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VIEW Conference: Diving Deep Into Animation, VFX, Storytelling, and Virtual Production

In October 2022, the 80 Level team joined the 23rd International VFX Computer Graphics Conference. Today, we'd love to share with you some insights about the event and discuss the most prominent sessions. 

It’s autumn in Italy. As we’re traveling along the northern part of the country I can’t help a certain nostalgia. Quiet villages, sleepy stations, random people passing along - all this reminds us a lot of our trips in Ukraine. It’s vastly different from Los Angeles though. Riding the train for one is very different. We go from Milan to Turin to visit one of the biggest game development and animation events in Italy. VIEW Conference has been running for some time now, gathering people from all over the world to talk about their careers, share production knowledge and discuss creative challenges.

We arrive at the Tourin Central Station in the afternoon and walk to our little hotel, which is situated a couple of blocks away from the venue. It’s October and it does get chilly in the evenings, but people around glide in beautiful suits, smoking their cigarettes and drinking from very small cups. The venue is bustling, if you get into the entry area you can see Jan-Bart van Beek resting before his talk about Horizon Forbidden Lands, there’s Robert Ralph Minkoff who wants to share the incredible stories of the times he was building the Lion King feature film.

The event has a couple of areas, with talks running at different times. You can always find something to do around, plus, if you just want to chill for a bit, there’s a nice bistro inside, where you can drink a small very cup of coffee, and chat a bit with the locals. Talking about the locals.

Italy is big on animation and technical arts these days. There are people from different places in the country coming to find employment. It’s no wonder that in the small expo area at the View Conference you can find representatives of some of the biggest production companies out there. It’s inspiring to see people coming and going, sharing their experiences and portfolios, and willing to start working the next day. Very good youthful energy is in the air.

The conference featured numerous outstanding sessions covering Animation, Storytelling, VFX, VR/AR/XR, Career Journeys, and Virtual Production. We've picked several sessions that literally won our hearts. 

And we encourage you to view the full list of sessions here. The incredible thing is that almost all the sessions were live-streamed, and even if someone did not have a chance to travel to Italy because of a busy schedule or other reasons they still had an opportunity to live this experience and listen to the industry leaders. The sessions were viewed online by more than 200,000 creatives. 

Animation Sessions

This part also featured multiple workshops for talented creatives that would love to start a career in animation. The game industry leaders such as Helge Maus, Mark UlanoAntony PassemardJason Schleifer, Hal Hickel, and Robert Hranitzky, shared cutting-edge techniques and tips with the participants. 

Recruitment Sessions

A lot of studios joined the event in 2022 to find world-class talent and empower the teams. Among the companies that were looking for new rockstars, we saw ILM, Framestore, Technicolor, Mikros Animation, MPC, and The Mill. Their talent acquisition managers not just talked to the candidates, but gave comprehensive lectures about life and culture in the studios, tips and tricks for the creatives willing to join them, and the recruiting process. 

The conference also provided portfolio reviews hosted by the Sony Pictures Animation team, professors from top art universities, and Oscar-winning composers, artists, and game developers. We guess that exactly this initiative is currently one of the most needed, and from the number of creatives that joined these sessions and workshops we caught its extreme value. 

The VFX sessions were the next area we joined at the event. One of the most prominent talks was dedicated to the future of VFX, hosted by a production VFX Supervisor, Pinocchio, Walt Disney Studios Kevin Baillie, VFX Supervisor, Westworld, HBO, Jay Worth, VFX Supervisor, Lola Visual Effects Trent Claus, and Visual Effects Supervisor Helena Packer. It was a deep dive into VFX, new procedural technologies, and tools.

Christian Manz, a VFX Supervisor & Creative Director, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore, Framestore, talked about his time in the Wizarding World and how, through close collaboration with filmmakers and the use of Virtual Production tools, VFX was integral to the storytelling of Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore.

Latest Techniques Sessions

A very inspirational session was presented by Dylan Sisson on Pixar's RenderMan. The Artist uncovered a special screening of RenderMan’s latest animated short, Teapot Meets Potzilla. The next talk was presented by NVIDIA's Rick Champagne on Digital Humans and Avatars, where the speaker shared an innovative way to bring the characters to life. The third session that we should definitely mention was prepared by Nimble Studio and FuzzyPixel. It covered a new way the team used for producing content entirely in the cloud. 

The VIEW Conference did leave a very favorable impression on us. Maybe it’s the beauty of Italy and the enthusiasm of the creative people around us, but it’s incredibly inspiring to see so many incredible ideas communicated and interpreted during these few days in October 2022. 

And by the way, be sure to check out the official website, cause the 24th edition of the VIEW Conference is already announced and will take place on October, 15-20, 2023. 

We encourage you to stay tuned for the VIEW Conference 2023. You may read the latest updates on the event's Facebook and Twitter

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