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  • Writer's pictureRowan Karrer

Panigale - official release

This has been a very long time coming. A little over a year. Which is kind of a lot for an animation that's barely a minute long... But as anyone will tell you who's tried, personal projects are not easy to fit into your spare time. Plus it took ages to render!

Panigale started off as technical demonstration to plug two holes in my skill set - detailed hard surface modelling, and product visualisation. I figured if I was going to take all this time to make a nice model, I might as well present it in a short film. Like a fancy turntable.

The bike and the environment took about 6 months (of late nights) to model, shade and animate. The lighting and rendering was then undertaken progressively over a 6 month period, during which I was rendering the film almost constantly between freelance gigs. It isn't easy rendering 2000 odd frames on a few computers, especially when they take anywhere from 4 to 24 hours a frame to finish. My electricity bills are a bleak testament to the cost of 3d rendering.

Panigale was created in 3ds Max, rendered in VRay (Adv), and composited / graded in After Effects, with some help from RE:Vision and Frischluft. The audio was done in Logic Pro X. It's 2048x872 native and runs at 25fps.

To provide more back story to the project, I am pitching myself increasingly as a generalist these days. That's actually a really tough thing to take on, but my personality being what it is (risk averse) I see it as the only way I can ensure stability in a fairly chaotic profession. It also appeals to me creatively, to be able to do a bit of everything.

That means lots of research and trying new things. Short films are a huge undertaking in your spare time, but I'm already at work on my next one, which will be called Glimpse. Panigale was the first film I've made for 5 years (not counting my technical short Tea Time in 2016) so it was good to get on the bandwagon again. I've also learned a lot in the last year on how to go about making them in a home study environment, and indeed how not to. Managing the scope of the project is really important, or you'll simply never finish and that can make you lose momentum.

The next film I will be focusing far more heavily on the artistic side of film making, for now, I hope you enjoy this shameless technical exercise, as I get back into the swing of things.

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