Thursday at SIGGRAPH

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Today was the final day of the SIGGRAPH conference, and a much slower paced day for me compared to the last three. 

The day started with "Don't Let Go" a series of talks about the film Gravity. The first part was about how Framestore built their volumetrics, specifically all the clouds for the Earth. They went on to discuss their destruction pipeline, how they used simulations in other parts of the production (like styling clothes)  and how they created the Earth. 

The next session was about University education as it relates to the VFX, animation and gaming industries. As a teacher, I was inspired by several of the speakers, and it gave me a few ideas for the next semester. 

After lunch I spent the rest of the afternoon in my final session of the conference. It was about raytracing and how Sony, Framestore and Double Negative transitioned to using raytracing from a REYES pipeline. This was one of the highlights of the week for me. First they gave an overview of their original pipeline, explained it's shortcomings, and then what made raytracing so appealing. It was filled with case studies from films like Spider-Man, Man of Steel and Gravity. They talked about where they had problems and how they fixed them. It was a great talk. 

Looking back I am blown away by the conference. It was exceptionally well run and very organized. I was busy the entire time, and often had to make tough decisions on which talk I was going to go see. I wish it was twice as long so I could have seen everything that interested me. This was my first SIGGRAPH and I hope it's not my last.