Vancouver – This past Saturday night we attended the best digital art event in town. Anomaly 2009 was held at the District 319 Theatre, and with attendance of well over 200, was an awesome night of networking and learning.
Attendees could watch live CG demonstrations given by such talented digital artists as Daryl Mandryk (Propaganda), David Tran (Smoking Gun), Jesse Turner (Threewave), Jeff Simpson (Big Sandwich Games), Peter Zoppi (Treyarch, Rythm & Hues, Luna Pictures) and Marco Menco (Image Engine), as well as interact with the artists, who were more than willing to talk about their techniques and share their knowledge. There were also two showcase exhibits set up featuring the beautiful work of Offload Studios and Avatar Sculpture Works.
The evening began with speed sketching, featuring Jesse Turner and live model Jenny Magenta. Accompanied by live music, everyone was encouraged to draw along with either traditional or digital tools.
Two keynote sessions were also offered over the course of the evening. The first was presented by 3D Modeler and Concept Artist Julianna Kolakis, who took the audience through the various processes she used while working on the Yeti from Mummy 3 as well as her own personal art. The main focus of her keynote was an indepth look at digital portrait painting. A graduate of Vancouver Film School, it is very easy to see that Juliana has a passion for her work, and it was a treat to be able to learn many of the techniques and processes she uses. Watching her demonstrations has almost made me want to pick up the tablet and start painting again.
The second keynote address was given by Blizzard Look Development Artist Steven Chen. Steven’s address focused on the development of character concepts in pencil and the importance of getting skin textures right. He also touched on using Renderman and Mudbox, as well as what types of work to include in portfolios and demo reels.
Both artists stressed the importance of using real-life references to maintain elements of realism in any digital work, whether it is humanoid, animal or plant. Studying textures and lighting in nature and then incorporating them into your own work will always add that extra depth to any piece which will bring it to life.
The entire staff who worked on Anomaly 2009 are to be congratulated for a very well-run educational and social event. Many thanks also to the corporations and organizations who supported Anomaly 2009 as sponsors:
CG Movement, Mindseeker Entertainment, Mitts Creative, Ubisoft, Pixologic, DieConstant, Annex|Pro, Stash DVD Magazine, Big Fish Games, Offload Studios, CG Society, SIGGRAPH Vancouver, The Artery and Vancouver Animation.
Event photos by Scott White
The rest of our Anomaly photos will be available for viewing in our gallery Monday evening (April 27th)