Texas-based company Locomotion Studios recently pushed Vicon MotionSystems' Vicon 8 to the limit, by capturing motion data of riders onhorseback for THE NIGHT OF THE HEADLESS HORSEMAN, a TV movie being producedby Computed Animation Technology (CAT) which will air on Fox on October 28at 8 pm. The company merged their Vicon 8 with CAT's Vicon 8 to accomplishthe feat, which was no easy task. The crew had several concerns, the mostchallenging being finding a way to place markers on an animal that would be
Boris FX, the makers of compositing and effects plug-ins for filmmakers,recently made several key announcements, including the introduction of twonew products. Boris Graffiti, a new 3D title animation tool will shipbefore the end of 1999 at just under $1000. The program will be availablein the form of a plug-in for non-linear editing programs, and will allowusers to create and extrude 3D text, and rotate it in 3D space with lights,motion blur and animated kerning. Also, Boris Factory, a new 3D DVE
Play Inc. - the producers of Snappy Video Snapshot, Trinity and GlobeCaster- recently announced Trinity Live, a live production tool based on anadvanced digital component hardware switcher. The new tool, which istightly integrated with Trinity's real-time architecture for custom 2D and3D video effects, animated graphics, character generation, and virtualsets, is geared toward taking live television to a higher level. TrinityLive contains all the familiar features of a high-end switcher, however its
Nothing Real recently announced that it will provide a plug-in which willallow Adobe After Effects users to transfer AE projects into their popularcompositing tool, Shake. This plug-in means that After Effects users willbe able to benefit from Shake's powerful manipulation and output features,yet at the same keep the familiarity of the AE environment. Allen Edwards,president of Nothing Real said that, "With the development of a Shaketranslator plug-in for Adobe After Effects, we are confident that we will
Puffin Designs -- the producers of popular 2D effects tool Commotion - recently announced thatthey will be releasing a version of Knoll Light Factory in Avid's AVXplug-in format. The Light Factory plug-in is already available for AdobeAfter Effects and Apple's Final Cut Pro, however Avid users have yet toexperience the control and precision lighting effects that Knoll LightFactory offers. The Avid version of Light Factory will be available beforethe end of 1999, and will be priced at $295.00 (US). For more information
Burnaby, British Columbia-based CDIS is offering a one-day industryintroduction to Macromedia's Flash 4.0 on October 23 from 9 am-4:30 pm.Cost is $225, which includes lunch. By the end of the seminar, you'll knowhow to prepare graphics for Flash, use the interface, sketch and draftideas for animation and interactivity, create symbols and manipulateinstances for actions, combine the final pieces into your own 30-secondanimated banner with sound, and post the final product to the web with FTP.
Waterloo, Ontario-based Jedor Inc. has released Viscosity 1.0, a newsoftware package that puts the process of 2D image editing and animationinto one application, and enables both novice and advanced graphicdesigners to create, edit, and view animated graphics for web sites, videoclips, and multimedia presentations. Viscosity differs from traditionalimage editing software by totally integrating highly visual animationtools, animated effects, and real-time playback directly into Viscosity's
Cary, North Carolina-based LIPSinc. is offering a free beta version ofVentriloquist for MAX, a new lip-synching plug-in for 3D Studio MAX R3.0.Ventriloquist for MAX automates the process of synchronizing correct mouthmovements to dialogue for animated characters. For more information visitwww.lipsinc.com.
Macromedia, Inc., leading publisher of Web publishing tools such asDreamweaver, Fireworks and Generator, is offering a multi-city Generator 2Seminar and Training Series for Internet professionals seeking successfulonline solutions for e-business, e-commerce, financial services, news &information and advertising. Generator 2 delivers targeted, real-timegraphics and interactivity for Web sites that feature on-demand content.Attendees will learn how Ford Motor Company, Internet Shopping Network and
Toronto, Canada-based SoftQuad Software Inc., a provider of HTML and XML content authoring tools, has announced HoTMetaL PRO 6.0. HoTMetaL PRO 6.0's new features are designed to increase productivity and provide users with more control over the Web development and management process. They include new FTP and remote file editing capabilities, improved handling of imported HTML source code, an improved drag and drop asset management system, and new customization options.
Sausalito, California-based Puffin Designs has announced Commotion DV, aprofessional image editing and effects program for digital video artists.Commotion DV is ideal for creating original stylized motion graphics andfixing image problems such as video dropouts. The SuperClone brush allowsusers to move and duplicate objects such as mountains, trees or clouds tocreate just the right background; fill in crowd scenes; or remove visualdistractions such as power lines or a wayward microphone. Playback controls
San Diego, California-based Pixels, Inc. is shipping version 3.2 of PiXELS:3D for Power MacIntosh. The new version is 25% faster than the previousversion. Among the features are: an Inverse Kinematics system that lets youdraw bones and create joints; Organic Modeling that enables users to moldprimitive objects like clay; a MorphMaker that allows for multi-targetmorphing and an Animation Timeline that lets you fine tune the movement ofobjects. PiXELS: 3D 3.2 Studio version sells for US$299.00 and PiXELS: 3D3.2 Studio Pro version sells for US$499.
San Jose, California-based Adobe Systems Incorporated has announced Adobe After Effects 4.1. After Effects is a tool for motion graphics designers and visual effects artists working with film, video, multimedia and the Web. Among the new features are: support for enhanced media exchange, performance enhancements, workflow refinements, and extended creative options and control. Adobe After Effects 4.1 will be available in September 1999 in the US and Canada for an estimated street price of US$699 for the standard version and US$1,499 for the production bundle.
Montreal, Canada-based Toon Boom Technologies Inc. is now shipping version 2.3 of TicTacToon. Some of the features included on this new version are the ability to: customize and modify the aspect ratio of each scene at any stage of production; work on up to three levels of animation simultaneously; drag and drop entire columns of drawings with their cel names and timing to and from the Animation and Exposure Sheet modules; make order and timing changes quickly in either module through insert, replace or append options; and draw paintable rectangular zones to close outer edges of any drawing.
Italy, Rome-based Digital Video S.R.L. has announced Toonz version 4.3,which provides 2D users with new tools to be more creative and efficient ontheir job. The digital exposure sheet is much more user friendly, includingmany new special effects, complete keyframe capabilities on all parameters,and enlarged number of mathematical expressions for more controllablemotion. Enhancements of display features include icons in the level headerarea for quick reference of elements. Texture mapping has been strengthened
Diepenbeek, Belgium-based Androme N.V. has announced the release ofCreaToon, a tool for cut-out animation, animated paint and any otheranimation that needs the manipulation of images or video sequences.CreaToon enables real-time editing and preview, and allows all parametersand textures can be animated with multiple camera views and scenes and lotsof plug-ins, such as file format plug-ins (TGA, BMP, JPG, PNG and AVI), alayers plug-in (image and gradient layer) and others. The package also
Cambridge, UK-based Cambridge Animation has released Animo ProductionTracker - new software that allows studios to use the Internet, intranetsand internal networks to track every aspect of a production cycle. AnimoProduction Tracker software automates management of the thousands ofdrawings and different personnel involved in a typical project, allowingusers to better ascertain progress, determine costs, allocate resources,and eliminate duplication. The new software is fully integrated with Animo,
San Francisco, California-based Macromedia, Inc. has announced theimmediate availability of the Macromedia Drumbeat 2000 line of productswhich provide a visual solution for Web application and e-commercedevelopment. Drumbeat 2000 is available in an Active Server Pages (ASP)version, a Java Server Pages (JSP) version, and an eCommerce edition. TheDrumbeat 2000 product line is being offered for the first time byMacromedia, which announced its intent to acquire Elemental Software and
San Francisco-based MetaCreations Corp., which develops and markets 2D and 3Dvisualization software for graphic artists and the World Wide Web, hasannounced Carrara 1.0, a 3D modeling and animation solution for print,video and the Web. Carrara will contain a hybrid Ray Tracer, advancedshader editors, multiple modelers, real-time Metaballs, particle systems,3D light sources, lens flares, motion blur, key framing, physical effects,deformers and more. Carrara will introduce a workflow called SmartFlow that
San Antonio, Texas-based NewTek, manufacturer of 3D animation and videoproduction products, has announced Video Toaster for Windows. The new VideoToaster is the heir to the original Video Toaster for the Amiga, whichinitiated the desktop video revolution in 1990. The Video Toaster offersusers a suite of tools for video creation including all the essentialcomponents for video editing, compositing and 2D/3D animation. Thesuggested retail price is $2995.00. The dual format NTSC and PAL solutionretails for $3495.00.
Santa Monica, California-based Station X Studios is licensing theproduction version of its proprietary animation software tools, code named"Project: messiah," as a commercial software product. The high-endanimation production software, developed to animate the studio'sforthcoming live-action/CGI feature film DUNGEONS & DRAGONS: THE MOVIE, canbe used on computers utilizing the Microsoft Windows NT operating systemwith either Intel compatible or Alpha compatible processors. A Mac version
Interactive television with its animated real-time games has been a hit across the globe but not here in the States. Sharon Schatz profiles the first venture in the US arena Throut & Neck, and probes why there aren't more.
Kellie-Bea Cooper asks everyone from pioneers to students just what they thought about the new, highly regarded SIGGRAPH documentary. Also features Quicktime video interviews by Diana Cracknell.
San Francisco, California-based Macromedia, Inc. has announced Macromedia FlashWriter, a free downloadable plug-in for Adobe Illustrator, which willenable Illustrator users to save their artwork natively to the Flash Playerfile format (SWF). Illustrator users will now be able to deploy theirartwork to the Web immediately without having to reformat it as a bitmappedfile. Flash is the industry standard for high-impact, vector-based Websites that deliver motion, sound, interactivity and graphics. Flash Writer
San Francisco, California-based Macromedia, Inc. has announced that itsFlash Player, which enables internet browsers to play web animations, willbe available free on September 1, 1999 for Linux, Sun Microsystems, Inc.'sSolaris, and Silicon Graphics Inc.'s Irix platforms. Flash is the standardfor creating high-impact, vector-based Web sites that deliver motion,sound, interactivity, and graphics. Flash Player versions for UNIX will beavailable for download at no charge from the Macromedia Web site.