Get a giant bunny dropping

The opening rabbit-hole scene from the open-source movie Big Buck Bunny, converted to iClone format. Selected items (mound with hole, tree, stones) exported and converted to individual VNS props, then scaled and arranged in a scene. Three native iClone trees were added and then rotated / positioned to provide the leaf cover, but you’ll still need to texture and then add grass + flowers as required. You may have to make your own texture to get enough detail and grain on the mound. Background picture not included. Download here for a limited time.

Default lighting used above. How it looked in the movie…

Put a hobbit door on the front of the hole, and it could also be a LOTR scene.

Zign Track

This looks rather interesting, if rather expensive ($159 or £115). Zign Track 1.4 offers facial motion-capture via a normal camera and facial dots, and then exports to BVH files or Poser…

There’s a seven-minute Zign Track to Poser tutorial on YouTube here, although the heavy Dutch accent makes it very difficult to follow. Anyone have success using Zign Track with iClone or CrazyTalk?

Perhaps this sort of webcam-based mo-cap will be the major CrazyTalk update feature mentioned as “forthcoming in 2010” in the Xmas Wolf & Dulcie podcast? Just a guess.

News services wake up to anymation

The Associated Press wire service is telling the world about the new wave of computer-based anymation…

“[…] online videos popping up with visual effects that just a generation ago would have been possible only for big Hollywood studios, with big budgets and armies of computer animators. Today the falling cost of computing power and cameras, along with the free distribution possible over the Internet, are giving everyday people more chances to follow their creative instincts.”

Not an especially good article but, given the wide range of places where AP stories end up, it’s encouraging to think it could eventually spark the interest of some kid reading the local newspaper in No Hope City, Venezuela.

Meanwhile, The Guardian muses on the emergence of animated recreations of unseen news events

“We have found some of the most interesting examples of the genre. Is animated news blurring the border between fact and fiction? Or are levels of media literacy advanced enough to recognise that the animations are not intended to be taken all that seriously?”

Above: the British Prime Minister, who is mired in allegations about his bullying of staff.