reallusion at New York Comic-Con [video + photos]

iClone5 & Kinect,
"Quite Impressive."

Matthew Hawkins,
GameSetWatch.com on iClone5 @ NYCC OCT 20th

New York Comic-Con draws over 100k attendees from around the world to experience the interactive side of pop culture.  Normally the interactive part is getting autographs or attending panels, but many interactive technologies fill the Javits center with a digital circus of rides to enjoy.  Reallusion exhibited NYC Comic-Con from booth 329 where our neighbors included Xbox, Bioware and those guys that make the sweet Han-Solo ice cube trays.  Joining us in the booth for a detailed look behind the scenes of motion-comic, Justice for Hire; Jan and team from Creative Impluse Ent., & Zach & Melissa of Willow Road animation studios.  Zach and Melissa demoed their pipeline with CrazyTalk & After Effects to create on-the-fly character animation in their animated series.  

The booth was jammed with attendees eager to give iClone5 & Kinect a try and those that kinected were of all ages.  Kids puppeteered the newly introduced GORF monster, while others puppeteered aliens, angels and demons from the Flowing Hair character packs.  

"It was like seeing a dream unfold in front of my eyes.  My mind raced with the still untold possibilities of what this software has the capabilities of doing." Christian - NYCC Attendee


We talked to many folks covering the show for various blogs, podcasts & TV which captured some of our demo live on the showfloor.   

Nerd World

 

Here's an interview we did with Captain Action's Lady Action (nice!)

AwesomeCast #73 podcast
direct link to our segment: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=GyMoBI1dxrg#t=1461s 

One of my favorite aspects of attending a show like Comic-Con is the opportunity and always unexpected surprise to meet a user that tells us how they enjoy iClone or CrazyTalk and how they are using it at work or in their time off.  Meet Dan and Frank:

Frank (CrazyTalk power-user)

Dan (iClone power-user)

Comic-Con brings creative minds together from every digital arena; publishers, game developers, digital artists, compositors, animators, 3d modelers, software developers, illustrators, etc... We met with many of each and got great feedback.  Many more studios are discovering the animation productivity power behind iClone & CrazyTalk.  Thanks and see you in 2012 

Wednesday
Oct192011

The Ultimately Ultimate iClone Toon Tour... "suffering-suckotash!"

Wednesday
Oct052011

iClone & War Technica 48hr Machinima Awards

Congratulations to 48hr filmmaking team, War Technica on their many awards and first runner-up prize!

"Faery Dust" Made in iClone 4 by Team War Technica

Entry in the 48HR Film Project Machinima Competition 2011
Won the following awards:

1. Best Direction
2. Best Voice Acting
3. Best Sound Design - Which Includes Music
4. Runner-up for Best Picture

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxQAHO6vSi0

Sunday
Sep252011

iClone5 launches Mocap, Physics & VisualFX

The long-awaited evolution of iClone has arrived!  iClone5 is now available from www.Reallusion.com with an assortment of power-tools to take 3D real-time animation to the extreme.

Motion grabs the headline among the features you'll enjoy in iClone5.  There have been many updates to iClone over the years, but the motion tools in iClone5 are the ones we've all been waiting for (including me).  Motion design & animation get massive help from the new Motion Puppeteering, Direct Motion & Kinect-ready mocap.  Further refinement of the motion, once you've created it is better than ever with the inclusion of Autodesk's HumanIK which makes every 3D actor in iClone a fully poseable figure that behaves like a real human.  Pull the character's hand and  his body and arm will follow.  

 The Physics inside iClone5 give every scene a chance to take on fully interactive physics-based performances.  Want to make a dangerous rock-slide for your action film?  No problem!  Rigid-body object settings will help create an instant set of dynamic boulders.  Need a shower curtain to quckly slide open in your horror film?  Drop a soft-body object in the scene,  attach some prop accessories and you'll have the perfect effect!  

The eye candy continues to evolve in iClone with the new real-time FX like ambient occlusion, toon shader and more!  With the new post FX features inside iClone5, users can have a real, hands-on experience with visual possibilities that transform any dull project into amazing scenes. Make use of toon and visual effect templates like blur lens, color filters, and NPR (Non Photorealistic Rendering).

There is also a great set of new G5 actors to add to the character library with a fresh look and body-styles you can customize with a variety creative results utilizing the updated body transform panel.  It's alive!  It's alive!!!  http://www.reallusion.com/iclone/iclone_whatsnew.aspx

 

Thursday
Aug252011

Jimmy Kimmel LIVE! goes CrazyTalk for animation


Jesse Griffith delivers just-in-time animation for late-night laughs

 

During our trip to Comic-Con San Diego we met Jesse Griffith, a member of the Jimmy Kimmel Live graphics crew and a fan of CrazyTalk.   Jesse shared his CrazyTalk experience with us and talked about animating on a deadline with JKL.  We enjoyed it so much we asked him to answer a few questions for the community.   Watch Jimmy Kimmel Live! weeknights on ABC (www.jimmykimmellive.com)  Also, don't miss Jesse's award-winning sci-fi short, Cockpit:The Rule of Engagement, which premiered during Comic-Con and is currently invading the world.

Here's a bit of Jesse's handywork with a Twilight spoof:

You're an artist for Jimmy Kimmel Live, tell us about your work on the show.

JG: I work in the graphics dept, which means I do something different every day.  Some days I create title graphics for fake news bits or fictional movies, other days we are putting members of our staff in current blockbusters as a gag through the magic of green screen, and on other days we are requested to create three minute animated bits that need to air that night.   The latter is the doozy, so we are always looking for a way to animate faces faster.   I consider myself a “Fast Food Graphics artist.”  It may not be the finest cuisine, but it is darn funny and we reach millions of people a day. 

How has CrazyTalk worked for you in the studio, with the writers and with deadlines of a daily TV show?

JG: I use a lot of different software packages in my line of work, and CrazyTalk is one of those blades in my graphic “pocket knife” that gets me through the day.  Quite simply, CrazyTalk has made bits possible that would have otherwise missed deadline.  Jimmy Kimmel is big on topical jokes, so often the bits he selects to produce need to be completed that day for air that night; otherwise someone else might tell the joke or it gets stale.  We get our scripts between eleven am and noon, sometimes later.  So that gives us 3 to 5 hours to do several animated shots.   That could take forever if key-framing mouth movement by hand.  On top of that, scripts change and performances are swapped.  CrazyTalk allows me to easily swap voice files at the last minute and to meet an otherwise impossible deadline.

Beyond JKL, you are also a filmmaker and recently released, "Cockpit," with a great cast and CG.  How has new tools like those from Reallusion helped independent filmmakers?

JG: I don’t know how it’s affecting the indy community, but I know that it should be making waves.  And if it isn’t, then I need to be making the waves.   Your software is amazing and a literal dream come true. Since I was a seven year old boy, I have always tried to do effects way out of my league.  I used to shoot super 8mm (J.J. Abrams wasn’t the only one) and to scratch laser beams onto film with a razor blade, and make spaceships out of Legos and Milano cookies.  Endearing… but lacking.  The tools were just not there.   And now I see iClone, and I wish I had something like that back then....  and my mind starts percolating.  What can I use it for now?  Ooohh do I do a story about someone trapped in a video game as a video game character?  Do I shoot another all greenscreen piece with iClone’s library of customizable sets?  I’ll let you know.

The dynamics, the environments, and the fact you can isolate any one element and composite it in another package gives the power of an entire effects studio at the hands of one artist.  When I look back on the “The Last Starfighter” which was the first space movie to do entire CG exteriors, the computer that was used cost 8 million dollars.  I bet you could do every fx shot with a $1500 computer and a copy of iClone.

When I first saw CrazyTalk, I admit, I was skeptical of another consumer or pro-sumer animation package.  But when the writers of Jimmy Kimmel Live had more and more last minute ideas, CrazyTalk’s ability to non-destructively swap audio files for an animation made it an indispensable tool that saves me hours.  I am now a Realillusion fan:   They create inexpensive tools that are great to let amateurs dive in and create professional looking work, and those same tools belong in every professional’s bag of tricks when they need to create something overly ambitious in a short amount of time.

 

Monday
Aug152011

SIGGRAPH 2011: iClone5 Kinect & CrazyTalk Animator

‎"Looking for a great mocap-friendly, animation software? Look no further as Reallusion gives you iClone5!" - KinectHacks.com


This year's Siggraph expo held in Vancouver, B.C. August 9-11 was another CG overload with no shortage of innovation from ReallusionNvidiaIntel and Lucasfilm.  Reallusion and Animation Magazine's booth #244 gave visitors a chance to test-drive the iClone5 motion capture and real-time animation with Kinect.  Reallusion's John Martin was there to demo the new featueres of iClone5 including Kinect mo-cap, Human IK Animation, Physics, Actor customization and virtual actor performance.  Studio professionals working on feature films, as well as educators teaching 3D and media arts found iClone5 and CrazyTalk Animator to be go-to tools for teaching animation, previz and just-in-time animation production in the studio.  

View 360 of Reallusion Booth


Animator and iPhone app developer, Steven Elford,
"I work a 50+ hour week on studio animation projects so for my own personal projects I have very little time.  CrazyTalk keeps things simple and quick meaning I can finish a scene in one sitting."

 - Steven Elford, www.ZombiesDrule.com

Among the many students and industry professionals attending Siggraph we were delighted to see the original iClone filmmaker, Gabe aka AnimaTechnica.  Gabe's shirt says it all!  Along with gearing up for a new batch of films for iClone5, Gabe has launched a Kickstarter around his Nobbit series.  He's also an organizer for the upcoming Silicon Valley Film Festival.  Submit a film!

One of Reallusion's most popular content producers and community contibutors also paid a visit to the booth to get the low-down on iClone5.  Guy aka BigBoss took a play-by-play account of what's in iClone5 from the show demo and put it all in nice show diary. Check out BigBoss' diary here.

Power-users Chris, Missy & Mike

 more photos...

Friday
Jul292011

COMIC-CON 2011 - POW! Zap! BOOM! [photos & video]

Reallusion and Animation Magazine partner to showcase super-power animation technology at the 2011 Comic-Con. 


We talked with so many great folks at Comic-con and heard some stories about our tools powering hefty studio projects.  Comic illustrators and indie publishers were interested in the Reallusion CITY marketplace and also how they can create motion comics from their existing catalog with CrazyTalk Animator.  The iClone5 Kinect mocap preview wowed with instant calibration and real-time puppetering with record.  We also announced today that iClone5 will be available in September.  There are iClone5 videos and a preview of features here.

We talked to directors like David E. Duncan a storyboard and VFX artist for Ironman, Snow White & The Huntsman and more.  His VFX and Previz studio, Flying Sorcery, specializes in innovative r/c aerial shots, animatics and previz. iClone's Kinect-powered mocap and 2D facial animation with CrazyTalk impressed a seasoned pro, but what's really impressive is the IMDB page for David.  That's his storyboard from Ironman.

Comic-Con is a pop-culture crossroads.  The entertainment industry is there in full force and nearly everyone is relaxed, having fun and ready to enjoy the ride.  Open minds reign supreme.

The combination of industry-insider coverage with a free copy of Animation Magazine and Reallusion's in-booth Kinect mocap experience made for steady crowds at the booth.  iClone5 kinect animation and CrazyTalk Animator Motion-Comic demos were a hit and we got some great feedback from animators, illustrators, directors; even  famous TV shows (ahem, Jimmy Kimmel Live!) are using Reallusion to make funny, fast.  

A perfect ensemble of storytelling at its best.  Writers of comics and celebrities from all genres are onsite for meet and greet or autographs, which makes for some major geek-freak (Ok, ok... I'm guilty. see cheese photo with Garth Ennis #kidforever) 

Indie studios have found CrazyTalk and Reallusion tools to be a just-in-time solution and we caught one film on-the-rise at Comic-Con's Martial Arts Film Festival, "Justice For Hire."

 

Zach Shelton, director, Willow Road Animation met us at our booth and shared their story of coming to Comic-Con and how CrazyTalk Animator played a big role in their film. Zach shares his experience in the following video interview I did with him the day after the premiere.

 The film, "Justice For Hire," motion-comic trailer DID premiere at Comic-Con's Martial Arts Film Festival. 

Justice For Hire Motion Comic Trailer from Willow Road Animation on Vimeo.

The Reallusion experience at Comic-Con invited attendees to see the powerful, time-saving and budget-friendly tools for 2D and 3D animation.  2D Animators see how fast CrazyTalk Animator can animate their existing 2D illustrations or rig their custom sketchs or vectors into fully animated sprite-based characters. Facial animation is solved with CrazyTalk Animator.  Define the character, record audio and see your comic panel or storyboards come to life.  Previz and feature production artists applauded CrazyTalk as a "pocket knife," in the studio.

Wednesday
Jul202011

Reallusion & Comic-con 2011

Reallusion joins Animation Magazine for Comic-Con 2011.  We're bringing CrazyTalk Animator to Comic-Con for an onslaught of animation creativity! Learn the workflow to bring character sketches to life with the facial animation and body puppeteering of CrazyTalk Animator.  See CrazyTalk Animator and catch a sneak peek at iClone5 Kinect mocap at Animation Magazine's Comic-Con booth #1535 on July 23rd and 24th.

Tuesday
Jun142011

Kinect 3D animation coming to iClone5 (VIDEO)

Reallusion confirms the buzz around the forth-coming Kinect & iClone revolution!  3D real-time animation and Kinect avatar performance goes to the next level with iClone5 (Winter 2011). 

"iClone5 is a 3D animation production studio combining the power of Kinect's user interaction for a new level of human-driven digital storytelling.  A new technological element of expression coming soon to a community of directors that before only watched the likes of masters such as Peter Jackson & James Cameron flex these type of tools in previous years.  iClone5 will represent a close in the gap between big budget and big ideas.  iClone5 and Kinect, 'All the world's a stage,' indeed." -  John Martin, Reallusion

Real at-home studio quality 3D motion capture and real-time avatar puppeteering along with Reallusion's award-winning facial animation tools equip a digital visual effects studio on-a-dime.  Virtual Actors?  Sure.  Real life performances for animation shorts, in your living room.  OK!  iClone + Kinect is a DIY animation studio you can operate with 8 feet of space for full body motion puppeteering. Further enhancing the Kinect performance, Reallusion has added the human-element to animation created with Kinect through the integration of Autodesk's HumanIK.  Now, motion in iClone5 will pose more natural in key-framing and constrain to human characteristics when puppeteered by motion devices such as Kinect.  Realluison's Winter release, iClone5, will offer real-time puppeteering viewing and simultaneous recording.  The time for performance animation and serious motion capture with minimal hassle or investment comes to independent animators and budget concious studios.

iClone5 (private-beta Summer 2011 - release Winter 2011)

Wednesday
Jun012011

Animation Magazine Pitch Party!

The Tenth Annual Animation Magazine Pitch Party contest is going on now through (better get busy) June 10th and offers Reallusion members and storytellers worldwide the chance to pitch their story to industry pros and finally knock Trey Parker and Matt Stone off their high-horses.  Well, maybe you'll just get a shot to make it big.  Good enough?  We thought so too and that's why Reallusion and Animation Magazine have partnered to encourage iClone and CrazyTalk filmmakers to prepare their pitch!  The contest requires you purchase and submit a 1/6 page ad for inclusion in the upcoming Animation Magazine Pitch Party issue.   Animation Magazine has extended a special offer of $50 OFF their 1/6 page, Pitch Party ad for Reallusion members.  Get the full details and know more over at Animation Magazine's Pitch Party Contest page.

 Reallusion and Animation Magazine have an exciting summer planned with events and contests. 

  • In June we will launch a special spotlight opportunity to have your movie and art featured in a full page within Animation Magazine... details coming soon. 
  • We are joining Animation Magazine at Comic-Con San Diego this year to showcase CrazyTalk Animator July 23-24. 

"The partnership between Reallusion and Animation Magazine connects our storytelling community to AM's media portal for all-access industry coverage, careers and green-light opportunities.  Our partnership is in the spirit of the independent animator and encourages citizen directors to bring new and innovative works from groundbreaking studios." John Martin, Reallusion

Stay-tuned for more upcoming contests and events with Reallusion and Animation Magazine.

 

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