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TNG Visual Effects - 3D Scanning Services

Celebrity English Interviews TNG Visual Effects Founder Nick Tesi

Nick Tesi, Founder of TNG Visual Effects, talks about how he entered into the Visual Effects Industry, how TNG came about, and what it takes to be an artist or scan technician at TNG in this interview by Alex Graham of Celebrity English.

3d scanning prosthetics, alien

Alex Graham: Please tell us a bit about yourself and TNG Visual Effects.

Nick Tesi: I came from the area of selling hardware and software to the 3D graphics arena based on PC work stations, and in their earlier days based on silicon graphics work stations.  From there I went into motion capture. I was with the first motion capture facility in Los Angeles and we were doing a lot of work in the gaming arena, if you will, and then from there I moved into 3D scanning.

“I was one of the earliest people in that as well. I try to stay on the leading edge, or as some people call the bleeding edge of technology.”

Then prior to coming into TNG, prior to 2010, I ran a company called Eyetronics. They were out of Belgium and were a 3D scanning hardware manufacturer. After a year of trying to sell the hardware, we had discussed selling a service based on their hardware. Then we took that direction and that seemed to be a much better model to work with. I moved from selling out of my living room to selling from an office to expanding into a bigger office space with more people. At the end of the decade, 2009, they started taking a different direction that I really didn’t want to go in. I didn’t see their vision. I wanted to stay in providing services in 3D scanning so I started my own company as of 2010, and that is what I have been working on.

Alex: Fantastic industry background! Can you tell me what the difference between Special Effects and Visual Effects is?

Nick: Yes, I sure can! In talking to the industry…

Click here to read the full interview

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Can You Buy Fashion?

Yes you can. However, does this fashion meet your personal taste? How do your rate your taste in today’s market? These are the questions you need to ask yourself. Of course we look to fashion magazines, girlfriends and boyfriends, and trends in the market, but it is up to you whether you follow the trends or try to make your own fashion statement.

Full Body Scan with Props

What does all this have to do with the art of visual effects, 3d characters, computer graphics and the like? As we scan our models, they are dressed in all sorts of apparel. Some they like, and some they don’t, therefore we are looking to build a library of items they can choose from to add to their character to give them more variety.

3d scanned jacket

Another area of interest is in 3d scanning shoes, boots, slippers, etc – a full line of footwear that can be displayed, rotated and shown in different color variations by companies that specialize in shoes and apparel. Other items are hats, gloves, blouses, pants, coats, and the list goes on.

3d head scan, digital character, scarf

This caters to manufacturing companies that want to put their full line of shoes and apparel out at once to give consumers the ultimate in selection. The consumer is then able to fully customize what they want to purchase.

3d scanned boots

This is all in our search to add new markets and uses for 3D scanning services that both service the entertainment market and also the more general markets. In going back to the question of fashion, wouldn’t you want to have the choice of showcasing your design that is customizable for your costumer? This could be an opportunity to show the world YOUR idea of fashion.

 

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Episodics On TV Have Become More Visionary

We have been honored to be a part of several new and returning episodics this year. The companies that bid on the pilots and jump into this market not only have nerves of steel, but have extremely creative ideas on how to bring the directors concepts and vision to life.

once upon a time, once upon a time in wonderland, agents of shield, sleepy hollow

The visuals need to be created at a fast pace in order to serve the episodic world. As the plot continues each week, so does constant planning and executing to get the job done. The trusted vendors and production houses are challenged with staying on target and within budget with their deliveries. Needless to say, their job is not an easy one.

Our hats go off to these tireless workers. They bring quality work that rivals film (with a lot less time and money) to our TV screens every week. Of course their mission is different than film, but their accomplishments are still amazing.

We find the episodic world to be fast and demanding, and a part of the industry that we cannot take our eyes off. If we start getting busy with film, commercials or game trailers, we still need to be on our game for the next character, prop or whatever the series calls for to scan and deliver on schedule.

The more vision and creativity the director and writers have, the more work that comes to our location. Even when there is no budget left, the sheer determination of the crew finds a way of getting it done. You can say it is the magic of visual effects, but it’s more so the magic of a truly gifted group.

 

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Pre-Vis To Full Building Scans

Identifying the needs of production early on is important when providing 3D scanning services. 3D scans can be used in previs by capturing an entire building, inside and out, and having it eventually developed into the final shot. Perhaps you have several buildings that need scanning, or a few crashed vehicles that are in the middle of a scene, all of this can be scanned quickly and efficiently, and replicated for your final shot.

building scan

We have been asked a number of times to scan sets that need to be taken down so new sets can be built. These scanned sets can then be edited, added to, or recreated in the event something changes and a clean set is needed.

tng cg town, lidar scanning, 3d scanning

What about vehicles? Perhaps you need a train or an airplane to crash into a car or truck. You may want to use a 3D scanned version of these items so they are not destroyed, and so that the shot can be taken several times. This way you are sure to get the director to sign off and agree that their vision is being captured.

3d scanned train

In our experience, scanning sets and vehicles for virtual use is the most cost effective solution for production when working on a project. We are always looking for better ways to bring you solutions that are within budget and delivered on time.

 

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Digital Assets: 3D Scanning Props

Props come in all shapes and sizes and are necessary elements for movies and other forms of entertainment. They are an integral part of the storytelling process. Last year we participated in a demo that presented a real bow propelling a virtual arrow. It’s definitely better to be on the receiving end of a virtual arrow than a real one!

Along with scanning a prop, there are other things to consider like the availability of the prop, the safety of the prop, the purpose of the prop, etc. It’s also important to balance the needs of production along with the artists’ abilities. For some projects (although an artist is skilled enough), it is not necessary to model every detail of a prop. For example, it can take up to a week to complete a 3D scanned gun with only a single modeler working on it. We carefully communicate the needs of our clients to keep projects on target.

3d scanned gun3D scanned gun

3D scanning helps propel the speed of 3D model creation, especially when the resources to model are in short supply. But it also brings with it the same list of challenges affecting other scans. Consider the spokes on a bicycle wheel, are they shiny or transparent? To cover any data not picked up by the scanner due to reflection and material width, some modeling will be done to complete the project. All of these obstacles are overcome in order to keep the project moving forward.

We have created virtual props for commercials such as food products that were packaged and without packaging. Whatever objects you need, we’re here to build your virtual world, one 3D scan at a time.

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