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Last Updated: August 8, 2015 12:15 am GMT
(August 8, 2015) Bridging Oceans – How new tools are changing remote production

Cospective is presenting a Birds of a Feather session at Siggraph 2015 to discuss how new tools are enabling remote post-production

Working across borders – Cospective is delivering a Birds of a Feather panel session at SIGGRAPH 2015 about the most recent developments in remote production. Details about the panel, along with some information about the topic, can be found below.

Bridging oceans: How new tools are changing remote production

WHEN?

Thursday, August 13, 10am-11am

WHERE?

Los Angeles Convention Center, ACM SIGGRAPH Theater

WHO?

Rory McGregor, CEO, Cospective

Rohin Aggarwal, CEO, Scarecrow VFX

Jenny Fulle, CEO, The Creative Cartel

Ben Hadden, Product Manager, Shotgun Software

Sandro Di Segni, Director of Visual FX at O2 Filmes

A recent explosion in software, combined with massive growth in internet bandwidth and much lower costs, has seen technology completely change the media production industry.

The effect of this transformation can be seen in everything from major Hollywood productions to advertising; from web design to wedding videos. Production and post-production companies are no longer restricted by geography – they can pitch to clients in other cities and even entirely other countries. And that means companies can forgo relocation costs for new staff and simply enable them to work from wherever they live in the world.

This isn’t a defence of outsourcing or subsidy-driven cost-cutting, which can clearly distort the market. Instead, we’re talking about remote collaboration as a way of engendering efficiency and effective communication in an increasingly distributed business.

Even productions based entirely in the same city can benefit. Take Los Angeles – anyone who’s ever driven from Burbank to Santa Monica and back again will agree it’s a good way to waste a day. If you can avoid the travel, save the time and get a decision faster, then remote collaboration is a winning formula.

Closing the gap

Free face-to-face video conference and screen sharing software is now commonplace throughout the industry, and the more powerful tools are becoming increasingly affordable. We’re seeing production offices that are increasingly “cloud-based” – that is, with no physical central location. Staff work from home, or from satellite offices of a few people. All the work is stored online and everyone interacts via Google docs, Dropbox, Skype, email and other tools. It’s simply a way of working that wouldn’t have been possible even a short five years ago.

Today, products like Shotgun and ftrack provide production tracking, review, and asset management, enabling distributed teams to have clear communication and easy access to all data. Even Shotgun and ftrack themselves are distributed companies, with engineering and support spread across multiple countries and timezones.

Cospective’s own tools, cineSync and Frankie, allow people to watch videos in sync with anyone, anywhere in the world, enabling synchronised remote review and approval. This allows supervisors to comment on or sign off on work created in another city or country, all in a real-time collaborative environment. That means less iterations, less revisions, less lost time and more money saved.

Collaborating across the Pacific

In this new working environments, it’s entirely possible to set up a remote office – even as an individual – and contribute to some of the world’s most prominent entertainment projects.

Using a combination of services such as Skype, FaceTime, cineSync and more, Jamie and Lindsay Hallett realised it was completely realistic to achieve the previously impossible: they set up 2D VFX vendor capital T in a beach house resting on the glorious shores of Maui, Hawaii.

A VFX supervisor and VFX producer respectively, Jamie and Lindsay have overseen work onCaptain America: The Winter Soldier, American Sniper, Insurgent and most recently, Ant-Man.

For any team, having in-depth, accurate feedback is incredibly helpful, but that goes double in the case of a company like capital T – a studio located on a tiny island far flung from the shorelines of North America. This isn’t an entire team of 40+ artists collaborating across desks – it’s one producer and one supervisor working across expanses of ocean. Remote collaboration tools are key to keeping such businesses afloat in a constantly diversifying and expanding market.

The big guns

At the other end of the market, VFX companies like Pixomondo, Prime Focus, Double Negative, MPC and ILM have offices in several locations around the world, often working on the same projects. In what’s often referred to as a “chase the sun” approach, these companies are able to work on films 24 hours a day, as the various facilities come online in different timezones.

Essentially these companies have set up secure private clouds, where information can be securely shared between offices without the risk of leaks. Remote collaboration is just as important inside a secure cloud as it is between separate companies.

In between are some new VFX and post companies with an entirely distributed workforce.Scarecrow VFX are a great example – the head office is in LA, but they can call on artists and freelancers from all over the world. This enables them to scale up quickly – and scale down quickly, if required – enabling a new kind of flexibility in the face of contemporary productions’ ever-changing demands.

—ENDS—


About Cospective

Cospective is the creator of innovative software solutions to visual communication challenges.

cineSync Pro is the Academy Award®-winning synchronized review-and-approval tool used for major film productions. Frankie is used for real-time video review using standard web browsers and is ideally suited for short-form content produced by ad agencies, production companies and post houses.

Cospective is a privately held company based in Adelaide, Australia.

For more information about cineSync and Frankie, visitwww.cospective.com

For further information contact:

Chris McMahon, Grammatik

E: chris@grammatikagency.com

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