Stay in Touch via Social Networks

Home → Archives → Category → HPA Press
22 2018 Jun

ICG Selects 22nd Annual ECA Honorees

Nine Honorees Selected from 105 Submissions to Screen in Los Angeles, Sept. 30.
EmergSTD

The International Cinematographers Guild (ICG, IATSE Local 600) has named nine honorees for the 2018 Annual Emerging Cinematographer Awards (ECA), spotlighting promising cinematographers and providing crucial exposure needed to succeed in the motion picture industry. The collection of nine selected short films will debut at the ECA Los Angeles event on September 30, 2018, at the Directors Guild of America (DGA) Theater. Additionally, screenings in three major U.S. cities will follow including New York at the SVA Theatre, October 28; Atlanta at the SCADshow, November 4; and Chicago at the Logan Theatre, November 4.

The honorees, who have been selected from 105 submissions, are:

Hunter Robert Baker, Peacock Killer
Tommy Daguanno, Detroit Diamond
Drew Dawson, Demon
T. Acton Fitzgerald, Intrusions
Clifford Jones, Baby Steps
Martin Moody, Goldblooded
Alicia Robbins, Internet Gangsters
Gus Sacks, Embalmer
David Stragmeister, Intergalactic Samurai

ECA_rocketLOGO_2017_PMS2635Steven Poster, ASC, President of the ICG, said, “The Emerging Cinematographer Awards are a terrific opportunity for our members who are about to take the leap into cinematography. These honored films show that they are already Directors of Photography.”

Jimmy Matlosz, Chairman of the guild’s ECA committee added, “As we enter into our 22nd year, the ECA’s are one of the only awards shows that recognize the art of cinematography in short films in the world. I am continuously inspired by the filmmakers and feel proud to be in such great company of honorees, sponsors and staff.”

ICG’s Emerging Cinematographer Awards gives Local 600 members an opportunity to present themselves as directors of photography by submitting a short film with a running time of 30 minutes or less for consideration. The awards are open to any member of the Guild who is not already classified as a director of photography. The films are selected by a panel of ICG members from across the country and can be also be seen by a wider audience at selected film festivals throughout the year, including Camerimage in Poland.

For more information about the ECAs go to http://ecawards.net/ or contact MaryAnne MacDougall at MMacDougall@icg600.com.

21 2018 Jun

Object Matrix Named Object Storage Vendor of the Year

Object Matrix 500px

Object Matrix has been awarded Object Storage Vendor of the Year by the Storage Awards. The awards, run by Storage Magazine, reward outstanding products, services, and people across the storage industry.

Based in Wales, Object Matrix specializes in providing media focused private cloud and object storage solutions to the media and entertainment industry. Its flagship solution, MatrixStore, enables media companies to keep content secure and protected, whilst ensuring easy access and discoverability at all times. The latest version has been updated to support hybrid cloud workflows, IMF workflows, and Artificial Intelligence.

Nick Pearce-Tomenius, Co-founder and Sales & Marketing Director, Object Matrix, commented: “After 15 years of developing, promoting and delivering object storage to global media organizations recognition such as this is always extremely well received. We are very proud to have won the award and extremely grateful to everyone who voted for us.”

Object Matrix’s solutions have been transforming media archives for a wide range of media companies, including Sky, ITN, BT, NBC, Orange, The Guardian, and the BBC, amongst many others.

Jonathan Morgan, Co-founder and CEO, Object Matrix, added: “The media industry has been evolving at a dramatic pace. Our customers are faced with providing more content than ever before to more platforms than ever before, as well as the need to monetize their archives. As such, we place a great deal of importance on ensuring our solutions consistently meet those ever-evolving needs of our clients, making the archive discoverable and easy to monetize.”

In April, MatrixStore by Object Matrix was awarded the Storage category in the IABM Broadcast and Media awards.

About Object Matrix Object Matrix is an award winning UK based software company that pioneered Digital Content Governance (DCG), object storage and the modernization of digital video workflows. Our media focused private and hybrid cloud solutions are tightly integrated into file based and IP workflows and bring economic and operational benefit to all of our customers. Our flagship product, MatrixStore, is used by the world’s largest organizations that create and distribute video content, including NBC, TV Globo, MSG-N, the BBC & BT.

21 2018 Jun

Ownzones Continues Expansion of European Operations

OWNZONES Media Network, the EntTech company, recently announced the continued expansion of its European operations. With the move to a new and larger headquarters in Bucharest, OWNZONES is doubling its footprint in the technology world by growing its team of developers, cloud system-based architecture specialists, administration and tech support.

Additionally, OWNZONES has appointed Andreea Dumitru as Director of Project Management; Andrei Ionescu as Technical Project Manager; and Iulian Fenici as Technical Lead.* The new staffers joined a stellar team which already includes George Ionita, European CTO, and Constantin Lucescu, European CEO.

OWNZONES’ new European hub is located at Bulevardul General Vasile Milea 4, București 061344, Romania.

The demand for OWNZONES’ technology continues to grow worldwide as studios and content owners search for the most cost-efficient and effective ways to distribute content in today’s digital universe. Earlier this year, the company unveiled OWNZONES Connect™ — the industry’s only cloud-based media logistics program that is API-driven, which allows content delivery to any platform in the world. To achieve its goals faster, OWNZONES also achieved Advanced Technology Partner Status in the AWS Partner Network.

“The expansion of our business in Bucharest is another milestone for OWNZONES since we will continue to lead the technology disruption in the entertainment business,” said Dan Goman, CEO of OWNZONES.  “It is a natural progression for us to expand in Bucharest, home to some of the most talented and skilled minds in the technology world. The success of our customers and partners is OWNZONES’ highest priority, and this staff expansion will enable us to further our commitment.”

With years of research invested in the platform, OWNZONES Connect™ is designed to conform and distribute digital content in the most efficient and streamlined way possible to all devices. It also acts as a post house in the cloud with state-of-the-art features in editing, conversion and encoding, motion graphics, sound mixing and editing. More specifically, OWNZONES Connect™ features an array of capabilities that work in conjunction with each other to create the ultimate post house in the cloud for IMF. This includes the Cloud IMF transcoder, the Native Cloud CPL Builder, Cloud-based CPL Source Previewer, Cloud-based IMF Playback, Supplemental Packager and Elastic Parallel Transcoding.

21 2018 Jun

Globo Enhances 2018 Russia World Cup Coverage with Avid’s Augmented Reality Solutions

Avid Maestro graphics systems give first-ever augmented reality capabilities for Globo’s hotly anticipated World Cup 2018 coverage

Avid recently announced that Brazilian leading broadcaster TV Globo is using Avid’s Maestro™ augmented reality solutions for its 2018 World Cup Russia coverage this summer. Gearhouse Broadcast, a global TV broadcast services market leader, has provided Globo with the necessary TV equipment rental and systems integration services to build the studio.

Globo’s full production studio is being operated at the center of the action, at Red Square, in Moscow, Russia, for the network’s broadcast of the World Cup event. Originally tried-and-tested, first at Globo’s Rio de Janeiro premises, and later at Gearhouse’s premises in the UK, to ensure a faultless live performance in Moscow, the studio brings Globo’s World Cup coverage to life through creative augmented reality visuals.

“The studio is an original design developed by Globo’s Arts & Technology Divisions, and represents a major step forward in comparison to what we have used at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games,” said José Manuel Mariño, Globo’s Director of Technology for Sports. “There are no physical scenic elements in the studio. We have just three giant LED screens, six cameras, and nothing more. We air four network news shows per day, and two weekly network programs from this studio. The cameras are switched in Rio, as we are using remote production, so the studio is both innovative and efficient.”

“We worked closely with Globo at every step on the road to Moscow to help make Globo’s creative vision a reality,” said Ed Tischler, Managing Director at Gearhouse Broadcast UK. “Augmented reality is a powerful tool to get complex analysis across to mainstream audiences in an aesthetically pleasing and creative way. Avid’s impressive, leading-edge technology is the go-to for this type of broadcast application and will increasingly figure prominently in high-profile sporting events like the World Cup. It has been a welcome opportunity to see the Maestro solutions at work.”

Through a suite of augmented reality tools, Avid’s Maestro | AR provides the ability to create captivating 3D virtual objects that look like part of the actual environment. The solution

allows the insertion and control of 3D virtual objects and graphics, as well as sophisticated real time multiple image manipulation. Avid’s Maestro | Designer is a powerful design tool used by graphics artists and designers to create the compelling graphics seen in the broadcast.  Maestro l Designer can import stills, video, and graphics from other third-party programs while giving artists the flexibility to create and design compelling 2D and 3D content. Avid Professional Services provided valuable training and support for the project.

“Globo needed a powerful augmented reality solution to bring to life the world’s most prestigious football tournament for the millions of passionate fans in Brazil—the most successful country in the tournament’s history,” said Tom Cordiner, Senior Vice President, Global Sales at Avid. “We worked closely with Gearhouse to deliver an Avid Maestro solution that enables Globo to keep up with the fast-paced action on the pitch and create eye-catching graphics that boost ratings and engage viewers in exciting new ways.”

 

21 2018 Jun

DigitalFilm Tree Adds Colorist Dan Judy

Dan_Judy_croppedDan Judy has joined DigitalFilm Tree as a Senior Colorist. He has already begun working on the hit show “Roseanne” as well as the CW’s “The 100” and Fox’s “Last Man on Earth.”

Prior to DigitalFilm, Tree Judy had a tenure of almost 20 years at Modern VideoFilm working on such popular shows as “Walker Texas Ranger,” “Smallville” and “The Walking Dead.” He began his career at Century 3 in Orlando, FL and worked on “Swamp Thing,” “Super Force” and “The Adventures of Superboy.”

“We are thrilled Dan has joined our team,” says Ramy Katrib, CEO/Founder of DFT. “He is one of the top colorists in the industry andcontinues to build relationships with the industries most accomplished DPs and producers.”

“I came to DFT because their vision for the future is in line with mine,” says Judy about DigitalFilm Tree. “I like being here because Ramy isn’t afraid to explore different ways of advancing our product through the shared vision of DFT’s technologists, software developers and artists. Now I get a chance to work on amazing shows and be part of groundbreaking innovation in our industry.”

His tool of choice is the daVinci Resolve for all his shows. “I’m very familiar with that box because I’ve been working directly with the designers for close to three decades,” he expresses.

 

21 2018 Jun

New Starz Series “Vida” Finished at MTI Film

Carmen - MTI

Senior Colorist Steve Porter collaborates with Cinematographer Carmen Cabana on new drama series that paints a bold picture of Latinx life in Los Angeles.

Post-production finishing for the first season of Vida, the new half-hour drama from STARZ and Executive Producer Tanya Saracho, was recently completed at MTI Film. Senior Colorist Steve Porter worked with series Cinematographer Carmen Cabana in finalizing the look of the show, which has just been renewed for a second season and has drawn rave reviews for its revealing portrait of Latinx life in East Los Angeles.

Vida centers on a pair of grown-up sisters who return to their East Los Angeles home following the death of their mother and face the prospect of running her struggling bar along with her “roommate.” The young women must learn to work together, come to grips with the secrets of their mother’s past and navigate the changing cultural landscape of the neighborhood where they grew up.

Cabana, whose previous work includes the Netflix series Narcos, does a masterful job in capturing the sun-washed tones of the barrio and the disparate personalities and ethnicities of its residents. She explains that her aim was not to present a homogenized view of urban life, but rather convey how it is experienced by the people who live there. “The show was never intended to have a glossy or stylized aesthetic, but that doesn’t mean it couldn’t be cinematic,” she notes. “Many producers interpret a ‘realistic’ look as unshaped lighting and frantic handheld. I think of real life as having defined shadows and layers of light and color.”

Cabana shot with an ARRI Alexa Mini and Cooke S5 lenses for both interiors and exteriors. That combination allowed her to work quickly and achieve shallow depth of field. “It was quite challenging for our focus pullers because, as an operator, I don’t stay still,” she says. “I move with the actors’ movements and with the emotion of the scene as I feel it when I see through the lens.”

Reflecting the show’s unusual subject matter and point of view, Cabana developed a unique visual style to draw viewers into the world inhabited by its central characters. “The show has strong women as the leads and a good amount of sex scenes, which we approached from a female perspective,” she explains. “We’re used to seeing sex scenes in which women are objectified, but on Vida, we see women in pursuit their own pleasure as they see fit. There is a sense of liberation that we sought to capture with a very fluid camera approach. When it came to sex scenes we encouraged the camera and the actors to move freely and explore. It was messy and smooth, violent and sweet…like sex can be.”

Cabana’s precise visual aesthetic was further refined through grading sessions at MTI Film. After working with MTI Film’s Johnnie Kirkwood on the series pilot, Cabana, who is a colorist herself, collaborated with Steve Porter on the six episodes that comprise the first season. She says they made an instant connection, noting, “Steve is the perfect complement to my cinematography. Even before we met, he did a pass on the footage and understood completely what I was going for. He not only respected my shadows, contrast and style, but improved it. LA is not known for its beautiful skies, between the smog and lack of clouds, there ain’t much there, but Steve dug in and found clouds and boosted the blue. He has a gifted eye and an amazing personality.”

Porter recalls that Cabana had clear ideas about both the overall look of the show and details within it. He says that she was particularly insistent about retaining the variations in the features of the show’s multicultural cast. “She didn’t want everyone to look one specific way,” he explains. If someone had a little more olive in their skin, we kept that. A lot of shows would blend that out. We adhered to the culture of Vida.

Porter adds that it was inspiring to work with a cinematic artist who brings passion and a distinct point of view to her work. “She not only worked behind the camera, she did the handheld, the lighting, the framing…everything,” he says. “She kept things very real and helped tell the story.”

Noting that it was her first experience in working at MTI Film, Cabana says that she was impressed that the company’s staff was not only able to help her achieve her creative goals, but to do so within the confines of her hectic schedule. “They were very accommodating,” she recalls. “I was unable to be physically present to supervise the coloring on episode 3 because I was in Europe, but they kept me involved remotely. Upon my return, I had only a few weeks in LA and the MTI team went the extra mile to make it possible for me to have a pass at the final episodes. They cared as much about Vida as I did.”

 

21 2018 Jun

Sky News Installs Ultimatte 12 for VR Studio Delivery

Blackmagic Design recently announced that Sky News UK has integrated a series of Ultimatte 12 compositing processors and an Ultimatte Smart Remote 4 to produce dynamic virtual studio segments for its award winning 24 hour rolling news cycle, in particular for its ‘Sunrise’ breakfast programming.

The installation forms part of a major relocation project, which saw the news broadcaster move to new, state of the art studio facilities within Sky Campus in West London. “Our key aim was not only to retain the extremely high quality production values that Sky News is renown for, but also to ensure that we were able to create depth, scale and variety when presenting news output,” explains Ben Wickham, head of studio output, Sky News.

The three walled greenscreen takes up around half of the studio, and is predominantly used for Sky News’ virtual news studio, built within a highly realistic 3D VR environment. Within the virtual set, a video wall can be deployed for welcome sequences, lead item discussions, correspondent reports, sports bulletins and weather forecasts.

Ben explains that this is where the cleanness of Ultimatte’s keying and spill suppression come into their own: “As well as a range of different presenters’ hair colors, skin tones and clothing, it has to deal with changes in camera angle, and greenspill from the three walls on presenters’ heads and shoes. The Ultimatte’s real time edge handling and color separation means that we can always be confident of the results on screen, no matter how many different VR studio slots we have in the running order.”

News programming in the studio is captured by five cameras, including two dedicated VR units; one on a jib and a pedestal unit operated remotely from the gallery. “Our VR elements have to be as flexible as possible, so we can cut between our VR camera signals and also transition between the virtual set and the presenters’ desk in the other half of the studio,” continues Ben. “The integration
between studio set and VR cameras has to be seamless.”

Sky News is already expanding its use of VR with Ultimatte 12 with enhancements to its editorial news elements, for example, creating a series of real life locations to recreate timelines of key news events. “Often we simply can’t film in these locations live, as they may still be an active crime scene, however by constructing a virtual recreation, we can have a presenter walk through the scene, giving the story an added dimension,” explains Ben.

“We chose Ultimatte 12 primarily because its precision, wide color space and real time image processing would match Sky News’ rigorous demands for production excellence at all times,” Ben concludes. “It’s critical that any VR elements we introduce into our studio productions retain as much authenticity as possible. Ultimatte’s flexibility, combined with high quality VR builds ensures that viewers will continue to turn to the channel as a reliable and information news source.”

21 2018 Jun

Leadership Changes at Avid

Avid welcomes Ken Gayron as Chief Financial Officer & Executive Vice President and elevates Jason Duva to Chief Legal and Administrative Officer & Executive Vice President 

Avid also introduces several key appointments and strengthens its executive team and senior leadership to create better functional alignment, improve operational execution and bring new leadership talent to the organization

Avid recently announced changes in its executive and senior leadership teams, including the appointment of its new chief financial officer and the creation of the chief legal and administrative officer role, as well as several strategic appointments across product development, supply chain management and a number of key corporate functions. These changes are designed to enhance Avid’s operational capabilities to better position the Company to drive growth and improve business performance.

New executive officers

Ken Gayron has joined Avid in the role of Chief Financial Officer & Executive Vice President. With substantial experience in software and technology, Mr. Gayron worked half of his career in senior finance management for public companies helping to drive cash flow, profitability and enterprise value, most recently having served as CFO and interim CEO for Numerex, playing an integral part of the leadership team that led that company’s sale to Sierra Wireless. Previously, he served as the CFO of Osmotica Pharmaceutical Corp. and also held senior finance roles with software and technology providers Sensus, Inc. and Nuance Communications. The first half of his career was in investment banking with UBS Investment Bank and CIBC World Markets. Mr. Gayron’s responsibilities include finance, accounting, treasury, indirect procurement, corporate development and investor relations. Brian Agle, who held the position of CFO & SVP since December 2016, has departed Avid to pursue other interests.

“I’m excited to welcome Ken and anticipate that his experience, skills and management style will quickly sharpen Avid’s focus and execution while helping to improve the outcomes for the Company, our customers and partners, as well as our shareholders,” said Jeff Rosica, Chief Executive Officer & President of Avid. “Avid has earned a strong and unique position in today’s large and growing market for media technology. Coinciding with my first 100 days as CEO, I’m pleased to announce these strategic appointments that will enhance our executive and senior leadership teams in order to reinforce our ability to better capitalize on the opportunities in front of us and optimize business performance.”

Additionally, Avid has consolidated the leadership of certain global corporate administrative functions and resources under Jason Duva, who has been promoted to the newly created role of Chief Legal and Administrative Officer & Executive Vice President. Mr. Duva has been with Avid since 2005 and, most recently, had served as General Counsel & Senior Vice President of Strategic Initiatives. He is now responsible for legal, human resources, business operations, corporate IT and facilities, as well as the Company’s project management office, which spearheads cross-functional initiatives to improve operational performance.

Other executive team appointments

Avid has also taken several steps to better align executive leadership responsibilities for functional areas of its operations including:

To more tightly align technology investment with profitable growth and enable faster time to market, all aspects of Avid’s products and technology organizations are now unified under the leadership of Chief Product Officer Dana Ruzicka—from technology strategy through product portfolio management and engineering development to commercialization strategy. A 25-year industry veteran, Mr. Ruzicka’s responsibilities now include software and hardware engineering, program management, product management, solutions marketing and alliance partnerships.

To bring better focus on optimizing its global supply chain and improving its end-to-end processes and performance from order to delivery, Avid has promoted Dave Perillo to Senior Vice President of Global Supply Chain Operations and elevated him to a member of the executive leadership team. Mr. Perillo joined Avid as Vice President of Global Supply Chain in 2017, bringing over 25 years’ experience in hardware and software technology supply chain management.

With the goal of driving cultural change and reshaping the Company’s workplace environment to foster a high performance culture, Avid has appointed Diana Brunelle as Chief Human Resources Officer & Vice President. Ms. Brunelle brings 25 years of human resources leadership, talent development and recruiting experience for companies including Arnold Worldwide and Digitas. With the addition of her background and expertise to the executive leadership, Avid will further develop a culture and environment that contributes equally to the success of the Company and each individual member of the Avid team globally.

Ms. Brunelle reports to Mr. Duva and Mr. Perillo reports to CEO Jeff Rosica. Both join the executive team which includes Duva, Gayron and Ruzicka, as well as Tom Cordiner, Senior Vice President of Global Sales, and Peter Ennis, Senior Vice President of Global Services & Support.

Several promotions within the senior leadership team

In line with its executive team changes, Avid also announced expanded responsibilities of several individuals on its senior leadership team with the following key promotions:

As a result of the elevation of Jason Duva, Avid announced the promotion of Alessandra Melloni to General Counsel & Vice President. She joined the Company’s legal team in 2014, most recently serving as Assistant General Counsel.

In line with the leadership changes in Avid’s products and technology functions, the Company has appointed industry veteran Tim Claman as Chief Technology Officer & Vice President of Product Management, reporting to Dana Ruzicka. Previously, Mr. Claman was Avid’s Vice President of Platform & Solutions and has held numerous senior executive positions in the media technology industry.

Sharon McGowan-Spinelli has been promoted to the newly created role of Vice President of Business Operations, reporting to Mr. Duva, to drive better alignment, performance and efficiency of its business operations under a united, shared resource organization to support the Company’s sales, marketing, services, products and technology functions. Ms. McGowan-Spinelli previously held the role of Vice President Global Sales & Marketing Operations and Enablement for Avid.

Rosica concluded, “As we prepare Avid to better convert its market opportunities into more demonstrable results today and in the future, all of our organizational announcements will help to reshape our executive team and senior management in order to lead this charge. We’re grateful for the efforts and service of Brian during his tenure at Avid, and we wish him well.”

 

21 2018 Jun

YEP Talk: What’s Trending in VR/AR? The View from NAB, VRLA and AWE

by Jyotsna Kadimi, Technical Product Manager, YBVR

I was almost nostalgic when I walked into Los Angeles Convention Center for VRLA. The event brought back memories from USC and the connections built there during graduate school and as president of the VR student club (VRSC).  My first visit to VRLA was as a new graduate student at USC.  This year, I walked in as a young professional working for a Silicon Valley VR startup.

2015 was the height of the VR2.0 wave; it was a great time to get into VR. In 2016 I was actively doing VR/AR/MR projects in media companies and university research labs.  Yet, when I was asked whether the industry would go first in the VR or AR direction or where the future lay, I would say towards ‘mixed reality,’ because I honestly saw it that way. Now in 2018, ‘mixed reality’ is defined differently by different audiences – for some MR is advanced AR, to others MR is mixing VR video and players’ live-action video captured with green screen. So, we all seem to agree that the term ‘XR’ (also referred as eXtended Reality) is a better umbrella term for immersive (excluding augmented virtuality and diminished reality for now – google that!).

The state of VR remains a constant topic of conversation in the industry.  Perhaps VR is ‘not doing great’ and AR is what is becoming big, now and in the near future. One of the reasons the VR industry has been struggling with adoption is because the headsets are heavy and pricy, among other bottlenecks.

Having kind of seen the rise and relative fall of VR (it’s not dying), I walked into VRLA with renewed hope to see what’s in store, because hey, the new standalone headsets are hitting the market – light, portable, better screens, better optics and affordable. There is no denying that the arrival of Spielberg’s Ready Player One at the same time as the Oculus Go headset has been a blessing for the VR industry!

At its launch in 2014, VRLA started small with 100 attendees.  It was organized by USC undergrads Cosmo Scharf and his friends. Rumor has it that the first year took place in a parking lot!  Scharf dropped out of school to dedicate his energies to his own startup and to this event.  VRLA now bills itself as the biggest VR expo, boasting 12,000 attendees.

During this year’s keynote, Scharf referenced a scene in Ready Player One where everyone in the real world wears headsets, calling for the creatives and technologists in the audience to take responsibility for how our technology transforms the world.

Some other thoughts on what I saw at VRLA 2018:

Despite a keynote on how AR was white hot, there wasn’t much AR there – no Mira, no DAQRI, no Magic Leap, few HoloLens and WMR experiences. However, we saw all of them and many more at AWE 2018!

Location-based VR with multi-player games have matured. This is the best time to enter Esports VR.

Social VR and avatars are also improving – they were virtually present at VRLA to give demos. Yes, we truly live in a virtual world! There was real-time PokerVR tournament, and several booths had real-time VR tours and demonstrations by real-people avatars from their remote locations.

6DoF (six degrees of freedom) is on the rise. 3DoF seems quaint now. Games featured for Pico, Vive Focus, Lenevo Mirage Solo. This week ViveFocus announced that it had sold the most units in China and is now the top headset next to Pico. Leading creative studios such as Dragons, Felix & Paul are focusing on 6DoF live-action experiences

Light-field capture (by GoogleVR) is amazing! You can see the reflection and lighting change in real-time as you move your head in 6DoF. It feels very natural and realistic to the human eye.

VR distributors are making deals to white-label content created by Vimeo 360 and YouTube 360 video creators.

Meditation VR is a thing now! There was a large dedicated area organized by Anshul Pendse, my USC colleague. Only a few of the experiences were video-based, and one was so relaxing I fell asleep in 10 minutes. Anshul was working on his own immersive audio project called Inner Activity as a PhD student at USC.  He graduated and kept working on the project and reached out to others doing similar work in meditation, healing and relaxation through VR. Now his single inner activity installation is accompanied by 10+ such demos in a dedicated space on the expo floor!

Partnership is the new way to go. Many 360 content creators, VR communities and tech companies are making open calls. Kumar Kausik, head of commercial VR/AR at Intel and GM of Wireless Charging, showcased the “Future Classroom,” which has involved partnerships with Sansar Studio (which did Intel’s VR theater at CES), the Smithsonian, Linden Labs, and Sundance Film Festival, and announced there is an open call for more partnerships.

Radiant Images showcased “Macro VR” footage that looked amazing, and demo’ed FUNIQUE, an e2e live action solution for 6DoF. Ricoh Theta, which makes consumer 360 cameras, announced a switch to Android’s OS to allow users to make their own plugins in Android Studio.

At NAB 2018 we saw new 360 cameras from Kodak, Vuze, Insta, YiHalo, Kandao and Samsung: their new 4K live-streaming capabilities.

VRARA (Virtual Reality Augmented Reality Association) hosted their VRLA after-party event. It had a good demo showcase of different companies – mostly gaming on standalone 3DoF and 6DoF headsets and AR for entertainment.

Some VR companies that have been consistent attendees at VRLA were missing at this year’s event.  They are downsizing or going out of business.

Even at NAB2018, last year’s AR/VR Pavilion changed to Immersive Storytelling Pavilion to accommodate for XR. And the show floor was not buzzing like last year. The area was much smaller, with more participation from newer companies. It’s hard to say whether the exhibitors from previous years who were absent this year evolved their business models and chose to be at events more relevant to their niche, or they are not doing well and that’s why we don’t see them anymore, or they are busy secretly building for the next big move!

The Augmented World Expo (AWE), hosted by Superventures for the past nine years, claims to be the world’s largest and no.1 AR/VR showcase. This year’s theme was clear: Go XR or Go Home! There was an AWE playground with multi-player games, room-scale experiences, and fun holographic and AR experiences. There were VR dancing classes, snap chat lenses studio, arcade shooting games and of course VR for relaxation, as well as a lot of enterprise use-cases!

21 2018 Jun

Kees van Oostrum to Lead American Society of Cinematographers for Third Term

Board Votes in 2018-2019 Officers

 

The American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) has re-elected Kees van Oostrum as president, who will serve his third consecutive term at the organization.

The ASC Board also re-upped its roster of officers for 2018-2019, including Bill Bennett, John Simmons and Cynthia Pusheck as vice presidents; Levie Isaacks as treasurer; David Darby as secretary; and Isidore Mankofsky as sergeant-at-arms.

“During this past year at the ASC, we have been steadfastly focused on educational events, international outreach, and efforts to promote diversity and inclusion,” notes van Oostrum. “These all support our mission of loyalty, progress and artistry. As we look ahead, we plan to usher in the 100th anniversary of the ASC in a way that commemorates our heritage and positions our members to maintain a leadership role in the evolution of the art and craft of image making.”

Van Oostrum initiated and chairs the ASC Master Class program, which has expanded to locations worldwide under his presidency. The Master Classes take place several times a year and are taught exclusively by ASC members. It is designed for cinematographers with an intermediate-to-advanced skill set, and incorporates practical, hands-on demonstrations of lighting and camera techniques with essential instruction in current workflow practices.

The ASC Vision Committee, founded during van Oostrum’s first term, continues to organize successful symposiums that encourage diversity and inclusion on camera crews, and also offers networking opportunities. The most recent was a standing-room-only event that explored practical and progressive ideas for changing the face of the industry. The Society will continue to host more of these activities during the coming years.

Van Oostrum has earned two Primetime Emmy® nominations for his work on the telefilms Miss Rose White and Return to Lonesome Dove. His peers chose the latter for a 1994 ASC Outstanding Achievement Award. Additional ASC Award nominations for his television credits came for The Burden of Proof, Medusa’s Child, and Spartacus. He also shot the Emmy®-winning documentary The Last Chance.

A native of Amsterdam, van Oostrum studied at the Dutch Film Academy with an emphasis on both cinematography and directing, and went on to earn a scholarship sponsored by the Dutch government, which enabled him to enroll the American Film Institute (AFI). Van Oostrum broke into the industry shooting television documentaries for several years. He has subsequently compiled a wide range of some 80-plus credits, including movies for television and the cinema, such as Gettysburg and Gods and Generals, and occasional documentaries. He recently wrapped the final season of TV series The Fosters.

The 2018-2019 Board who voted in this election include: John Bailey, Paul Cameron, Russell Carpenter, Curtis Clark, Dean Cundey, George Spiro Dibie, Stephen Lighthill, Lowell Peterson, Roberto Schaefer, John Toll, and Amelia Vincent. Alternate Board members are Karl-Walter Lindenlaub, Stephen Burum, David Darby, Charlie Lieberman, and Eric Steelberg.

The ASC has over 20 committees driving the organization’s initiatives, such as the award-winning Motion Imaging Technology Council (MITC), and the Educational and Outreach committee.

For additional information about the ASC, visit www.theasc.com.