Rotomation / Body Track

VFX work done here is listed below as steps-

Rotomation starts where Matchmove’s camera-tracking ends. The shots withcamera’s pan frozen serve as a field for Rotomation artists. Shots are worked hereto make way for CG implants; characters and ambience are tracked for adding CGelements and effects.  

The team works on 3D equalizer for trackable shots; these arelike distinctive objects and things-anime. Maya is also resorted to but when work getsmore intricate. 

Rotomation makes characters on a 2-D plate to animate on 3-D space. 2-Dplate is matched as a start. Key poses – i.e., defining positions ofcharacters and objects – are first tracked. For example: key poses can be thestarting and ending points of an object’s movement-trajectory –say, fall of anapple. 

Once key poses are tracked, the underlying path is set for trajectory; i.e., in-betweens are worked upon. Artists then fine-tune key poses to get them in-syncwith in-betweens. These are essential to see one unified, seamless motion with no apparent jerks or lags.

Key differentiators

Artist-prowess in Rotomation is earned through expertise in first principles of movements. An observant, keen eye for characters’ motion arcs, their poses and movements serve as core a differentiator here

Another core element that scores high here is the empathy artists wield for processes beyond Rotomation. The show-pipeline may have currently landed at the Rotomation artist’s desk. But, soon after this desk- it may go through a host of other desks such as lighting, layout, animation, etc. So, work done here sets the foreground for tasks succeeding it. This fine forethought for the hereafter is earned through years of experience.

As much as Rotomation is the next value-add step to Matchmove camera-track, experienced artists understand Rotomation is the start of things to come soon after it.

Role of team-leads and supervisors Seniors in the team make a big difference in helping artists surf 3-D plate. Rendering depth to a 2-D plate calls for visual finesse; seniors possess this – thanks to their experiences. Characters’ key poses are another aspect. The work is a smooth ride if these poses are mastered. Experience counts a lot here as well. Desk-level know-how is an integral yet essential value-add from seniors.

Supervisors serve as bridges with artists, team-leads on one side and production / client-side interests on other. This is a balancing act. The key elements here are realism behind bidding, quality of work and ETA-adherence. Resources are mobilized and work measured on a real-time basis to meet client-side specs.