The image above is one-hundred percent fake. It has no connection whatsoever to the world of things. I created the bolts, lights, textures, and everything else in a free, open-source, relatively easy-to-use software package called Blender. It’s easy enough that even a novice user like me is able to make a pretty convincing image. If you are a photographer that makes a living shooting still-life photos, this should scare you. Read more…
Clothing retailer H&M has sparked quite a bit of controversy after admitting that most of the models featured on its website are computer generated. The company says that pasting real model heads onto CGI bodies provides a better way of displaying clothes made for humans than using real humans to model them. Spokeswoman Nicole Christine tells ABC News:
This technique can be found in use throughout the industry. This is not to be seen as conveying a specific ideal or body type, but merely a technique to show our garments.
It is regrettable if we have led anyone to believe that the virtual mannequins should be real bodies. This is incorrect and has never been our intention. We will continue to discuss internally how we can be clearer about this in the information towards our customers.
Although the identical poses and proportions are hard to overlook, the company does match the skin tones of the bodies to the faces quite well, making the ‘shopped nature of individual photos difficult to detect.
Here’s yet another example of the crazy visual effects found on today’s TV shows — this time it’s from HBO’s series “Game of Thrones“. Just making composites this realistic using still images would be difficult enough, but for video? Wow.
Artificial lens flare is an important part of making certain computer generated scenes look realistic, but up to this point creating realistic lens flare has been a task that requires a good deal of processing power. Now, researchers have come up with a way to simulating lens flare quickly and accurately, taking into account a large number of physical factors that cause the phenomenon:
The underlying model covers many components that are important for realism, such as imperfections, chromatic and geometric lens aberrations, and antireflective lens coatings.
The video above discusses how the technology works, and also touches on the science behind lens flares. The method is patent-pending, and will be presented later this year at SIGGRAPH 2011.
“Modern Times” is a short film that offers a glimpse of the future in both the story that it tells and the way it was made — it’s a low/no budget film created entirely against a green screen with friends as actors. Maybe in the future shooting at real locations (or with real people) will be less and less necessary as CGI continues to become more and more mind-boggling. Read more…
Alex Roman, the genius behind the breathtaking “The Third & The Seventh“, recently created this short commercial spot for Grupo Cosentino. It’s certainly stunning, but here’s the kicker: it’s completely computer generated, created by two people over the course of two and a half months.
“Nuit Blanche” is a 4-minute long short film by Arev Manoukian of SpyFilms that will blow your mind. While you’re watching it, try to guess how it was created — see if you can pick out what’s real and what’s “shopped“. It may remind you a bit of The Third & The Seventh, another mind-blogging short we shared at the beginning of the year. Read more…
The latest Transformers movie to crawl out of the Hollywood cookie-cutter machine had a budget of $200 million. The above 2.5 minute short film was created by Amateur Russian filmmaker Alexander Semenov using a Canon 550D (with a 18-55mm kit lens and 50mm 1.8) and a Nikon D5000 (with a 18-55mm kit lens). In other words, the gear used was entry-level quality with kit lenses.
The footage was captured in two hours of shooting, and a month was spent editing the film. It’s amazing what a couple kids can create with a couple sub-$1000 DSLRs. We’re going to be seeing much more of this kind of thing as HD video recording because a necessary feature on new cameras.