While the demise of theaters has been foretold, we keep coming back for more. Movie studios have upped their games to keep audiences returning to the big screen. The Oscars are not just about rewarding the hard work of the red-carpet starlets, but about bringing wider recognition to those mastering their arts behind the scenes.
No matter what industry you are in, operations has slow and busy time periods. Using cloud computing in peak demand periods is proving to be an easy alternative to renting temporary servers or even permanent data center expansions.
One example of this is in the making of movies. In post-production environments, demand for rendering nodes can fluctuate greatly. Projects come in spurts and these studios must ramp up quickly to meet deadlines and keep artists working. When the project is over, the ability to ramp down is almost as important. They can avoid not only the cost of the nodes, but also free up space and eliminate overhead costs associated with IT systems.
Specialty VFX Shops Bring Stories to Life Using Cloud Infrastructure
When it comes to animation and VFX, Europe’s powerhouse is the United Kingdom. But in 2016, France, as well as other countries like Belgium and Spain, have been making strides to become more competitive. The threat in the UK has been attributed to “severe skill shortage” and “insufficient government support” as far back as 2012 as noted in this Wired article.
If you are in charge of IT, moves to new office locations mean more than packing up some pens and a stapler, gathering your photo frames and favorite poster from the wall and hauling out. Moving servers and storage isn’t easy and allowing for their unique requirements in the new office space can cause more than a few grumbles from office mates and space planners. And even after you find a place to accommodate what you have, do you have room to allow for growth?
Once you understand the ease of adopting cloud computing connected to your on-prem storage (cloud bursting), most people ask about the cost and begin to compare service charges with either renting or buying the equivalent capacity in order to get the same quantity of work done in the same amount of time. Determining how to approach cost justifications seems straight forward, but crucial considerations are easily missed.
With peaks and valleys in a workflow as the norm in many post-production studios, using cloud resources to offset overcapacity IT infrastructure can seem very attractive. Not only can you pay as you need it and avoid large capital expenses, but it can also provide smaller studios the ability to go after projects they once could not due to limited compute capacity. The cloud lets these smaller shops work like big shops and deliver top quality in tight timelines.
When it comes to an efficient decision to leverage cloud rendering to meet aggressive, looming deadlines, Moonbot investigated, evaluated, and launched in under 60 days. This inforgraphic tells the story of why Moonbot Studios made the move using the vFXT to leverage scalable rendering capacity using the compute cloud.
Rendering in the cloud is quickly moving from a pie-in-the-sky idea to reality. In a webinar on September 9, 2015, we heard from Tristan Crichton, Senior Systems Administrator, at award-winning VFX studio Framestore about how they are using Avere Systems and Google Cloud Platform to put cloud computing into their workflow to solve peak demand challenges quickly and easily.
The typical rendering workload at a visual effects (VFX) studio dramatically increases as a deadline approaches. Sometimes 50% of the final rendering for a film can be completed in the last month before its release. Often studios purchase hundreds or thousands of additional servers to meet these peak rendering demands. After the movie is delivered, studios switch them off to save power until the servers are needed again.
Heading to Siggraph 2015 next week? We’re packing our bags and heading to Los Angeles ready to take on the Big Orange! It is the perfect place for this event, a city known for its contribution to big screen graphics and animation.