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NAB 2014: The Foundry's vfx, editorial and finishing suite

NAB 2014: The Foundry's vfx, editorial and finishing suite
Jake Bickerton
09 April 2014

NAB 2014: The email sent out a week or so before the show simply said to meet at The Foundry's stand at 6:05pm for a special announcement. And that was it. This elusive approach worked a treat in whipping up something of a frenzy, with The Foundry’s stand absolutely rammed by 6pm with even standing space anywhere near the stage difficult to come by.

The company then ran a short teaser film, which didn’t give a great deal away, before kicking off proceedings, which were being streamed globally online to an audience including a hardcore contingency of UK Nuke fans who’d stayed up ‘til 2am UK-time to be the first to hear the news.

And so to that news… The special announcement was the reveal and launch of Nuke Studio, a combined vfx, editorial and finishing suite that merges Nuke and Hiero and adds a load more capabilities too, including real-time timeline effects, full editorial tools, collaborative control, 4k real-time playback, built-in “intelligent” rendering, a python core and multi-platform support. 

In a nutshell, the product appears to be aiming to fill the gap left by the demise of Avid DS and only partially taken over by Autodesk Smoke.

Pitched at vfx supervisors, producers, animators, creative artists, directors, compositors, editors and pipeline developers, the announcement of Nuke Studio was greeted by the kind of whoops typically reserved for the likes of Apple.

There then followed an extensive run through of Nuke Studios’ features, which were demo-ed using the finishing of a real-life cg-heavy commercial as an example.The first step (in the demo, at least) was using Nuke Studio to do the conform; importing the edl and clips and reference offline and using editorial tools in a traditional editing view with source and record windows to ensure the timeline matched the reference offline.

The background plates were then graded in Nuke Studio before the cg assets were brought in. To do this, a comp was created on the timeline which takes you to a node-based Nuke compositing environment where you can do things such as create cameras, add annotations and comp out work that needs tweaking to the 3d department.

Changes made by the cg guys in Nuke are immediately reflected and updated in the Nuke Studio timeline, making for a very straightforward collaborative finishing workflow.

Nuke Studio is scheduled to come out late this year. The Foundry hasn’t yet announced pricing for the product.

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