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Lidar Scanning

Lidar Scanning

The Journey from Pilot to Episodic

 

pilot season logo

 

What needs to happen for a Pilot to evolve into an Episodic? There are a great number of pitches that get whittled down to about 70 per network. After further filtering, about two dozen pilots are ordered per network to further evaluate. By the end of this process, only about 6 pilots go on to do a series. Survival rates are low in the first season with only a couple making a second season per network, according to a number of sources.

It is quite the undertaking for networks to go through this process each year. The upside is viewers like us get to see some amazing programs that are the best of the best by the time they make it to a second season. The downside is the colossal work that goes into these pilots, regardless if they make it to the TV screen.

FOX 2011 SUMMER TCA: ALLEN GREGORY Creator

With so many pilots on the front end, there is competition to produce great impressive work. You have everything from known talent, special effects, and visual effects to wardrobe, crew, and other things needed to complete a pilot.

We have provided 3D scans of characters, places, and buildings for several pilots and episodics and have seen the level of detail and dedication of each team. To continue being a part of this process, we are offering SPECIAL PRICING FOR PILOTS as they have smaller budgets, and we want to help them put together a show that will capture viewers early on and get it past the evaluation stage. There are many ways and opportunities to use 3D scanning technology.

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

Good luck to all the companies working hard in this industry, and keep us in mind as part of your solution for success.

 

Where’s your closest TNG location?

tng vfx locations

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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

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

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.

blendWireframe

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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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

 

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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.