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cyber scans

cyber scans

MOTION Equals NOITOM in Mocap

Noitom’s Perception is a new inertia based Motion Capture (or Mocap) system available in North America. It’s very compact and can go nearly anywhere in its small traveling case. It is by far one of the most mobile units we’ve worked with.

Noitoms Perception, Motion Capture System

We’ve been testing Perception in our studio over the last few months and have been really surprised with how fast and easy it is to use. For us this was the real test because when you take new equipment to a production set or to a new venue for demonstration, you never know what technical problems could happen. Perception has 17 trackers to capture movement and can be easily placed on the body. After you set up a laptop and calibrate the markers via performing three poses the system,  it’s ready to go.

Noitoms Perception, Motion Capture System

Perception is supported by third party software like Autodesk Motion Builder, Maya, 3DS Max, Unity 3D and the Unreal Development Kit. You can purchase a system for yourself or you can utilize TNG’s Mocap service. It’s a fast and easy way to get the natural movement you want.

 

Melika-Mocap

Contact us if you need Motion Capture for your project.

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tng vfx locations

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Why Choose 3D Scanning for VFX Production?

As a VFX Producer the decision to 3D scan starts with the decision to deliver solutions which provide the best visual support to execute your story.

full body 3d scan

There are many different technological options available and each comes with it’s own limitations, advantages and costs. I’ve found the best scanning companies deliver consistent quality, competitive pricing and offer inventive solutions to create value for a show’s 3D digital assets.

Full body 3d scan

full body 3d scan plus textures

Choosing a reliable source during bidding requires developing a relationship with your vendor, clear production specs, and multiple conversations to guarantee the same artistic expectations are met during the entire production process.

Quality can be compromised in the rush of shooting on set or location, choice of 3D scanning equipment or shortened turnarounds, so working with vendors who are experienced and can respond quickly is important to getting good 3D digital assets.

I’ve found 3D scanning to be a valuable tool for resolving a multitude of production needs which would otherwise be too expensive or difficult to execute. The ability to pull clean precise digital assets using this technology is a great option to have for any producer working in the entertainment and media industry.

– Visual Effects Producer

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Building A Valuable Library Of Digital Assets

As Visual Effects Supervisors and Producers, it’s easy to concentrate on the immediate task at hand, such as scanning a specific body or face for the newest game, or scanning a special prop for that feature or episodic project, or even scanning a customized product for use in a commercial or music video.

full body and lidar scanning

Scanned digital assets can also be used for advertising, promotion, marketing, and public relations as well as supplemental content for websites, blogs, or trailers. Other members of the project’s team such as the Client, Executive Producer, or Head of Production may want to use the digital assets for purposes other than what is being worked on such as for the presentation or promotion of a new product design, showing a wider variety of colors, fabrics, or textures. In a pre-vis presentation or project pitch, VFX Producers could use those assets to add additional props or characters to the story, so their clients or investors could more easily visualize their appearance in the developing story.

3d scanning merchandise

You could save significant money down the line having those assets readily available, or they could even generate additional revenue. This is certainly something to think about in an age where digital assets are being used for a wider range of purposes. When the next project comes in, consider other ways the images might be used for.

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tng vfx locations

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Using Lidar Technology

In recent years, Lidar has become the most used technology and is a necessity for many industries. Lidar is typically used to scan large areas or environments, buildings, and vehicles. It’s been used for mapping cities and for agricultural use, however our main use has been for visual effects purposes.

building scan 2

tng cg town, lidar scanning, 3d scanning

When we use the FARO scanner on a job, the data captured can be used for Previs and then again as a background for a set. The scanner can either be mounted on a tripod to scan a large area or object, or can be attached to a vehicle or helicopter to collect the data. Some units can now scan point clouds at a much higher rate than past units. If the job is in a more remote area, we make sure to bring along a portable generator for the scanner. One thing to note is the need for a collection of SD cards to store the scans on.

Lidar scanning on site, battle ship

Whether you are scanning in a studio or for a commercial at a baseball stadium, planning is paramount to getting the best results in the shortest period of time. You observe your surroundings, consider the timeframe you have been allotted and are willing to spend on location, and you think about how many scans there will be along with their positions to optimally cover everything vital.

building scan

There are some tricks to aligning the point cloud Lidar data. For example, light bulbs in street lights can be used as markers – or anything for that matter of a consistent size that’s throughout the scene. Another style of alignment is to use printed out targets that are seen by each scanner position – with enough overlap on each scan. Line of sight is very important as well as observing the conditions such as wind and anything that can move in the scene during the capturing period.

 

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Using Photo Real 3D Scanned Models

blendWireframe

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.

 

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