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Advanstar's LEAF Conference Program to Showcase Next Generation Animation and FX Techniques

More than 250 Entries for LEAF Awards (October 18, 2001)
The London Effects and Animation Festival (LEAF) today announced a program of events designed to examine ground-breaking animation and special effects technology alongside traditional techniques, with a range of prestigious speakers from the UK, US and Europe. The Festival is held at Olympia from 13th-15th November. The opening night sees the Eighth Annual LEAF Awards Ceremony and screening followed by the LEAF party at the London Hippodrome. Overall, the competition has received over 250 entries.

Sophie Trainor, Conference Manager for Digital Media World, commented, ?This year has seen unprecedented leaps in the progress of digital animation and effects technologies, with productions like ?Shrek and ?Final Fantasy hitting our screens. LEAF provides an opportunity to take a closer look at how the seemingly impossible was achieved, and we are privileged to have many of the creators at the conference to give invaluable ideas and practical advice.

?Hensons is delighted to be involved in the LEAF event; the industry we work in moves so fast, and this is a great opportunity for creatives to get together, discuss new ideas and learn from each other, said Adam McInnes, Jim Hensons Creature Shop.

The conference programme reflects both traditional and cutting-edge animation techniques and, as well as keynote addresses and panel discussions, delegates are offered practical experience and tuition in a variety of workshops and courses. Speakers include such luminaries as: Michael Dudok de Wit, the Oscar-winning Animator and Director, will screen his acclaimed short film ?Father and Daughter and give a keynote address on the place of the short film in the contemporary animation world; Bob Godfrey & Stan Hayward, BOB GODFREY STUDIOS talking about technical advances in animation versus traditional methods, plus a screening of the first ever digital film, ?The Mathematician; Tom Sito, Animation Director, WARNER BROTHERS STUDIOS on the challenges of integrating CG into Live Action in ?Osmosis Jones, continuing the process of convergence that began on ?The Iron Giant, of integrating 3D and 2D traditional animation; Denis Friedman CEO, CHAMAN explains the innovative approaches taken for ?Axis, a 3D long form project currently in post-production at Chaman in Paris and due for worldwide release early 2002; Adam McInnes, Arundi Asregadoo & Mike Connolly, JIM HENSONS CREATURE SHOP uncover the compositing challenges in ?Jack and the Beanstalk the real story, which resulted in the creation of some amazing visual shots through layering to 360 degree camera angles.

Exciting new content includes a ?One-Off Mini-Masterclass by animation guru Richard Williams, followed by a book-signing to launch his new book, ?The Animators Survival Kit. Also, Russell Appleford and Jim Radford from the Moving Picture Company will present ?E4 Idents, the Making Of?

A full conference programme is attached, together with categories for the LEAF awards; previous winners include Framestore, The Mill, Clear and Studio AKA. The post-production sponsor for the LEAF Awards 2001 is the Moving Picture Company and it will be responsible for providing a showreel of the entries and winners plus providing a judge for the panel.

The London Effects and Animation Festival is part of Digital Media World exhibition, which runs from 13-15th November at Olympia. It is the UKs premier event for digital content creation, distribution and management and includes three other conference events: Media Asset Management, Streaming Media and Games.

Those wishing to attend either the conference element or the awards ceremony of the Festival can register on-line at or telephone +44 (0)1244 393454. Those interested in exhibiting at Digital Media World should contact Jason Moss on 020 8987 0918 or by email at

ABOUT DIGITAL MEDIA WORLD 2001 Digital Media World is Europes premier event for digital creation, management and distribution for the media and entertainment industry. The prestigious London Effects and Animation Festival runs alongside DMW. Attendees include media and entertainment companies; in-house corporate, Web/sales and marketing departments; post production; advertising agencies; Web developers; independent music and film organizations; and other corporate and creative executives and directors. Exhibitors include content creators; digital and print publishers; film, video and audio producers; graphics animators; production; real networks; and more. Digital Media World and the London Effects and Animation Festival are organised by Advanstar Communications. For more information about Digital Media World visit


Advanstar Communications Inc. is a worldwide business information company serving specialized markets with high quality information resources and integrated marketing solutions. Advanstar has 105 business magazines and directories, 87 exhibitions and conferences, numerous Web sites, and a wide range of direct marketing, database and reference products and services. Advanstar serves targeted market sectors in such industries as art, beauty, collaboration/e-learning, CRM/call centre, digital media, entertainment/marketing, fashion & apparel, healthcare, internet/e-business, manufacturing and processing, pharmaceutical, science, telecommunications and travel/hospitality. The Company has more than 1,500 employees and currently operates from multiple offices in North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia. For more information, visit

LEAF November 13-15 2001 Conference Schedule

DAY ONE Tuesday 13th November 2001

CONFERENCE PROGRAMME 10.00 10.30 Keynote address: The Short Film as an Art Form, Michael Dudok de Wit Oscar Winning Animator and Director Michael Dudok de Wit will screen his acclaimed short film ?Father and Daughter and will then focus on the short film?s place in the contemporary animation world.

10.30 12.00 Integrating CG into Live Action in ?Osmosis Jones Tom Sito, Animation Director, WARNER BROTHERS STUDIOS On ?Osmosis Jones, Tom and his team strove to continue the process of convergence that began on ?The Iron Giant of integrating 3D and 2D traditional animation in a design harmony. On ?Osmosis Jones one lead character was completely 2D while his partner was fully 3D. Backgrounds and the more complex camera work are CG.

Toms team created libraries of effects that could then be duplicated, pulled and stretched in the computer and placed wherever needed. The climax also has many interesting combination shots of characters hanging from live action eyelashes and tears.

13.30 14.30 Approaches to Short Form Projects through COLDPLAYS ?DONT PANIC, MINI AD & SONY PLAYSTATION spot Andrew Ruhemann, Pete Candeland & Hugo Sands, PASSION PICTURES A number of mini case studies of short form projects currently being worked on at Passion Pictures one of Sohos trendiest facilities.

14.30 15.30 ?Axis Spinning the production cycle looking at every angle. Denis Friedmann, CEO, CHAMAN ?Axis is a 3D long form project currently under production at Chaman in Paris. Learn about the technical challenges that the team faced during the creation of the visual effects as well as the innovative approaches taken to overcome commercial obstacles.

15.30 16.30 PANEL: Synthespians Vs Thespians? Marc Miance, PDG, ATTITUDE STUDIOS; Tom Hershey, SONY PICTURE IMAGEWORKS; Tim Gale, EQUITY; Richard Morris, FILM COUNCIL. With current advances in technology and the introduction of virtual characters in film and on the Internet is the number up for humans? Will real actors become obsolete? Will Avatars take over the world?

MASTERCLASS: FOCUS ON COMPOSITING 14.00 15.30 Compositing Challenges in ?Jack and the Beanstalk the real story Adam McInnes, Arundi Asregadoo & Mike Connolly, JIM HENSONS CREATURE SHOP The team at Hensons has uncovered the real story of the childrens classic. Weeks spent in composition presented numerous challenges and resulted in the creation of some amazing visual shots through layering to 360 degree camera angles. Hear how they went about it?

15.30 17.00 ?Le pacte des Loups who shot the wolf? Adam McInnes, Alex Wuttke & Val Wardlaw, JIM HENSONS CREATURE SHOP ?Le Pacte des Loups or ?The Brotherhood of the Wolf ? - an ancient French fairytale has been brought to life by the Creature Shop. Due for UK release late in 2001, the film is packed with exciting and interesting shots built around backgrounds emulating deciduous forests and French countryside. This is your chance to see some UK preview shots?

COURSES: 10.00-13.00 Acting for Animators; Observation, Characterisation and Communication. Mark Brierley An interactive workshop centred on ?Observation, Characterisation and Communication, the three most essential ingredients in any character animators cookbook. (Wear comfortable clothing and bring a sketchpad and pencil?)

DAY TWO - Wednesday 14th November 2001

CONFERENCE PROGRAMME 10.00 10.30 Keynote Address: Technical Advances in Animation Bob Godfrey & Stan Hayward, BOB GODFREY STUDIOS Animation techniques and tools are very different in 2001 compared with the traditional animation process how have these changes facilitated the animators day to day work? and have these advances resulted in a larger than predicted animation industry? PLUS a screening of the first ever Digital Film, ?The Mathematician.

10.30-12.00 Jeff Kleiser, Joint CEO, Kleiser-Walczak Hollywood Effects in ?The One 2002s kicking Martial Arts movie? Jeff Kleiser, senior visual effects supervisor for Kleiser-Walczak on Revolution Studios/Columbia Pictures' film "The One," will present his latest work and speak about stereoscopic filmmaking as embodied in projects such as "Santa Lights Up New York" for Radio City Music Halls "Christmas Spectacular."

12.00-12.45 E4 Idents - The Making Of... Russell Appleford and Jim Radford, The Moving Picture Company

Lunch & Exhibition Visit

13.30 14.30 Twisting the night away How the Mill brought us that Levis ad? Barnsley, The Mill This summers award-nominated ad for Levis encompassed striking effects to signify a new style of popular favourites Levis. See a step-by-step breakdown of the production of these effects, how the computer graphics were integrated into the live action and methods used to create the spot.

14.30-15.30 ?El Bosque Animado The democratisation of technology and the related new possibilities for animation Juan Nouche, Technical Director and Manuel Cristobal, Executive Producer, DYGRA FILMS ?El Bosque Animado or ?The Living Forest is the first European animated feature film, created by Dygra Films based in Northern Spain. This project was made possible by the new phenomenon of democratization of technology. In short, animation software is becoming more and more accessible and fantastic opportunities are appearing for freelancers and small/medium studios worldwide.

15.30 16.30 Updating Classic Cartoon Characters for the CARTOON NETWORK Jonas Odell, FILMTECKNARNA

17.15-19.30 Richard Williams Mini-Masterclass launching his new book "The Animators Survival Kit" Followed by a book signing by Richard Williams himself your chance to get your very own collectors item.

14.00 17.00 Panel: ?Which format presents the most challenges in Animation Production? Phil Streather, PRINCIPAL MEDIA GROUP - IMAX; Steve Cooper, CURIOUS LABS - WEB; Richard Morss, PEPPERS GHOST - TV; Phillippe Gluckmann, PDI/DREAMWORKS Cinema; Andy King, BBC RESOURCES HDTV; Fredrick Nordbeck, 4K - DVD The panels aim is two-fold: primarily it will concentrate on the difficulties of animating for different formats, namely IMAX, the Internet, Cinema, Television, HDTV and DVD. In addition, it will cover the advances in technology that we see in the Animation/Effects world today and how these advances have resulted in new exciting challenges to todays technical researchers and of course the increased scope now available to Animators, Technical Directors and 3D Artists.

COURSES: 10.00-13.00 Texturing in Extinct a C4 Production Alex West, Wall to Wall, CHANNEL 4; Chris Petts, THE HIVE

14.00 17.00 Traditional Animation Techniques in lip sync for Computer Animators. Steve Roberts, London Animation Studio An informal, interactive course where you will learn the basics of phrasing a scene, master the in betweens and adding the mouth shapes and jaw movement.

DAY THREE Thursday 15th November

CONFERENCE PROGRAMME 10.00-10.30 Keynote Address Film to Game, Game to Film; an easy way to gain established ideas? Tom Hershey, Vice President, Operations, Sony Pictures Imageworks With the increasing number of films being created "off the back of" computer games, are film makers getting lazy when planning new projects for production? Traditionally, it was the other way around - where the film would appear first and the game second - however, are we now seeing a major shift? What can this be attributed to? And is the film community happy about this??

10.30-12.00 The VFX Process a Case Study ILM Speaker to be Announced

13.30-14.30 Post Production Houses can have Creative Influence Over the Design Process Mike Uden, Rushes When it comes to pure graphic design work for film and television, surely advertising agencies, production companies and design houses call all the shots. Don't post houses just play a supporting role? Not so, says Mike Uden, and he'll be showing examples to prove it. Find out just how much creative influence the post-production house can actually have in the overall design process.

14.30-15.30 The making of ?Ice Planet Hansi Vollmer, Director of Graphics, H5B5 Due for release in Germany and the US during 2001, the effects in ?Ice Planet supervised by Academy Award Winner John F Schlag create a futuristic science fiction of strange new worlds and creatures which capture the imagination. H5B5s Director of graphics will present an overview of this incredible and interesting project.

15.30-16.30 Panel: "Animation or Imitation; the Future of Visual Effects" John Coates, TVCARTOONS; Jonas Dahlbeck, FILMTECKNARNA; Phillippe Gluckman, PDI/DREAMWORKS; Tom Sito, WARNER BROTHERS STUDIOS The main thread of this debate is whether effects-based films are now starting to imitate the look of live action work so well, that Live Action is becoming redundant? Can todays projects still be called animation or has a new kind of medium emerged? Certainly, with films such as Shrek and Final Fantasy this appears to be the case. Does this mean that a new name for VFX work is needed?

10.00-11.30 Super Furry Animals: From Storyboard to Screen; the Adventures of the Aero Mouse Hector Mcleod, Bruce Steele and Alistair Hearsum, Glassworks Glassworks has a certain knack of creating great fur on animals of all kinds including spiders (Frisk Spider commercial), mice (Aero commercial) and the latest Schwepps ad that incorporates a talking cheetah.

Glassworks' proprietary FurShader was developed in-house over the past three years, and has been used to create highly realistic fur animals in commercials. FurShader is a plugin also for Softimage|3D that lets 3D artists create an unlimited number of individual hairs on a model surface, which are made life-like with the addition of dynamic movement. The functionality built into the FurShader toolsets lets artists manipulate such complex variables as tip and root colour, hair density, the thickness of individual hairs and the amount of tapering per strand.

11.30-13.00 Is that a hair in my pint? A profile of fur in ?The Dream Club Guinness Ad Sally Goldberg, Dominic Parker, Rangi Sutton & Justin Martin, COMPUTER FILM COMPANY The Computer Film Company squirrelled away and created some of the most life-like computer generated rodents for the Dream Club Guinness Ad. The team will deliver an in-depth look at the modelling of the creatures and also present to you a practical insight into how it was done.

MASTERCLASS: WEB FORUM 14.00 - 15.00 What technological developments are driving web animation work and what work is driving the business of web animation?

15.00 - 16.00 To flash or not to flash - a look at the tools... The tools available for Web based work and the shift towards higher end solutions, eg - 3D studio max or Maya is the focus of this discussion. Animators/designers who use the products created by; Cambridge Animation, USAnimation, Softimage, MediaPegs, Toonz, Maya, but have experience of flash will illustrate the incorporation of non-flash developed solutions and also the benefits/disadvantages of the major tools available compared with Flash, still seen as the universal web tool.

16.00 - 17.00 Panel: The Future of Animation on the Internet - Technology, Commerce and Art. All speakers involved in the "forum" to take part in a discussion on the future of animation on the internet! - Where the technology will go, will revenues increase? is the internet a new medium for Art? and what of the crossover of Web animation techniques into broadcast animation.

MASTERCLASS: MODELLING FOCUS 14.00-17.00 THE HUNT FOR THE DEATH STAR Creating Photo Realistic Outer Space Phenomena Oscar Gonzales, Head of Animation, RED

COURSES: 10.00 13.00 How to manage the commercial side of a post house Louise Hussey, ex-REFINERY; Joce Capper, RUSHES

14.00-17.00 Digital Matte Painting Jim Bowers, DOUBLE NEGATIVE

14.00 17.00 Birds of a Feather; Student Q & A Kevin Rooney, EYE ANIMATION; Tom Harding, CLEAR; Shelley Page, PDI/Dreamworks; Neil Scott-Sills, BBC Resources Industry Figures currently working within the community will be available to share their experiences in the big wide world and answer questions from undergraduates.

LEAF Award Categories 2001 Commercials: Animation Best use of CGI to promote a product or service.

Commercials: Live Action Effects Best use of CGI coupled with Live Action effects to promote a product or service.

Feature Films Feature length films using CGI, SPFX and/or Animation produced for a full-length cinema or television screening. Submissions must be edited to no more than 10 minutes in length.

Pop Promos Most creative use of CGI, SPFX and/or Animation in Music Videos.

Short Films Creativity in partially or entirely computer generated short films.

Titles, Idents and Stings Title Sequences for broadcast, games, films and video, idents, stings and trailers.

Web Animation Innovation and creativity through advanced CGI and Animation used in online games or for transfer via the World Wide Web.

Special Area Award - Best Use of CGI, SPFX and/or Animation in other areas, e.g.; TV Animation, Simulation, Education.

Student Work Pieces of work undertaken during a recognised course of study. Written confirmation of student status from a tutor must accompany entries.

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Related Keywords:3d animatoin, filmmaking, special effects

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