VIEWFest | 2008
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June, 6 h. 4.15 – 6.00 pm | Cinema Massimo, Via Verdi 18, Turin

SIGGRAPH 2007: 25,000 creators and users of computer graphics and interactive techniques convene in San Diego for five full days of world-class technical presentations, creative exploration, and the industry's largest marketplace of products and services: the SIGGRAPH 2007 Exhibition.

The Siggraph Electronic Theater is the premier annual event for the world's most innovative, accomplished, and amazing digital film and video creators. An internationally recognized jury receives hundreds of submissions and presents the best work of the year in the Electronic Theater. Selections include outstanding achievements in time-based art, scientific visualization, visual effects, real-time graphics, and narrative shorts.

Get ready for the Electronic Theater arrival in Turin!


Burning Safari    Paris (France) | 1:47
Directors: Vincent Aupetit, Florent de la Taille, Jeanne Irzenski, Maxime Maléo, Aurélien Prédal, Claude-William Trébutien | Producer: Gobelins, l'École de l'image.

Several million years ago, small robots from space arrive as tourists on planet Earth and take souvenir pictures of their trip. One of them wanders away from the group and meets an ape-man. Communications between these two prove to be difficult.

Raimond    London (UK) | 5:37
Directors: Fabrice le Nezet, Jules Janaud, François Roisin | Producer: Stephen Venning | Contributors: The Mill-BIF.
Software: SOFTIMAGE|XSI; Adobe After Effects; Apple Shake.

The story of a lowly swimming instructor from Douche Les Mines and his quest, with the help of some fantasy science, to swim with the whales. The film was created as a combination of live action and 3D animation. The main area created in 3D was that of Raymond's laboratory re-programming, and it is here where BIF was able to display their very unique style of character animation. Raymond is put through his paces, he's a table top footballer, he runs like no man before him and he dances like a Jackson. The other area that Mill believes their BIF team have truly excelled is the look of the film. It's a combination of very cool stylization and photo-realism, giving the final film a very sophisticated look.

Ark    Warszawa (Poland) | 7:23
(Siggraph 2007 Computer Animation festival "Best of Show").

Director: Grzergorz Jonkajtys | Producers: Marcin Kobylecki, Grzergorz Jonkajtys | Contributors: Write, Director: Grzergorz Jonkajtys | Co-Producers: Jaroslaw Sawko, Piotr Sikora | Executive Producer: Marcin Kobylecki | Production Assistant: Marta Staniszewska | 3D Artists: Steve Arguello, Alex Federici, Joe Hoback, Kevin Hoppe, Szymon Kaszuba, Grzegorz Krysik, Slawomir Latos, Votch Levi, Olek Lyzwansky, Radoslaw Nowakowsky, Bartosz Opatowiecki, Akira Orikasam Marcin Pazera, Piotr Rusnarczyk, Lukasz Sobisz, Bartosz Tomaszewski, Piotr Tomczyk, Gabriel Vargas | Character Animation: Grzegorz Jonkajtys, Grzegorz Kukus, Lukasz Muszynski, Tracy Irwin | Paint Artists: Damian Bajowski, Lei Jin, Krzysiek Kamrowski, Pawel Lewandowski, Marcin Pazera, Maria Strzelecka | R&D: Adam Wierzchowski | Miniatures: Marcin Kobylecki, Tomas Mayer | Music: Pawel Blaszczak, Adam Skorupa | SFX: Adam Skorupa | Theater Mix: Tomasz Sikora, Piotr Knop | Mixing: Tota Sound Studios | Film Laboratory: WFDiF | Laboratory Manager: Malgorzata Roguska | Tech Support: Tomasz Kruszona, Piotr Getka, Danny Torres, Michael Torres.
Software: SOFTIMAGE|XSI; NewTek LightWave; Autodesk 3dsMax; Adobe Photoshop, After Effects; Eyeon Fusion.

An unknown virus has destroyed almost the entire human population. Oblivious to the true nature of the disease, the only remaining survivors escape to the sea. In great ship, they set off in search of uninhabited land. So begins the exodus, led by one man.

The Recent Future Robot Helper Z    Tokio (japan) | 1:42
Director: Katzuyuki Suzuki | Producer: Isaku Ogura.
Software: Autodesk Maya; Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Premiere, After Effects.

A story of a near future robot, developed in order to help troubled people. This time, is it possible to rescue the woman?

Formation of a Spiral Galaxy    Tokio (Japan) | 2:00
Director: Takaaki Takeda | Producers: Eiichiro Kokubo, Shoken Miyama | Contributors: Presentation: National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, Four-Dimensional Digital Universe Project | Simulation: Takayuki Saitoh | Visualization: Takaaki Takeda, Sorahiko Nukatani | Visualization Programming: Takaaki Takeda, Toshiyuki Takahei | Music: Asako Miyaki | Voice: Catherine Ishida | Voice Recording: Hideharu Takayama, Hiroyuki Hatano, Yumi Iwashita, Hidehiko Agata, Junichiro Makino.
Software: Custom Zindaiji; Adobe After Effects

Gravity enhances slight variations in the density of matter, basically causing matter to clump together, creating a mesh-like distribution. Most of the matter in the universe consists of the mysterious dark matter, which tends to concentrate together with ordinary matter.
This movie shows what happens to clouds of gas in the process of galaxy formation. The gas is blue, while dark matter is not shown. Stars form where the gas is densest. Each second in the movie represents the passage of tens of millions of years.

High Fashion in Equation    Geneva (Switzerland) | 1:36
Director: Prof. Nadia Magneant-Thalmann | Producer: MIRALab – University of Geneva | Contributors: Pascal Volino, Christiane Luible, Nedjma Cadi-Yazli, Marlene Arevalo-Pizat, Anouk Porrot, Mathilde Tourenk, Yacine Benmansour.
Hardware: VICON Motion Capture System | Software: Autodesk 3ds Max; Adobe Photoshop, Première; Custom Fashionizer software for cloth simulation

With the research "High Fashion in Equation", MIRALAb brought to life virtually 18 haute couture garments out of original ancient fashion drawings from designers such as Marc Bohan, Serge Guérin and Hubert de Givenchy, former assistants of the famous couturier Robert Piguet. The sketches served the purpose of a direct procurement of the aesthetic dream of the designer.
Shown only in two-dimension, a sketch leaves a lot of space for individual interpretation of the garment in three-dimensions. Tools in 3D Computer Graphics give the users the freedom to visualize the real world virtually in a realistic or a completely abstract way. Regarding the garments of Robert Piguet, this freedom allows thousands of different virtual interpretations of the fashion drawings. The sketches could be either transformed into a very realistic virtual garment visualizing small details or into an abstract cloth related only to the idea of the designer. The challenge of the virtual animation of the Piguet sketches was to fin the adequate grade of abstraction to transport all the important information. The final aesthetic of the output consists in a balancing act between artificiality (toward the sketch) and realism (towards the real garments).

En tus Brazos    Paris (France) | 5:15
(Siggraph 2007 Computer Animation Festival "Award of Excellence").
Directors: François-Xavier Goby, Edouard Jouret, Matthieu Landour | Producers: Marie Anne Fontenier, Supinfocom Valenciennes | Contributor: Distributor: Annabel Sebag.

The greatest tango dancer of the 20's is stuck in a wheelchair after an accident. Thanks to his wife, he recovers the use of his legs, in time for one imaginary dance.

the itch    Bournemouth (UK) | 1:44
Director: Joel Green | Producer: NCCA Bournemouth University.
Hardware: Linux Workstations | Software: Autodesk Maya; Apple Shake

The Itch is a short animation concerning a strange period in the main character's life. One day he find himself being followed home by a small plain looking man who starts tapping him with a walking stick. No matter what he tries, he cannot get rid of his new unwelcome companion. The story follows these events and how the man eventually grows to accept the intrusion and ultimately begins to rely upon the tapping.

Dreammaker    Ludwigsburg (Germany) | 13:35
Director/Producer: Leszek Plichta | Contributors: Screenplay: Dominik Steffan | Music: David Christiansen | Sound Design: Michael J. Diehl | Foley Artist: Marcus Nauberger | Voice "Dreammaker": Tom Zahner.
Software: Autodesk 3ds Max; Adobe Photoshop; Eyeon Fusion

At one time, the Dreammaker made the most beautiful dreams for people. Now, he lives solitary for only one purpose, the creation of his own special dream...

Equilibrio    New York (USA) | 1:08
Director: Tomas Salles | Producers: Natasha Novis, Tomas Salles, Bobby Yan | Contributors: Production Designer: Natasha Novis | Cinematography: Chris Freilich | Camera Assistant: Amy Bostwick | Gaffer: Carl Schroder | Key Grip: Jean Chen | Editor, DFX: Tomas Salles | Soundtrack: João Brasil | Production Assistants: John Alberico, Young Lee | Driver: Jose | Render Support: The Mill NY.
Hardware: AMD Athlon 64X2 Dual Core CPU, 4800 + 2.41 GHz, 2 GB RAM | Software: Autodesk Maya; Michael B. Comet's Pose Deformer; Pixiologic ZBrush; Adobe Premiere, Photoshop, Illustrator, After Effects

A male character confined in a dark gym works out to develop his upper body muscles, and he grows enormous proportions his body stability changes.

A Gentlemen's Duel    Venice – CA (USA) | 5:56
Directors: Francisco Ruiz, Sean McNally | Producers: Tim Miller, Al Shier | Contributors: Writers: Sean McNally, Francisco Ruiz, Jeff Fowler, Tim Miller | Animation Supervisors: Jean-Dominique Fievet, Jason Taylor | Lighting & Compositing Supervisor: Sebastien Chort | Character Modeling Supervisor: Laurent Pierlot | Associate Producer: Debbie Yu | Rigging Supervisor: RemiMcGill | VFX Supervisor: Kirby Miller | Concept Art: Sean McNally, Francisco Ruiz, Chuck Wojtkiewicz.
Hardware: Boxx Dual Opteron Dual Core 8400 Series Workstations, IBM and Angstrom Dual Processor Render Nodes, NVIDIA fx4500; Windows XP Professional 64 Bit; Linux CentOS | Software: Autodesk 3ds Max; SOFTIMAGE|XSI; Splutterfish Brazil; Eyeon Fusion 5.

In A Gentlemen's Duel, a new short film presented by Oscar-Nominated Blur Studio, a time-honored tradition is re-imagined with a fantastic blend of boisterous characters and over-the-top comedic action. A seemingly innocent tea party takes a turn for the dramatic when two imperious aristocrats suddenly find themselves competing for the affection of the same fair lady.

swirl    Cambridge (UK) | :25
Director/Producer: Lee Griggs.
Hardware: Dual Quad Core CPU | Software: Autodesk Maya, mental ray.

Fluid effects are converted to polygons with non-linear bend deformers applied and animated in a 360 degree rotation. Lit with a physical sun and sky keyframed from sunrise to sunset.

Herbstlaub    Ludwigsburg (Germany) | 3:03
Director/Producer: Oliver Vogel | Contributor: Animator: Oliver Vogel | Music: Philipp Noll | Vocalists: Thomas Hinke, Christoph Horch, Tanja Krampfert, Johannes Kümmel, Jan Locher, Moritz Mayerhofer, Philipp Noll, Oliver Vogel.
Hardware: PC Xeon 5160 @ 3GHz, 3GB RAM | Software: NewTek LightWave; Adobe After Effects.

Herbstlaub is the coming-of-age road movie, of a dot. It's a simple story told in abstract graphics.

HAPPINESS FACTORY    New York (USA) | 1:30
Directors: Todd Mueller, Kylie Matulik | Producer: Boo Wong | Contributors: Production company Psyop, Inc. | Executive Producer: Justin Booth Clibborn | Assistant producers: Kate Phillips, Viet Luu | Flame Artists: Eben Mears, Jaime Aguirre | Lead 3D Artist: Joe Burrascano | Animation Director: Kevin Estey | Technical Director: Josh Harvey | 3D Animators: Kyle Mohr, Miles Southan, Boris Ustaev, Dan Vislocky | 3D Artists: Chris Bach, Clay Budin, David Chontos, Tom Cushwa, Josh Frankel, Jonathan Garin, Scott Hubbard, Jaye Kim, Joon Lee, Paul Liaw, Joerg Liebold, David Lobser, Dylan Maxwell, Naomi Nishimura, Ylli Orana | Storyboard Artist: Ben Chan | Character Design: Ben Chan, Todd Mueller, Kylie Matulik | Matte Painter: Dylan Cole | Editor: Cass Vanini.
Software: Autodesk Maya; Flame; SOFTIMAGE|XSI; Adobe Photoshop; Illustrator; After Effects.

Imagine the world inside an average Coke vending machine. PSYOP created a magical land where deliciously twisted creatures labor to fulfill their destinies by infusing joy into each bottle of Coke. Through character design, development, and animation a whole cast and their story was brought to life.

Travelers: Snowball    Wellington (New Zealand) | 1:06
Director: Dante Ariola | Producer: Kate Talbott | Contributors: Weta DIgital Ltd., Wellington NZ | VFX Supervisor: Dan Lemmon | VFX Executive Producer: Eileen Moran | DFX Supervisor: Chris White | Animation Supervisor: Paul Story | Client: Travelers Insurance | Agency: Fallon | Creative Director: Todd Ridde | Head of Production: Vic Palombo | Production Company: MJZ.
Software: Autodesk Maya; Adobe Photoshop; Apple Shake; Pixar RenderMan.

Travelers: Snowball begins with a man walking down a steep street. He crashes through a yard sale, before tumbling head-over-heels down the hill. As the man continues to roll he creates a "snowball effect", accumulating objects from the street to create an enormous ball of urban debris. The ball continues to roll through the streets and grow. Finally it smashes into a wall, releasing a shower of objects. The biggest challenge from a visual-effects standpoint was the large number of digital objects and people Weta Digital had to create to form the ball. Eight digital humans were built, modeled after live-action actors and an assortment of debris found on any city street. Extensive reference photography and a high-speed, high-resolution facial scanning system were used to create models, textures, and shaders as photorealistic as possible. In some cases, the plates were fabricated from digital photos shot with a consumer SLR; stills were cleaned up – static people, cars and signage painted out, camera moves added to the cleaned still plate, animated and the CG elements rendered. Everything was then composited together with liberal amounts of dust.

HP Hands "Paulo Coelho"    Venice – CA (USA) | :27
Director: Mathew Cullen | Producer: Scott Gemmel | Contributors: Agency: Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, SF | Creative Directors: Rich Silverstein, Steve Simpson | Group Creative Director: Mike McKay | Associate Creative Director, Art Director: Stephen Goldblatt | Executiva Producer: Josh Reynolds | Producer: Ashley Sferro | Agency: McCann Erickson, Mexico | Creative Director, Writer, Art Director: Rodrigo Lopez | Production Company: Motion Theory | DP: Roman Jakobi | Executiva Producer: Javier Jimenez | VFX Art Director: Mark Kudsi | VFX Supervisor: Nick Losq | VFX Producer: Matt Winkel | Lead Programmer: Josh Nimoy | Editorial: Motion Theory | Editor: Josh Basche | Compositing, Finishing: 1.1 VFX | Lead Compositor: Danny Yoon.

In HP's series of distinctive "Hands" spots, director Mathew Cullen of Motion Theory helps make magical realism come alive as Paulo Coelho, best known as the author of the international bestsellers The Alchemist, explores the world of his computer through visual imagery that combines the mystical and the modern. Coelho's poetic descriptions flow seamlessly together with symbolic visuals that match his evocative and sensory writing style. A door opens into the world of a book, which Coelho then pull apart like thread. He runs his hand through a river of words, which just as quickly evaporate into the air.
Cullen and Art Director Mark Kudsi worked together to create a seamless blend of illustration, animation, and precise live-action choreography.

The Saints Are Coming    Los Angeles – CA (USA) | 4:34
Sway Studio | Director: Chris Milk

Working closely, the team meticulously to ensure all shots were done to the high level of detail and quality that was expected. SWAY's main challenge was to make the Iraqi Desert Storm aircraft and tanks look like they were actually there in New Orleans for the rescue and mass evacuation. Every shot was scrutinized, worked and reworked to ensure its believability, all within a tight timeframe.
Our compositors integrated many photo-real CG elements, including Harriejets, helicopters, bombers and tanks into existing news footage from Hurricane Katrina, resulting in a thought-provoking and emotional video that illustrates what it might have looked like had the government responded to the disaster.
SWAY also added video degradation to the CG elements so that they would match the original footage, which varied substantially from shot to shot. The most challenging part was taking a shot of a flooded main boulevard and adding rows of tanks rolling through the water.

A VFX Journey Through Pan's Labyrinth With CafeFX    3:41
Director: Guillermo del Toro | Producers: A Production of Estudios Picasso, Tequila Gang, Esperanto Filmoj in Association with CafeFX, inc.

When the harsh world of the Spanish Civil War becomes too horrific to bear in director Guillermo del Toro's visually rich and complex Pan's Labyrinth, young Ofelia escapes inward, finding in her imagination the power to heal her real-world wounds. Challenged to create the mythical creatures and landscapes of Ofelia's fantasy, CafeFX embarked on an artistic and technical journey spanning four months of location shooting and five months of post production. Seamlessly uniting the real world horrors with Ofelia's fantastic universe, CafeFX brought reality to the dream, creating a curious stick bug, fairies, a giant toad, a baby in the womb, and an infant-like mandrake root, while augmenting both the title character and our heroine's nemesis, the Pale Man. In addition, artists tracked, rotoscoped, composited and painted hundreds of practical and digital elements to create the throne room, labyrinth, rock wall and womb environments, creating a dark and earthy realism that contributed to the film's three academy awards, three BAFTA awards and six Goya awards.

Portal    USA | Doug Lombardi | Valve Corporation | 1:56
Real-time rendering of new Portal gameplay in Half Life 2, one of the most played sci-fi shooter game!

Gears of War    USA | Jerry O'Flaherty | Epic Games Inc. | 3: 46
Gears of War is a third-person tactical action/horror game: As Marcus Fenix, you fight a war against the immense Locust Horde, which not only outpowers but outnumbers you, your squad, and the entire force of the Coalition of Ordered Governments. Gears of War is the only game that blends a deep and disturbing story of human survival with an endless mass of nightmarish creatures, a next-generation tactical combat system, and unsurpassed visuals and special effects.

Resistance: Fall of Man    USA | Insomniac Games | The Ant Farm | Sony Computer | 2:27
Resistance: Fall of Man (PS3) represents a unique blend of heavy military action and unnerving horror set in an alternative reality. 1952 England: the US and Britain band together in a last-ditch effort to save England from a horrible species called the Chimera, which in mere decades has overrun Russia and all of Europe. "Resistance: Fall of Man" has been praised for its unique weapons arsenal, immersive single-player campaign, and extensive 40-player online offering. The game has earned global critical acclaim since its release and remain a top-selling PlayStation 3 title.

Plasma Pong    USA | Steve Taylor | 3:11
Plasma Pong is a variation of Pong, the first videogame (1966), that utilizes real-time fluid dynamics to drive the game environment. Players have several new abilities that add fun twists to the classic game. In the game you can inject plasma fluid into the environment, create a vacuum from your paddle, and blast shockwaves into the playing area. All these abilities have fluid-based kinetic effects on the ball, making Plasma Pong a fast-paced and exciting game.
To render the fluid, different fields such as density, velocity, curl, pressure, and divergence, are visualized using color-mapping. The plasma effect in the game is created by combining the velocity, dye, and pressure fields. The details of these fields are refined using 3D lighting.

Siggraph 2007    Technical Paper Review
A series of short clip from Siggraph 2007 technical papers narrated by Jim Blinn, a review of the most advanced researches on digital techniques.

NVIDIA Real-Time Graphic Research: The GeForce 8 Demo Suite
Efficient Rendering of Human Skin
New research is applied to a high resolution scan of actor Doug Jones (Fantastic Four, Pan's Labyrinth, Hellboy) to enable realtime rendering of natural-looking skin under a variety of lighting conditions. A new formulation of light diffusion using sums of Gaussians allows efficient evaluation of subsurface scattering on modern GPUs that accurately models reflectance of a multy-layer skin model. The result is a startling leap forward in realism for real-time characters.

A lonely frog comes to life in a rich pond setting where the user is free to move about the scene and pull, poke, and slap the frog, and watch as he reacts. In addition to realistic water effects and skin rendering, an extremely sophisticated character rig is evaluated completely on the GPU to enable a huge array of realistic deformations as the users pulls the frog skin.

NVIDIA's Cascades demo features waterfalls flowing down procedurally generated terrain. The waterfalls are simulated and rendered in real-time on modern graphics hardware as a dynamic particle system and can be interactively placed anywhere on the terrain by the user. The terrain is also generated by the graphic hardware, on demand, as the user roams.

Advances in Real-Time Rendering showcases the latest in games technology from Crytek GmbH, Epic Games Inc. and Insomniac Games Inc. This montage is edited by Habib Zargarpour (Electronic Arts).

Capturing and Animating Human Skin Deformation    Moshe Mahler | Sang ii Park | Jessica Hodgins
During dynamic activities, the surface of the human body moves in many subtle but significant ways; bending, bulging, jiggling, and stretching. We present a technique for capturing and animating those motions using a commercial motion capture system and approximately 350 markers. We supplement this sparse sample with a detailed, actor-specific surface model. The motion of the skin can then be computed by segmenting the markers into the motion of a set of rigid parts and a residual deformation. We demonstrate the power of this approach by capturing flexing muscles, high frequency motions, and abrupt decelerations on several actors.

The Firebird    Scott Draves | The Electric Sheep
The Firebird was designed and realized by the "Electric Sheep", a cyborg mind composed of 50,000 computers and people communicating with a genetic algorithm. It's an open-source, distributed screen saver that harnesses idle computers into a render farm with the purpose of animating and evolving artificial life-forms known as a "sheep". The participants control what they see by voting to direct the sheep's reproduction, and by submitting genomes A.K.A. intelligent design. To render the The Firebird required 250,000 CPU-hours and 160B particles per frame. It is a tiny excerpt from Dreams in High Fidelity, a painting that evolves.

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