Creating 3D Models for VFX with TNG Visual Effects

TNG Visual Effects scan technicians and artists know just what to do when creating digital assets from 3D scanning for use in film, television, or video games.

The scanning process begins as soon as the talent arrives at our studio (or we arrive on the location of our clients’ choice). Once everyone is settled in and our equipment is calibrated, we begin by taking high-resolution reference photographs. The quality of these photographs is critical to producing high-resolution texture maps at 2K, 4K or as high as 8K.

We use structured light scanners to capture the geometry of the talent who will become a photorealistic 3D cg model. The scanners create the digital models at up to a million polygons. Once the data is captured and created, we move on to the post-production process.

Create your digital assets with the right team and the proper equipment.

The first step in the post-production process involves ensuring the accuracy and integrity of the scan data. We align, stitch, and register the scan data. It is then re-topologized (the process of intelligently placing edge loops) in order to ensure the data is a manageable size for our clients, in addition to optimizing it for animation.

After re-topologizing the model, the team of artists at TNG UV the polys and then texture the model using the high-resolution reference photos. They will sculpt any additional details necessary to make the model worthy of the title ‘photorealistic.’ Accurate measurements are verified through the use of the scan data throughout the process. In the final stages of post-production, TNG artists will use various shaders and materials to produce the best looking render possible.

Good quality photorealistic looking 3D models can only be accomplished with a complete pipeline,  a dedicated team, professional equipment, and good coordination with clients to ensure they are getting what they want. Choose 3D scanning technology services as your number one source for visual effects assets.

http://tngvisualeffects.com 877.879.2040

Who’s got character?

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There are so many different characters out there it will make your head spin. We enjoy finding new and unusual characters. They define life. What they bring with them and what they face every day fascinates us. These are the real characters of life. No prosthetics, no makeup. Just a face for the world to look at. This is the face we enjoy working with. A face someone is proud of, that has distinction. It carries a distinct imprint and also that aged look whether it is in years or experience. Now that’s a face!

Of course in this business, it is the project you face and do the best job you can. The tools afforded to us today give you the ability to get in close; see the eye socket structure, the corner of the lips and the lines within the lips, the scars on the face and even the wrinkles. The challenge with creating a new character is not 3D scanning the head and body, but rather the cost, quality and speed of delivery. I’ve heard some people say which two out of the three would you like, but it doesn’t have to be that way. My clients do not want to make that choice. They want it all.  That is what we aim to give them – everything we can to meet their needs.

In the course of preparing for the scan, it should be realized that the hair is the hardest part to capture. Whether using lasers or structured light, it is a challenge. I find, however, that most companies do not concern themselves with this aspect as they would like to build cyberhair to react with the dynamics of the scene. Therefore, we use wigcaps to cover the hair. This will give the character a bald or hairless appearance. A major advantage of this is that it helps us develop a better ear thanks to the process. There will also be some small issues like, sideburns, beards, mustaches etc, but we do find ways to make it all work to give you something that gets you the most realistic character possible.

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Facial expressions are also a source of concern regarding developing good facial performance. There are numerous choices out there and we are looking at several new ones to offer an even better product. In the meantime, we have employed a way to do it that serves most needs. However, the future is always changing, not only the way we look, but also the way we do things. This dictates the need to keep aware of what the market has that makes sense and works.

At Siggraph last month, I was watching the “Demo” of a product and the company was pushing a Siggraph special. The product sounded good and the price sounded okay until I asked what the regular price was and found out they didn’t know or didn’t have one, but I should still buy at the Siggraph special price. The second question was; if I did, can I bring the software with me or download it? That’s when I heard it hadn’t started shipping yet. This is not to say there are not other solutions, but beware of what you are buying lest your character ends up having a look of bitterness and rage.

  -Nick Tesi

http://tngvisualeffects.com

TNG’s Exclusive Interview with Tech Gaming 24/7

By Xavier Coleman

Today I had the pleasure of interviewing the company TNG Visual Effects. Here is a transcript of the interview that took place.

TG24/7: Can you tell me a little about Mr. Nick Tesi, the founder of TNG Visual Effects?

TNG: Mr. Tesi has been a pioneer in the visual effects industry for over 25 years and is widely considered one of North America’s leading experts in 3D scanning, motion capture, and other visual effects technologies. A passionate innovator, Nick brings an incredible depth of experience and talent to his work. His relentless enthusiasm for creating unlimited digital realism in visual effects has made Nick a valued colleague at production companies throughout the entertainment industry.

Continue article here: http://www.techgaming247.com/category/features/interviews/

Your Virtual Ride

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What’s your dream car? Ours is the Chevrolet Chevelle. It’s a great car, even at stock. However, if you want, we can add to the basic 3D scan of the car. We can add things like a hood scoop, chrome exhaust pipes, chrome spinners, a big spoiler on the back, race stripes, or even a body kit. We can trick out your virtual ride until it’s just what you desire.

We prep and scan a car in about four hours. It can be scanned in your garage or ours, provided we have enough space and time. We can provide static or movable pieces on the vehicle if needed, such as a door opening, or the hood, or the trunk. As you can imagine, the interior is much more detailed and will take additional time and expense.

If you’re producing a commercial or movie that has cars, motorcycles, scooters, horses, tractors, buses, trucks, planes, or even trains, we can scan it. Once processing is complete, we can deliver a quad mesh, or a fully textured 3D model. We will give you a price that is more than competitive.

So bring your automobiles to TNG, and we will treat them like our own as we prepare your virtual copy. Remember, digital is forever

Replicating Your Environment

Create exactly what you want via TNG 3D scanning visual effects technology.

 

Have you ever stepped on set, and immediately wished you had a digital scan of it?  Or have you wished the set was still there after it’s been taken apart? You might think you need a time machine, but all you need is a 3D scanning company with the right tools.  This is why we provide a service akin to insurance scanning. It’s the same concept of scanning characters in the event that they become unavailable later during production. With insurance scanning, you can have the sets scanned, and the data archived in case you need it in post production. The same can be done for location shooting as well.

We can scan houses, buildings, and structures that may be on the location to provide you with the ability to add (or subtract) cleanly from the scene. Sometimes pedestrians or traffic may be obstructing a location, and in that case, we can scan in the middle of the night with our infrared laser scanners.

It is the customer’s choice as to what they want and when they want the final delivery. You may want to consider what type of format you want the data: be it a point cloud, a surfaced model, or perhaps a complete model with textures is your ideal delivery.

Consider using 3D scanning on your project. TNG can save you the resources of both time and money.

A Lineup of Characters from the Real World

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A Lineup of Characters Brought in from the Real World

TNG Visual Effects provides full body 3D scanning of characters for your film, television or video game project. TNG’s 3D scanning visual effects technology can scan your characters in full wardrobe, partial or in underclothes so you can modify the digital wardrobe. We scan heads and hands separately for better detail. It’s a quick and easy process. We also help you create the facial expressions you need as an extra service, or just for reference in a photo shoot.
 
The group seen here is the beginning of our virtual library of characters for hire or license based on your needs.
Call us to create the 3D characters you need in your current or next project. 877.879.2040

Replicating Buildings – Inside and Out

Replicating sets with 3D scanners has become a staple of films and other markets. A building may be scanned (interior or exterior) for the set designer to add extensions or different facades, or to have as a reference for placement.

For exquisite detail, high resolution is necessary. Our laser scanners can capture hundreds of millions of points. We take several dense point clouds and stitch them together. To convert these point clouds to a surface (polygonal data) is a process which includes decimation, allowing for a very large spectrum of resolution output according to the client’s need. These laser scanners were developed specifically for very accurate measurements. We also add markers to the scene in order to have additional reference points to better register the data.

The 3D scanner we use is consistent with our company goals of having a solution that is small, easy to transport and set up, and is able to scan quickly. Like windows on cars, transparent and shiny materials are harder to capture, whereas buildings made from a flat material such as cement, brick, or wood are better for measurements and registration.

We have found that if we need to scan a highly populated area, we can work during the middle of the night, and shoot the reference photographs earlier in the day, or the following day. This is yet another way in which we strive for efficiency when it comes to collecting data without disrupting our clients’ production schedule.

Allow yourself the freedom of working in the digital realm by using these 3D environments. Visual effects have a versatility that is akin to the mind’s imagination. Remember, we provide more than just environments. Cars, people, and objects are also some of our favorite elements to replicate.

Are your characters breaking your budget?

http://myemail.constantcontact.com/Are-your-CHARACTERS-spending-your-budget-.html?soid=1103007733068&aid=8eXGeCF7roM.

 

Special Effects vs. Visual Effects: Our Changing Industry

The industry (commonly referred to as “The Biz”) is in a constant change of getting the public viewers’ interested in their story by using all of the tools available. All businesses experience this – constant change. Special Effects was the preferred tool of the trade for years with explosions, water tanks, and stuntmen diving off of buildings into inflated cushions. In the last 10-15 years Visual Effects has been coming into their own with water effects, fire, explosions and making digital characters fall off roofs, mountains, or catching on fire.

Special Effects with live action shots were faster and easier for the director to work with, however, to do a second and third take became difficult and expensive. Now with visual effects and computers, you can do the second take, make various changes, and get a whole new look that could not be done any other way.

Visual Effects also lets you break all the rules as to what happens to a character or object within a scene. Yes, over the years there have been many changes, and more changes are on the way. The most important part of visual effects is creating life-like models and their seamless integration to live action.  This is the real magic of everything working in synchronization. It also gives the movie makers and commercial innovators a more cost-effective method of building content. This should also have an effect on the insurance that a show has to carry becuase their talent or their stunt actor is not in danger.

 To create the digital characters and props, you could have them modeled, or use some different visual effects depending on how close you would like them to get the action. 3D scanning has become the quickest solution that gives you the ability to use in pre-visualization and in the shot.  If you are working on a franchise such as Spiderman or Ironman, the 3D scan can be used over and over. The same can be done with TV episodics,  commercials with several variations and with video games that have a number of iterations to serve their fan base. 3D scans also make a great asset to use in the event of changes in the cast for various reasons.

What’s your poly count?

 

Whether you’re creating digital content to be used for mobile apps, video games, television episodes, commercials, trailers or feature films, we’ve got you covered. TNG Visual Effects specializes in creating custom 3D digital assets for virtually any production. Email info@tngvisualeffects.com to inquire about what we can create for you or call Nick Tesi (310.717.2937) directly to discuss your needs.