Art and Technology at Pixar

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Date: Tuesday, December 4th
Time: 2:15pm - 6:00pm
Venue: Hall B5(2) (5F, B Block)

Summary: As decribed by this now famous quote ”The art challenges technology, and the technology inspires art”, technology has always played an important part in Pixar’s movie making process. This course will show how we develop and utilize new technical advancements to tell more appealing stories, using real-world examples from our latest movie Incredibles 2. This is a direct refresher of the previous course from Siggraph Asia 2015 in Kobe "Art and Technology at Pixar, from Toy Story to today". Since that time, Pixar’s pipeline has been heavily restructured, switching its main rendering algorithm to pathtracing. We will describe how that technology has now matured, and how we were able to reintroduce complete artistic control in this new physically based world. At the same time, the pipeline kept evolving and we introduced a new stage that didn’t exist before, in the form of deep compositing. Finally we’ll focus on USD, OpenSubdiv and the Hydra render engine, to showcase how the whole pipeline is moving toward real-time feedback, not only for rendering, but also for many other departments such as animation, simulation and crowds.

Moderator: Ryusuke Villemin, Pixar Animation Studios, United States of America
Lecturer(s): Chia-Chi Hu, Pixar Animation Studios, United States of America
Sonoko Konishi, Pixar Animation Studios, United States of America
Hiroaki Narita, Pixar Animation Studios, United States of America
David Yu, Pixar Animation Studios, United States of America
Magnus Wrenninge, Pixar Animation Studios, United States of America

Author(s)/Speaker(s) Bio:
RYUSUKE VILLEMIN began his career at BUF Compagnie in 2001, where he co-developed BUF’s in- house raytracing renderer. He later moved to Japan at Square-Enix as a rendering lead to develop a full package of physically based shaders and lights for mental ray. After working freelance for Japanese studios like OLM Digital and Polygon Pictures, he joined Pixar in 2011 as a TD. He currently works in the Research Rendering department.

CHIA-CHI HU studied cinematography at Universite de Paris - Saint Denis, and worked as as commercials director before moving to the visual effects industry. Before joining Pixar, she worked as a Senior and Lead Compositor at Dubois and Macguff in Paris, Moving Picture Company in London, Digital Domain in Los Angeles and Industrial Light and Magic in San Francisco. Some of her film credits include The Last Jedi, Rogue One, Jurassic World and Tron Legacy. She is currently Compositing Technical Director in Pixar’s lighting department.

SONOKO KONISHI joined Pixar in 1994 as a Jr. TD after graduating from a fine arts college in the States. She worked on Toy Story, Toy Story 2 and Toy Story 3 in various departments such as lighting, modeling and character rigging. Over the past 20 years Sonoko has predominantly focused on feature film production but she has also worked on the production of shorts, TV Specials and promotional materials. She currently works for the simulation & digital tailoring department.

Hiroaki Narita is an Effect artist / technical director has worked for Sony Imageworks, Walt Disney Animation Studios and Pixar Animation Studios. He also worked for an architecture design company and a medical software company in his career. Contributions: “Moana: performing water” Talk in Siggraph 2017, “Animated Effects in an Animated Production” Nomination in Annie Awards 2017. Filmography: Oz The Great and Powerful (2013), Edge of Tomorrow (2014), Amazing Spiderman 2 (2014), Big Hero 6 (2014), Zootopia(2016), Moana(2016), The Incredibles 2 (2018) and etc.

DAVID G YU has been at Pixar since 2000 working on the Presto animation system (and its predecessor Marionette) with a focus on advancing the use of GPU technology. Prior to that David was at Silicon Graphics Inc (SGI) developing workstation hardware and software for OpenGL and visual simulation.

MAGNUS WRENNINGE is the author of the book Production Volume Rendering and the SciTech awarded open source project Field3D. He started his career writing fluid simulation and environment rendering software at Digital Domain, and in 2005 he joined Sony Imageworks where he worked both as a Senior Software Developer and Lead Technical Director on films such as Alice in Wonderland and Oz: The Great and Powerful. Since 2013 he has worked as a Principal Engineer at Pixar Animation Studios, where he focuses on all things related to rendering.



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