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TNG Visual Effects - 3D Scanning Services

Build Out Your Sets With Lidar Scans

3D scanning can be used for Pre-Vis as well as building out sets with scanned models or areas such as cities or valleys, trucks, trains or large aircraft. These scanners are most often Lidar scanners. Like all industries, there are several service bureaus who can do this type of work using different types of scanners. Once you decide on what you would like scanned, the service bureau should be able to use the 3D scanner that does the best job, and that will scan in the least amount of time without compromising quality.

lidar scan, building scan, large area scan

Large areas can also be scanned from the sky using a Lidar scanner. This will still call for clean up as all scans do, but actually scanning the area will be faster, and bigger projects become more affordable.

lidar scan of old building


Where is your closest location?

tng vfx locations

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Expanding to Everywhere You Need Us

We continue expanding our services to cover Canada and the US (…from sea to shining sea!). It is our way of servicing the VFX industry in North America and to meet the needs of the tax incentives available in each of the areas.

US and Canada

There are a number of things to think about when deciding to expand your business to multiple locations. The first is how to make sure our brand stays consistent no matter where it is located. The quality, efficiency and overall customer service should not change. The reputation of the company depends on this or it will be missing the true branding that our customers look for.

3d scan jacket

3d scanned boots

We plan on providing our clients with a unique service at a great price with the same attention to quality and efficiency. Until then, we are still highly mobile and can be in nearly any location within hours. We travel with our equipment to make sure there is no delay and we have it when we are on site. If we are there for more than a day we will start uploading the data immediately after the scans are completed to get the project going. We go as fast as our client can accommodate us and head back home the minute the scanning is complete, if not in the middle of the night. We are always looking for ways to spend less and give more on time and on budget.

Catch the Christmas Spirit

Catch the Christmas Spirit

3d scanned train

We are constantly striving for a better, faster, and more cost-effective way to serve your needs. We certainly look forward to working with you and welcome any and all suggestions you may have.


Where is your closest location?

tng vfx locations

We welcome your feedback! Comment on our blog or visit our Facebook page.

What Do You Expect from a Service Bureau?

In a service bureau of any kind, there are times when you need specific tools to get the job done. If you are true to your profession, you will have whatever your service requires to be immediately accessible.

3d scanning of hand

In the 3d scanning world, we use a combination of people and technology. We have photographers, scan technicians, modeling and texture artists, as well as a number of software programs and 3D scanners to choose from. Throughout the years we’ve discovered that having an array of solutions and scanners available for projects has saved us, and our clients on time and money. Our clients appreciate using a “one stop shop” rather than several companies to get the job done. Since we have not yet found one scanner that can do everything, we have several types of scanners as well as back ups of the same 3D scanner in the event we need to serve a few clients at the same time.

Getting Ready for the Photo Shoot

Full size light for Body 3D Scanning Photo Shoot

For example, scanning smaller items like character props and then larger items such as cars and buildings use different types of scanners to get the data. That data is then taken through a variety of software applications our artists use when working on a model. To eliminate too much time being spent on one thing, we have some cross-trained employees who can work on any stage of the project at any time.

Behind the Scenes on site

Being a 3D Scanning service bureau, we believe we need every tool we can get our hands on to service our clients and give them a professional experience they expect.


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tng vfx locations

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Creating A Digital Double

What is the difference between creating a digital character and developing a digital character? Did you even know there was a difference?

It all depends on the expectation of the final product. To fully develop a character, especially if a well-known actor is in the scene, involves a much larger effort to create facial performance, cyber hair and cloth, and apply character lighting and final scale, all the while making sure it is an exact match to the original talent to keep a smooth transition.

For example, if the digital copy you’re working on is the main character and needs to be on the screen for a long period of time, such as Brad Pitt’s character in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, then a lot of time would be spent on matching the digital copy to the actor. If the character you’re creating needs to jump off a building, transform into something, or burst into particles, then less time would be spent on perfecting the details and making sure it was an exact match, but it would retain having the illusion of being perfect.

Here’s how we do it. 3D scanning the character is the first step, but you must also do a photo shoot of the talent for reference photos. The next essential step is the photo acquisition of high resolution textures with and without polarization. This will help create more accurate Ambient and Specular maps to be used later in the texture mapping process.

3d scan_full body_lidar_large vehicle and building

The model is then delivered with flat textures (or no lighting values). The production house has the option of adding those values in later when matching the plates. They can also incorporate different types of shaders to match skin such as Subsurface Scattering to give a more lifelike or realistic look to the digital double.

3d head scan, digital character, scarf

As the craft develops, it will be hard to tell the difference between the real character and their digital double. There is still a lot of work to be done on the fully digital character to act alongside real characters, but the day is coming and facial performance, mocap, and digital doubles will all come together with lower costs and time lines of creation.

Until then, we do our best on this quest while servicing the needs of the entertainment community.

Where is your closest location?

tng vfx locations

We welcome your feedback! Comment on our blog or visit our Facebook page.

Using Photo Real 3D Scanned Models


A good artist can now create a photo realistic model using 3D scanning equipment. There are a number of 3D Scanners on the market today and it seems like the price point is starting to come down. Are you considering purchasing a 3D scanner and letting the graphics department take it over? Here are some things to think about:

  1. Will you save time if the scanning is done in-house?
  2. How long will it take to replicate the model?
  3. Are there skillful artists on your team that can create a photo realistic model?
  4. How often will you need the technology?
  5. If it is only once in awhile, is it better to outsource the work?

Technology is ever changing and skills can be forgotten, so using a 3D Scanning Service bureau can be beneficial. They use the equipment often and have experience handling break downs on set, working quickly with the talent and double checking the data to make sure it was captured and backed-up correctly. Another benefit is that you can typically get a 3D scanning service to do blend shapes to capture different expressions of the talent.

Facial Expression Capture, 3d scans

The idea is to capture the talent very quickly to avoid needing to reschedule the scanning session if the talent is available a limited amount of time. We have found that if you are working on a project, like an episodic where visual effects are frequently used, it may be more effective to capture the talent once in a swimsuit or bodysuit and reuse the data with the appropriate outfits created in software.


Where is your closest location?

tng vfx locations

We welcome your feedback! Comment on our blog or visit our Facebook page.