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Skin deep

Presentations will highlight epidermis' characteristics

Improvements in Industrial Light & Magic’s proprietary skin animation techniques will be explained by tech wizard Cary Phillips, who spearheaded the award-winning Cari software used in the new “Star Wars.” Presentations at Siggraph will highlight how skin moves and the subtle ways skin reflects light so that human characters don’t look like mannequins.

PDI/DreamWorks’ Juan Buhler pairs with Stanford’s Henrik Wann Jensen (whose research was a hit at last year’s show) to demonstrate an efficient new approach to capturing skin’s translucent effects. As PDI/DreamWorks R&D chief Nick Foster remarks, “When we did ‘Shrek,’ we created skin for the character of Fiona by designing a very involved system with lots of layers.”

The new approach that will be demonstrated will make the follow-up film to “Shrek” much easier to do, Foster says. “This collaboration between production people and academic research is a great example of how Siggraph drives the innovation in our industry.”

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