Get caught up on everything that happened in 2017 with this Motion Design roundup.
Motion Graphic work can take a lot of time. So if you haven’t been able to take a break this year here’s some Motion Design news from 2017 that you need to know about.
MOTION DESIGN NEWS FROM 2017
Joey sat down with Ryan Summers to talk about the MoGraph industry in 2018. Needless to say both hosts had a lot to say about the state of MoGraph.
If we had to just pick a few...
What is likely the coolest MoGraph series of 2017, CNN Colorscope gave various MoGraph artists and studios the creative freedom to express themselves while telling the story of a color. It’s like a color theory course for non-artists. Why did CNN commission this series? Who knows! All we know is the MoGraph work is insane.
It’s always amazing to see how many MoGraph studios and artists out their dedicate their time to fighting for nobel causes. Case and point, this piece from Newfangled in Boston. Using MoGraph they’re using their artistic skills to make the world a better place.
BLADE RUNNER 2049
It seems like ever since the first Iron Man movie UII design has been all the rage. Just as you’d expect this year was full of incredible UI examples, but our favorite definitely comes from BladeRunner 2049. While there are a lot of MoGraph things to love in that movie, the dystopian retro-futuristic UIs created by Territory take the cake. Just look at this friggin’ demo. Swoon.
BACK TO BITS
Over the last couple of years Back to Bits has been creating retro-inspired GIF animations. This year B2B focused on re-creating video games from the 80s and 90s. Over 40 artists contributed to the project. The results are amazing.
THE POWER OF LIKE
When we grow up we want to be like Andrew Vucko. Vucko is an incredible animator/director based in Toronto. While we would never say that someone is just born a Motion Designer Vucko makes it look easy. We even chatted with him this year about how he seemingly does everything in MoGraph. This short titles ‘The Power of Like’ is an instant MoGraph classic. The visual language is insane.
AMERICAN GODS INTRO
You know when you see a MoGraph project and it’s so good that you feel like giving up, this projects kinda like that. Patrick Clair directed this wicked intro title sequence for American Gods. The project pairs religious symbols with neon lights. Wowzers...
Motion Graphic News 2017
2017 was also a big year for MoGraph news. Not a ‘o my gosh their giving Cinema 4D away for free’ kind of year, but still a big a year. Here’s some things you might have missed:
ADOBE CC 2018
Adobe released their 2018 version of the Creative Cloud and it added quite a few new features to After Effects, Premiere, and the rest of the creative apps. Here’s a few things you should know about:
- Adobe did a lot to improve performance. More and more is GPU accelerated.
- Mask / Shape points are now accessible through Expressions / Scripts. This has opened the doors for a few new tools like Overlord to hit the market.
- HTML5 Extensions are becoming more common, allowing much more powerful tools to be created for After Effects. (If you don’t know what HTML5 means you can read about it here.)
- All of Kyle Webster’s brushes available in Photoshop for FREE now!
- You can now open multiple projects in Premiere. Hooray! Also, what took so long?...
IS VR STARTING TO CATCH ON?
VR was kinda ahead of its time. If you’ve ever worked on a VR project than you know it can be a pain to work with, but the industry is starting to catch up with the demand. Notable VR news includes:
- Cinema 4D released R19, Which includes a Spherical VR camera.
- Adobe bought the Mettle Skybox tools and immediately put in inside of After Effects. You can edit VR in AE and edit VR in Premiere.
NEW TOOLS IN 2017
There were a ton of really great new tools that hit the market this year. Our wallets can’t seem to catch up...
- Overlord - Overlord completely changes the 2D workflow. With Overlord you can send Illustrator files directly to After Effects without exploding shape layers or any of that stuff. Just draw and send.
- Ray Dynamic Texture - Apply moving textures to layers in After Effects with just a few clicks. We even made a tutorial on how to use this.
- Stardust - Craaaaazy good particle system for AE. It is a 3D particle system that allows you to import 3D models with all the bells and whistles that you could want for 3D particle work.
- KBar - KBar allows you to create a button for any task in After Effects. We even wrote an article about how to use it.
- X-Particles 4 - XParticles is basically a full fledged particle / volumetrics / fluid tool now. Insane!
- HDRI Link - Soooo useful for look dev in C4D. The team at GreyscaleGorilla is killin’ it.
- Lottie - You’re seeing this tool everywhere… Lottie basically translates code from Bodymovin’ into iOS and Android code.
- New Cintiqs - Wacom’s product line is getting better and better. They released the Cintiq Pro 16 & Cintiq Pro 13.
REAL-TIME REVOLUTION COMING SOON?
Real-time rendering has been around for awhile now, but it hasn’t been until recently that the difference between realtime and pre-rendered quality is beginning to blur. Lots of companies are beginning to move into real time work. We even visited Vectorform in Detroit to check out their real-time VR MoGraph work for our Path to MoGraph Series (coming in 2018).
IV studio in Nashville is even releasing their first video game. This is interesting because they have always been a Motion Design studio. Even the game Cuphead integrated Motion Graphics with real-time rendering. The two worlds are starting to merge more than ever before.
Lots of companies are now using tools like Templater and new AE features to offer their clients solutions for creating tons of data-driven MoGraph. Notably companies are triggering After Effects compositions with APIs. This means virtually anyone can edit and export a Motion Graphic project without even opening up After Effects.
MOTION AWARDS - ROUND 1
Motionographer once again set the bar high by running an amazing Motion Awards. Round 2 is underway and you can enter online. If you win you’ll be a MoGraph legend forever.
Up and Coming Studios
Gunner - Speaking of the Motion Awards there were a few awesome studios making headway this year. One of our personal favs is Gunner. This team out of Detroit was asked to do the Motion Awards video for 2017. Needless to say the project they created is ridiculous.
Ranger & Fox - Started up by 2 Capacity alums, Ranger & Fox is putting out MoGraph work that is just bonkers.
Igor & Valentine - We’ve been seeing Igor & Valentine’s reel everywhere lately. This team is killin’ it.
FREELANCING GOES MAINSTREAM
Now, more than ever, the dream of being a freelance Motion Designer is attainable to those who would dare take the plunge. Sorry we’ve been watching a lot of LaLaLand…
Notably Joey released his very first book, the Freelance Manifesto. Motion Designers from around the industry have shared how much they love the information inside. If you’re serious about becoming a freelancer you need to read the Freelance Manifesto.
Sander van Dijk also released his Freelance Foundations course on his site. The course gets you access to advice from one of the best freelancers in our industry. It’s well worth the money. Other sites like The Future and GreyscaleGorilla continue to put out incredible resources for Motion Designers.
MORE NOTEWORTHY STUFF
Here’s some other noteworthy news from around the industry:
- Beeple. The Man. The Myth. The Legend. Has hit 10 years of everyday projects. That’s a new piece of art every day for 10 years. Wow.
- The Blend Conference was even more amazing the second time. The conference/party was one of the coolest things we’ve ever attended. You must go next year.
- NAB was amazing. There’s tons of great networking opportunities and many good times to be had in Vegas. At what point does the conference get too big?
- PC’s still gaining popularity in the MoGraph world because of their cost / performance advantages… but will that change in 2018 with the new iMac Pro and possible redesigned Mac Pro?
- Motion Design is maturing and artists are starting to see how this can be a life-long career. So what does Motion Design look like for someone with a family. We talked about growing old in the Motion Design industry on Motionographer.
CHEERS TO NEXT YEAR!
Well that should get you caught up for now. 2018 looks like it is going to be a huge year for MoGraph. So cheers to MoGraph, let’s keep the momentum going.
Ranger & FoxIgor and Valentine
Rubber hose character animation
Henrique Barone Mograph Mentor course
Podcast Transcript Below 👇:
He's about 455 yards. He's going to hit a button.
Joey Korenman (00:00:07):
This is the school of motion podcast come for. The MoGraph stay for the puns. 2017 was quite a year in the world of motion design, and we thought it'd be cool to do sort of a retrospective episode to cover some of the developments, trends, new studios and work that made headlines this year. Now, since I'm no longer in the trenches of motion design David Day, I'm running the school of motion. I invited my buddy Ryan Summers to come on and chat with me. Ryan is currently a creative director at digital kitchen, and he really gets this industry better than almost anyone I can think of this episode. It's kind of a long one and we cover a ton. So grab some coffee, sit back and enjoy 2017 the year in MoGraph Ryan. It's the end of 2017, man. And I'm really happy to have you on this podcast with me so we can nerd out and talk about what the hell happened this year.
Ryan Summers (00:01:06):
Awesome, man, I can't wait. 2017 has been personally pretty insane. And I feel like in the industry too, it's been nuts. So let's talk about what happened.
Joey Korenman (00:01:14):
Yeah. Yeah. And I like doing this at the end of every year. Kind of, you know, everything kind of slows down, um, you know, in the industry and, and, and it definitely at school of motion and it's like, oh, a lot actually happened this year. And it's kind of good to kind of take a look back. So why don't we start by talking about some of the work that came out in 2017? Um, so I'm curious, like, you know, you're, you're still in the game, you're, you're a creative director, you're making stuff. Um, are you seeing any, any trends, any new kind of styles that are hot these days, um, that were kind of, you know, kind of popped up this year?
Ryan Summers (00:01:51):
Yeah, uh, definitely. I mean, I think we might, we might talk about a couple of like specific instances of them, but I don't know what to call this, but I feel like I've been seen a lot. I don't know where I'm still searching for like the point of origin nation, but it with character animation, obviously there's still like the proliferation of the rubber hose style, which awesome, great. Like, it's great that people are getting a character animation and I'd love seeing more conversations about it, but like that look is getting kind of a little played out a little tired. It's like the defacto, um, explainer video look. Um, but there's also, I feel like there's a second one. So that that's kinda like your standard, like after effects, shape layer, kind of character look for some reason, I feel like there's also, I don't know where it came from, but there's this kind of like long limbed skinny person kind of like deadline weight, but the key thing that's around is like, there's always these tiny little black drop shadows everywhere, and I don't know what to call it.
Ryan Summers (00:02:42):
I don't know what the name of it is yet. I don't know what to call it, but I feel like it's like the defacto, if you're trying to learn hand drawn 2d animation, that's kind of like the house style now. Like there's always, even if it's black and white, it's just these like thin outlines, but there's always these kind of like little black triangles underneath, like your arms underneath your nose, or like I'm starting to see it over and over and over. And I'm trying to figure out where it like officially came from, but I know someone did it and then more and more people are kind of, um, playing with it. I think, uh, one of the, the pieces we were going to talk about was the, the back to bit series, which I love. It's amazing. Um, but even in there, I feel like I've seen, uh, if you look at the whole product, there's a couple pieces of it.
Ryan Summers (00:03:20):
That's, uh, that have that example. And it just, it seemingly like pops up over and over. Um, and it's not like a, like a plugin origination, not like, you know, like rubber hose kind of has a thing, but if you look at, uh, I don't, I'm not calling out anybody in particular to say that it's bad, but even like, there's a little Contra three alien wars, one where, you know, whenever the legs kind of pass each other as a look, a little black drop shadow, and there's a little black drop shadow underneath, like the chin, I feel like it's just become like a style. I don't know where, where, but I, do you have any idea where money come from?
Joey Korenman (00:03:50):
I don't know where that specific thing come from, but you brought up an interesting point. So I, so we recently, um, at school of motion, we took a field trip to Detroit, Michigan, and we visited a bunch of studios there and we're going to be releasing, um, kind of a video kind of showcasing the studios. But one of the ones we went to is gunner and you can imagine, uh, it's pretty amazing place. And, um, we're talking to Nick and Ian and we were kind of talking about that, that phenomenon of, you know, something comes out and everyone thinks it's awesome and it's cool. And so then like they kind of reference it in their thing and then someone else references that thing and someone else references that thing. And you kind of, everything's sort of unintentionally, not for bad reasons. It's like out of, out of the love of that, look, it gets kind of watered down.
Joey Korenman (00:04:36):
Um, and, and so basically I think the lesson here is that that has not gone away in 2017 tools. Driving looks is still a thing, rubber hose, a hundred mill in good for Adam Ploof, by the way, you know what I mean? Like, you know, not for nothing. I mean, that is a useful as tool for after effects. Um, but I think too, that I'm starting to see at least with our students, um, a lot of people really starting to dive into Salem cell animation too, and kind of finding the limitations of what you can do with a character rig in after effects. So, so just on the, on the student level, I'm seeing a big uptick in that. Um, I know MoGraph mentor has this amazing course that Enrique, but on a put together, the teachers that, um, keeps getting rave reviews. So, so that's one thing I think in terms of trends I've noticed.
Joey Korenman (00:05:24):
I mean, um, I didn't see anything that looked, nothing really looked like super new to me this year. There was some insanely well-executed stuff like the CNN color scope series that, you know, Jorge worked on Claudio worked on like all the best people worked on that, on that. Um, and that's, it's still like, that's like the high water mark that's as good as it gets if you're doing that sort of 2d, you know, after effects looking stuff. Um, but another thing that I'm starting to see more of an a and I have to give a shout out to Erica Gora chow for, I think really may she didn't start this, but she's done a great job pushing it is using MoGraph for good. Um, and I'd love to see more, more studios do that. Um, a friend of mine in Boston runs a studio called newfangled and they released a series this year called untapped, uh, talking about kind of the dirty little secret in the advertising industry, which is that, um, it's full of, you know, people who look like you and me, Ryan, um, and, and, and she's gay.
Joey Korenman (00:06:21):
And she runs a studio and has a totally different perspective. And so newfangled made this incredible piece kind of addressing that and they're turning it into a series, um, you know, and the look of it is great. It's PR it's well executed. It's got great animation, great design. Um, but it's the message. And so I hope that next year we see more stuff like that, where, you know, there, there will be some cool new look that comes out there will be some new tool and everyone starts using it. And that'll be interesting, but I think the content is something that, that I hope we can start focusing on a little bit more too, um, as an industry.
Ryan Summers (00:06:56):
Yeah. Uh, you know, I love that piece. I love that piece for like a bunch of reasons. Some of the stuff you mentioned, I, I, we just talked about kind of like generic kind of house styles. I think the character design and the character animation in that piece is really interesting. It's really, it looks different than a lot of stuff that I've seen. Um, it has a nice mix of kind of just like shapes mixed with lightweight, that stuffs that. Stuff's great. Um, I think it's a great example for people, either starting a new studio or have a studio that's been around for awhile, like a way to kind of, um, demonstrate your, your specific voice and kind of increase your visibility by doing these kinds of whatever you want to call them self motivated projects or personal projects or investment projects. Um, I thought that was awesome.
Ryan Summers (00:07:36):
Cause honestly, like I'd never heard of the studio. And immediately, as soon as I saw that piece, I went back and started just looking at all their work. Right. Like I was like, wow, what have they done? There's some cool type animation, some great designs and great color usage. And then, like I said, the character stuff was really compelling, but then the story itself was, was amazing. Like it's obvious we need more new voices in. MoGraph just like, we need it in Hollywood. Like you're seeing it everywhere else, but I really think emotion graphics. Um, it's really, it's part of the people who have kind of gotten established or made it found a way to make their voices heard. It's kind of a little bit our job to, to try to help people feel comfortable if they want to, to try to elevate themselves as well.
Ryan Summers (00:08:12):
I know so many amazing female designers. Um, I met so many amazing women in LA that no one knows about that. No one, no one has heard of, because there's either a fear of, of trying to create some notoriety and the kind of backlash that happens, or just no way of knowing how to do it. Um, there, there's going to become more and more avenues for that. But, um, I thought this was just a great example of kind of like sticking a flag in the ground and saying that, you know, there's important stories to be told there's important, um, things that you're not hearing, and this is a really an important studio that's taking the time out. I'm sure, you know, this is a huge investment for them as a studio to take time away from pain work, to create a series like this. I mean, I can only imagine the amount of time it took to make just this animation alone.
Ryan Summers (00:08:58):
You know, this is, is high professional level, high production quality, you know, like the same kind of level of, uh, of, you know, technique and effort that you'd see for pain work. Um, I, I couldn't applaud it more. I was so stoked by seeing it, it would seem like a new voice. There was some really exciting stuff just in that one piece. Um, so yeah, no, I, I wish that we get more and more of this. I mean, I think there was another piece from, um, Andrew [inaudible] that we were talking about as well. Um, that was just so cool to see. I'm assuming that was a self-motivated piece as well that had, like, what did we say in there, like seven animators, an additional designer? Um, like, like again like that, that's a bigger than most teams I get to work with on animation jobs. I'd love seeing that stuff. I love seeing, you know, animators flipping the script and, and actually making stuff for themselves or studios making stuff for themselves is awesome.
Joey Korenman (00:09:46):
Yeah. That's where a lot of the best stuff comes from. And you're T you're talking about the power of light, which is the thing, Andrew Fuko directed, which amazing. And he talks about it in the, in the podcast episode that we had with him too. Um, so let's talk about some other sort of, uh, some other sort of looks, you know, Patrick is still amazing. Um, the, I think the American gods title sequence, you know, it's like, you can push that, that there's that thing of like 3d things with slow camera moves, you know, but that put, that pushes it about as far as it can go. And I think that's amazing. Um, and also I will say that one trend that I may have noticed, um, and this could just be, um, confirmation bias, but I feel like, you know, stranger things kind of made the eighties like super cool again,
Ryan Summers (00:10:38):
Like that's everyone.
Joey Korenman (00:10:39):
Yeah. Yeah. And, and so the back to bits thing, you know, that's kind of like that nostalgia. Um, but, but also, um, looking at some of the fui stuff, like specifically like blade runner and ghost in the shell, there's kind of this, you know, if you look at, um, like the original iron man stuff, it was like clean and blue and orange, and, and now looking at, you know, there's this great breakdown that territory studio did on their blade runner 2049 stuff. And it's like the color palettes and the design and things, they're a little more retro and, you know, star wars is back. So like that might be pushing some of that. So I feel like, um, that might be one visual trend that is, that did actually kind of peak, or maybe it hasn't peaked, but the eighties are cool again.
Ryan Summers (00:11:21):
No, I, I think that that word that you just said is important for what kind of happened in 2017. I feel like we saw the peak kind of expression of a lot of trends we've seen over the last two or three years. You know, like if, if, um, kind of Andrew Voulkos piece is kind of like the ultimate expression of what we saw a long time ago from, uh, Horia Stratta. I can't remember the name of the piece, but when he was animating squares and circles, and everybody was kind of blown away that, you know, MoGraph can have the same kind of fidelity of animation that kind of like Disney animation can have the same texture timing, the same kind of, you know, simple, simple designs that are animated as exquisitely as possible. If, if Andrew glucose piece was kind of like the, the full expression of that, I really looked at, what territory did for, for blade runner is kind of like, you can't get much further, um, developed than what they did.
Ryan Summers (00:12:09):
You know, like I I've had this kind of like push pull feeling about, um, fui stuff lately where sometimes it's, it's just cool for cool sake, you know, like it's just like, let's just make something as complicated and as difficult as possible. Um, and I feel like the, this year we had two films that were really similar in terms of what they tried to do ghost in the shell in blade runner 2049. But whereas in ghost in the shell was kind of like, let's just make the dopest, craziest looking stuff. And it didn't really matter if it totally fit in the world, or if it felt like of a thing. It was just a bunch of cool things, you know, sequenced out blade runner 2049 was like the ultimate expression of the artwork servicing the, the vision of the director for me. Um, like that stuff, like the, there's a whole sequence of like this like super futuristic microfiche, like this giant old machine that, you know, the, I think Ryan Gosling walks up to and stairs into, and it felt like something that was built in the seventies and the UI actually felt like it fit from that time period.
Ryan Summers (00:13:05):
It didn't feel like there's this big old bulky device. And all of a sudden there's something that's brand new. Like I had that same problem with, um, Promethease right. Like there's all that cool old, great UI. That's clunky in the original alien film. And then there's a movie that's supposed to take place before it, and all this fui looks like Houdini wet dreams, right? Like it's just crazy and it looks beautiful. But I think that there, that that's that inherent tension that's in the motion design world right now is we're all getting awesome tools. We're all getting tons of training to be able to kind of make really, really difficult things, um, look easy to make. And sometimes I feel like as an industry, we're losing sight of the difference between like conceptual, um, perfection and technical perfection. And I feel like those two movies really described it better than anything I've ever seen where it's like, you can make something technically difficult, but it, it totally fails for what the concept was that it needed to support.
Joey Korenman (00:13:57):
Yeah. That's, that's a really good way to put it. I think, you know, looking at the Bladerunner inner stuff, it's kind of it's ghostly and it kinda makes you feel like a little uncomfortable, just that way, just the way it is. It's just designed really well and executed well. And, um, you know, the high, maybe at this point, the high watermark for, um, for fui stuff, let's talk about the tools that is, are doing all these things. And, and there were a lot of, oh my God, new announcements, a lot of updates. So why don't we start with, with everybody's favorite motion design tool, um, after facts and really Adobe creative cloud in general had a huge update this year. So we're now on Adobe CC 2018. Um, what's your, what's your favorite thing that, that Adobe did this year with the new release?
Ryan Summers (00:14:42):
You know, I've been, I've been pretty vocal about my frustration with, with Adobe and, and especially after effects in general. Um, I actually went down to Adobe, I think a couple summers ago now and worked with the team. I have a huge amount of respect for the people on the box. You know, trying to take what I believe is like a 23 or 24, 25 year old program, trying to make it modern. You know, in a couple of years ago they had the whole, we're going to separate the thing from the thing for a year and we're going to do nothing, but make it fast. And I feel like probably, I don't know how you feel, but I feel like the whole industry has been a little disappointed in that. Like, I don't know how you feel about performance.
Joey Korenman (00:15:18):
Well, I mean, I think that that's kind of a race you can never win. Like, you know, like it is, the performance is a lot better now. Um, and, and especially in the latest release where transforms can be GPU accelerated, um, in addition to a lot of effects and everything's like that. Um, but I think that if there's also that thing where, you know, computers get faster, the software gets faster and now we're doing now, we're doing 4k and now everything has to have, or, you know, Ray dynamic texture on it. And so now you have triple the number of layers in it. You can always that, that firepower gets eaten up pretty quickly. Um, but I, I will say I was really happy that, um, you know, especially with Victoria kind of leading the charge over there, Victoria niece, who's the product manager for after effects, um, you know, doing a really good job of interacting with, um, motion designers.
Joey Korenman (00:16:12):
You know, I think we have to remember that that after effects is not just a motion design tool, it's sometimes it's hard to, it's hard to keep that in mind. Um, and a lot of the things that have been done are super helpful for motion designers, for example, a mask and shape points being accessible through expressions and the API, the API and stuff like that. Um, I'm not sure that's a huge deal yet. I feel like in the next version, it might really start to be a big deal as new tools come out and they make that even more powerful. Um,
Ryan Summers (00:16:41):
I think the, the word, the word you said there was API. Like, I, I think we finally, I honestly think that there was a year where there shouldn't have been a release of after-effects. I think there was a year where they should have either just released it as a tech demo for some of the updates. Um, but I know so many people that are still like CSX in 2014, um, because they trust it and they've heard so many bad things. I think 20, I think it was 2015 was a frustrating release, but I think all I can say is I just did a job that was 21 K that we did all in 2018. Um, and it, after effects for all of its kind of problems or frustrations we've had, um, just in terms of performance, finally, with the, the, the timeline playback, it's finally gotten the point where I feel like I can have all the shops, all the offices in our studio, working on it together and not feel like there's gonna be major problems.
Ryan Summers (00:17:33):
And I think for the issues we had over the last, probably like two years, I think that they've somehow within, after effects within the development team, they've crossed a major hurdle of just trying to get the performance, you know, wrangled out, trying to get all the bugs that they kind of brought to with all the work they did for, for kind of like reworking the core. I feel like we've crossed that hurdle. And I also feel like what you just mentioned, that, that sense of an API, that's the thing that really shows off that they've gotten past all that really, really difficult work that is hard to explain to people who don't program, because that, that, that one small thing being able to say, you have access to masks and path vertices, look at the explosion of scripts and tools we've seen in almost no time, right? Like I'm trying to think of all the different tools that create a pass from NOLs. The fact that somebody extended it and released it off of a YouTube video within like two weeks, three weeks of it being released, um, tools like tools. Like I'm trying to think there's at least three or four that, that,
Joey Korenman (00:18:33):
Well, it joysticks and sliders now as, uh, as a much more powerful because of that feature.
Ryan Summers (00:18:40):
Yeah. We saw so many in such a short amount of time, and I know Victoria and the team there that is their mentality is that they can't address everything, but they can create APIs and they can essentially create, create the sense that a is a platform. That's a, basically a, a set of APIs plugged together that anyone we know could have access to that makes it so much more robust. And that just means that we're all going to spend a lot more time at ACE scripts, trying to figure out which ones to buy.
Joey Korenman (00:19:06):
It's going to be great for Lloyd Alvarez, but, you know, it's funny cause you used the word platform. That's exactly how I think about it now. And I have to give credit to Zach love it. Who, you know, I asked he, he came on the podcast and I asked him like, kind of a devil's advocate question. Um, you know, why do you, like, why is it necessary to build so many third-party tools? Um, and he's like, well, like, because it's a platform, that's kind of the point it's by design. And, and honestly, if you think about, um, you know, all of the million different use cases for after effects, you couldn't possibly build an app that had core features to satisfy everybody, but having this open nature has been amazing. And one of the, one of my favorite things that it didn't happen this year, I think it happened last year, um, was just kind of the proliferation of, um, extensions instead of scripts like flow, you know, there there's other ones, that's the only one I can think of off the top of my head, but, um, or like body moving as an extension where you've now got this full-blown interface inside of after effects that can also run as a script and do a lot of neat things.
Joey Korenman (00:20:09):
Um, and I think that, you know, there there's some, there's some of that in Photoshop now, too. That's really, really, really powerful. We're we're talking about after effects, primarily let's talk about Photoshop, Photoshop, uh, you know, Adobe bought out Kyle Webster. And so all of his amazing brushes are available for free with Adobe creative cloud. That might be my favorite thing that's happened this year.
Ryan Summers (00:20:34):
Um, I'm stoked that we have all the brushes and I think it's great, but I'm more stoked that Kyle is there as an employee from everything that we can tell from the outside, because from everything I understand, he's basically shepherding everything and anything that has to do with, with drawing in Photoshop with any kind of mark-making. And that means that stuff like lazy and zoomy stuff like brush box, I would assume any of those kinds of drawing assistance tools, right? Like being able to favorite and categorize, being able to have symmetry built in. I think that that's one of the kind of beta test features. You can unlock the new version in Photoshop C CC 2018 symmetry brushes. Um, if you've ever used laziness, zooming all the perspective, rulers, that kind of stuff. I can see that stuff very rapidly over the next year to two years, um, Photoshop will very quickly become a, the drawing, you know, tool of choice.
Ryan Summers (00:21:26):
You know, there's a lot of other great tools out there, sketchbook pros. Awesome. Um, I'm trying to think of the other one clip studio pro has been used by a lot of, kind of like web comic and Monga artists. But I feel like for our industry, everybody is so familiar with Photoshop. It's just like kind of built into our DNA. If that can turn into a great, like amazing drawing tool. I can see how that either through an extension through scripts or through some pressure, um, on Adobe, how that can also kind of work its way hopefully into, into, after effects where after effects could become just as viable of a place to do cell animation instead of on a bounce between two or three different products. But, um, just having somebody like that in, I wish that there was an advocate for animation on the aftereffect side that we now have for the drawing side and Photoshop. Cause that that's amazing having somebody like that as the kind of like the voice for an industry is so
Joey Korenman (00:22:18):
Yeah, I mean, there's definitely a trend where it seems like Adobe is trying to create feature parody between, um, you know, all of these, all of these apps and, um, you know, you mentioned maybe one day being able to use after effects for selling animation via, I think the latest version of paint and stick for after effects came out this year. And I don't know if you've played with it. Right. It's actually pretty awesome. That's pretty, hopefully that a little bit. Yeah. I mean, it doesn't have all the bells and whistles of Photoshop and if you're, you know, if you're used to selling animating and Photoshop with layers and all that, it's, um, you know, it's not that powerful yet. Um, but I would love to see like, you know, support for Kyle Webster brushes in it and stuff like that. And I think, I think that sooner or later the tools will sort of merge there's some other things too that, um, you know, I think are cool just in the Adobe creative cloud world premiere, you know, a lot of times for me, it's the little things like now in premiere, you can have multiple projects open.
Joey Korenman (00:23:11):
That is so, yeah, that's like so huge, like such a good, such a good idea, um, in Photoshop and I believe this was released, they did last year, but it's gotten really, really good this year. Um, and a lot of designers may not actually use this, but the integration with Adobe stock is pretty, pretty phenomenal in Photoshop. Um, you know, we do, I do a lot of mock-ups for stuff at school of motion and, and blog art works. I like that. And um, I mean, it, it's, it's so easy now where it used to be 10 steps. It's literally like there's an extension where you can search for stock photos inside of Photoshop and it gets a watermarked version for free. You click one button that licenses it and then it's in your comments and it's, I mean, it couldn't be an easier and I can't wait to see what's going to come out next year. I know, um, you know, for all the complaining our, our, our motion design industry likes to do about the tool, they've actually gotten pretty dang good in the lesson.
Ryan Summers (00:24:06):
Oh yeah. This year has been crazy. I mean, you're talking about, uh, about extensions. I think as soon as that, that kind of became available for developers, like we've just seen explosion. Like, I, I was just looking at mine between like expressionists, um, K bar, like I think K bars. I used to use Ft toolbar, and it, it had kind of like a after effects, killing bug in it that, that made me kind of have to walk away from it and not everybody ran into the problem. But if you did, it was it got to the point where you literally couldn't open up after effects, but, um, th that kind of stuff, I think though, I think a lot of the source of frustration, at least for me is that, um, there's some stuff that's just not accessible to, to API developers, right. Like we shouldn't have to, like, I don't know, an easy way to go and kind of make something like, um, the node based features in, in after effects.
Ryan Summers (00:24:52):
I don't think a, an API, like a developer could access that. Um, Flo does an amazing job giving us more, more speed and more kind of, um, presets in the curve editor, but it still would be amazing if that curve editor got, got, you know, a nice kind of like revamp a nice touch up after however long it's been 10 or 15 years. The fact that like, there's no easy way to, um, make, um, parameters, separate note to separate parameters for position or rotation, just make it a default, right? Like there's still stuff that, that, like, I, we still need Adobe to kind of consider, or at least open up access to, you know, like, I think it's funny, right? Cause everybody's learning cinema and, and learning 3d packages and that's just kind of inherently built in, right? Like plugins are expected, you know, you, you don't expect to have a company like max on make, you know, X particles or make, you know, some of the crazy stuff that we're seeing coming out from third parties.
Ryan Summers (00:25:47):
But for some reason in after effects, we still all feel like Adobe needs to do it. All right. I always am a frustrated, like, come on. Like, why aren't you thinking about animators? But I think if they just continue to work to open up stuff like they've done with, you know, the, the mask, uh, vertex parameters, if that's still what's going on and we still have that ability. I mean, I think the next couple of years I'm working with, uh, I don't know if I can talk about it yet, but I'm working with, uh, a developer. That's got, uh, an extension that basically gives me something in after effects that I live and die by from cinema 40, just a basic workflow thing that when you start working with character animation or really deep, um, hierarchies, it's really frustrating when you're dealing with it in after effects. But this one extension basically gives me the power that I have in cinema built in, in a box, like right out of the box.
Joey Korenman (00:26:30):
We'll have to look out for that one. Let's talk about some of the, you know, some of these, like third-party tools that have come out, um, in 2017, I think, I mean, the MVP for me is overlord. Um, I don't know. I'm not sure anything could be more useful than that.
Ryan Summers (00:26:45):
Yeah. It's kind of shocking. Right. Like I remember that was one of the things when I was talking to, with the Adobe guys back, um, I think like two summers ago, I'm like, why is it's so difficult? And so time-consuming to work with illustrator going over to after effects, right? Like if you've ever rigged a character from a designer, that's done something in illustrator, the amount of time, like, I think you guys have at least one or two tutorials, like 30 minute video tutorials on prepping stuff from illustrator over to after effects. And when Adam just, all of a sudden was like, oh yeah, no, here's a one button click. And actually, you know, what, if you want to actually animate an illustrator because the selection tools are so much better, like animate, like shape layers, um, instead of dealing with all the twirl downs you have to do in Africa, uh, here, here's another part of the same tool that it's a one button that kind of shuffled back and forth. Like that's like black magic to me. I have no idea how he, how he was able to pull it off.
Joey Korenman (00:27:32):
He's a smart man. He's a smart man. So, so that would be one tool that I think is kind of a game changer for a lot of people. Um, Saunders, Ray dynamic texture came out, um, made a ton of noise when it came out and still seems to be really popular. Right. Um, you know, th this might be another trend that I've noticed, you know, we went kind of from a couple years ago, everything was flat color. Well, now everything's flat color, but with a little texture to it. Um, and I think that, that, that was kind of the right tool for the right time. Um, also I haven't had a chance to play around with it, but, um, I've been hearing a lot of good things about Stardust for after
Ryan Summers (00:28:08):
Startups as ridiculous. Yeah. I mean, if X particles hadn't come out, I would have said like, eman take, take the money a little bit of money and take a little bit of time. And the amount of stuff you can do in after effects now that it's almost like having the MoGraph module built in to after effects. Um, it's also a great way to get your head around nodes if you've never used nodes, if you've always just been a layer based, you know, animator, um, you really understand why people talk about nuke or they talk about espresso and cinema 4d after you've played around with startups for a little bit. Um, I love trap code particular love it. I've used it so much. I've done talks about it at different places, different like weird ways to use it. Um, but start us just, I hate to say it like completely trumps everything that I used to try to do in particular there's reasons why you might still want to use it.
Ryan Summers (00:28:56):
Um, but man, like the ability to use like 3d objects in it, the ability to have replicators, the ability to have multiple types of forces and sculpt those forces. Like it's, I think we're just, I think in the last two or three weeks, we've just started to see a buddy of mine. James Ramirez has been posting his, his kind of test for the year over and over. But besides his stuff I hadn't seen much. And like in the last two weeks, I feel like I've seen an explosion of tutorials where it was like everybody must've been working on projects with it. And then finally got some downtime and started recording tutorials. Cause there's even between a scripts and a couple of other people, I think I've seen like four or five, like in the last two days, even like, man, people, people need to start using this thing and seeing what it can do. Yeah.
Joey Korenman (00:29:36):
Well it looks super powerful. I can't wait to play around with it. And I think it's good too, to have competition like that. You know, I particulare is my bread and butter. Like I have paid bills with that for, for a decade. Um, but I think it's good to have, you know, an alternative and some competition. I mean, I remember when no lens flares was the only option for lens flares, and then you had, you know, Andrew Kramer's, um, optical flares came out and I was like, whoa. And then both tools now had to compete in one and they both got better. Um, so yeah, so another for me, anyway, changer was K bar that you already mentioned, uh, for anyone doesn't know what K bar is. I don't, I don't even know how to explain it. I mean, essentially it's just a little menu you can dock and after effects with icons that trigger various things, but it can trigger scripts. It can trigger expressions, it can trigger presets. I mean, it's, it's kind of a Swiss army knife and it looks really pretty too, which is handy.
Ryan Summers (00:30:29):
Yeah. And you know what, to be honest, like, um, with the proliferation of all these scripts and all these different tools, sometimes it's nice to just have a visual reminder in your interface that you have them. Like, I have so many, like, I don't know about you, but when I go to window and I see all the scripts and it takes forever to scroll down, like you hit that little down arrow and you take forever and I'm like, I just need to find like, God forbid there's something that has like an S or a T in the name. Cause it could take like 10 seconds to scroll all the way down to find something like Wayfinder. Um, just having visual reference. Another thing that I think is awesome that like I've had people ask me like, well, why use that if I already have Ft toolbar, um, besides the kind of like after effects, killing bug that you could run into, they have a ton of little icons already pre-built that you can just select from. And it sounds like a dumb thing, but trying to make and manage all the icons I was using for Ft, toolbar versus just kind of being able to change color of little, um, SVG icons is a tiny little thing, but it, it makes KBR even more.
Joey Korenman (00:31:27):
Yeah, it's really awesome. Um, all right. So some other, uh, I mean there's, there was a ton of great aftereffects tools this year. We can briefly mention a key cloner Wayfinder. Um, I mean, just go to go to ACE scripts.com, you know, get comfy, grab some, grab some coffee, but we should also talk about cinema four D and O, but real quick, I do want to talk about, um, this is a really important tool and I think we'll talk about it, uh, in a few places in this discussion, but Lottie, um, and I have to say it's pretty shocking how quickly Lottie has become the tool to translate body moving Jason into iOS and Android apps. I see it everywhere. And you know, Bodymovin existed for a few years, I think already before Lottie came along this year, but Lottie sort of, I mean, as soon as Lottie came along and it was like, oh, now everyone's using it.
Joey Korenman (00:32:22):
So I think, uh, it, it, it made body moving 10 times more useful and it got companies like Google and Airbnb who made Lodhi, um, you know, just any tech company that makes apps now is using Lodhi and there's articles all over the place, Solly over at Airbnb. Um, you know, he's kinda the motion designer that was heading up the Lottie development, um, and Brandon over there, the developer on it did a, such an amazing job. I mean, you know, like I want to pick them up on my shoulders. I don't know how big they are. They're heavy. I wouldn't be able to do
Ryan Summers (00:32:54):
I think, but I think that's an amazing point that, that kind of references back to that whole idea of AI as a platform, right? Like the fact that we're seeing giant corporations have small little motion design teams that create stuff that then they basically essentially open source. It's the first time that I finally felt like the motion graphics world has had the same kind of like synergy and teamwork that I always envied from the visual effects world. You know, like if you go to see graph, you don't see companies just show a reel and say, Hey, we're awesome. You see them sitting down for an hour, hour and a half, two hours describing how they created all the work for all of their competitors and then releasing open source technology, right? Like you see places like ILM and Disney and other companies basically releasing their, their kind of secret weapons and basically sending them out to the world and say like, Hey, they're open source.
Ryan Summers (00:33:41):
We need everybody to push together to push forward. The fact that companies like Google with the stuff Adam was doing, or the stuff that Airbnb of all places creating something, that's essentially defining an industry. Like, I feel like we're finally at that point in motion graphics that I always wished we would be, that I saw the visual effects side doing that. I never really felt like it, that that's just going to push everybody further. You know, like when, when there's an area of the industry that has pain and that essentially a giant corporation just gives us the tools that make our lives better. Um, there's something about the motion graphics industry that becomes really unique compared to other creative industries.
Joey Korenman (00:34:15):
Yeah. That's a really good point. And I think too, that, um, you know, with, with a tool, like Lodhi all of the sudden opening up motion design to a, uh, kind of tangential industry of development. Um, and you know, I think it's, it's going to open up motion design to that industry to, you know, kind of independent of after effects. There's actually some really interesting apps being developed for animation, for apps that aren't after effects, but are, are actually really, really, really good. And I think, you know, again, I mentioned it's good to have competition. I think, um, I love after effects. It's paid my bills, my, my entire career. Um, but I think it will be good if some competitor comes along just to, it's just a good thing. I, you know, we have competitors, studios have competitors that makes everyone better. Um, let's talk about, uh, let's talk about the 3d world now.
Joey Korenman (00:35:04):
So max had a pretty big release and, you know, I don't keep up as much with cinema 4d as I do after effects. But one of the big things that stood out to me was that they they've included something called pro render in our team, which is sort of the first iteration. I think it's, it's, you know, semi beta right now. I'm still in development, but it's there and it's a GPU renderer and it seems like GPU renders are here. Like that's, that's just the future. Um, you know, I hear every day I hear about Redshift and how great it is. Octane's still there, but maybe it's kind of like tailing off a little bit. Um, are, are you seeing any trends in the 3d world in terms of like render technology, stuff like that?
Ryan Summers (00:35:50):
Oh yeah, yeah, absolutely. I mean, three or four years ago, you'd hear in the corners of, of motion graphics communities that somebody might be playing with. V-Ray for cinema 40. And I came from the, basically from like the 3d studio max world, where multiple renters was kind of like a defacto standard dealing with visual effects. You deal with different renders for different kinds of problems. And the motion graphics world and cinema in particular was kind of slow to catch up. VR is always like a little bit behind, but in the last two years, it's just, I think the, the accessibility and the, the price of the GPU renters has just accelerated this. I feel like every month there's a new, there's a new render and it's a different technology, but there's, there's essentially in, in Chad Ashley's terms, the render wars are still strong. Um, there's always this battle and it's sometimes it gets frustrating to kind of turn sometimes into a little bit of like fanboy ism and like kind of like tech fights.
Ryan Summers (00:36:41):
Um, but right now, like to me, Redshift is, is the defacto standard. It's amazing. Um, it gives you the speed, but it also gives you the control, but there's so many options out there, right? Like octane kind of exploded on the scene a couple of years ago where you could actually go and get a pretty cheap, pretty fast gaming GPU and all of a sudden sit at your desk. And it looked like you had a whole render farm working in front of you at the same time. Right. Everybody knows about it. It's basically changed the whole world. It's one of the reason why everybody's doing one a day is because they have the ability to kind of render this stuff very quickly and very cheaply. And unfortunately it makes everybody's stuff look a little bit the same because people are just kind of sitting at the surface of what the tools can do.
Ryan Summers (00:37:17):
I think in my opinion, a lot of times, but we have Arnold, we have Corona there's GPU renders coming out. Um, there's a really interesting, um, essentially like a element 3d style, almost gaming interface called tack-on, um, uh, kind of a, a viewport render, um, cinema in our 19 it's viewport itself has almost become an additional render engine on top of the pro render GPU engine, the, the viewport itself, the open GL acceleration's gotten a lot better. Um, and we have kind of like fake reflections, uh, screen space and inclusion. I've actually, um, sent out hardware rendered, um, viewport renders for previous, for approvals from clients where they think that it's the final render. Um, it's gotten that good. Like I've been able to do previous at a pretty high level of fidelity just from, you know, what I see in my viewport. Um, it's made the whole space a lot more confusing.
Ryan Summers (00:38:11):
Um, it's put the focus a lot more on technique and technology, I think versus concept and kind of the art side of it to a certain degree that I'm hoping in the next couple of years as this kind of shakes out, we figure out which renders people are going to use and which way we're going to go, that people start talking more about lighting and talk more about art direction and less about, you know, unbiased versus biased and how many GPU's they're going to have and you know, that kind of stuff. But right now it's in just an incredibly like breakneck pace for, you know, all the technology that's available to us. Um, it it's really, really exciting, a little bit frustrating, but really exciting.
Joey Korenman (00:38:44):
And clearly Maxolon is aiming at the GPU, um, you know, render a market with, with pro render and I'm really excited to see where that ends up. Um, and you're right, you said our 19, I think I said our 18 earlier, it was our 19 was there at least this year. Um, and it's funny, you mentioned the, the viewport improvement, because that seems like, you know, to a lot of people sort of a nice to have, but when you're doing play blasts, when you're doing these hardware renders, uh, that's an enormous advantage to be able to show your clients something that's a little more done. You know, three DS is notoriously difficult in that respect. Uh, if, you know, if the final Render's gonna take 20 minutes per frame, the client really won't know what it's going to look like until the end, especially if you have to do, you know, comping and stuff like that.
Joey Korenman (00:39:28):
Um, and, and, and another thing you brought up that I really hope goes away to be honest is that I like the idea of every days, but they like, and, and, and there are people doing them in super original, amazing ways, but the vast majority of the ones I see are people clones, um, it's, it's just, it's octane and a light and something shiny, and a model you got off turbo squid, and it looks beautiful. And it's awesome, but it's it, it's just creating this generic soup of just neat looking techie, 3d renders that don't make you feel anything, you know?
Ryan Summers (00:40:05):
Yeah. I, I, I personally, I don't know. I, I try to try to have this viewpoint of being critical, not cynical, right. And the one a day is a very difficult for me to not be cynical, but I think most of them are, are garbage. Um, in terms of the way they're being presented, right? Like I think there is absolutely nothing wrong with maintaining a sketchbook essentially. Right? I think there's nothing wrong with having a thing that keeps you motivated to do one a days all the time to, to try to get better. The problem is I see people doing something. I don't see a lot of people getting better. I see them just copying, like you said, I mean, people is amazing 10 years of one a days, and you look at his stuff and they could all be covers the books. They could be posters for films and you see his, he, I feel like when he's using it, and you're looking at like a master artist's sketchbook, right?
Ryan Summers (00:40:55):
Like you can literally see him developing his voice, developing his ideas. He'll, he'll do something for three months and you can see it getting refined or getting better, or like evaluating different types of composition. And then you can see one thing happened. It was like, oh, I learned this new thing about this one thing and a renderer. And then all of a sudden everything shifts. And it's just about that. And then he goes back to square one, and he's iterating, he's designing, he's finding his voice. He speeding up his techniques, he's increasing his fidelity. Um, but you see a discussion happening, right? Like you see artists growth when you watch that. And I feel like that's why he's doing the one a days. He's not doing the one days to get likes. He's not doing the one a days to get articles written about him.
Ryan Summers (00:41:33):
He he's doing, because he has something inside he wants to do. And he has something that he wants to figure out any sharing it with people. That's where I think one of days are amazing when you're doing it, because you're like, oh, you know what? I saw this cool thing on, or rip it off, or I'm going to literally do use the exact same composition, or I'm just going use the same technology just to try to like, get the buzz that people gets. That's where I'm like, you know what, just don't even bother, like go out and spend a month making one thing that looks awesome that you then spend another month making one thing that you show. But yeah, I feel like there's just this kind of like social media hype train that people are just trying to catch on board that people's kind of like in the, in the like leader spot for, and it, it just seems, it seems like it just actually devalues the work that everybody's doing. Sometimes
Joey Korenman (00:42:16):
I heard, you know, Nick from gray scale has, has said some interesting things about the everyday thing. I mean, you made a good point that, you know, they, they serve a purpose. If you're new to cinema 4d, or you're trying to learn octane, it's a good way of just getting reps in and kind of, and learning and learning a new technology. And in that sense, it's an amazing idea. I think, where it starts to feel gross is when, you know, people look at what people has done and people has transcended motion design. I mean, he's, you know, he's like people, stuff shows up in weird spots, you know, he's kinda like Andrew Kramer in that way. Like, you know, people not in the industry have heard of people, um, and they want some of that juice. And so it's using every as a marketing tool as opposed to what the strength of them is.
Joey Korenman (00:43:05):
And, and I've, I think Chad, Ashley has said some things on their podcast about, um, you know, every day's are th they're good for learning little things, taking little bites of knowledge, but if you really want to get good at lighting trying to do something in one day, and really it's not like one day, it's like a couple hours that you have free. You're not going to get a lot better just doing that. You know, you gotta, you gotta spend some time on this. You need to like, you know, spend, it's been a couple of days, like lighting a complex scene. That's how you gonna learn
Ryan Summers (00:43:36):
Exactly the compulsion to hit the one, a day thing to say, you've done it to save done it for a year, for two years or three years kind of leads to some really bad behavior. Like it leads to people who are like actually taking other people's artwork and just kind of like tweaking it and saying, I'll look what I did. And not really doing like any call-outs that you see that a lot where it's like, then, then it's almost like the, the desire to have the people hype actually perverts the whole kind of like artistic experience, right? Like you're just, you're not doing it to learn. You're not doing it to, to get better. You're not doing it to like develop a voice. You're doing it just to maintain, uh, I don't know, some, some type of schedule and it's, it's leading you to do some kind of like morally ambiguous stuff.
Joey Korenman (00:44:21):
Yeah. And, and, you know, there's been some semi high profile, um, flare ups that, that we've seen at that. So my hope is that next year, you know, I don't think one a days are going anywhere and not, and not that they necessarily should go anywhere. Uh, I would just encourage people to do them for the right reasons. And the idea of practicing every day is a very good idea. The idea of practicing and then trying to get Instagram likes from your practice everyday. Maybe not such a good idea. Yeah.
Ryan Summers (00:44:51):
I think, I think it goes back to like what we try to teach, right? Like, I'm sure you teach this at school emotion and that MoGraph mentor we teach. It is like, if you really dig somebody, don't try to turn and try to emulate them, try to emulate the people they were learning from or the people they were hyping on. Right. Like if you dig Ash Thorpe, don't rip off Ash Thorpe, go and rip off, um, categorize automo, go and rip off the guy who was the cinematographer for Stanley Kubrick, go and find who Ash was thinking about when he was making his thing and use that as like an inspiration point to find out other things that you could be into and find, again, it goes back to finding your voice. Don't just rip off the surface level. Cool. Go and find what made that cool thing interesting to you.
Joey Korenman (00:45:32):
So let's talk about another trend that I've seen in 3d this year, which is this kind of procedural artwork thing that that's getting more and more popular. And I have to say at first I was sort of like, oh, I don't get it. Um, but it, I got to say, it's getting, there's some really cool stuff out there. Uh, you know, Albert OMAS, not everyone's, it's not safe for work if you go to his site potentially. Um, but you know, he, it's just so weird and unique and awesome. I love what he's doing. He's doing this crazy stuff with Houdini. Um, uh, future deluxe did a really cool thing, um, with like, you know, massive amounts of particles being driven by sound and color. Um, you know, you mentioned, um, X particles, the new version is bringing a lot of that capability into cinema 4d, but a lot of people are trying to go out and learn Houdini. Um, and I think that we're just on the, I think we're, we're on the cusp of like a huge explosion in that for some other reasons. But, um, yeah. I'm, I'm curious, what do you think about the, you know, the idea like everyone who's into 3d in the back of their head somewhere, they're thinking, oh, crap. I got to learn Houdini now.
Ryan Summers (00:46:40):
Yeah. I think it's great. I mean, I think anything that pushes pushes everybody forward and, and tools in our industry seem to be the thing that does it versus, you know, like artistic inspiration. I still think it's great. Like, I, I feel like it's, it's been building for a couple of years watching the stuff that man versus machine or [inaudible] has been doing and seeing how they went from, you know, a cinema and trying to push stuff and playing with different render engines and then jumping into Houdini and, and just knowing how those studios work very, very differently, um, in terms of their, their structure, both like financially and creatively, um, how that's allowed them to kind of like get on that, that bleeding, bleeding edge that like tip of the sphere of adopting Houdini. Um, I think it's great. Cause it'll push people. It'll, it'll push cinema and we've already seen it.
Ryan Summers (00:47:22):
Like you said, like I think X particles for as a direct reaction and the way people will use it as a direct reaction to, to a few people jumping into Houdini a couple of years ago. Um, I think anything that's like procedural ism I think is awesome. I think in the kind of like motion graphics, aftereffects world, we saw it probably a decade ago with processing where all of a sudden people are starting to get into coding and starting getting to procedurals and to try to kind of create new looks or find new ways to do things that were almost impossible to do in after effects. Um, and that kind of came and it kind of went and there's people who did it before that still do it, but it was kind of like a little bit of like a blip. I feel like Houdini is a lot like that processing craze that probably happened. I don't know if 10 years ago, 12 years ago. Um, but I think it'll probably stick a little bit more for the 3d side because the tools will make it a lot more accessible Houdini. It used to be really difficult to kind of get your head into, but now with, um, more and more training with, uh, some of the, I think, uh, I sponsor guys doing a lot more training to that and tag Emma. I think that those, those are those guys
Joey Korenman (00:48:21):
Swab. That's something too. I think Adam swab put something together for maybe for hallow Luxe, you release something it's supposed to be really good too.
Ryan Summers (00:48:29):
I think that's, that's great. Um, I think it will push people. The thing that I like about that is that, um, a lot of it is very solution-oriented right? Like people are like, wow, I got to do a Nike fly knit commercial. And the only guys that have done it were using Houdini. So how did they do it? Um, just open it and it's people are opening up their techniques, they're showing how they're using it. And then I think people will get used to just experimenting plain, right? Like it's a lot of like what I think Nick Campbell did at the beginning where people are like, how do I do X, Y, and Z? And Nick showed very simple ways to do stuff that look kind of complicated. And then it just opened that funnel, right? It opened the world of possibilities to people that didn't think they could do that.
Ryan Summers (00:49:04):
Chad's doing that right now with Redshift. Um, Andrew Kramer did it a lot with what he did with a lot of his tutorials around, um, like element 3d people were exposed to something they never thought they could do. And then the tools kind of migrated down to them to make it possible. And then a bunch of people experimenting and remixing created a whole bunch more opportunities. So I'm stoked by it. Like, I, I definitely have felt the pressure to try to find local Houdini artists in Chicago, which there really aren't that many of, um, I think it's probably a great way to level up in the industry. If you're looking for an advantage the next couple of years, if you can get ahead of everybody and learn Houdini, you're going to get booked. You're going to be available. Um, as everything else, everyone else tries to catch up.
Joey Korenman (00:49:43):
Talk about another really interesting trend. We had, uh, Fraser Davidson on the podcast a few episodes ago and he talked about, um, you know, so for people listening who don't know who he is, he's, uh, one of the founders of Cubs studio sort of, you know, the, the lead over there. Um, and they do amazing stuff. They did this Trump series. It's just so good, but, but they spun off a, um, a side company called most share. And, uh, it's, it's a really interesting business model reminded me of a talk that the team from ELO gave, uh, at blend this year, where they were talking about their own version of that, which is called algo. And it's essentially, um, an aftereffects template that to data and that data can come from basically anywhere. It can come from a Jason feed, like from a weather service or, uh, in most Sheriff's case, they give their clients sort of this front end that they can log into.
Joey Korenman (00:50:42):
And, you know, they primarily work with sports teams, soccer teams and stuff like that. And so, you know, like the, the, the social media manager for a soccer team can log in and say, we scored a goal. This is the new score of the game. This is the team we're playing. And in like a minute or two, there's this beautiful render waiting for them that they can send out on Twitter or Facebook or use however they want. And it's this idea that you can create essentially, a robot, you know, that w with some expressions and some clever after effects, you can create a machine that creates MoGraph on demand. And there's a lot of that. And I think that's going to be a huge, a huge thing. Maybe not in 2018. I think the tech, the tech isn't quite hasn't quite caught on yet, but 2019, I wouldn't be surprised if there's a ton of this out there.
Ryan Summers (00:51:31):
Yeah. I think this is just like what we were talking about with Houdini and talking about technology catching up to people's needs and, and kind of this call and response kind of pattern in our industry that data-driven, MoGraph, it it's already been there. It's just been really difficult. The, the, for lack of better term, the API APIs and the platform with an aftereffects, wasn't set up for this. But I mean, we've had to set up tool kits before for companies for broadcast packages, right, where we made the, you know, essentially the, the template, we designed everything, but then we've literally hand off after effects files for people to basically type in when a show is going to be on what the type is going to be and the animation and the, the lower thirds react to the length or the width or the size. But, um, with the last version of after effects, um, Adobe is really, and I think this is where Victoria's influence really.
Ryan Summers (00:52:17):
It can be felt, um, the ability to treat data like footage is going to reverberate for years. Uh, the fact that Adobe is literally creating a new data-driven file format. That includes time as part of it, M G Jason, and that they're actually spearheading the effort to try to get other camera developers, other software manufacturers, other people to adopt, uh, an entire file format, um, that shows where, where data-driven is going to go. Um, I think right now it's a little bit like we were just talking to her about having mass Vertesi access and how we saw a bunch of tools build on that. I feel like Jason, and MGJ on, especially over the next two years, you will see an explosion of interfaces and tools, whether they're in aftereffects or not be built around that. Cause the, the possibilities are, the demand will be ridiculously high, but the possibilities are endless with it as well.
Joey Korenman (00:53:08):
I think that it's just going to take one ad agency to really latch onto this. So I, you know, I see I've seen a lot of use cases for this on, you know, social media managers using it. Um, you know, sort of the, the example, if you, so the tool that a lot of these companies are using this called data clay templates, which is, uh, you can get it on AA scripts.com. You can go to data, clay.com. I'm actually giving a talk about it at NAB this year. And, um, and you know, so they use the example of, okay, well, if you have like, um, you know, uh, whether full screen graphic and you want to say the weather for the week, well, you can pull that data from, you know, an API from weather.com or something like that. And, and, you know, once every two hours it will kick out a new render with the new data in it. And I think the tools to let an after effects artist set that up have been pretty clunky and very, very, more developer friendly than artist friendly and template, or kind of takes a lot of that overhead off your plate and just, and just does it, um, there's still a piece missing, which is building the front end for this thing, and someone's going to solve that sooner or later, too. Um, and all of a sudden ad agencies are gonna be able to offer this as a service to their brands.
Ryan Summers (00:54:25):
Yeah, I think we're even starting to see the Adobe team starting to address that. I think the implementation is almost too early for them to even have released it. But when you look at the essential graphics panel, which right now is just the absolute smallest little baby steps. But if you look at what the idea is, which, which I think was born out of, um, an idea from Stu mash, what's called capsules. It's essentially the idea that, um, way back in the day with soft image, we had a 3d program that's dead now, but have we had the ability to basically code or program or design something and just allow inputs and outputs and package that up as a plugin. And then you could share that plugin almost like, like nuke, you can have a node graph, they can literally copy and paste and slack or email or text to someone.
Ryan Summers (00:55:10):
And then they could basically drop in and they would have this whole thing. Essential graphics is just at the very beginning baby steps allowing to essentially create that whole kind of template, have data points that can be filtering into it live, and then have an artist or an operator basically be able to make small adjustments that you limit, what those adjustments can be. I think that that's exactly what essential graphics is eventually going to go towards is that they're almost going to be mini scripts or many plugins that an artist creates that leverages real time data from any source that then lets an operator on set or in a control room, basically change, oh, I want to change the color. Or I have 24 teams. I can change the teams or I need to be able to add a, an explosion animation every time a touchdown happens. Um, but I think that that's very quickly in the next two years, it can be something one after effects artist at one, one, um, desktop could set up for an entire team of people.
Joey Korenman (00:56:02):
I'm really glad you brought up the essential graphics panel. Cause I forgot to mention it. That I think is, is a hundred percent a game changer. And even in its early iteration is crazy powerful. Like for a motion designer, we look at it and we're like, well, I know after effects, I can just go in, but you know, remember who after effects is probably primarily serving it's that post production editor environment, it's the studio. And so as an after effects artist, you know, I worked on a, on an animal planet show once where I would, every episode have to make lower thirds for every single person. And, and, and you know, it was because I had to like sometimes scale the, you know, the name up and down. Sometimes it was a two line. Sometimes it was a three line and I need a bigger thick, and you can bake all of that into the essential graphics panel and give it to an editor and never touch it again.
Joey Korenman (00:56:53):
And, and, and, and we, we, we have a tutorial about it where we actually push it pretty hard. And if, you know, some expressions, you can make it, do all kinds of crazy things. You can, you know, crazy stuff. And, you know, then you throw into the mix that, you know, you know, one day, uh, the essential graphics panel may be, is able to, um, talk to an API online and find out what day it is, you know, and like, and automatically put that in the graphic. Um, I mean, there's just some really, I I'm really, really excited about that stuff. And I think as motion designers, we should be thinking about what types of offerings for our clients, is that going to let us, you know, put out there, what sort of businesses, like most share, like algo can be built on top of that?
Ryan Summers (00:57:36):
Yeah, I think, I think, yeah, there's a lot of exciting. Like, it's almost like an octopus. Like you can see the arms extending out to a bunch of other applications. I think the combination of MGJ sun, the combination of this kind of capsules concept, that's just being born out as a central graphics right now. And I think the really exciting thing for me is as soon as all that stuff can be, real-time live connected to two other things like MTJ, son's built to be Jason with a, with a timeline essentially, right. But that timeline doesn't have to be static or fixed. It can be something that's real-time. So imagine if you could literally sit here with your iPhone, right? Like your iPhone is basically a collection of sensors that all can spit out data, right? Imagine you can live link your iPhone to after effects.
Ryan Summers (00:58:18):
And all of a sudden you have the accelerometer, you have the angle, you have all these different things, you have the visual data path, right? Like right now to sign into your newest iPhone, it's actually doing essentially, um, like 3d tracking and 3d point plotting. So it's essentially doing scanning. Imagine you have access to all of that live in after effects at any time. And you can do anything with, it's basically like a data collector you're basic can collect visual data, time, data, altitude, all that stuff, and feed it directly into after effects as if it was just 2d footage. And then all the data can be manipulated any way. Like that stuff gets really, really exciting. And then imagine you can be sending that stuff out, live to a control room that's connected to a broadcast, you know, that's going out to the world, one guy with an iPhone and a laptop connected to a desk. Can all of a sudden do a lot of really crazy.
Joey Korenman (00:59:08):
I can't wait. I can't wait man. This, you know, I'm really excited. All right, let's move on. Let's talk about some other important things that happened this year. Um, so the motion awards round one wrapped up, uh, it kind of beginning of the year, um, first batch of winners and, uh, you know, looking at the winner so everyone can go to motion, awards.com and you can look at last year's winners. Um, and of course, like it's all amazing work that deserved to win. I'm curious. Um, you know, how, how, from your perspective, someone at a studio, and I don't know if, if you were DK submitted anything, um, or you might've been a judge, were you a judge last year? Ryan, you were a judge, but you could still submit, even if you're a judge. Um, you know, when, when the motion awards were announced, I was really, really kind of curious to see what the response would be. And it seemed like it was really good. Um, because I I'm, I don't want to be too down about it, but I question the value of, of awards on, you know, especially internet awards these days. Um, I'm curious if you have any thoughts on that.
Ryan Summers (01:00:11):
Yeah, I think, I think it's, um, it's all a case of perspective. I think it's inwardly it's again, that, that kind of tension I was talking about earlier, where as artists, I think sometimes we get really excited about things that are difficult to do, or we give a lot of notoriety to something we aspire to do, but I think we're missing the connection to, was it conceptually successful or did it actually, you know, if it's client-based work, did it actually have the prescribed effect? Right. Like a lot of us are making commercials. We're making advertisements there. If you start interacting with agencies, agencies, couldn't give a about making art most of the time. Right. But the things that we award are the art, but if you do a really good job and you get asked to come back again to keep your studio going most times, because you moved product or you made some kind of awareness.
Ryan Summers (01:00:56):
And I think there's a really distinct disconnection in our industry right now, between making something awesome for us versus making something that's very successful outwardly. And I feel like that's a little bit, I mean, it's a bitter pill to swallow, but our industry is for the most part commercial driven, I'd love to see it be not so much, you know, I'd love to see people making some more of their own stuff, but I can give you a direct, direct correlation, right? Like I nominated, um, one of my favorite studios, midnight Sherpa, right. For in the, the awards for best new studio. And I, I don't think a lot of people knew about them, but when they got nominated, they must have garnered enough attention because the three studios that one were odd fellows. Um, I can't remember, I think golden Wolf and the night Sherbrooke one.
Ryan Summers (01:01:46):
Right. Um, good friends with those guys. They're ex partners at imaginary forces. They didn't see any uptick in work that they received or notoriety they received because of the Motionographer awards. Um, no one, no one came up. I was like, holy, you were, you were one of the companies along with Oddfellows and golden with which we already knew about, um, we want to talk to you about work or we want to talk to you about a product they saw no, no blip. So maybe that's more on the commercial side, but I think it's also an important side to consider, you know, how much time you put into things like awards. Um, it's the first year that they did Motionographer. So I think internally everybody, like on our, on our side of the fence, it's like, wow, that's awesome. There's an awards, but I don't think it really, really makes a big difference to, to the outside world in terms of getting more work yet. Um, I think it's a great thing for the industry to have. And I think as it gets bigger, it may have more of an effect, but I also see how people chase after likes and thumbs ups and all that stuff. If you start chasing an emotional grapher award, I think that's the wrong, wrong motivation,
Joey Korenman (01:02:46):
Greed. And it's interesting to hear that there wasn't an uptick in, you know, it didn't drive client or two to midnight Sherpa and the, and frankly, that's what I would expect, but it's interesting, you know, I have, I come from this place of being very practical. It's like, it's just kind of the way my brain is wired. And I always look at things in terms of ROI and, you know, I like it, not a very artistic way of looking at things. It's just kind of how I'm wired and I, and, um, Joe Donaldson, who's, you know, essentially running Motionographer as content right now. Um, we, he lives like 20 minutes from me, so we get together, we have coffee and it's great. It's a great combo because he looks at things the other way. He's he, you know, he, that man is an artist truly is.
Joey Korenman (01:03:31):
And, um, and he praises a lot of points. It gets me thinking about stuff like this, because there is definitely something to be said for having a pedestal to put things on that are legitimately awesome. And even if it's not to, you know, awards pro max, BDA, that stuff used to drive sales. And so that's kind of what a history of awards in our industry lives. But, um, you know, for us the motion awards, maybe that's not what it's for and maybe, um, maybe, you know, it can be effective and amazing in a beautiful thing, even if the goal is really just to inspire people. And just to just to say, this was good and to kind of have a time capsule to show all that stuff, you know?
Ryan Summers (01:04:13):
Absolutely. Yeah, no, I, as much as I was saying on the commercial side of that, you know, like it's, it's dangerous to chase those. I think earlier we were even saying, you know, that the more companies that make self-motivated stuff, the more companies and individuals that start thinking about being the product, rather than making the product, um, that if the Motionographer rewards do that, like create an awareness that there is value in doing self-motivated work and that there is an end goal, then, you know, then that makes a huge difference to me. You know, like I, I think I probably sit somewhere between you and Joe, right? Like there's a part of my brain because I'm a creative director because I'm exposed to, you know, the, the kind of lifelines of, uh, of a large company that you do have to be practical to a certain extent.
Ryan Summers (01:04:58):
But I have that tension even here at the studio that I want us to do more creative, more challenging, more interesting work. That sounds like it's been built by people rather than a faceless company. And something like the Motionographer words like that, that encourages people. Right? Like I have a junior artist here. That's an amazing illustrator, but he never does anything, you know, outwardly facing because he has to be animated. Right. I'm like, man, you're doing more boards. You should be doing more stuff. If he knows that the Motionographer awards exist and his work could get seen and he could elevate it because that then yeah. Who cares if they make you money or not like that lifts someone else up. Um, so yeah, I I'm super stoked about it. I'm super hyped about it. Um, I'm obviously I'm a judge again, this year. I'm really excited to see the work that's that's been submitted. Um, I just had firsthand conversations in this last week about man, how did that go? You got nominated, you won, you're one of three companies in great company. Like how did it, how did it help you at all? And I literally heard like crickets, like, oh, if it was nice, it didn't do anything.
Joey Korenman (01:05:53):
The motion awards. I think the, uh, you can still submit for this year's awards through, I forget it's on the site. You can go to motion, awards.com and find out. And, uh, yeah, I'm a judge again this year and I'm, I mean, I had so much fun judging. I'm building the student category and it's like, you know, it's just, it's uplifting man, to see like, you know, the love that people are putting into things, student pieces and, and personal projects and stuff. Uh, so this segues very nicely into, I wanted to talk about, um, a few of the studios that are sort of, um, I don't think they were necessarily founded in 2017, but starting to make some noise, um, and gunner is making gunners make a noise and they actually animated and did the, um, the motion awards sort of teaser for this year. And it is so great. Awesome. Go to motion. awards.com has a big video player wash it. It's hysterical. Uh, when we went to visit, they were sort of showing us some of the behind the scenes and they are just, they're doing it right. I'll tell you what, and it makes me really happy, really happy that they're in Detroit of all places. They're not in LA, they're not New York.
Ryan Summers (01:07:01):
Oh man. I mean, honestly, that's one of the reasons why I moved to decay and going staff, because there's an opportunity to go back to the Midwest to go back to Chicago. Um, I'm so stoked that there is a, in my head like a, a book or a giant ad or an odd fellows of the Midwest kind of starting. Um, I mean, I, I'm professionally jealous. I'd love, I can't wait to go out to Detroit and actually like, hang out with those guys and see what they're doing. I need to reach out to him. Cause I love 2d. I love like really beautifully designed, you know, stylized stuff. I, as much as I love photorealistic 3d, um, and seeing that like really specific voice, I talk about voice all the time, but gunner, as soon as he saw their work, like, wow, these guys have a point of view, they have a style, they have a look. Um, I'm so stoked that that's happening and it's happening in the Midwest. And especially in Detroit man, like if, if Detroit can become like, uh, a little Portland or a little, little like Seattle, like a little Mecca for handcrafted, beautifully designed, you know, animated stuff for the MoGraph industry, that would be awesome. Dude, it's primed and ready for it.
Joey Korenman (01:08:02):
Detroit is legit. I was blown away when we went there. We, we visited gunner. We visited Yarhouse, which, uh, I don't know if you're familiar with them, but uh, beautiful work, amazing stuff. Um, lunar north is this, this really cool studio doing like high end. They do a lot of automotive stuff, like a hundred percent photo, real 3d stuff, but they also do this crazy. They're like more of a 3d heavy shop. Um, and then we there's this cool company vector form that I kind of want to bring up in a little bit because they were, they, to me, they're kind of like the future of all of this. And, and we went to a MoGraph meetup in Detroit. I mean, there's a scene there. It's pretty amazing. And you know, you, you get some amazing artists there, Steve Savale lives there. And he's, I rave about that guy.
Joey Korenman (01:08:44):
Um, so gunner making a huge mark and, you know, you'd love it there, man. Like it's, uh, they just have this Motley crew of super talented people. Um, we met, we met one of their artists, Rachel who's this insanely talented cell animator. And she sitting right next to John who was working on like, you know, some stuff with body moving. And I mean, it's, it's like to me, I think that is a beautiful model for a modern studio. It's not in an expensive place. Their overhead can be kept low. Um, and they really just lean on technology like slack and Dropbox and zoom and Skype, whatever to work with clients that are for the most part, not in Detroit. Um, and you know, I love New York and I love LA. I don't want anyone to think. I don't love those places, but it's just so expensive to live there, to start a studio. And I don't think you have to anymore.
Ryan Summers (01:09:36):
Yeah. I mean, even Chicago man. It's so it's so difficult to compete when, when your baseline overhead is so high, especially if you're a small studio. I am not even, especially your small studio. I think, especially if you're a large studio, like, like being witness to the pressures that, you know, companies like imaginary forces or companies like DK are under because of their size because of their historical legacy. Um, because of their locations, man, like I honestly think, um, you know, between, you mentioned some of the software, but between the stuff you talked about, stuff like frame IO, Trello, slack, obviously as the lifeblood, but, uh, we're seeing stuff like boards, um, that I think that's an awesome tool for collaborative storyboarding, you know, built by a really amazing animation studio that they're basically putting out there as a product. Um, I just started using this thing called Lucas.
Ryan Summers (01:10:24):
Um, it's basically for creating pitch decks collaboratively on the cloud. It's almost like, like keynote in the cloud. Um, but it's not like a Google app it's, it's built for artists. Um, there's so much stuff out there that you can have 2, 3, 4 people, you know, geographically kind of co-located in an inexpensive place and then the rest of your team can be distributed everywhere. Um, you can leverage, you know, an amazing style frame designer that you basically cast for a very specific look that could live, you know, somewhere in, in Asia, you could find somebody that works in the awesome scene in Australia. That's a great character designer, you know, like it's, it's definitely, I think it's as the, we get both upward and downward pressure from, from both budgets and technology and turnaround times, like it's going to become much more required. I'm even seeing a DK where I'm bringing in freelancers from everywhere, because I I'm specific almost like a casting agent where it's like, okay, I need this one, dude. That's awesome at octane for this project. And I know a really great modeler that lives in Australia and I have two awesome animators that happen to live in London, you know, like, and I'm kind of creating this like patchwork network, even at a company like digital kitchen that has, you know, a lot of resources, you know, built in into the company.
Joey Korenman (01:11:37):
Yeah. And you know, you mentioned some of the tools making all that possible. I think a frame IO deserves some credit for building such an incredible tool. And I mean, they they've been doing a lot of fundraising this year too. They, uh, they've got some lofty goals that the integration that they have now with, after effects and premiere pro is unbelievable. We're actually starting to use it because, you know, we're a totally remote company. Um, Nope, nobody but Joey lives in Florida. Um, you know, and, um, you know, Hannah who edits our podcasts and stuff, I was talking to her about doing some more editing and, um, I actually don't even know where she lives. So it's like what, you know, but it's not Florida, so how are we going to share footage? How are we going to do this? And she's like, oh, like, you know, frame IO.
Joey Korenman (01:12:18):
I mean, there's, there's, there's just, it's, it's getting pretty easy and I'm glad you brought up boards too, because, uh, you know, Animade one of my favorite studios and we're happy that boards seems to be really successful for them. Um, and then, so aside from gunner who I, I could rave about them forever. Um, also, um, ranger and Fox, I think, I mean, two, two super talented dudes, um, and they are in LA, but what I love about what they're doing is they're, they're doing the LA thing, but they're doing it small. Um, you know, it's, it's, it's Brett and I'm sorry, I'm blanking on his, uh, creative partner's name, but it's, it's just, it's two people. And, um, I think that's how they're starting. I don't think they're hiring a producer right away. They're not hiring junior artists right away. They have a tiny little, you know, space to work from.
Joey Korenman (01:13:08):
Um, and, and it's, you know, um, it feels like it's finally catching on that. That's okay. You know, you can do that and you can scale up and scale down and make a good living without the overhead of, um, you know, a place like DK, which for sure, I'm sure that's it. That is a lot of pressure. Um, you know, and, and you're still gonna, you know, ranger and Fox is still gonna compete with DK in a sense, but there's so much work, you know, so much work out there. I think they're going to do great.
Ryan Summers (01:13:36):
Yeah. W what's exciting about it is like, I, I remember coming out of school and I would have friends that were designers, graphic designers, print designers, that two dudes in a, in a, in a small office or working in an office in a larger person's office that they're kind of subleasing. Um, they were highly competitive. They could move at the speed of light. They could work anywhere, you know, like they could, they could do their work and look like a large company. And on our side, it's always been difficult to do that because of the infrastructure needs, the tools, the, the amount of people it took to do something you had to be in a place that had a lot of people available and you had to have space to put them. Um, but like stuff like pixel plow, even like, like being able to have cloud-based rendering, um, I wish someone would, would figure out the, um, kind of third party, um, plugin situation for aftereffects to kind of create that kind of, um, after effects, cloud-based rendering kind of functionality that we have everywhere else.
Ryan Summers (01:14:34):
So the cool thing about cloud-based rendering is that it just becomes a line item that you just bill to your client, right? Like, it's really difficult to tell your client that you need to buy 20 more nodes for your render farm, but it's really easy to just say, okay, well, this is part of the, the services that I have rendering service and it's whatever, five grand or 10 grand or 20 grand. And it's just something you bill against. And then you can actually put markup against that. It's something that you can actually make a profit on offering as a service to the client. And to be honest, most of the time, it's something that's just accepted. It's like, oh yeah, cool. Well, that's, you're outsourcing part of that, that it makes it a lot easier. Um, it's something that still needs to be managed. Obviously, you know, like every cloud service, isn't waiting there with a thousand machines, you know, just waiting for you to be busy. You know, it's something that you need to have redundancies and backups and, and additional throughput if you need it. But man, like if they, if somebody flips a switch and figures out a way to kind of conveniently upload all the footage that you're using for your after effects project and manage all the plug-in kind of pricing and all that stuff, like after effects, cloud rendering mixed with cinema 4d cloud rendering, it changes the game completely.
Joey Korenman (01:15:36):
Totally. I've been using cloud rendering with cinema 4d for years now. I mean, when we, you know, when I was running a studio, we built a small render farm and it costs, you know, 20 grand, uh, and you gotta manage it and you gotta deal with all the headaches and rebooting. And then all of a sudden it's like, oh, you can use Rebus farm. And for a hundred bucks, you can render on a hundred machines and the things done in an hour. It's like, it just, I think for 3d it's, it's a little easier because of the file sizes, because you're generally not dealing with footage. Um, you know, I mean, it's, I feel like all it's gonna take is the right, you know, the right developer. Um, I don't know what she's working on next, but that to put that bug in his ear because yeah, exactly.
Joey Korenman (01:16:22):
You know, what, they got the, they got the cash. So, but, um, no, I mean, you know, the cloud rendering is one of those things. That's like, I keep waiting for it to just be the standard thing everyone does and it's not yet. Um, and I think it's because of all the reasons you mentioned, I mean, with after effects, there's just so many moving parts, fonts, files, video footage that can be enormous, um, plugins with different licensing and this plug and you have to buy a full license. This one, you can get a render license and all that kind of stuff. Um, but I don't know. I mean, I feel like there's enough work that, you know, whoever gets there first is gonna gonna have a pretty sweet payday when they release a product. Definitely. Um, all right. Let's talk about one more studio, which is brand new and it's just kinda like ranger and Fox.
Joey Korenman (01:17:08):
It's two people, it's Igor and Valentine and they just launched. And it's one of my, one of my favorite artists to follow on Twitter and dribble is David Stanfield because he's like the nicest guy ever. And he's just like super humble and really talented. Um, and he and his buddy, I want to say, Matt Smithson, I'm going to look it up while we're looking right now. Yep. Got it. And they launched this thing, Igor and Valentine, and you go look at it and it's like, okay, they're going to be super successful. And probably pretty quickly, I think they were both already successful freelancers. Um, but I know the reason I wanted to mention them is because this model of small boutique curated studio with low overhead and, you know, uh, David's in South Carolina, I think, I don't know where Matt is. Um, I think that, you know, this is going to become very normal to have lots and lots of little studios and maybe they work together and it kind of leads into my next point, which is that freelancing seems to be exploding this year. Um, but, but yeah, I mean, what do you think about that? Do you think that like these little studios are kind of going to start to be more and more prevalent or is there still a place for the big legacy studio? Yeah.
Ryan Summers (01:18:22):
Um, I think, I think you will have a couple large legacy studios. Like I don't know which ones they'll be. I don't know. I mean, very honestly, like, I don't know if there's a place for a bunch of digital kitchens in the next five to 10 years or imaginary forces, not saying those studios are going to go away, but that size of multi, multi office, 50 to a hundred people with full service clients, you know, client, people, account people, production, live action, animation CG. Um, I think there will be some, I think that there's a certain amount of trust from big, big agencies or big brands that when they have a large project with a huge ad spend and very specific turnaround times that they will go to those for their kind of bread and butter jobs that they know they have, you know, a big spend and they need to get it done at a certain time.
Ryan Summers (01:19:11):
Sure. I think, I think a lot of those companies though will actually disappear. And I think in their stead, you'll see two man shops that turned into five demand shops that turned into 10 man shops. But I also think that you're going to see a high attrition rate from these smaller shops as well. The hard thing with these things is maintaining, um, momentum, maintaining the volume of work you need. I think a place like eager and balancing or ranger and Fox, as long as I say to people, I think that there'll be fine. I think a company like that will always with people that are that talented, that know how to work professionally that know how to handle clients will always find work. The temptation is going to be to grow. And when they grow from two to five, that's fine. When they get past seven and they all of a sudden need two producers and they find out they needed an account person and that overhead starts getting bigger and they have to move to a slightly bigger office there that, that like small, but not too people shop is you're going to lose a lot of these because the temptation is so strong.
Ryan Summers (01:20:10):
If you're billing two and a half million dollars a year and it's between two people and you think, well, I could get to 10. If I add one more person, the temptation is to go to five and get to 20 or whatever crazy numbers it's going to be. Right. That's the part where it gets really difficult. I think if these guys can, can maintain their size and maintain their initial, if the initial goal is to make beautiful art and work in a non, um, non corporate environment and have a way to maintain quality of life, if that's the true goal, then you stay two people, three people with a bunch of freelancers it'll work. But if all of a sudden you see the cash and you start going for the grab, that's where I think you're going to see them fall off.
Joey Korenman (01:20:52):
That's a really good point. I I'm interested to see, I think that a, I mean, I can definitely appreciate the sentiment of if you're doing good work, there's a lot of pressure to grow. Um, you know, if your, if your company's doing well, it wants to grow with, or without you, sometimes it feels like, yeah, it's interesting. I think, you know, I think that companies like DK in the mill and, and buck, I mean, there's, there's always a place for that. You know, I mean, you look at the type of work the mill does, for example, you can't do that with two people and a couple IMX, you know, there is a level at which you do need the big guns. Um, and then on the low end, you know, Igor and Valentine or Valentin, I don't know if I'm saying it wrong, but, uh, you know, they can do probably 10 to $20,000 jobs and crush it all day long and both of them can, can do really well. And then there's the middle, the middle road. And that's where I think things are getting kind of dicing. You know, I talked about this with Christo on this podcast, you know, uh, he was very honest about what, where he thinks it's all going in blind. His studio is right in that middle ground. It's in that no man's land, it's big enough to be really expensive to run, but it's not big enough to be able to, you know?
Ryan Summers (01:22:06):
Joey Korenman (01:22:07):
It's just it's. And, and so that, you know, it's interesting, and I think that for the individual motion designer, uh, there's a ton of opportunity right now. And a lot of it seems to be freelance. Freelance seems to be catching on, in a big way this year. And I have absolute confirmation bias because I wrote a book about it that came out this year. Um, but, uh, you know, also there, there seems to be this, like, there's something in the air, you know, like Saunder Vandyke just released a freelance course. Um, Christo, uh, you know, the future stuff is amazing and it's a ton of it's business-based um, on Nick's podcast, grace podcast, they talk about the business all the time. Um, and it just seems like a lot of people are starting to catch on. It's not like a secret anymore. So as someone who's having to hire freelancers all the time, are you seeing any trends there?
Ryan Summers (01:22:58):
Yeah. Um, I definitely, I definitely see a lot more people wanting to be freelance. Um, particularly the Midwest though. I see a lot of freelancers who, I dunno, I've, I've noticed this thing where a lot of people call themselves generalists, but it just means that they're not good at any one thing. If that makes sense. It's kind of harsh to say it, but like I look at, I look at being, being a generalist is actually a specialty, right? Like I come from being an LA, when I was hiring a generalist, I was hiring someone who could, I could basically give them the creative brief. And if it was a small enough job, they would basically go away for two weeks and come back and hand me something nearly finished. And I maybe have one more cycle, but a generalist meant they could handle everything, right?
Ryan Summers (01:23:41):
Like they could storyboard, they could probably put together an edit or a previous. They knew all the technical problems that were going to stop them from being able to finish it. And they had a great artistic mind, as well as the technical to be able to kind of see the bigger picture while they're really down at the nuts and bolts level. And then they get to come up for air. Talk to me, get a little course, correction, finish the project. But what I'm seeing now here in Chicago is that a lot of people are generalists are basically junior artists, but they just call themselves generalists. They don't realize that like generalist is as much of a specialty as the guy. Who's a Houdini VFX artist or the guy who's an amazing character animation rigger, who they are tradition considered specialists. So I think there's a lot of freelancers.
Ryan Summers (01:24:22):
Um, I think that there's a lot of like very difficult to use freelancers that still need like a lot of seasoning. Um, the other thing I'm seeing, or I think is like a spot that's missing as more and more people come freelancers is like, we're talking about tools, right? Like there's a proliferation of tools for artists. I feel like there's very little infrastructure or tools or services for the freelance artists. Right. And I'm really surprised that in the kind of like world where people are trying to make a living doing Uber or doing Lyft, or trying to do a little bit of freelance here and a little bit of something else there, that there aren't many tools or services or agencies or networks that are really helping kind of facilitate freelance. I think that's the next growth explosion is that we're going to see a lot more like app driven things, a lot more small venture funded startups to try to enable people who are doing freelancing to do it better. Like there's no good system for me to schedule freelancers. There's no, no network. There's no way to tap into it.
Joey Korenman (01:25:20):
So I'm going, I'm going to drop a bombshell here. It's not really, no one's gonna care yet. Uh, school motion in 2018, early 2018, we will be launching a jobs board and a jobs board is not a big deal. Um, but we've, I've been talking to a lot of people like Yuran and, and asking them about this. Um, and that is the number one pain point that people say every single time, how do I manage availability of freelancers? It is hell on earth. No one has figured it out yet. Um, and we're very lucky now that we have a developer team working on our site, you know, around the clock and, and, and we are going to take a run at it. We're going to try
Ryan Summers (01:26:01):
So many people have
Joey Korenman (01:26:01):
Tried. Yeah, we're going to, we're going to try me. We're going to start small. We're going to start with, uh, you know, basically just trying to help our help our alumni get gigs. But also there is from my perspective, and then I'm not in the industry like you are anymore, but there's an inventory problem. Um, you know, it's, it's, um, it's a logistics thing. There is plenty of inventory, but no one knows where it is. No one knows how much of it there is, it seems like the kind of problem that could be solved there. Sites like working, not working that sort of attempted to do this, but we can talk, I'll do a whole episode about that, why that didn't work. Um, so we're going to take a run at that, but I, that was one of the things I wanted to bring up on this conversation
Ryan Summers (01:26:40):
Was I feel like you're right. There is, there is some idea that has not yet been tried or, or hasn't been executed successfully. I've when I was running toil in Boston, we worked with, um, you know, sort of freelance referral, um, companies. And they were based out of New York and focused on after effects, artists and designers. Um, and, and in theory, that should solve the problem. Right? You call them, you are guaranteed to get a freelancer. You can book. And the price is the same. Cause they, they generally have the freelancer pay the fee. Um, but in practice it just doesn't work because there's a lot of problems, you know? How do you vet them? The vet. Yeah, exactly. That's why, that's why it's such a squishy kind of, kind of like medium gray issue. Right. Cause it's like, really, all I have is I can call you Jerry and be like, Hey, do you know somebody who might be able to do something like these two jobs that's available now that might be in the Midwest and like you have a network or a Rolodex, but like, when you tell me when I call you and you say, yeah, I got a guy I trusted, right.
Ryan Summers (01:27:41):
Because I trust you and I trust your taste. Right. And I trust that, you know, the people who you're talking about, that's so rare to actually find it. Like everybody has their two or three people, they help, or they have their little networks. But when it's on a larger scale, there's so few like people that you trust that can provide value. You know, when you're like, I need someone. And another problem is systemic. The industry is most of the time I need someone, I need someone yesterday and I don't want, I don't know how long I need them for either. Right? Like it could be three days, but if we win the job, it could be three months, you know, like it, there's no way to know.
Joey Korenman (01:28:14):
It's a, it's a big problem in them. You know, we're gonna, we're gonna put our heads together and we've got some ideas about how we might be able to make that a little bit easier for everybody. Um, awesome. But it's a real problem. I mean, everyone has this problem. Uh, let's talk about, you know, a topic very near and dear to me, which is motion, design education, you know what I mean? It's, it's really, it's amazing, dude. Like, you know, if you think 10 years ago the offerings that were out there, not, not just online, but also just in terms of like places like Ringling and SCAD and hyper island and, you know, and, and then there was sort of an explosion, um, you know, probably starting with video copilot and then Greyscalegorilla, and, and, and you know, now with us in the future, I mean, there's a lot of good stuff out there now.
Joey Korenman (01:29:02):
Um, so I just kind of wanted to hit some of the highlights. Um, you know, we've been, we've launched multiple courses this year. Uh, we relaunched our website, we've done a lot of stuff. Um, and the future, uh, I gotta say that they have impressed the hell out of me, man. I'm a big Cristo fan and they hit like 200,000 subs on YouTube this year. Um, you know, Christo is a certifiable celebrity at this point. Um, when I see him in Vegas, I'm probably gonna have to talk to his people before it's up to him. Um, but yeah, but with some of the other things that I want to point out are, uh, grayscale gorilla podcast, um, has gotten really, really good this year. I've really enjoyed listening to those guys. Um, and, uh, animal eaters also has been awesome. They're, they're kind of on hiatus right now.
Joey Korenman (01:29:46):
I think they're coming back next year. Um, but Zach and the team over there, amazing and motion hatch is a brand new one, um, which I'm super excited about because, uh, Haley who's running it a, um, thank goodness. There's like some more female voices kind of, you know, coming out in public and, and, and leading the charge. But also she's focusing on the business end of motion design, which, which I think is really, really important. Um, yeah. And MoGraph mentor is still going strong, man. Are you still, uh, are you still involved in educating the future of motion design?
Ryan Summers (01:30:19):
I took, I took the year off just because you're moving to Chicago and then jumping into a CD position, especially at a company that was basically kind of, at least in our office restarting our, our kind of artist's development. Um, I kind of took the effort that it would have been doing at MoGraph mentor and kind of put it into here, but I, I'm probably going to, I'm probably gonna try to find some time next year to do a semester or two. Um, I still, I'm still in touch with Michael Jones all the time. We talk about the program. I'm always talking to all the mentors that are there to, you know, help kind of adjust or look at the way they're doing stuff. Um, I definitely want to, I actually looked into teaching. I looked into teaching in brick and mortar schools back in Chicago.
Ryan Summers (01:30:57):
I went to some of the old schools I used to teach at. And man, I, I have to tell you, it was so such an unappealing venture compared to, you know, the possibilities of going back to MoGraph mentor doing something with school of motion. Um, it was depressing like looking at the state of the programs, looking even at the, at the student body, at the work that they're putting out, the kind of like lack of awareness of the greater motion graphics community and the resources. It was, it was shocking to me. I like I kind of was blown away that, you know, when I left Chicago eight years ago, now I was teaching. And when I came back, I'm shocked at the prices they're charging versus the value you're getting. I would never send anyone if somebody was a teenager and they asked me, should I go to Columbia or should I go to the AI schools?
Ryan Summers (01:31:45):
You know, at least the places we have in Chicago, I would steadfastly push them to go totally the opposite direction. I'd say, get a good machine, get some subscriptions to some of the, the, the software sign up for, you know, MoGraph mentor, sign up for school of motion, start watching the future, start your networking, start developing stuff and get a part-time job while you're doing it. Because I just don't see how 60 to $80,000, unless they're going to like art center or you're going to hyper island. Like if you're going to one of the top three or four schools, it's still a roll the dice in terms of risk versus reward. But man, if you're not going to one of the top, top 10% schools, there's so much more available and so much more networking that you can do at a much wider scale, just online and getting out there.
Joey Korenman (01:32:32):
I can't wait to see this, you know, I've, I've talked a lot about that. Exactly what you just said and that I, you know, we don't have to like beat the dead horse here, but I think, I don't know, in the next five years, I think, uh, you're going to see a shift in the way people think about learning in general, especially in the United States where, you know, and you know, if you, if, if you live in, um, in a, is it Switzerland or Sweden where hyper island is, if you live there Sweden, right? Yeah. So if you're in Sweden, if you're a Swedish citizen, I believe hyper island doesn't cost you anything because your taxes pay for it. Right? So totally different calculus there. If you live in a country where you can go to art school for, you know, four years and come out and oh, 10 grand, totally different calculus. If you live in the United States and it's going to cost you 200,000, for that education,
Ryan Summers (01:33:28):
You could start a studio for $200,000 people to teach you, right? Like for 200 grand, you could literally be like, I'm going to start a little company that makes explainer videos and hire three dudes to be full-time here, whatever, or whatever, to PR to freelance with me and learn while I'm making product, like $200,000 is insane.
Joey Korenman (01:33:47):
You could like, you could rent a suite apartment on the beach and hire Ryan Summers full-time for a year to come teach you for growing it up.
Ryan Summers (01:33:59):
I would do it in a heartbeat.
Joey Korenman (01:34:01):
Okay. So, so, and so I'll, I'll close this part of the conversation with this. I, you know, w we have so many courses on deck for 2018, uh, as Ryan Summers knows wink, wink, and, uh, I, you know, we're going to keep expanding our, our curriculum. Um, I know MoGraph mentor is too. I know Chris is, and, you know, Michael Jones, uh, he is going to be on this podcast, I think in two or three episodes. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Ryan Summers (01:34:30):
Joey Korenman (01:34:30):
He's another one of my favorite people and he's got some really cool stuff going on that he talks about when the interview is done, it's in the, can we haven't released it yet, but yeah, you'll, everyone will get to hear about that. He's got, he's a smart guy. He's got some good ideas. Um, alright. Uh, so there's a couple more things I want to talk about. I wanted to talk about sort of the, you know, there's still live events in motion design, even as everything kind of moves online, I still love going to events. And so, um, you know, blend part to happen this year. It was I'm sorry, Ryan. Cause you missed it, but it was, uh, I mean, I gotta tell you everyone who was there said the same thing. It was something special. It was inspiring. It was incredible. It was exhausting. Cause it just, there was so much, you never stopped talking and meeting people. Um, if they do another one, Ryan, you definitely have to go up.
Ryan Summers (01:35:20):
Yeah. I, if I have to quit my job, I will go to it. Not because of work.
Joey Korenman (01:35:25):
Yeah. Yeah. It'd be worth it. It's the event. And I guarantee everyone listening. Next time it goes on sale. This time it sold out. I want to say in like, I don't know, like five or six hours. It's
Ryan Summers (01:35:36):
Two in the morning and buy my ticket.
Joey Korenman (01:35:38):
Yeah. Yeah. It sold out near instantly. Uh, this time it will be instantly. I promise you, it will be gone. It'll be like a Taylor swift concert. All right. Yeah. Yep. All right. Let's talk about NAB. Um, cause you and I met for the first time in person there last year, I'm going again, I'm going to be teaching at post production world. Um, and NAB's is an interesting one because it used to be so relevant to our industry and it still is, but less. So I'm curious what your thoughts are on nav.
Ryan Summers (01:36:05):
I still dig NAB mostly think thanks to Paul Babb. I, I, I think if it wasn't for max on having that amazing anchor of a booth where they've invited the third party devs, where they, they always bring such a great group of people, the NAB and seagrass, but NAB, especially, um, that that's just an anchor that kind of radiates outward. Um, the Adobe Adobe booth, I think actually the last couple of years has gotten a little bit better. It's gotten a little bit to me, a little bit more motion, graphics friendly. Um, but if I ever heard that Maxim, wasn't going to be there. I would never go, but it's still, I still have a lot of connections to kind of like the visual effects world. And it still becomes that kind of like yearly kind of a high school reunion of, of, you know, I probably go on to seven or eight of them in a row.
Ryan Summers (01:36:51):
Um, it's still kind of a sentimentally. It's the place I went where I didn't know cinema and I decided I was going to learn it. And then the next year I came back and I was on stage talking like it still is a special place for me. Um, I I've never really been a part of post-production world. I might, I might be doing something next year for it. Um, I I'm surprised by how little of a, of a draw or, or a buzz there is about PPW in the motion graphics community. I know Christo was there last year. I went and talked about a feature film. I did visual effects for, but just looking at the lineup, I was surprised how kind of like editing and photography heavy. It was, and it wasn't really motion graphics. So I think there's an opportunity there. Um, I honestly personally feel like they should fold Adobe video world into NAB because this year's ABW, I'm sorry to say was, was a huge bummer, a huge disappointment for me.
Ryan Summers (01:37:44):
I was a speaker. I did I think three, three different talks. Um, and it just, there was no energy. There was no buzz, a lot of the Adobe team that normally would be there. Wasn't um, I don't know if there's an experiment in here, but something just felt really off, um, for ABW, um, which is a bummer because the first time I went that also felt like it was like the kind of beating heart of, of motion graphics industry. And there was some excitement, but yeah, I feel like NAB is a, is an opportunity for someone in the motion graphics community to kind of take advantage of,
Joey Korenman (01:38:16):
Yeah. I'm bummed to hear that I didn't go to AVW this year, but I did the previous year and I loved it. It was, it was so much fun. And um, yeah, that's, that's a bummer and hopefully that hopefully that picks back up cause that's a great, that's a great conference to learn stuff in like little groups. Now I'll talk about, you brought up a good point, which is that post-production world at NAB and for anyone listening post-production world is sort of the training part of NAB. You can buy a pass and they have a ton of amazing, um, you know, instructors and presentations and, um, I'll be there this year. Chris will be there. Um, uh, Ron stern, um, uh, Louisa winters, I mean a lot, a lot of really great presenters, uh, but it is clearly very geared towards the sort of editor, you know, after effects artists more than and shooter more than the true motion designer.
Joey Korenman (01:39:10):
And this actually brings up something about NAB that I think is really important. And, and, um, you, you, you brought up Paul Babb, the Maxon booth. It goes without saying that that is the place to hang out. Um, I mean, what, what Paul has managed to do with that booth blows my mind, um, and he's the nicest guy ever, uh, but NAB really shoves it in your face and it hits home in a big, big way, how huge this industry is and how tiny a piece of it motion design is. And I think that that's important for people to grasp because it speaks to a lot of the, you know, we kind of talked earlier in this conversation, right about, you know, things we wish that Adobe would do this and that. Um, I think it's, uh, it's always good to have some perspective, you know, the Maxon booth is the center of the universe, as far as motion design goes at NAB.
Joey Korenman (01:40:03):
And it is like a tiny blip in a sea of $5 million boots from companies you've never heard of. I mean, there are editing systems they're being demoed that I've never heard of that edit in eight K and they cost a million dollars and there's a long line of dudes wearing suits to buy them and you see that and you're like, oh, well, yeah, that, yeah. You know, but I like cinema 40 and you look over and it's like, okay, there's like a couple hundred people hanging around there, but it's just such a small piece. And I think that just, just witnessing that bearing witness to it is kind of like a Rite of passage for anyone in this industry. You know,
Ryan Summers (01:40:44):
Like every time I'm like, why, why isn't Adobe read the curve editor it's so old, like, couldn't you just make it like cinema. And then I count how many people are selling color control surfaces for edit suites. Like it's like there, there's probably 10 times as many people looking at little track balls for doing color correction. And then there are that know, even know what after effects is at NAB. And it's definitely a stark reminder that like the people at Adobe have to find a way to balance that no matter how loud we might be or how much we might be bitter old people complaining about things like are our voices a very small drop in the water compared to, if you really realize after effects in a lot of ways is basically an add on plugin for, for premiere.
Joey Korenman (01:41:25):
Yeah. I mean, you know, I, I don't think Adobe would pitch it quite that way, but in terms of like the market share and, and just the size of our audience versus the, the global postproduction audience, um, I mean, it's, it's like a drop in a giant swimming pool. Um, anyway, so, uh, I'll leave that section by saying this go to events, even though it may seem weird an anachronism or something to go to a live thing now, um, it's just so much fun. It's like you said, it's almost like going to summer camp and having a reunion and there's always neat little events there. There's the Mo um, you know, the media motion ball. Um, we had a
Ryan Summers (01:42:05):
Joey Korenman (01:42:06):
Yeah. The Superman is crazy. It's like going to a Tony Robbins, you know, date with destiny or something. And, and, uh, w just with geeks and editors and, and, you know, we had, there was a ton of school of emotion alumni there last year. We had a big meetup with the grayscale gorilla team and th there's, there's a reason to go. So if you can swing it, get your butt to Vegas. Um, I want to end this episode by talking about just a few other things that, um, that happened this year that were kind of noteworthy little trends. Um, I want to give a shout out to people cause he hit 10 years of every everyday is this year, which, you know, we had, we kind of were down on the everyday thing a little bit earlier in this conversation, but people is sort of the Mo the, the reason that they're so popular and he's also doing them for himself, you know, like he puts them out publicly and it's been good for him, but it's,
Ryan Summers (01:42:54):
It's ridiculous. And the fact that in fact that the guy shares a lot of his stuff. Like I remember when was it people that did like ordinary machines and he just like, here's all the files you guys just mess with them. And I've seen that stuff. I've seen that stuff show up in so many YouTube videos where people have adjusted the edge. It's like, yeah. Like, like what a one of a kind dude, like there's no one else like him.
Joey Korenman (01:43:13):
Yeah. And he was at the max on booth last year, everybody. So if you want to get a people setting, um, you know, that's, that's the place to go. All right. So, um, one trend that we definitely saw this year was a lot of people bailing from max and switching to PCs because you just get more bang for your buck on, on a PC, frankly, but now apple has released the iMac pro and, um, they they've said that they're working on a new Mac pro to come out in 2018. Uh, how do you feel about the, the Mac versus PC thing?
Ryan Summers (01:43:45):
I have no skin in the game in terms of like emotional connection. Like I I've been a PC person just because what I was introduced to I've used max all the time in LA. I was always on a Mac. Um, when I was at IMF, I brought in a PC just to kind of like show people the power of octane when it was like version 1.0. Um, I think if, if what apple is doing or should be scheduled to do in 2018 was happening in 2017, I think they would have stemmed the tide dramatically. I think if this modular Mac pro would have come out in February, 2017, a lot of people were kind of on the fence and not really sure even if it didn't ship with an Nvidia option at launch, they would've seen like, oh, here's the thing that I can kind of, you know, treat like my cheese grater.
Ryan Summers (01:44:28):
It's going to last for five or six years before I have to upgrade. But when I do have to upgrade, I could get another two or three years out of it and it's going to be elegant. It'll be powerful. It'll be trustworthy. It'll have the OS that I, for whatever reason love, um, and can't leave. Um, but I think that like the fact that it's taken this long and that people, so many people have seen the possibilities of, oh, I can build a PC for a couple of grand and be way more powerful. And if something breaks I can upgrade with the next newest thing. Um, and then there's other people like Chad are built, like, you know, a pretty beefy rig that they're gonna work with for the next four or five years. And any time they're just going to take their GPS out and just slot them back in, um, the whole Nvidia thing, I think, as people are jumping on GPU, as we start seeing, even after effects really relying on GPU, um, I think that's a really hard tide to turn.
Ryan Summers (01:45:22):
I know that there's EGP support coming in the newest version of the macro S uh, but there's still that ATI versus, you know, versus invidious situation. My bigger problem is I, as a professional, I don't trust apple at all to have the best interest of professional artists in mind. And there's been so much history of what they did with the servers, what they did with final cut, what they did with lot, what they've done with so many, uh, even like shake and motion, you know, there's these huge initiatives like we're going to destroy the visual effects industry and take it over, or we're going to destroy after effects with motion. And then it just literally disappears with no fanfare. A couple of years later, like I'm frightened. If I had to start a studio in investing in a company that doesn't value me and doesn't have any transparency into what their future plans are.
Joey Korenman (01:46:08):
That's interesting. See, I I'm, I'm a dyed in the wall, apple fan boy, I can't imagine, like, I, I feel like if I had to buy a computer right now, I probably would just get a PC because, you know, if I'm going to spend five grand on an iMac pro I can get a pretty beefy PC for that too. Um, but I don't know. I, I see, I think that there's a lot of people like me with this sort of sunk cost mentality about apple. Like I, you know, I really do love working on apple computers. Like I, I get them, you know, and, and I understand them at a really high level now because that's all I've used and to switch to a PC even. I mean, we have an article on our site explaining how to switch to a PC, but it still me like the thought of it.
Joey Korenman (01:46:51):
And it's kind of a rational, and I understand that, but, um, I think there's enough people like me out there to prop up the, uh, the design, the pro design community as far as apple is concerned. Um, and, and frankly, you know, the amount of money that they make selling iMac pros is probably a rounding error compared to what they make selling iPads and iPhones. So I, you know, I think it, it's, it kind of rings a little bit like, you know, the way that I imagine Adobe has to look at things where here's this very vocal PR you know, user group that uses this app, and they keep saying, we want this, we want this one about this. The other 95% of our customers don't need that. I'm an apple, like, you know, 95% of their customers are, are probably way higher are using their phones. Uh, and, and aren't doing after effects is I like that. So, you know what, I don't think 2018 is going to solve the IMF. I mean, the apple versus PC, um, dilemma, I think it's, it's going to continue forever, but, um, it'll be interesting to see if there's parody eventually with at least, uh, capability in terms of GPU's and stuff like that. Yeah.
Ryan Summers (01:47:57):
I think let's just see what happens with the module. The thing is the people who will never, never leave apple, there's nothing that can happen on the windows side that would get them to leave apple. And I think that the people in charge of the pro side of, of Apple's efforts know that, and I feel like they've probably leveraged that, that sentiment for as long as they possibly could. And I think they, I mean, they, they went out of their way to say that they made a mistake with the trashcan Mac pro. So I think like, let's see what happens with the modular one. I think there's people who their confidence and comfort with the OS, uh, trumps the fact that they're going to spend two to $3,000 more than a, an equally powerful PC. And they're fine with that. And I, I don't think that's, like you said, there's people who that's never going to change.
Ryan Summers (01:48:39):
I think 2018 could be a really great year for those people, because I think the modular Mac pro is going to be basically the new cheese grater for the next 10 years. And it's going to be what everybody wanted. No one wanted that, that trashcan. And I, I think there'll be admitted. I think they'll, they'll make something really awesome. Um, it's just going to be a case of how many I've seen people who I never thought we would try a PC, try it, and then go and build their own machine. So I it's definitely, it's more fluid than I thought it would be, but I also think there's people who just they'll get what they need this year and that'll be good for them.
Joey Korenman (01:49:11):
Yeah. Well, we'll see you next year might be the year that Joey has a PC, we'll find out we'll find out. Um, all right, cool. A couple of other things, um, you know, I wrote a guest post for Motionographer earlier this year called too old, too old for MoGraph. And it was sort of about the idea that, you know, we're, we're in a young industry and there's not a lot of models around us for what does a 48 year old after effects artists, you know, look like, and what do they do? And what's their life like and all that kind of stuff. Right. How little hair do they have? Yeah. Right. I think that, that article, at least, you know, from my perspective, it, um, and there was a post about it on mixed parts. It brought up a lot of, a lot of people feeling the same way, and then think, goodness, a lot of older artists kind of coming out of the woodwork while actually I'm in my fifties and I'm still freelancing and Hey, I'm, you know, I just turned 45 and, you know, I only worked like 30 hours a week and took my kids.
Joey Korenman (01:50:05):
I mean, and, and, and so it, it made it very clear to me that the industry's maturing, um, this, you know, very clearly now can be a lifelong career. And there's like so many more options popping up with how you can do it too. So for me personally, I feel super comfortable saying that motion design is, is, this was a big year of maturing for motion design. It doesn't feel the way it did at all in 2003, 2004, where it was like the wild west. Right. Kind of feels legit now to me.
Ryan Summers (01:50:36):
Yeah, no, I agree. I think, I think like it's kind of good that we're almost ending on this because I think this is like a summation of a lot of the stuff we've been talking about, that there there's the, the disintermediation from having to be in the most expensive places in the world to do the work. There's the tools that allow you to have the freedom either to live, where you want to work, where you want, or to find a way to diversify yourself. Like you could be a freelancer who has two junior level people that are helping you do work to kind of increase your kind of like work life balance. Um, I think Chad in your article actually said something, um, that I think is a pressure. A lot of us are feeling as we get older, that there needs to be a decoupling of how much you make and how far you get away from doing art.
Ryan Summers (01:51:21):
Um, I think that there's been this kind of like career trajectory where just as soon as you get really good at what you do, you have to stop doing it. If you want to keep the amount of money you're making increasing, um, there's a lot of I'm firsthand at this. There's a lot of people who are not built or, or meant to be creative directors or art directors in those positions because they have to be because to keep making more money, to have a family, to have a home, they have to increase their, their wages increase, their salaries, increase their rates. But the only way to do that is to basically stop being an artist and become a manager. Um, I think that we will see more and more people finding other options, whether it's starting a small company, start doing training, start making product, you know, there are more, like you said, there are more options and more, more trajectories than there ever used to be for, for motion graphics artist.
Ryan Summers (01:52:08):
The other thing is there's so many more, I hate even calling them screens anymore. There's so many more canvases that are out there for people to, to show their work or demonstrate their work and make money on that. That's only w we are at the tip tip tip of AR and VR and Mr. And real-time and gaming. You just mentioned animal enters. Um, those guys just took some time out and made a game, shipped a game, you know, like th there's so much that our skill sets and our ability to tell story and our ability to create beautiful design that creates emotion that makes, takes people's emotion and actually makes them go do something that, um, that, that is really what we do and that skill and that ability is going to be needed by so many more companies by so many more people. Um, that, yeah, I think there's definitely, it's not just a come in, sit down at nine o'clock and go home at eight. O'clock just cranking out after effects, animations anymore. There's a lot more options for people
Joey Korenman (01:53:02):
That was really beautifully put man. And I think that, you know, this has been an awesome year for motion design. I think next year is going to be an even better one. And Ryan, I just want to say, thanks for hanging out for man, like nearly two hours. I think we've been talking about MoGraph and I have no doubt we could do another two if we, uh, if I didn't have to run home and let the contract,
Ryan Summers (01:53:24):
Well, let's do it. Let's do it again at the end of 2018. Let's see if anything. We, uh, we actually said actually it was true.
Joey Korenman (01:53:29):
Absolutely. But I want to say, thanks for doing this. Thanks for everyone listening and a happy new year. Everybody, are you still there? That was a long episode, but Hey, a lot happened. So, you know, it took a while to get through it all. Listen, thank you so much for being a part of the school of motion community. Even if you've never actually been to our site, which you should, by the way, it means so much that you take the time to listen to our podcasts. And I really, truly hope that we can be an even better resource for you in 2018 happy new year. Everybody see you next year.