SIGGRAPH 2008 – Day 4

Alright … … Final Day!! (for me and Sacha at least).  It takes two days to get back to Singapore and we both have to work on Monday.  So here we go … …

Started with breakfast at the Blender Heads favorite breakfast spot (don’t remember the name now but it serves good food and great coffee, its about 10mins walk from our hotel.)  Right after breakfast, we went to check out the animation competition at the Nokia Theatre.  Most of the animation competition submissions are very impressive be it funny, happy, sad, serious or all out weird.  However, it feels like overdose once it gets pass the forth or fifth animation.  Moreover, there were a few sessions, each session shows a different set of animations.  Least to say, Sacha and I only get to watch the first session due to time constrain.  After the competition screening, we went to attend the Computer Animation Festival: Fat Panda: Visual Design Development in DreamWorks’ “Kung Fu Panda”.  I really hope that they would put all these presentation on a DVD somehow (I know the Conference Presentation will be recorded to a DVD but not so sure about the Festival’s presentation).  Its too much to absorbed, not to mention constant jet lag hits on the brain is not conducive to information absorptions. Within 15mins, Sacha could not take it anymore and had to leave the presentation as he is falling asleep.  As for me, I tried my best to stay awake but alas, I was in and out of “coma” for most part of the presentation.  I feel really bad about it as I hope to bring back all these information back to Malaysia and share it with artists there whom do not have the opportunity or budget to go there.

We had a quick lunch and left the LACC to prepare ourselves for our trip back to Singapore tonight.  After a quick shower and re-packing my luggage, Sacha and I waited for Ton and the rest of the Blender Heads to pick us up for a reception at the Dodger Stadium.  The Dodger Stadium is humongous!! Its quite a walk from the car park to the stadium.  They served a lot of hot dogs, American Chinese food, Mexican food and tons of tidbits, crackers, peanuts, frozen treats and ice-creams.  As it was already paid for, its a relief to eat without thinking, but on the other hand, I am a small eater so it feels like I did not get my money’s worth.

As I still wish to spend some time with my cousins, I apologize to the Blender guys that we had to leave early.  So off we go, Ton dropped us off right outside the gates of Dodger Stadium while one of my cousins came to pick Sacha and I up.  I think Ton and the Blender Heads are going to Figueroa Hotel to enjoy some Margaritas, I think they really like that place.

Got my two cousins together with Sacha and I.  We went to a cozy little place serving some nice Milk Tea with Perls to talk and catch up some more before we headed to the Los Angeles International Airport and bid USA farewell.

Now I am back in Singapore typing up the conclusion of my SIGGRAPH USA visit.  Thinking back, it would seem like the future of movie making is Stereoscopic 3D and all the major studios from Disney to DreamWorks to Sony are pumping huge R&D money into effective story telling using depth and to sanitize the notion that stereoscopic is a cheap gimmick that does nothing for movie goers.  For me, I see it as a more impactful way to present story or more like what I think of it as a “depth-based” story telling.  Every facet of the animation pipeline from pre-production to final output has to re-think and re-work the way they tell story in a depth-based visual method.

So … … SIGGRAPH 2008 has ended, it is now time to prepare for SIGGRAPH ASIA 2008.  For all Blender Heads out there, especially blender heads residing in and around Asia, Austrailia, and New Zealand, I look forward to seeing you at the one and only Birds of a Feather session in SIGGRAPH ASIA 2008 in Singapore’s Suntec City Exhibition Hall.  Keep checking blender.org and blendernation.com as I will announce a “Call for Presentation” soon around September.  My name is Victor Yap and I will be your host at the Blender’s Birds of a Feather sessions at this year’s SIGGRAPH ASIA 2008 in Singapore on the 10th of December.

Ton and I during breakfast

Ton and I during breakfast.

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