Reallusion has been making a lot of noise lately. The maker of 2D and 3D animation software used by “Jimmy Kimmel Live” and countless independent filmmakers won “Best-of-Show” at this year’s SIGGRAPH. They’ve also been receiving rave reviews for iClone Character Creator, their new character creation tool. We caught up with John C. Martin, Reallusion’s Vice President of Product Marketing, to get the scoop on what animators and filmmakers need to know and where the market is going with the explosion of VR solutions.
Cinema Without Borders: Tell us a little bit about iClone Character Creator.
John C. Martin: iClone Character Creator makes it easy to create realistic-looking 3D human models. The tool is a free add-on to iClone 6.2 Pro and above. What sets it apart is the level of customization. Unique characters can be created through the use of shape morphs, customizable high-resolution skin textures, and outfits with clothing containing your own fabric designs. We’ve also shortened the design cycle with fully rigged characters ready for any motion and animation, in addition to facial lip sync. This feature saves you time on dialogue animation with natural lip-sync animation.
CWB: How does it integrate with other professional tools?
JM: iClone Character Creator allows users to prepare characters for game engines like Unity, Unreal and Stingray or use in 3ds Max or Maya with direct FBX export via the iClone Animation Pipeline. They can also animate game character motion in iClone and export via the iClone Animation Pipeline’s 3DXchange.
CWB: Tell us more about the customization features. What else can users do to give the work a personal quality?
JM: Our advanced customization features include Morphable Muscle Shape & Bone Scales. This brand-new, one mesh allows users to apply further adjustments to the body, or individual parts such as: Head, Torso, Chest, Waist, Arm, Hand, Leg and Foot. Another feature is Morphable Face Creation & Editing. To easily create unlimited authentic human faces, you can either directly apply any of the presets for quick prototypes, or you can further refine the appearance through highly detailed facial sliders, grouped into intuitive segments such as: Skull, Forehead, Eye/Eyelash, Brow, Ear, Nose, Cheek, Jaw, Teeth and Mouth.
iClone Character Creator also allows for Adjustable Skin Properties. Users can freely apply different texture patterns to a masked area. By blending color variations and skin pores and wrinkles, they can generate the right skin for characters with various ages, genders and ethnicities.
CWB: We’ve also heard about iClone Live Motion Capture System. What do our readers need to know?
JM: iClone Live Motion Capture System enables any size studio to leverage the power of motion capture. We integrated the Perception Neuron suit from Noitom with our software. The result is a fully robust solution for motion capture and previz that beats all competing solutions on functionality and price-point. We announced this partnership at SIGGRAPH. Interested users can now take part in the public beta: http://iclone.neuronmocap.com/
CWB: What do you think is coming up next in 3D animation and motion capture?
JM: We see better, more innovative and more personalized tools on the horizon. This is certainly the path we have been pursuing. It’s no great mystery. For years we have been listening to users, incorporating their feedback into our products. The smart developers have been doing likewise. The old days of top-down software development are over. These days it’s about delivering maximum quality and maximum value. Over the past several years, Reallusion has become masters of this model. We encourage everyone who cares about 3D animation and VR to check out what we’re doing. We think they will be very surprised.
John C. Martin is VP of Product Marketing at Reallusion. For more information, visit: www.reallusion.com