Celebrating Autodesk Flame Artists

Award Nominations Open Until May 17

At this year’s National Association of Broadcasters Show (NAB 2013), we announced the Autodesk Flame Award to celebrate the achievements of all the amazing Autodesk Flame artists who have advanced VFX creation over the past 20 years. The award celebrates the ultimate artist who demonstrates a high level of creativity, originality, community involvement, and a dedication to advancing the art and science of visual effects creation through the skilled use of Flame.

Flame Award
Credit: Autodesk

A special Flame advisory board comprised of independent visual effects and industry experts, along with representatives from Autodesk, help name the winner. Nominations are open to the public until May 17 through the AREA, the Autodesk community hub.

The Vanity

Flame artists are as diverse as the stunning work they create. Autodesk recently visited The Vanity, a Toronto based post-production company and Flame customer. The two year old, seven person company works on commercials for notable brands that span a gamut of industries, from automotive, to fashion, to sports drinks and fast food.

In 2012, they created a McDonald’s spot visualizing a man going down a water slide using the iconic striped McDonald's straw. With a limited budget and a tight timeframe, The Vanity not only directed the spot, but also created an animated concept clip, all using Flame. Their ability to quickly iterate client needs and changes in Flame won them the job.

The Vanity
Credit: The Vanity

“I think there's nothing like Flame. There are other compositing tools. There are other tools that do animation. There are other tools that do editing. But there's nothing that does all those things as well or as quickly as Flame can do,” said Naveen Srivastava, Flame artist, co-owner and partner at The Vanity. “Flame is invaluable to my day-to-day working schedule because commercials typically have a one- to two-day turnaround in post. Flame is the only tool I can imagine that could allow us to meet that deadline every single time. And we haven't missed one yet.”

The Vanity team also regularly collaborates with Nissan, one of the company’s biggest automotive clients, to push the creative and technological boundaries with post-production technology, virtual cameras and computer generated cars. To create eye-catching visuals for Nissan, the team relies on the workflow between Flame and Autodesk Maya. The Vanity uses still imagery of the car and a Maya-created model then projects the photography onto that Maya model. To add additional production value and create environments around the car, the team then moves the virtual camera around in Flame to produce the final shot.

“Flame is speed. That's it. Yes, you can go and get these other pieces of software. But there's nothing that I've played with that's as fast as Flame. And for me, that's the number one thing that I need,” said Sean Cochrane, Flame artist, co-owner and partner at The Vanity. “With Maya, we can port things back and forth very easily, very quickly. When I import it, it's exactly as our 3d artist had it and I don't have to spend time editing.”

Autodesk continues to work with world class artists and we’re excited to honor them with the Flame Awards. To hear other stories from The Vanity and other creative companies, visit AREA InHouse.