Scot Ross discusses the State of the VFX Industry at NAB (Video)

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Old 05 May 2013   #16
Originally Posted by Dillster: Add to that, the fact that most residential connections have a monthly cap. Even so called "unlimited" connections have a fair usage limit. Most of my friends are on a 100Gb maximum.
The one we have at home is 250GB a month, and I probably take chunk of that watching Netflix and YouTube.
What is the average monthly limit in the USA? Is it enough to cope with cloud type CG working environment?


Thats a real fight, content providers are fighting this with companies who don't want to upgrade their infrastructure. We can only hope whatever google fiber is doing goes out to more cities than the two slated so far. Also, it should be known that if you are working with a system like this, you'll be paying more monthly for it. I strongly believe this will happen, even if its kicking and screaming.
Just imagine if you want to live in say, North Carolina for the quality of life but your work is in LA. You'd not have to make that sacrifice if we were a mobile community and they wouldn't have to build million dollar buildings to host people. Just giant server farms that can be anywhere. Get out of these cities, get costs down and give us options.
 
Old 05 May 2013   #17
Sending so much data, especially for vfx is completely impractical now. However, the data doesn't have to be moved around if all you do is in the cloud, the data, the horsepower, everything except your terminal. All you need to send is essentiall io data of your monitor, mouse and keyboard.

The real problem is in breaking up teams. I enjoy working with smart clever and creative people and I think there's no way around it if you want to produce great work.
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Old 05 May 2013   #18
Originally Posted by Mic_Ma:
The real problem is in breaking up teams. I enjoy working with smart clever and creative people and I think there's no way around it if you want to produce great work.


Agreed its never going to happen in FX

b
 
Old 05 May 2013   #19
Originally Posted by mr Bob: Agreed its never going to happen in FX

b

Never is a loaded word.
Right now. i do have to agree that it is impractical.
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Old 05 May 2013   #20
There is a point to all of this though. Most of the vfx studios place themselves in the most expensive cities in the world. Why have a building full of artists sitting in seriously expensive rental space when they can live and work outside the 'expensive' busy cities, have better social/work lives, less travel and all cheaper to both parties? If a presence is still needed in the city, then rent a small studio space for client facing meetings and screenings of the work. If the artists won't reallocate then tough on them, why should a company pay for their love of the expensive city life?.. there are plenty of good people who would rather be in a suburb or by the sea and those folks will find themselves congregating at your door. Remote work, cloud computing etc is the future but we aren't quite there yet. I personally see big cities as seriously crippling the infrastructure and economy of a country, work and living needs to be evenly spread and large cities do not help. They are archaic.
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Old 05 May 2013   #21
Wow they made it so clear.

Everyone needs to watch this!

Please share!
 
Old 05 May 2013   #22
Remote working is already here, we constantly use remote modelers and animators, although we are working on commercials not films.

As for data it is not an issue for me as when I work from home I remote desktop into my computer. There are security issues with this so we only allow the most senior staff to remote login and this is usually when we cannot get into the office for any reason.

But the point is it works, and it is still a very rudimentary setup, with better internet connections and purpose build remote login hardware it will get way better.

I recently worked on a job where I was lighting and another guy was compositing, we both worked from our places of residence for all the look dev phase, and for the final completion phase.

Anything is possible....
 
Old 05 May 2013   #23
I would say it'll never happen if I was still in my mode from a year ago. However, I work at a company now that is half remote. Through Google Hangout, Chat, Kickoff and the ability to dial into each others computers to collaborate and talk real-time via cameras ...it works very well.
We meet everyone in person once a year, which helps get a feel for personalities, but having real-time, anytime video chat abilities with anyone on the team has and does make you feel like you're working with them.

This has given us the ability to get top talent that would not want relocated to Orlando, and helped us expand without expanding the hard costs.

Think about how much a facility that can house 200 artists costs when you're in-between projects and have empty seats with no staff at that time? Its not free. Wouldn't it be great if you didn't? Only had a producer office in LA or NY ? Server farm was in the desert, top talent is wherever they want to live? You're not relocating people for a year or two then cutting them off till the next project. Sounds good to me.

Last edited by pipdixel : 05 May 2013 at 02:12 AM.
 
Old 05 May 2013   #24
Honestlty i don't like to work alone in front of a computer ... All the beauty of this job is to be we other talent to / share / emulate / have fun , if i must work alone at home where is the fun ?
For the idea to stay away of big crowded city i do agree with Dominic, you put the artist into a cool mid-size town close to the sea and you only put the client relation guys in the big city .... et voila !
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Old 05 May 2013   #25
I think remote working is finally here, if NVIDIA presentation is anything to go by.

There are progression, I'm sure. Just like the outsourcing of manufacturing, then code, and now animation, there are things that previously thought would be impossible, later become a way of life to a point its now a problem (too much job going to other places).

Virtualization scaling and office space is going to be key. I mean I thought that the problem with R&H is that they have to eat cost when projects get postponed?

With NVIDIA server hosting a virtualization and software can be rent per month basis (for example adobe now) I can see a future where a studio can scale up and down based on project. Works on Pain & Gain of 20 million project? Then hire (for example) 20 artist and 20 virtualization containing rented dcc software.

Works on bigger project of 200 million budget? Then hire 200 artist and 200 virtualization containing rented dcc software. And things can be scaled up and down. Skeleton crew at the start, big in the middle, then small at the end.

I think the software, hardware, and business method need to be available for this to happen. NVidia already show that on the software and hardware side it could be done. Google is installing fast internet. So it up to business to create a show of proof in order to be followed.

I think there was a company that allow you to rent Windows 7 and also games and play it via virtualization (forgot the name) and I think this is the future in some ways.
 
Old 05 May 2013   #26
The thing that would be a problem (just like outsourcing) is that 3ds (at least in vfx sense) will be a freelance job, unlike other aspect of 3D (construction, etc).
 
Old 05 May 2013   #27
The way vfx studio staff operates isn't important.

Because the same circumstances that made award-winning film vfx houses go bankrupt, will bring any other business/operation model go bankrupt too, as long as there's something like a greedy Hollywood mentality.

Hollywood is a distribution powerhouse for films. That's all it really is nowadays. Once the internet tottaly takes over film distribution (and it will) Hollywood will become obsolete.

At that point, vfx studios will partner with directors/writers, and they will launch their own IP.
There's probably no way around that if vfx people want to get the stakes they deserve.
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Old 05 May 2013   #28
Most of the artists I know working in vfx dont want to live in small/mid-size cities anyhow. They enjoy big cities and the lifestyle it provides. It comes down to a preference of which big city they like (some hate LA but love Vancouver or London, etc).

Just talk to any recruiter who scouts people for studios in remote locations or smaller-cities. They tend to have a tough time finding talent who are willing to make the move.
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Old 05 May 2013   #29
Originally Posted by mustique: The way vfx studio staff operates isn't important.

Because the same circumstances that made award-winning film vfx houses go bankrupt, will bring any other business/operation model go bankrupt too, as long as there's something like a greedy Hollywood mentality.

Hollywood is a distribution powerhouse for films. That's all it really is nowadays. Once the internet tottaly takes over film distribution (and it will) Hollywood will become obsolete.

At that point, vfx studios will partner with directors/writers, and they will launch their own IP.
There's probably no way around that if vfx people want to get the stakes they deserve.


Netflix is a sign of things to come. So is YouTube and Vimeo. Vimeo for example already set up a way you can sell your film online.

While vfx house afraid of studio, and studio afraid of hollywood, hollywood itself afraid of cinema chain. there are issues even with the recent iron man 3.a lot of ideas that hollywood plan to do (cinema and home view on the same day for example) were shot down by cinema chain - where most of where hollywood makes their money.

So I think its up for us indies to start a revolution in this regard. KickStarter and IndieGogo have become of crucial that even Lord British uses it to sell/kickstart his game, even though with his fame, cash, and team experience, they could do it on their main game page and saves the KickStarter charge (which is quite a lot when you go into millions).

So when enough people are using vimeo to a point it can be a go to for new movies, and easier (no parking hassle, cheap food) compared to going to cinema, it can be very useful when it reached critical mass.

If there is something that is stopping this, it would be pricing. Unlike computer game where if it 9.99 in the US it would be multiplied here by currency exchange, cinema ticket are not so. They based on the country economic reality.

Internet says that in the US movie ticket is around USD 8, here in Malaysia its around USD 3 to USD 5. So this kind of system maybe Vimeo need to provide to help. Maybe vimeo (with help of google or imdb or something) aggregate every month start the pricing of each country, convert it into USD, and do the percent compared to 100% of US pricing. Then allow film maker if they want to use this capabilities. In this case if the fimmaker want to charge USD 10 in the US, users in Malaysia will get to watch it for half the price. Country with better income than Malaysia maybe will watch it at 0.75 the price. Country with equal ticket price compared to the US will have the same pricing.

There are a lot of ideas floating around by many people, but they all need to achieve the critical mass.

Remember, the earliest (and yet largest) SERIOUS* mp3 seller is Apple, and not any of the music company (which told Apple it can't be done).

*Startups don't count since it doesn't have popular play list that people wanted in order to achieve the critical mass, heh.
 
Old 05 May 2013   #30
I would keep a close eye on Amazon and Google.


Amazong is doing some cool moves in terms of content creation.
case in point

Amazon Publishing Introduces “Kindle Worlds,” a New Publishing Model for Authors Inspired to Write Fan Fiction—Launching with an Initial License of Popular Titles from Warner Bros. Television Group’s Alloy Entertainment



http://finance.yahoo.com/news/amazo...-130000223.html

They would be paying Fan fiction authors, a digital royalty of 20%!

This is a BIG DEAL.
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