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Weekly Summary 13th May 2024

Updated: Jun 2

Midjourney: A photorealistic image of a spacecraft in the distance with a long vapour trail. The foreground contains a crowd of various types of robots at a music festival.
Midjourney: A photorealistic image of a spacecraft in the distance with a long vapour trail. The foreground contains a crowd of various types of robots at a music festival.

This summary has been created by ChatGPT from the various recent chat rooms discussions. Please assume there will be errors and omissions as no one is perfect. To get the discussions first hand, head over to Starting Pixel.

Exploring New Frontiers in Virtual Production: Insights & Updates! 🌟

Hey Starting Pixel community! Here's a quick rundown of some intriguing discussions and updates from the last two weeks in the world of virtual production:

  1. Plastic SCM for Unreal Projects: An affordable alternative to Perforce, offering similar functionalities with a few challenges around file locks. Plastic Cloud is appreciated for its ease of setup and speed, although it presents some operational hurdles.

  2. Innovative Tools on the Radar: We're eyeing Anchorpoint for GIT integration—still untested but promising. Also, integration efforts are ongoing for Switchboard with Plastic, leveraging its Python-based extensibility.

  3. Perforce & Alternatives: Assembla remains a convenient choice for Perforce despite some slowdowns and seat limitations. For varying needs, custom servers and DigitalOcean’s Perforce droplets are being considered as flexible solutions.

  4. Tech Integration & Updates: Exciting discussions about Sony's line-fr7 camera for Unreal or Aximmetry, focusing on calibration and community feedback. Plus, a sneak peek at Unreal Engine 5.4 which brings minor updates and fixes.

  5. Creative Community Projects: We're brainstorming VFX techniques for a unique charity project featuring a baby dressed as a politician—exploring mouth replacement VFX and AI-driven lipsync possibilities.

  6. Welcoming New Talents: A warm welcome to Sarah Thomas Moffat, who brings her vast experience and passion for virtual production into our community.

  7. Localizing Content & Community Engagement: A reminder about the importance of localized content and effective content organization on platforms like Starting Pixel's website to reach broader audiences.

🚀 Upcoming Events & Opportunities:

  • Don't miss out on the Creative Technology Open House in New York and various training initiatives including Pixel Pathway and VP Producer Training at Garden Studios. Check out the links for more details and registration!

👉 Stay tuned and connected as we navigate these exciting times in virtual production. Your insights and participation enrich our journey!

Link Digest

Creative Technology Open House in New York: An event registration page on Eventbrite for an open house showcasing creative technology. Event Details

  1. Pixel Pathway: A free training initiative for post-production and VFX professionals. Learn More

  2. LAMDA VP Technician Position: Job posting for a Virtual Production technician at the London Academy of Music & Dramatic Art. Job Posting

  3. UAL and Ulster Job Postings: Opportunities in VP and XR textiles and dress at University of the Arts London and Ulster University. UAL Jobs, Ulster Job

  4. Creative Digital Lab: A new virtual production studio in Croydon South London, offering networking and competition for free project support. Studio Details

  5. Google Spreadsheet for Regular Updates: A shared Google spreadsheet for regular updates within the virtual production community. Spreadsheet Access

  6. Filming in England Industry Mixer: Event details for a VIP mixer for film industry professionals in Hertfordshire. Event Info

  7. VP Producer Training at Garden Studios: A training course for virtual production producers offered by Garden Studios. Training Details

  8. MPTS Starting Pixel Virtual Production After Party: Details of an after-party event by Starting Pixel, focused on virtual production - Sponsored by Sony and Big Pic Media. Event Info

  9. LinkedIn Presentation: Announcement of a presentation at MPST related to the virtual production industry shared on LinkedIn. Presentation Announcement


  • Discussion about the use of Plastic for Unreal projects, highlighting its cost-effectiveness and similarity to Perforce but with some issues around file locks.

  • Mention of Anchorpoint for GIT as potentially useful, though not tested.

  • Comments on the ease of setup and speed of Plastic Cloud but some operational challenges compared to Perforce.

  • Discussion on integrating Switchboard with Plastic; Switchboard is extensible and primarily a Python app.

  • Use of Assembla for Perforce noted for its convenience despite potential slow performance and minimum seat requirements.

  • Mention of alternative solutions like custom servers for Perforce and DigitalOcean's Perforce droplets for different needs and scales.

  • Query about a recording issue in Unreal Engine, with a response indicating it might be a bug fixed in the upcoming version.

  • Mention of the Sony line-fr7 camera integration with Unreal or Aximmetry, with discussions on calibration and community feedback.

  • Updates on Unreal Engine version 5.4, discussing its minor updates and fixes.

  • Discussion on a charity project involving filming a baby dressed as a politician, seeking advice on mouth replacement VFX and potential use of new AI developments for lipsync.

  • Introduction of a new member, Sarah Thomas Moffat, highlighting her experience and passion for virtual production.

  • Reminder about the appropriateness of localized content in the Starting Pixel community and suggestions for organizing and publishing content more effectively on platforms like Starting Pixel's website for wider audience reach.


Show and Tell

  • CG Pro podcast, discussing his journey and work in virtual production. Listen on LinkedIn

  • Positive feedback on the Mosys Max system, noted for its stability and power.

  • Discussion of various tools and platforms for virtual production, including Plastic, Perforce, Assembla, and DigitalOcean.

  • New virtual production tool Vidu highlighted for its capabilities and competition with Sora. Read about Vidu

  • NVIDIA's request for community contributions of content using Omniverse, RTX Renderer, and OpenUSD for promotional purposes.

  • UE 5.4 updates discussed, including the connection of Live Link Face and Vcam.

  • Various community members share links to their work and discussions about virtual production tools and techniques, such as Cuebric and Vue.

  • Ongoing discussions about the integration of Unreal Engine with live action setups and the use of tools like X-Rite charts.

  • Showcase of dynamic foregrounding in Unreal Engine using a CV tracking system, illustrating advancements in virtual production technology.

  • Ali, a real-time artist and filmmaker from Delhi, shared his short film "Masquerade" which utilizes the ICVFX pipeline. Watch on Instagram, LinkedIn, and read the case study on Behance.

Digital Humans

  • Concerns raised about the future for xsens users.

  • Links to Hirokazu Yokohara's technical breakdowns and tutorials on creating an avatar using a combination of tools including UE5, MetaHuman, Maya, and more. Read the article on

  • Additional resources and video links related to 3D animation and avatar creation were shared:

  • An updated version of Yokohara's UE5-powered virtual avatar Link to article.

  • Various YouTube videos demonstrating related technologies and tutorials were linked. Video on avatar creation, Another tutorial, Additional resource.

  • A post on making 3D animation easier, showcasing Maya, was also highlighted. Read on LinkedIn.

Back Chat

  • Discussions around virtual production and VFX, emphasizing the need for collaboration between VFX artists and VP supervisors to enhance project outcomes.

  • Comments about ongoing challenges in virtual production, similar to those faced since earlier pioneering works like "Gravity" in 2013, underscoring the importance of collaboration and proper training in the industry.

  • Training for virtual production and VFX highlighted as essential but needs to be more accessible and financially feasible for newcomers and those currently out of work.

  • Concerns voiced about the impact of marketing on the development of virtual production and the potential negative effects of short-term strategies.

  • A debate about the role and impact of AI in filmmaking, with differing opinions on the acceptance of predominantly AI-created films and the potential devaluation of traditional cinematic experiences.

  • Discussion about the evolution of cinema and how new technologies might impact traditional filmmaking practices and the cinema-going experience.

  • Concerns about the sustainability of traditional cinema in the face of evolving media consumption habits and technologies.

  • Interest in creating immersive, interactive media experiences as alternatives to traditional broadcasting, highlighting the potential for more personal and engaging forms of entertainment.

  • Discussion on the integration and learning curve associated with using Dataton's Watchout system for a production at Edinburgh Fringe, with a call for expertise to ensure seamless adaptation of content to the system.

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