LIBRARY: Tutorials Reviews Interviews Editorials Features Business Authors RSS Feed

Prime Focus on Power & Flexibility

CreativeCOW presents Prime Focus on Power & Flexibility -- Assimilate Scratch Feature

Michael Wrightson, Prime Focus UK
Michael Wrightson, Prime Focus UK
MICHAEL WRIGHTSON, DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS
Prime Focus UK divides its business into a number of distinct areas, including traditional post-production for broadcast and commercials, and a dedicated film division providing VFX and 2D to 3D stereoscopic conversion services using its own technology, View-D(TM).

Our first SCRATCH Lab system was initially brought in to complement our FilmLight Baselight grading systems. We found that the Baselights were increasingly being used for the task of data preparation -- conforming, file conversion, media management, etc. This was causing a major bottleneck, particularly as we were experiencing a steady increase of film work coming in as data from ARRI Alexa and RED cameras, and at the same time seeing a decrease in demand for traditional film/telecine-based work.

When I looked at SCRATCH Lab, I saw a system that had immense potential. It could deliver the efficiency savings that we required, while helping us maximise the productivity and return of investment of our "hero" suites. An added bonus was the integration with the rest of the facility, and the many uses of SCRATCH Lab that we are still discovering on a daily basis. From the moment we took delivery of our first system, it has been in use non-stop. The first SCRATCH Lab worked so well that the company shortly invested in another!


Kevin Doogan, Commercials VFX: ARRI Alexa and RED EPIC Conform
Kevin Doogan, Commercials VFX: ARRI Alexa and RED EPIC Conform
KEVIN DOOGAN, COMMERCIALS VFX: ARRI ALEXA AND RED EPIC CONFORM
Before SCRATCH Lab, we had carried out all of our conforms in Baselights. However, we're now working predominantly with Apple ProRes files from the ARRI Alexa, which are not supported by the Baselight, and so we required an alternative solution. Fortunately, SCRATCH Lab deals with them amazingly well, and provided our ideal solution. The combination of the fast processing power and the intuitive nature of the software has made it very easy to use SCRATCH Lab for the Alexa material.

We have also used it for RED camera footage, including footage from RED Epic and again, SCRATCH Lab is so easy to use with these RAW files, where you have the ability to change the colour space, ISO and so much more. SCRATCH Lab gives us complete control of all the parameters, and in real time.

Another challenge that we were faced with was making sure that the edit decision lists (EDLs) would marry up between offline through to editorial and effects. It used to take much more time before SCRATCH Lab, but now the whole process is so much easier.



EPIC, ProRes, Phantom, ARRI RAW, Panasonic MXF and DPX LOG in a single spot project at Prime Focus UK


CHRIS COUPLAND, FILM VFX
Chris Coupland, FILM VFX
CHRIS COUPLAND, FILM VFX: ANALYSIS, POWER, AND CONTROL
We're currently using SCRATCH Lab as a means to neutrally balance every scan that we receive on a show. This could be footage from RED, Silicon Imaging 2K, Phantom and other cameras. We want to prepare the images by applying basic colour and balancing, to give our artists a consistent place to start their work, with the most possible information to work with.

We work in an OpenEXR pipeline to get the most information possible out of the scans. Once we have balanced the plate we could export this again, but that would introduce another generation of compression. Instead we use tools developed both internally and with SCRATCH Lab to translate grading information directly into Nuke, so that any work uses the original scan.

SCRATCH Lab is one of the few solutions we evaluated that will allow us to see specific code values of our OpenEXR files that are below zero and above one. It doesn't just show clipping -- it gives us an idea by how much we're clipping.



ASSIMILATE SCRATCH Lab -- Industrial strength 5K workflows. Same power and price for Mac and Windows: $4995.

A shot that I'm looking at now has a peak value of 1.6. This kind of additional detail over what other systems gives us helps guide us through the choices we will need to make in order to come up with a usable neutral grade.

We simply have more control over how to address those problems with SCRATCH Lab. For example, with the Magnify tool, we can change how we want the information displayed. In addition to a zero to one range, we might choose, in a 16-bit range, values greater than 1. We want all the information we can possibly have as we take specific approaches, to know what we might gain and what we might lose across the spectrum of a shot.

We've also found that whatever problems we've had, we can talk to the people at ASSIMILATE, who have come back to us with new tools, or a LUT, or with some other kind of solution. They've been very willing to help with anything we need.


ASSIMILATE SCRATCH Lab -- Industrial strength 5K workflows. Same power and price for Mac and Windows: $4995. Virgin Media
Virgin Media "Our House" commercial, DDB UK/Academy Films, posted by Prime Focus
MICHAEL WRIGHTSON: CONFIDENCE IN SCRATCH LAB
It is most important for us to have as close a relationship with our suppliers as we do with our clients. Rather than just ordering a box and having a box delivered, we look for a continual process of support and understanding of our workflow.

That was very much what we found with ASSIMILATE. I said to them, "This is how I'd like to use it - will it fit into that workflow?" Their immediate response was, "Let's get a system in for you, so that you can see for yourself."

Seeing how well it has blended into the organisation from day one, I am confident that we will have a continual and increased requirement for SCRATCH Lab in our daily work, now and in the future.






ADVERTORIAL SPECIAL FEATURE, SPONSORED BY ASSIMILATE, www. assimilateinc.com




Related Articles / Tutorials:
Assimilate Scratch
ASSIMILATE Opens Online Store

ASSIMILATE Opens Online Store

ASSIMILATE has opened the door to the new online ASSIMILATE Store, which offers an ecosystem of tools surrounding the company’s SCRATCH Lab workflow for production and VFX dailies, as well as the entire SCRATCH product line. Users will have the opportunity to test out SCRATCH Lab before purchasing it, all on the site.

Feature
Debra Kaufman
Assimilate Scratch
Heroes of RAW Workflow

Heroes of RAW Workflow

Santa Monica’s Local Hero Post are using ASSIMILATE SCRATCH to change the future of RAW file-based workflows.

Feature
Leandro Marini
Recent Articles / Tutorials:
Blackmagic Design Fusion
Blackmagic Fusion 9's Most Powerful Tool: The Custom Tool

Blackmagic Fusion 9's Most Powerful Tool: The Custom Tool

Meet The Custom Tool, the most powerful and versatile tool in Blackmagic Fusion's entire toolbox ??" which ironically appears to do nothing when you first apply it. That’s because it’s a tool designed for building your own tools from scratch. That may sound daunting, but under the guiding hand of longtime VFX artist, editor, and business owner Simon Ubsdell, it’s engaging, empowering, and just plain fun. If you are new to Fusion and to compositing you'll find plenty of useful information here, including how to work with channels to create complex effects surprisingly simply. Bonus tips on expressions and keying, too!

Tutorial
Simon Ubsdell
Adobe After Effects
Adobe After Effects: Glitch Effects Without Using Plug-ins!

Adobe After Effects: Glitch Effects Without Using Plug-ins!

Join VFX guru Tobias Gleissenberger for a fun, high-energy look at how to create all sorts of digital noise, glitch, and other disturbing video effects with any version of Adobe After Effects, without using any plug-ins!

Tutorial
Tobias Gleissenberger
Blackmagic Fusion 9 Advanced Keying: Fixing Problem Edges

Blackmagic Fusion 9 Advanced Keying: Fixing Problem Edges

In this advanced keying tutorial for Blackmagic Fusion, longtime VFX artist Simon Ubsdell addresses a common problem: edges too brightly lit, along with light wrap that makes compositing a challenge. Learn how to build custom keyers using Fusion's node-based compositing that solve the problem more quickly and more completely than traditional layer-based approaches.

Tutorial
Simon Ubsdell
Art of the Edit
A Newbie Looks at EditFest LA

A Newbie Looks at EditFest LA

Thanks to the Blue Collar Post Collective's Professional Development Accessibility Program, Indiana shortform editor Hillary Lewis was able to attend the American Cinema Editor's EditFest LA. Rather than the lion's den she feared, Hillary found unexpected support among people who were more like her than she'd imagined. This rare opportunity provided unique insights into what Hollywood editing is really all about, and what it takes to succeed wherever you are.

Feature
Hillary Lewis
Adobe Premiere Pro
Cinematic Look Using Lumetri Color in Adobe Premiere Pro

Cinematic Look Using Lumetri Color in Adobe Premiere Pro

Want to give your video that elusive cinematic look? Visual effects guru Tobias Gleissenberger will show you the secrets of the Lumetri Scopes and Lumetri Color panels in Adobe Premiere Pro and After Effects that make it super easy to properly correct & grade your footage.

Tutorial
Tobias Gleissenberger
Adobe After Effects
Adobe After Effects Energy Ball

Adobe After Effects Energy Ball

In his latest high-energy Adobe After Effects tutorial, VFX guru Tobias Gleissenberger of Surfaced Studio combines a variety of effects to create the pulsating energy ball, composited with motion tracking, optical flares, and more.

Tutorial
Tobias Gleissenberger
Cinematography
Robert McLachlan: Cinematographer for Game of Thrones

Robert McLachlan: Cinematographer for Game of Thrones

Robert McLachlan is the cinematographer of Game of Thrones, Westworld and Ray Donovan, and he joins commercial director and Go Creative Show host Ben Consoli to share behind the scenes stories from some of his most iconic scenes including The Red Wedding and The Loot Train Battle.

Feature, People / Interview
Ben Consoli
Art of the Edit
What Picasso Can Teach Us About Filmmaking

What Picasso Can Teach Us About Filmmaking

Feature film editor Sven Pape takes a unique, entertaining look at Pablo Picasso's approach to art, and offers specific examples from a variety of movies, as well as Picasso's own advice. As Sven puts it, success requires action. Make a film. Fail. Then fail harder. Of course, Picasso and Sven have great advice for succeeding too! You'll get a kick out of this one.

Tutorial, Feature
Sven Pape
MORE
© 2017 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]