Supplementing his presentation of a novel denoising method at this year’s SIGGRAPH, Daniel Dresser (Image Engine’s shading specialist) will host a 5-minute talk at the Gaffer Birds of a Feather meeting, demonstrating a free implementation of the denoiser built in Gaffer.
This month, CGWorld has provided a write-up of Image Engine’s contributions to the Japanese-produced CG film Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV. Gaffer greatly aided the lighting department and daily automation during production of their 23-minute sequence for the film.
This month, Animation World Network wrote a brief on Image Engine Design’s VFX work for season 1 of Netflix’s Lost in Space. From rigging to final render, Gaffer played an integral part as the glue that joined all the parts of the studio’s pipeline.
Image Engine’s work creating digital humans was featured in February’s issue of 3D Artist Magazine, which shows off Gaffer’s capabilities in handling photoreal character lookdev and lighting using a multitude of shaders in a studio pipeline.
This month, FXGuide featured the look of the robot from Lost in Space, Netflix’s modern reimagining of the famous TV series from the 1960s.
We’re thrilled to learn that Gaffer was a key lighting and rendering software for a VES nominated project! CG Supervisor Edmond Engelbrecht and the Image Engine team were nominated for Outstanding Created Environment in an Episode, Commercial, or Real-Time Project for their work on Game of Thrones; The Winds of Winter, with the procedural texturing, look development, and rendering for the Citadel environment produced using Gaffer.
The buzz surrounding Gaffer was pretty solid at Siggraph this year, thanks in part to our Gaffer paper, published and presented at DigiPro. If you’re unfamiliar with DigiPro, its a co-located symposium that takes place the day before Siggraph. The presentations focus on production proven technology, providing a space for long-form papers about actual production challenges (rather than pure research). Image Engine has presented at DigiPro in the past, about our Cortex based rendering pipeline, but this was the first paper about Gaffer itself.
FXGuide has a detailed breakdown of Independence Day: Resurgence, including Image Engine’s key contributions: the aliens, interior mothership environment, and holding prison.
Because Gaffer is a procedural system, modifications to objects are made by applying nodes to the scene, using filters to determine which objects within the scene are affected by a particular node. Commonly a PathFilter is used to select all the objects whose names match a particular pattern, similar to the way pattern matching is performed in a Unix shell. For example,
/world/octopi/*/*Eye would select all the eyes of any cephalopods that might be lurking in the scene.
When reorganising a node network, you often want to move all the nodes upstream from a particular point in the graph. You can Shift+Alt click to select all such nodes and drag them to a new location. Here’s an example moving some nodes to make way for the insertion of another node. Also note how the node is inserted automatically when dragged over the noodle.
If you’ve spent much time in a UNIX shell, you probably already know and love tab completion, whereby hitting the tab key will autocomplete the current filename based on the first few characters entered. It’s particularly handy for navigating the kind of deep directory structures that seem to typify VFX job structures. It’s worth knowing that Gaffer’s path widgets support the same tab complete mechanism - just type part of the name, hit tab and if possible it’ll be completed for you. Here’s an example.
CGSociety has a great interview with Martyn Culpitt, VFX supervisor at Image Engine, talking about Image Engine’s work on Jurassic World.