Computer Graphics World

Education Supplement 2009

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Ringling's Computer Animation program celebrates student works, such as this piece from Evan Mayfield. In yet another approach, one of CalArts' character animation students, Jaewan Park, has experimented with acting out his animation while clad in a mocap suit, and then using the results as a guide to his keyframe animation. Park previously would have recorded his performance with video and used that as an animation reference, Scroggins says. "The advantage of motion capture is that he can see his acting from any point of view using a virtual camera in Maya—not just as played to a single point of view, as is the case with a video-camera recording," he explains. Alastair Macleod, head of animation at Vancouver Film School (VFS), takes another tack. He has elected not to bring motion capture into the program, despite many years of experience with the technology, including his work on The Lord of the Rings and The Matrix sequels. Pratt Institute encourages student collaboration and use of the school's facilities. 4 "I have a collection of motion-capture data that's available to the students, and they can use [Autodesk's] MotionBuilder or my own proprietary tool for Maya to solve the data," Macleod says. "Giving students access to clean motion-capture data provides them with relevant experience. To put it another way: I would not say that motion capture is a learning tool, but a tool to learn, and is not something we are currently teaching in the Animation & Visual Effects department, although it is taught and used in the VFS Game Design program." Virtually Real Innovative instructors and students at educational institutions, such as CalArts' School of Film/Video, are taking motion capture even a step further, combining it with other novel technologies into a virtual reality system. "We have recently acquired a Vizard VR system from WorldViz that, coupled with an eMagin Z800 HMD (head-mounted display), may be used with the real-time, motion-capture advantage of the PhaseSpace system to create work in fully immersive VR," Scroggins explains. The Vizard Virtual Reality Toolkit from WorldViz encompasses high-end graphics utilities for building interactive 3D content and developing high-performance graphics applications, including virtual reality, scientific visualization, games, and flight simulation. The system supports a variety of display technologies, including the head-mounted eMagin Z800 3D Visor, reportedly

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