MAXON Software Customer Projects to Screen at SIGGRAPH Computer Animation Festival

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Internationally Renowned Animated Film Forum to Include Nucleus Medical Art’s “Atherosclerosis” and Betsy Kopmar’s “Night Fishing with Cormorants”

Last Updated: July 21, 2009 6:10 pm GMT
(Newbury Park, California--July 21, 2009) MAXON Computer, a leading developer of professional 3D modeling, painting, animation and rendering solutions, today announced that two of its customers, Nucleus Medical Art, and artist Betsy Kopmar, have created projects using MAXON software that have been selected for inclusion in SIGGRAPH’s prestigious ‘Computer Animation Festival’, taking place during the SIGGRAPH 2009 Conference, August 3 – 7, at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans.

The festival, which is celebrating its 36th year, is an internationally renowned forum for presentation of the world's most innovative and stimulating computer-generated animated films. Nucleus Medical Art’s film, Atherosclerosis, is part of the festival’s Juried Films category. Juried Films include visual effects, animated shorts, student animations, scientific and musical visualizations, experimental subjects and more. The Best in Show Award qualifies the winner to be considered for nomination in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Best Animated Short Film category. Betsy Kopmar’s work, Night Fishing with Cormorants, is a curated entry in the Visual Music category, which features films marrying music and imagery.

“The SIGGRAPH Computer Animation Festival is legendary for showcasing some of the world’s most stunning 3D animation and we’re honored that two of our customers are represented in this year’s program,” said Paul Babb, president/CEO, MAXON USA. “These diverse pieces clearly demonstrate the universal appeal of CINEMA 4D and the broad range its capabilities enable creative professionals to attain even their most complex 3D animation goals. We’re confident that if it can be imagined, CINEMA 4D can help bring it to life.”

Though vastly different in nature and scope, both Nucleus Medical Art and Kopmar chose MAXON CINEMA 4D to take their projects from concept to creation. On the reality-based end of the 3D animation spectrum is Nucleus Medical Art and its film, Atherosclerosis, a three-and-a-half minute-long animation that provides a realistic view of how plaque forms within a coronary artery over time; eventually breaking free and causing a heart attack. It is the most heavily composited project Nucleus has created to-date. The studio’s creative team relied heavily on CINEMA 4D’s Studio Bundle, and most particularly the MoGraph module, to quickly and efficiently develop the ultra-dense models required to create repeat structures such as blood flow, LDL, and blood vessel walls made of hundreds of cells. With realism paramount, Nucleus artists turned to MAXON’s BodyPaint 3D to simulate the texture of a living heart and utilized several other CINEMA 4D modules, including HAIR, for generating cellular pseudopods, the arm-like extensions on cells, and Dynamics to create the natural bounce that occurs when migrating cells bump into each other. In addition to direct application benefits, the Nucleus team also noted CINEMA 4D’s intuitive workflow, ease-of-use and tight integration with Adobe After Effects as critical elements for the project’s success.

Representing the purely artistic side of the 3D animation spectrum is Betsy Kopmar; painter, artist, animator and instructor at Ex’pression College for Digital Arts, who used MAXON’s CINEMA 4D in a free-form style to create her film Night Fishing with Cormorants, selected by the Chair of the Computer Animation Festival for inclusion in the Visual Music category. The meditative piece was inspired in part by the 17th Century Japanese screen painting by Kano Tanyu of the same title and the novel “Shipwrecks” by Akira Yoshimura and blends elements of painting, dance and music. Kopmar’s technique involves no sketches or storyboards. Instead, she uses CINEMA 4D’s Cappuccino motion sketch tool within the MOCCA module to draw freehand and then connects the sketches with MoGraph objects, particles, colors and camera. The 3D renders are then mixed in Modul8, a VJ (video performance artist) software that allows Kopmar to work on footage clips in real-time and record to a QuickTime movie. Much like an improvised VJ performance, each piece is recorded as-is with no corrections, in what Kopmar describes as a “visualist jam session”. Audio is added once the visuals are complete.

Screening Dates, Times and Locations
Night Fishing with Cormorants – (Screening within the Visual Music Reel 1)
Monday, August 3rd
1:45 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. - La Nouvelle Orleans Ballroom
6:30 p.m. – 7:15 p.m. - Room 271-273

Atherosclerosis – (Screening within the Digital Schoolhouse Reel)
Friday, August 7th
8:30 a.m. – 10:15 a.m. - La Nouvelle Orleans Ballroom

MAXON Booth Hours
During the SIGGRAPH Exposition, August 4th– 6th, MAXON product demonstrations will take place during exhibit floor hours at Booth # 3219, as follows:
Tuesday, August 4th and Wednesday, August 5th – 9:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Thursday, August 6th – 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
For detailed information on MAXON’s exhibitor participation at SIGGRAPH, please click here

About MAXON CINEMA 4D and BodyPaint 3D

MAXON CINEMA 4D and BodyPaint 3D software applications are celebrated for their intuitive interface, efficiency and significant boosts to workflow productivity. In 2009, both CINEMA 4D and BodyPaint 3D have continued to inspire artists from around the world who have relied on the software to develop imagery for such notable films as Watchmen, G-Force, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, and the upcoming District 9 and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs; the popular cinematic trailer for the futuristic video game Front Mission Evolved; an award-winning episode of the cult-classic television series Doctor Who; and to create motion graphics for some of the broadcast industry’s most widely recognized entities, including The Weather Channel, MTV, CMT, Comedy Central, Al Jazeera, NBC, FOX, NFL, Tru TV, National Geographic Channel, Univision, the BBC, and many more. Earlier this year in June, CINEMA 4D garnered the “Best Animation and 3D Product” award at the Macworld (UK) Awards; its third award win in this category from the venerated magazine.

Additional information on MAXON can be obtained on the Web at http://www.maxon.net.

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