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TNG Visual Effects - 3D Scanning Services

Working with Children and Animals is a Breeze…

Scanning children and animals is the real fun part of our work. They come with no pre-conceived notions and go through the process without much complaint. However, if you are not patient with the wonderment the talent finds in the new experience, it can seem annoying.

full body 3d scan

As you do your best going over the process they are about to go through, you will find that both child and animal will have the same reaction of tilting their head and looking at you quizzically. Eventually the child will partially understand, but the animal, well, it will only be interested in its next treat.

3d head scan

Children are a lot easier to work with than you can imagine. They like to ride around on the turntable and as long as there is not real distraction, like seeing their shadow on the wall, they will stay still long enough for you to complete the scan. However, if you are on set, bring a book and your patience as the children have a lot of duties like mandatory tutoring, nap time, etc. It’s a bit different than working with an adult.

3d head scan

Animals are a different story. Everything depends on their attention span and how well they were trained. They react to their trainer but are unfortunately distracted by mother nature at times. We have found the smaller animals tend to be more nervous and don’t have the highest attention span, and although they may have been trained, they haven’t necessarily been trained to stay still.

Another factor is the type of hair the animal has, which can be a deal maker or a deal breaker. If the hair is smooth and evenly layered, it makes it workable and helps create an environment for a great scan. But, if it is more like a Pomeranian, you will need to get the clippers out!

The most sought out animals to scan have been dogs and horses followed by cats and a few other slower, more lethargic animals like the Elephant.

3d scanned animal_elephant

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tng vfx locations

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Our Valentine’s Day Cyber Fencer

Over the past week we’ve been working with a very talented fencer who has been using her techniques in the MoCap (Motion Capture) industry. We have been in the process of bringing MoCap back into our line of service to compliment our existing services and have been looking forward to adding motion capture to her.

victoria ortiz fencer victoria ortiz fencer

With every production or project, we explain to the talent what we will be doing to scan their image. We begin with a photo session to capture reference photos we later use during the texture process.

3D Scanned Fencer

With our fencing talent, we had a session to 3D scan her full body, capture facial expressions and scan different outfits to setup for MoCap. The scan data is then processed, re-topologized, uv’d and textured.

facial expressions   facial expressions   facial expressions   facial expressions

We will be creating a video with our fencing talent so make sure to visit our YouTube Channel in the next few months to see the final full action product!

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tng vfx locations

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Texturing Today

Texturing has come a long way over the past two decades. At first almost an afterthought, texturing now regularly holds its own position in the pipeline of VFX and animation and is considered a critical part of the process – as it should be.

In the days of the SGI, I started on Amazon 3D to paint textures along with Photoshop (yes, Photoshop was supported for the SGIs for a bit, for those of us old enough to remember) and it painted 16 bit Tiff’s but was sludgy and difficult. Studio Paint on the SGI was a huge improvement, but it was slow with larger textures. We gave up bit-depth for speed with Deep Paint, as we moved to PCs with Linux. Between projecting pictures from photos, shaders with subsurface maps, and the elevation of expectations of computer graphics, the world of CG was looking mighty pretty.


Now we are at a unique point in history for Texturing Software. Several different software programs are vying for prominence as the 3D Paint Program from Body Paint by Maxon to Mari. Body Paint was quick to take up the throne on Deep Paint’s exit, as it was already developing with the aid of Sony Imageworks during Deep Paint’s reign. Foundry’s Mari has been gaining acceptance as the texture program of choice with its ability to work with multiple large textures and its Photoshop friendliness. Its not a done deal, however, as sculpting programs have entered the arena with their own texturing capabilities. Mudbox and ZPaint have jumped into the foray, and Photoshop has included 3D capabilities in its last versions. Never before have we had so many options.

full body 3d scan of Elvis

So which do I think will reign supreme? Well I would have to say, that depends. Texturing needs depend on the medium of which it is going to be seen. Will it be for film? TV? Game cinematics? Real-time engines? Mobile? Are you dealing with sets? Digital doubles? Animals? Props? You can see that the variety of detail and needs are far different between each. Ergo, I believe there is now room for more than just one monarch of 3D Paint. There is one thing I CAN say — you WILL need a 3D paint package. Trying to get by with just Photoshop may have flown in the 80’s and 90’s, but the sophistication required for today’s textures demand a 3D paint package. So let’s sit back and watch the show, this should be interesting.


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tng vfx locations

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tng vfx locations

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