The Foundry – This Is Katana

The Foundry are the company behind, amongst other things, the compositing and CG workhorses Nuke and Modo – software used in countless films and commercials to deliver an industry-standard high end content and post production pipeline. The Foundry approached us to create an animation to help introduce one of the latest members of their family, Katana.

What is Katana? The secret of the best photography is usually in its lighting – and it’s no different with CGI. Katana is a lighting and look development tool that allows CG artists to adjust the look of their work either individually or collaboratively as part of a team, allowing them to load massive scenes in a flash, work through high volumes of shots quickly and seamlessly and have the ability to easily re-use looks and make revisions without repeating scene setup work. Which means more time achieving awesome results, less time waiting around waiting for things to happen, and happier impatient clients and directors.

The challenge was to find a way of representing Katana’s inherently tech orientated interface in an entertaining, informative and engaging way. So rather than focusing on the interface itself, we decided we had to approach the solution from the point of view of the CG artist, highlighting the challenges that they face in the real world on a day to day basis and how Katana can help face those challenges.  CG artists are constantly asked to work magic, and with Katana, it becomes much easier to pull that rabbit out of the hat…


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