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February 17, 2021

New York Film Academy (NYFA) welcomed Evercoast’s BEN NUNEZ and SEBASTIAN MARINO as part of The 20/20 Series, created by NYFA’s Creative Director of Filmmaking and Cinematography, Liz Hinlein. The conversation was moderated by Hinlein and was held virtually, allowing individuals to join NYFA and the special guests from all over the world.

The 20/20 Series, created by Hinlein, is a virtual pop-up event that takes us into the homes, hubs, and workspaces of an array of dynamic creative visionaries to allow for relaxed, engaging conversations on craft, creation and artistic vision.

(Clockwise) Liz Hinlein, Ben Nunez, and Sebastian Marino for The 20/20 Series

Ben Nunez and Sebastian Marino both work at Evercoast, a volumetric capture service provider. Evercoast provides high-quality, cost-effective volumetric capture, rendering, and streaming platform, turning people into 3D holograms in full motion for both live and recorded volumetric content. Some of their clients include Verizon, Comcast, WarnerMedia, NBCU, Intel, and others.

In a world where motion capture is the standard in animation technology for big-budget films, Evercoast’ Nunez and Marino are helping to usher in a new era of volumetric capture, a cost-effective and more accessible method of producing animation results. The difference between motion capture and volumetric capture depends on what is being tracked to be transformed into what the audience ends up seeing on the screen.

“Motion capture is a process of animation results of a character being tracked and it’s typically used for creature effects,” shared Marino. “Volumetric capture captures the actor in 3D.”

Hinlein urged both Marino and Nunez to share what about volumetric capture is so exciting and important for all kinds of creatives and storytellers who may use this method in the future. “It’s such an interesting space,” Marino began. “We think of film being the center of the world, but it is not when it comes to tech. It directly captures the subject. If you want to motion capture a character, you have to model that character and rig them and there is a ton of pre and post-production. volumetric capture is almost immediate.”

Recording for volumetric capture (Evercoast)

While volumetric capture can be applied almost immediately for an on-hand 3D asset, Marino noted it is still a difficult process to edit, which is, presently, one of the only drawbacks with the technology.

“Volumetric capture is not just for VR, it’s for everything including your mobile phone,” revealed Nunez. “Our whole world is going from 2D to 3D. It’s how our eyes see and it’s how we want to consume content.” Marino agreed and added that this technology is also becoming more accessible. “The cameras that we use cost on average $200 - $300 each. To do what we do at a small cost is enabling content creators all over the world.”

But who is already using this technology? Nunez and Marino explained that a mix of all kinds of industries are jumping on the volumetric capture bandwagon and producing innovative use cases from 3D telecommunication and 3D concerts to hospitals training doctors how to perform surgery. At the least, the technology can also be used as a way for creators to produce an essential pre-visualization for a full concept.

Actor Deepak Chopra in a use case for volumetric capture (Evercoast)

In the future, both Nunez and Marino urge the public to be ready to see this technology in more of everyday life as more companies are beginning to adopt this technology and innovate across industries to provide a whole new world of entertainment and communication experiences.

New York Film Academy would like to thank Evercoast’s Ben Nunez and Sebastian Marino for joining the NYFA global community to discuss volumetric capture for The 20/20 Series, created by and moderated by Liz Hinlein.

These guests are not faculty and do not teach at NYFA, but they have appeared to share their stories and experience with our students. As guest speakers are scheduled based on their availability, NYFA cannot guarantee whether a guest speaker will visit during a student’s attendance or who that guest speaker may be. This guest speaker forum is not part of any NYFA curriculum and attendance at guest speaker events is purely voluntary. Students should be aware that guest speaker events do not represent a job opportunity nor are they intended to provide industry connections.

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