# 2023

# June

# 21th June 2023

Today is day one of Unreal Fest 2023 in the Gold Coast. Woohoo!

I'm on the ground, so if you see me, come and say "hi" - it's Chris from LateNite!

Last night was the Welcome Reception at Stingray Lounge, which was a huge amount of fun - free food and drinks, and some of the smartest people in the Unreal world all in the same place.

Liz Ballantyne captured a great photo and posted it to Twitter:

The opening welcome talk in the Rocket Room was fantastic.

It had a beautiful Welcome to Country, followed by passionate talks by the Unreal Engine team.

Epic has released the Electric Dreams Environment Sample Project to the world for free, allowing you to explore the new Procedural Content Generation framework in Unreal Engine 5.2.

You can download and learn more here.

The Secret Kingdom, directed by Matt Drummond, used Unreal Engine. You can watch the trailer here:

Here's some photos of the slides from the opening talk:

The first session I went to was The Golden Trifecta: Creating Hollywood-Ready Unreal Developers. It was awesome.

Here's an video from last year talking about their workflows:

Reallusion Magazine also has a great article here titled PROXi Virtual Production empowers Action Design with Character Creator, iClone, and Unreal Engine.

There's also a great article here titled Interview with Harrison Norris, Director of the award winning film “A PEACEFUL MAN”.

Here's some photos of the slides:

The second session I attended by by Kevin Romond from Victoria University of Wellington, titled Lessons in Building a High-Quality Performance Capture Pipeline.

Kevin was awesome. You can follow him on Twitter here.

Here's some photos of the slides:

The third session I attended was Photorealistic Digital Doubles for Feature Films: Technical Processing and Applications with Duncan Jones & Lyle Hardwicke.

To quote the schedule:

Myriad Studios works at the leading edge of film and gaming technology, customising solutions using LiDAR, Cyber Scanning, Texturing and Photogrammetry to create high detail 3D digital doubles and simulations essential to the modern film, game, virtual reality and augmented reality production. This session will discuss how Myriad combines the power of Reality Capture and Unreal Engine to meet film production needs and exceed client expectations.

It was a really great and interesting talk!

Here's some photos of the slides:

The fourth session I attended was Essential Learning for Linear Content in Unreal by Shawn Dunn (Lead Technical Product Manager, Virtual Production @ Epic Games).

Shawn mentioned that everyone should check out this video:

To quote the YouTube description:

Introducing Blue Dot, a short film created by Epic Games' 3Lateral team in collaboration with local Serbian artists, including renowned actor Radivoje Bukvić, who delivers a monologue based on a poem by Mika Antic. The performance was filmed at Take One studio's mocap stage with cinematographer Ivan Šijak acting as director of photography.

These nuanced results demonstrate the level of fidelity that artists and filmmakers can expect when using MetaHuman Animator with a stereo head-mounted camera system and traditional filmmaking techniques.

What’s more, the team was able to achieve this impressive level of animation quality with minimal interventions on top of MetaHuman Animator results.
You can find out more about MetaHuman Animator here.

He also mentioned checking out the Technical Guide to Linear Content Creation resources here.

There's LOTS of useful tips and tricks in these slides...

The fifth session was by our good friend Pete Divers, Head of CG/VFX @ Fika Entertainment talking about Hairy Situations: Implementing Character Grooms.

We worked closely with Fika for our Unreal Engine Short Film Challenge, Eggs Cannot Fly.

They also helped us out with a 3D character on our short film Rebooted.

The schedule says:

Across several realtime animation projects including work for Mattel (American Girl, Girl of the Year) and Wildbrain (Teletubbies Let's Go!) Fika Entertainment has been implementing hair grooms and dynamics in our Unreal Engine and performance capture virtual production pipeline. In this talk, Fika's Head of CG and VFX, Pete Divers, will talk through several case studies that have used Fika's in-house pipeline for creating high end hair grooms for social media budgets, some of the pitfalls and challenges to this process, and the approaches and tools the Fika team developed to create stylised, dynamic and efficient hair grooms that do not require expensive and complicated hair simulations.

Again, lots of useful tips in tricks in here...

Last but not least, I went to see Shawn Dunn (Lead Technical Product Manager, Virtual Production @ Epic Games) again to talk about State of the Universal Scene Description (USD) format in Unreal Engine.

Shawn is an excellent speaker.

Here's what the schedule says:

USD is being used throughout the production world, but how do you integrate it into Unreal Engine? This session will explore three specific aspects of this workflow, including how you get data in, how you get it out, and how to use the USD stage window directly in UE.

Here's his slides:

And that concludes day one at Unreal Fest 2023! It's been an absolutely fantastic day, where I've got to meet MANY amazing people, some of which I've only ever met online previously - for example:

Day two looks to be just as exciting, so I'll post again tomorrow. Thanks for following along!