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Motion Capture for the Masses

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Archive for November, 2013

Now You See Me – Making of Video

Posted on: November 19th, 2013

“Now You See Mee” making of video: The MGM Grand Scene Explained

Other VFX breakdown:

Rodeo FX work on “Now You See Me”

Posted on: November 15th, 2013

Rodeo FX Turned To iPi Motion Capture to Create Key Scene in Summit Entertainment’s “Now You See Me”

Markerless Motion Capture Solution Rises to the Occasion for Pivotal Sequence Set in Las Vegas MGM Grand Arena

MOSCOW, RUSSIA, NOVEMBER 18, 2013 – The summer blockbuster “Now You See Me”, which has grossed more than $350 million USD worldwide since Summit Entertainment, a LIONSGATE (NYSE: LGF) company, released the film in the US, features several complex visual effects sequences created by Montreal-based studio Rodeo VFX. But none proved more challenging than a key scene set at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas – aided immeasurably by iPi Soft’s markerless motion capture solution iPi Motion Capture.

Read full press-release>>


NowYouSeeMe-1 NowYouSeeMe


Damian Gordon’s shares his hand-made solution for mounting Sony PS Eye cameras

Posted on: November 14th, 2013

Demian Gordon, head of the Motion Capture Society, shares his experience of setting-up 8 Sony PS Eye cameras system. He used hand-made solution to mount Sony cameras. You do not necessarily need to do this to use iPi Motion Capture system, but some of advanced users may find this solution useful.

Extract from Demian Godon’s blog post.

I thought I would document my adventures with the ipisoft system as I install it iand put it through its paces. I’ve got a 20 foot long x 14 foot wide x 8 foot tall area that I intend to cover with the ipisoft system.…

The pseye cameras cost 80 total for all 8…the mounts cost 120 for all 8 and the usb extenders cost 140. Total cost (not including box truss or software) – 340$….with hardware to modify the camera mounts…360$.  If I was using tripods I wouldnt have to modify the mounts as much….but they would still need modification…I’m only detailing how I made them rig clampable. The mounts are made to sort of sit on top of a tv and be held in place by gravity…which doesnt work at all to attach them to box truss…so they need some tlc to work.


A drill…various drill bits…2 nuts, 2 bolts and 4 washers per camera mount. a packet of felt adhesive pads,….. some pipe straps from home depot (1 per camera mount)


The adhesive felt pads (I just had these lying around…but they work to hold the pseye in the clamp and also to increase friction between the pseye and the mount so the camera doesnt adjust itself as easily as it does normally)


You will need a 3/4 inch drill bit like this to drill the top plate


This is what the unmodified mount looks like initially when it comes out of its packaging


Use pliers to unscrew the little nut at the top


Separate out the pieces


Drill the top plate using the 3/4 inch bit


This is so you can thread the usb cable through the hole and use the existing slot as a sort of cable clamp to prevent any tugging on the cable from being able to effect the pseye camera.  Since the pseye is on a ball joint that you cant lock in place I wanted to control the cable, ensure there was strain relief on it and that I minimized potentials for calibration loss due to cameras getting moved accidently.

Next I extended the side plate out fully and used one of the pipe straps to mark where I would drill the side plate


Here it is all drilled and ready to attach the pipe strap to


I flipped the adhesive felt pads upside down and used the pseye camera holder to mark out a section on the pad I would cut out so it could wrap around the pseye


Now I threaded the usb cable through the hole I had made in the top plate and pulled the cable all the way towards the front of the plate, allowing enough cable to give strain relief to the cord.


Now I added the adhesive felt pad to the pseye so that it was stuck to the mount and wrapped around the pseye. this increases friction and makes the camera less prone to accidental adjustment. it also locks the pseye camera in the mount. Without the pad the pseye is free to slide in or out of the clamp accidently if bumped. with the pad…the camera and the clamp become one.


I also reattached the top plate to the side plate using the little screw that comes with the mount. I slide this all the way forward until it pinches the cable between the little gap between the mount and the screw. this further locks the cable in place. This also has the effect of further stabilizing the pseye so it is doesnt move around by accident as seen here.


Now bolt on the pipe clamp using the two bolts, two nuts and four washers and its done


This is what it looks like installed

demian-gordon-mount-pic16 demian-gordon-mount-pic17Thats pretty much it. I didnt really spend much time on this…I just sort of had all these bits lying around my garage…total design time was….nothing….I did it on the fly…total time to assemble all 8 was about a half hour. Next step is to run all the usb extenders back to my pc and then make the cables pretty with zip ties. that will probably take about another half hour. Then I am putting in some led lighting to increase the contrast between the talent and the background. I have 500 feet of led rope light lying around Im going to cover the entire box truss with to make a nice uniform globally diffuse lighting. Thats probably an hours worth of work. I should have the system up and running in a day or two…depending on how much free time I get to putter around with it.

iPi Soft Returns As Sponsor At Machinima Expo On November 17

Posted on: November 14th, 2013

iPi Soft Returns As Sponsor At Machinima Expo On November 17

Latest Version of Markerless Motion Capture Will Be Awarded To Grand Prize Winner of Filmmaking Contest


MOSCOW, RUSSIA, NOVEMBER 13, 2013 — iPi Soft, developers of the advanced markerless motion capture software iPi Motion Capture will again be sponsoring Machinima Expo, the six-year-old virtual event that takes place on November 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. PST on the event website via their Ustream channel. They will also embed pre-recorded programming and film premieres into their main website and on the Expo Facebook site and Twitter channel.

The Machinima Expo is an annual festival that celebrates the art of machinima, a form of 3D animation using a real time game engine. Although machinima grew out of the game community, several software companies like Moviestorm, Reallusion and Linden Labs Second Life have created real-time engines that are specifically designed to create machinima content.

iPi Soft is an official sponsor of the event and will offer one iPi Motion Capture Standard license to the Grand Jury prize winner of the Machinima Expo Film Competition.

“This is our second time being part of this important event celebrating creativity and we continue to be amazed at the brilliant ways machinima filmmakers are incorporating motion capture into their art,” Michael Nikonov, iPi Soft’s Founder and Chief Technology Architect says. “Motion capture is such an expressive medium for machinima filmmakers and our goal remains to provide content creators with the ultimate solution for creating believable 3D character motion conveniently and affordably without the need of a studio space, special lighting or background.”

Machinima Expo is co-produced by Ricky Grove, who has been at the forefront of the machinima community as a voice actor and sound designer for over 10 years. He’s also a contributing editor for the respected renderosity.com website and recently called iPi Motion Capture 2.0 “an excellent application that will continue to get better.”

“iPi Soft’s motion capture software is changing the way that machinima directors animate their films,” Grove says. “Forget the clunky, robotic character animation that you see in many machinima films. iPi Soft lets you to quickly animate characters realistically right in your living room. We’re proud to partner again with iPi Soft to present this cost-effective and simple method of ‘motion-capture for the masses.’”

About iPi Soft:

Launched in 2008 by CEO and Chief Technology Architect Michael Nikonov, iPi

Soft, LLC is the Moscow-based developer of iPi Motion Capture, a markerless motion capture software tool that uses sophisticated image processing and computer vision algorithms to recognize and track the human body. The company’s breakthrough technology digitizes the movement of a human skeleton, rendering it in expressive 3D characters for video games or computer generated films. Additional information on iPi Soft is available at http://www.ipisoft.com.

All trademarks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.

Media Contact

Vicky Gray-Clark/Ambient Public Relations

p. 408-318-1980 e. vicky@ambientpr.com

Ray Ecke/Right Word Media

p. 973-726-3797 e. ray@rightwordmedia.com

Battle of Miridem

Posted on: November 6th, 2013

Modern 3D technologies allow you to create “Star Wars” at your desktop. “The Battle of Miridem” trailer, the winner of our October mocap competition is a solid confirmation for this.

Description from the author:

I’m using two Kinect cameras along with the standard edition of iPi software. I calibrated the two cameras with a flat rectangular plywood. Scenes in this trailer that includes animations that are standing still, walking and running is all done with recorded motion capture with iPiSoft. Some scenes are keyframed when it comes to certain delicate movements with hands and weapons. Scenes are rendered in 3ds Max and composed in After Effects.


GFC’s Anthony Hoit Talks at The World Animation & VFX Summit

Posted on: November 2nd, 2013


Graphic Film Company’s Anthony Hoit Talks About iPi Motion Capture
At he World Animation & VFX Summit, Nov. 3-6, Marina Del Rey, CA
VFX Artist Will Discuss His Mocap Work On Upcoming
“Night of the Living Dead: Origins 3D” At Previz Session

iPi Soft, the developers of the markerless motion capture solution iPi Motion Capture, is pleased to announce that Anthony Hoit, Systems Lead at The Graphic Film Company, Los Angeles, CA, will be speaking about the role the software played in film previsualization at the World Animation & VFX SummitNovember 3 – 6, 2013 at the California Yacht Club, Marina Del Rey, Calif.

Now in its second year, the Summit connects studio executives, producers, agents, distributors with high-level animation and visual effects professionals for three days of panels, screenings and networking.

Introduced in 2009, iPi Motion Capture has been gaining momentum as a professional and reliable alternative for capturing animation data without the need for expensive greenscreen stages, clumsy sensor suits with reflective markers or a team of technicians. The software uses sophisticated image processing and computer vision algorithms to recognize and track the human body. The digitally captured movement is then applied to a 3D character and rendered as part of a video game or a computer generated movie.

Session Highlight

Session: “VFX: The Importance of Previz”
Date/Time: Tuesday, November 5, 2:15 – 3:15 p.m.

Moderated by David Cohen, Senior Features Editor, Variety, Hoit will join panelists to discuss the growing importance of previsualization and the opportunity it affords filmmakers to explore visual sequences, VFX shots, stunts, technical solutions and more, using 3D animation and virtual environments. Further session details are available here

The Graphic Film Company is a  full service post-production visual effects house and film production studio founded in partnership with Simon West Productions (Con Air, Lara Croft :Tomb Raider, The General’s Daughter, When a Stranger Calls). Hoit, who is responsible for the company’s motion and facial capture technology, has relied on the iPi Motion Capture for several years. Most recently, the software was an integral part of the previs pipeline on Night of the Living Dead: Origins 3D, scheduled for release in early 2014. GFC has also relied on iPi Motion Capture for the upcoming Thunder Run, a war drama to be released in 2015, as well as the epic opening sequence of Expendables 2, released in 2012.

At the World Animation and VFX Summit, Hoit will show a video clip demonstrating the iPi Motion Capture rig and its role in improving the speed and efficiency of its previs pipeline on Night of the Living Dead: Origins 3D and other feature film projects.

Previsualization has become such an important aspect of our digital filmmaking pipeline, says Hoit. Having access to tools like iPi Mocap gives us the flexability to multi-person tracking that helps us easily and quickly generate an expanded range of unique motions to incorporate into our animations and live action sequences. I’m looking forward to sharing our previz experiences with the Animation & VFX Summit attendees.

The World Animation and VFX Summit

The World Animation and VFX Summit takes place as follows:

California Yacht Club
4469 Admiralty Way
Marina Del Rey, CA
90292(818) 883-2884
Date and Time:
November 3 – 6, 2013

Conference session times and agenda are available here

Members of the Press:

Hoit will be onsite at the Summit on November 5 from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., and available for one-on-one briefings except from 2:15 pm — 3:15 pm during his presentation.

Please contact Vicky Gray-Clark, Ambient Public Relations, , (408) 318-1980 to schedule an appointment.

Alternate briefing opportunities are available to those not attending the conference by phone/Skype.)

Additional information on iPi Soft is available as follows:

Website: http://www.ipisoft.com
Facebook: Motion Capture Software from iPi Soft
Twitter: https://twitter.com/iPiSoft

Media Contact
Vicky Gray-Clark / Ambient PR /  / 408-318-1980
Ray Ecke /Right Word Media /  / 973-726-3797

All trademarks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.