(2021Nov11) Oleg Zvyagintsev - Houdini artist Oleg Zvyagintsev brings the visions of product designers to life. His work on "Blindr 2.0" turns the ordinary window blind into a thing of beauty and precision. He does the same for a stylishly designed mobile phone in "Meet the Impossible". If you are interested in a career in product design visualization, or if you are already there and could use some inspiration from one of the greats, this webinar is a must watch.
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Webinar Transcript . . .
Thank you very much for joining us at another great GridMarkets session where we get to speak to some of the greatest and most fascinating people in the world of computer graphics. Today we have such a treat with a visionary in the world of product visualization: Oleg Zvyagintsev. But before we do get into the webinar profile, let me introduce you to a couple of familiar faces. If you are regular to the GridMarkets webinar world we have Mark Ross from GridMarkets who has made the magic happen today and Ben Hill global director of Oracle for startups. So Mark, you are the reason we're here today. Today you bring everyone together. Please could you tell us a little bit more about GridMarkets. I can thank Charlie so GridMarkets is a cloud rendering and simulation service we support all the major 3d packages the ones you see here on the screen and the major renderers as well some of the key features of our service are it's extremely simple to set up you download a plugin from our website and you can be up and running literally in two or three minutes also nothing new to learn you submit directly from the 3d user interface of your favorite software you that plugin makes that possible you can submit to one to many machines and you can stack your submissions so you can have multiple submissions running at the same time at the same time so as a consequence you can really accelerate your workflow it's a pay by the hour offering so and you can pretty accurately figure out what your costs are going to be in advance of actually submitting so there's an opportunity to you know budget for your expenses before you actually initiate your project the platform was built by artists and engineers and it's supported by artists on a 24x7 basis so we're here to help should you need any and also importantly it's secured by the Oracle cloud which Ben is going to be talking about in more detail so here's how it works very quickly you go to the sign up page GridMarkets.com sign up step one you create an account step two you download the plugin that I was telling you about it's called envoy and you download that package and inside that package there will be the plugins for the 3d software that we offer graphically represented here you install the plugin of interest so let's say that you're a Houdini user so you would install the Houdini plug-in and from the Houdini interface you can then submit your Houdini simulation or Houdini render to our cloud pushing a button once you do that this real-time interface appears and you can use that to monitor the progress of your jobs you can also use it to control the jobs to manage the jobs start them stop them etc. you can interrogate the logs of any given frame by clicking on those job entries there and drilling down to a specific frame to see what's happening in a given frame as the frames complete they automatically download to whatever directory that you designated nothing for you to do it happens all by itself so your directory starts filling up with the frames that you have submitted to us we're offering a free trial and a 15 discount on any credits you buy because you've attended this webinar go to the sign up page and enter that promo code there 2021 November 11th webinar and you'll get 15 more credits than you would have otherwise gotten so that's it easy peasy back to you Charlie thanks mark and we'll go back to that offer that offer will come back later on at the end of the session so don't worry if you didn't quite grab it then again steIph is that right Oleg I don't I was kicking myself after I said it wrong then and the thanks mark for taking us through taking a few GridMarkets and we're now on to the wonderful Ben hill and benefiting some really strong work with cloud security with Oracle so please tell us a bit about that and what you guys are offering sure thank you Charlie so again my name is Ben hill I am a global director for Oracle cloud infrastructure and I’m always happy to be here talking about OCI Oracle cloud infrastructure and our tireless dedication to security so when Oracle went about launching our gen 2 cloud offering our approach to security was deliberate and direct we wanted to share we wanted to ensure that it was architected in automated always on and best of all free so let's go through some of the high points on how we went about doing this first more security by default now what does that mean firstly we design for isolation so we've taken the hypervisor and put it on the network layer so what on earth does that actually mean many ask well in short this approach separates customer traffic which provides better security and performance and as an added bonus it reduces the risk of hypervisor-based attacks also OCI has what's called separation of duties which means Oracle admins have no access to a customer's memory space and as it relates to your to your data and associated storage devices we have all full encryption at rest and in motion as well as integrated backups for business continuity and disaster recovery best practices now let's check chat about our auto detection and remediation capabilities specifically Oracle CloudGuard and Oracle security zones Oracle CloudGuard provides comprehensive end-to-end monitoring for your cloud environments by continuously collecting and analyzing service configurations audit logs and other information and reports its findings as problems based on out-of-the-box security recipes or custom security recipes created by the admin and to complement Oracle CloudGuard Oracle has Oracle security zones which provide a secure enclave within customer tendencies for the most sensitive workloads where security is mandatory and always on this helps ensure compute networking storage database and database resources comply with security principles such as always-on encryption no public access and automated backups as I mentioned earlier and last but certainly not least most security services are free like multi-factor authentication for user access OCI vault which can be used to store passwords ssh keys and certification and OCI welcomes third-party tools so you can federate your identity and access management policies with your organization's centralized identity providers as well as sim systems like Splunk and logarithm via APIs and SDKs all right that is all I had on the security front Charlie I'll kick it back over to you thank you so now we have it we're on to the main event when I say Oleg has the most interesting back story I’m not kidding his his journey into where he is now is absolutely fascinating and yeah there's a few twists and turns along the way let's just say but before we get in and to learn about that in more detail Oleg welcome do you want to show our audience a little bit of what you do before we start chatting about it yeah hello everyone thank you very much for having me and let me roll my wheel before anything everybody thank you for sharing I mean that is just visually beautiful and they've got so many questions to ask about the different projects and how you know and just and how you manage that you know we've spoken to a lot of people around in media and entertainment but this is just fascinating and what you're creating is very beautiful I mean can you I guess start off with a little bit about your background and did you always see yourself working in this particular sector of the industry yeah thank you very much for your words and before I start like I can tell that I my palms are wet and I feel a bit nervous I hope I will not forget any of the awards like from English language so my name is Oleg Zvyagintsev and I live and work in saint Petersburg Russia initially I am from the south of Russia and as it always the case it's all started in in childhood like I’m not an excuse here and when I was a kid I always wanted to be a hacker and it is it's kind of a my favorite toy was was a remote from the tv and because it has all of the buttons and I can pretend that I’m like computer person or something like so currently I can't tell about myself that I’m artist or something like that I can let's pretend I am a computer graphics person it's something like broad like it's okay for me it's fair to say you're a mixture of the skier there's an artist in there as well yeah thank you so it is but when I when I finished school and while I was in this school and once we had a computer in our house me and my sister we always kind of played with the software like half of it over time not only games like all of the software and I guess it is because Russia is something wild place where everything you can have has you can have on this compact disc like back in the day now it's a bit changed but I it was kind of a place like pirate island so my first software of choice was cinema 4d I don't even know that this is something like cool production software nothing about the software not nothing about the history of the software just played with it and I even made something like a movie out of it and half of a time it was only like a cube that's was textured with my face like it was embarrassing it is embarrassing to to watch now to be honest so but I thought I will be a developer not a computer graphics specialist but when I started to think when I need where I need to go in terms of education it was it was clear that I’m not really interested in math and all of this complicated stuff like developers need and at the same time I love the computer graphics but this wasn't like idea that you can do this for for the life I am from the agrarian kind of place where you can you can be like truck driver or you can be a lawyer or something like that but it's somehow it clicked that you can go to the like learn this visual language as a as a specialty I guess so yeah and carry on yeah I went to the to the place where the only I wanted to go to the call arts when I googled it like it's perfect place for me I see this computer graphics computers like and the visual visual part of their productions so great but it was unreachable for me and I started to look something in my country and it turned out that you have to you don't need you don't should want to be a hacker to be in this place you always wanted to be drawing and you need to be a kind of person who draws from the from the young age I wasn't this person at all so I can't get inside of the of these facilities where people learned computer graphics because it was kind of related to the art I wasn't art person but occasionally it I kind of I found place where this bar for go to was so low so I kind of passed through I learned with this with the little kids with the small kids little bit of drawing like last year of school and like pass through so it was cool there so yeah in first two years it was really great because we had this um we had exercises from the bauhaus is a giant design school like history of design and kind of all first two years we had um our minds built on this kind of giant stones of the of the historical like exercises like in terms of design and we made them we made sculpture and like drawing and everything but third year was not so great for me because we started to go down the earth and it's kind of started to be more like commercial design for the billboards or something like that it was not so interested interesting so it I decided to end there and being there it was pretty expensive for my family so I just decided to quit and go to the Russian army for one year well that's the that that's the path that makes no sense art school to army and what did you were you able to carry on your passions there what did you do whilst in the army I didn't really want to go there you just when you have these two kind of qualities that you healthy and you poor you go to the army you don't have other options so I was I was this person and I went I kind of I kind of became this child dream I was there a hacker for sure because when you when you know how to open task manager with a shortcut you kind of automatically became like cyberpunk deity no one can live without inside so I was a hacker there for a year but my kind of this taste that was developed in previous several years it was destroyed first month I kind of my eyes bleeding when I when I see everything there how they how they make their documents how they make like decorations or everything anything like that it was it was so awful like sound music or anything it it was it was not my place but one month two months I don't really care about anything from this point like in terms of visually so it's so was it was just crashed like in life there are much more important things to think about like compared to what font do you want to use in the document so yeah and there I was this like person who works on the um oh it's actually secret I don't want to talk tell about it okay no that's fine we won't force you don't worry nobody state secrets but I mean from the sounds of it that experience kind of your creativity was flourishing you went to the army it somewhat got a little bit crushed so how did you host army what did that look like for you and to getting where you are now in this world of such creativity and in that realm between artistry and tech well I had to find the job when I when I kind of graduated from the army so it was I have several I had experience in the photoshop I knew these tools pretty well but I didn't know where to where to go and I just need to have the job fast and I started to sell my resume like it was very short to different companies and one company actually was very kind to me and we had a we had conversation and it was it was a position for a social media designer and it was it was like minimum wage minimum wage job and also I was terrible at the doing it because I had to pretend that I have kind of a taste and I had these tasks from the copywriters who asked me to make an illustration and I tried to guess what will be good for them because I didn't it's really nothing matters after the army for some reason and I was there for three months I guess and I lost my I lost my documents at the and had to leave but I had to leave I kind of made this decision myself and my boss she I think I kind of she wants to have a tough conversation with me and I kind of was first oh I I’m living so I mean that just seems like a world away from 3d and creating what you're doing where there are other stepping stones I mean there must have been what were the stepping stones that got you to where you are now well after I lost my documents I started to think what I what I want to do what I can do with the skills I already have and in the meantime I already knew how to use photoshop and started to to take a kind of little jobs with the with retouching like just painting people's faces something like that and it was pretty good and I was able to to have a some to have some money for upgrade of my of my computer with this kind of job it's it was I think for for a year I in the end of this year I thought maybe I can I can do it like that I can I can work in the photo retouching and make it more complicated because back in the day there was many interesting like places where you can do creative retouching like platinum fmd for example in Brazil they do this very cool illustration hyper real but at the same time it is it's kind of a surreal where like animals mixed with humans or something like that and it was one direction that I I’ve looked into and at the same time I looked into the movie industry and movie industry was very interesting in terms of you don't you don't have to have this kind of a taste that no one can explain you can you can borrow yourself in the tasks like technical heavy technical tasks and they are very understandable for anyone like and for me I just I just looked both at the those two directions and from one side was mad painting it was too close also for with the with the movie industry and I decided to choose movie industry and started as a rotoscope in the in the local movie yeah it was it was my first job where I worked with moving in moving kind of pictures like not still images it was rotoscopic and it was it was pretty hard I choose draw the scoping just because I saw that this is a pathway to be a compositor and compositors are they kind of making the movie when you see this reel from the all of the studios you like you see these layers of compositors and it seems like compositors the only people who are making movie so I wanted to be a compositor so yeah right the scoping was my first job was your step into that and how did you very quickly did you achieve your compositing goals do you how do you feel I mean working in the movie industry is like you're directed by you've got your director who has got that vision and as you've described you felt you didn't really have to have much input on the creative design compared to I suppose now what you're doing you very much have an idea of the creative was that an aspect that drew you towards what you're doing now rotoscoping is by itself was a was this aspect of me of my career which kind of pushed me away from the from the operational this kind of kind of mechanistic or I don't know they were like mechanical producing these steps because it led me to the burnout like complete burnout because I became pretty good at rotoscoping from the start just because I already had an experience working with curse I was a graphic designer and illustrator it's kind of the same tools you just need to understand how to understand how to break down motion and break down the object that you're working with and animate it and everything it's kind of not that not that hard in terms of in terms of understanding the job and because of you become good at something you inside of the production you kind of have more of that thing more and more and more and I really I really became this person who made the most complicated masks and it was kind of a soul-sucking process it was you kind of see you kind of sit all day like 10 hours in a day and just moving masks like all right it is efficient you already know and everything about it how to make it how to track everything and how to how to mix these techniques but it was so hard for me to continue it after three months of this thing so yeah and I after that I worked as a compositor and but I already saw that that maybe this is not something that I would like to pursue it because it's kind of a it's kind of a way to burn out even with compositing it's it seemed like it's interesting but at the same time I saw this I thought I will be post-production professional who go to the big facilities like MPC or frame store or something like that but I started to meet people who already was there and they not every of them was happy like it was it was kind of the same you everything already everything already done for you and you need to follow these steps that someone more smart than you kind of prepared for you and yeah just I just break that and I didn't do anything I wanted to have good real for compositing to right away start with interesting shots because no one give me interesting shots when I when I just starting out and I decided all right no one can give me shots I can make my own shots and I can learn 3d and start doing shots for myself just for the real just to get compositing job and yeah for from this period my kind of 3d 3d period started I started to think what kind of software I would like I need to have this something in the end like a like a real it was it was for the real and I started to look at the cinema 4d but it was too expensive I wasn't 12 year old boy anymore I can't use it like previously and I just I just choose between two software and it was blender and it was Houdini and it turned out I picked both for now so yeah here you are and so you I mean you came so you were working in the movies you came from a movie background how did you then take that sidestep what was how did you find out about product visualization how did that come about and I suppose actually just for people who may not understand who are more okay with the media entertainment world which is what everyone's first as yours was go to in there in the world of graphics can you explain what product visualization is and what your what you bring what its purpose is to be honest I’m not ended up relationships with the movies and tv series at all I just on this week I still working on the tv series it's kind of mixed for me so I’m not I’m not this is why I’m telling that I’m a computer graphics person I’m kind of a Swiss knife for today like I’m doing commercial I’m doing I’m doing movies I’m doing I’m doing this product visualization anything that kind of led me to to interesting place and it is it's true I’m not a super professional at any of these fields like in every of these fields there are so many people who smart and who much more focused on their part but for me it's like it's like fun and once I had this burnout with the rotoscoping I decided to I just it it was fun once why I can't live my life like still with fun that not with the lists of shots and identical movements and everything so and but I just wanted to have more options and I started to think how I can at the same time learn 3d and it turned out it's not only 3d I needed to learn editing and work with sound and how to how to make story how to build this kind of narrative how it is essentially a mosaic of time you are working with the with the sequence of images through which you kind of you allow someone else to go through the experience and it it was something that none of the compositor I have like naturally because we're all working with the shots with the single we don't even know what next to the shot typically and I just designed this process for product visualization because I thought it is kind of reliable field people are always gonna be gonna do these products new products every single year people are have to do new products because this marketing machine it's unstoppable and I thought it it's kind of I can provide value for these people because for them I see that the market itself kind of making pressure on them because they have to have all of these visuals that they have to have videos and like images to just connect to the people it's not it it's when everyone looking into the screen like it is important for people for people to show up here and I just I was thinking I can design efficient process for small businesses to help them with this product visualization part and at the same time I can learn with a camera because they don't even need to know about I’m exploring something here because like for the three for more for the most 3d artists work with camera is just kind of a fraction of a work they don't know nothing about it they just put camera at the end of the shot and how they don't know anything about like focal distances or how camera work and for someone who has background in compositing I always wanted I always watched to the kind of cameras and it was important which focal lens you have and it's kind of you observing how director and director of photography is working and I wanted to implement it in my work and yeah this is why product visualization because I have control over a whole narrative I need to design whole experience for someone and it was great for me so I it's kind of only two years and I have no idea whether I will do this for a really long time but for now I’m doing it's exciting so I’m going to open up the floor to questions I’ve already got a few questions in five minutes but I’ve got a couple of questions just from just from what you were saying there so I mean you were talking about really creating and exploring the whole story and you love doing that and I’m sure your clients and taking your clients on that journey with you is they must get really excited and feel your passion as well how does that process work with your clients and also actually when you made this decided to move into product visualization how did you start reaching out to people what did that look like oh first first step is always to show some something and while I developed this while I was developing this process I kind of have to go from every stage so it won't be kind of surprises there won't there's no be surprises for me in the process and this process itself was uh kind of productive in terms of in terms of content and from this content just from the developing process I was able to find first connections with the with the people because I just posted on the Instagram and with the with the hashtags and also and also I registered on all of these platforms like Fiverr or Upwork and something like that on the Fiverr it's so many people no one really see my kind of solution to the point when I applied to the pro like I started to be a pro and now I kind of the most expensive option on Fiverr you can you can find me okay and from people who really has a job done on this platform and this is one of the places because people are see looking for looking for a solution in places like like these platforms and Instagram always so it was start of a conversation what was the first part of this I was gonna say just like if you were talking about how you love being on that journey and discovering stories and creating that story and I was just asking about taking your clients on that journey with you it must be is that something that you enjoy yeah 100 and every product is a is a story and almost every client that I ever had they have this kind of specific their specific pain point about this solution that they are providing and it was it was very interesting to see how people how creatives kind of put their energy and effort to produce like electronic device and to solve their specific pain point and hope that in the world will be enough people who all also has this pain point and from my point of view I can choose someone I can choose projects I was I am fortunate to choosing projects who really care about the about their product who not just trying to gain some money for with you know just for the sake of money they care and but for them video production it is something really alien for them and from the start it was hard from someone who work previously worked only with people from the production who everyone in the production knew know about the process you don't need to explain anything you just need to do the job and here you kind of need to speak with people on another level like on the on the level of feelings and not specific parts and I know that many professionals and I I’m myself included it it's kind of hardest part when you ask to make something beautiful and for the for the first kind of several projects it was hard to adjust because I don't know how to describe it because yeah it's just it just it's just hard for someone who who used to work with specific tasks like to start to think creatively and trying to understand another person and trying to clarify your point why something is good and why not and kind of you don't need to make your own kind of uh sorry you just need to understand as good as possible your need of your client and what this client have for the market and market is always people it's not something something abstract it's all for people and made by people and I see myself currently as a glue between this production who has something to offer and people like audience who would like to have a solution and this is it in terms of computer graphics for the end client well I mean it just it's really fascinating I think one that you've gone and created and you've always worked on that route but also discovering different ways of being fulfilled so I mean we work most of the time right so we want to be fulfilled and I’ve got some questions if someone needs a product visualizing where do they come to contact you and to discuss the projects best place is my email my website aleczv.com and I place my email right on the front page and I don't using I’m not using Facebook and LinkedIn, LinkedIn is even blocked in my country and Facebook is too complicated for me to learn for some reason it's so hard and I there's kind of whether Instagram or email it's best places to come to come to talk to me and we can just schedule a call and discuss it oh great well that sounds that sounds very straightforward and another question I mean you've explained that it wasn't the easiest upbringing maybe if you for someone wanting to get into working with computers do you have any advice or suggestions about people living or from a region that is lacking schools with programs in this industry uh it's always kind of difficult to answer such questions because there is no single correct answer for this kind of question but advice that I see that I wanted to have myself from this point of view back in the day is to try to be as soon as possible in the at least small studio in the studio where you able to do anything and in this small studio you kind of can be generalist and from this point of view you already will be much much much kind of ahead it's very hard to start being a freelancer from the start just because of expenses like software and hardware it's it gets more and more expensive especially today it's so hard to buy new graphics card so because of this and best way to start is to start with the studio I guess great thank you I hope whoever asked that question is I think I think that is great advice because it's it is difficult it's not everyone lives in a country where that software is readily available so I think that's the last of our questions and thank you so much so much Oleg for being part of this panel and hearing your story like it's very inspirational and it's very it's just fascinating to see where you've gone and moved on to and it's also good to know you're still working in a varied environment so thank you very much for joining us today thank you for having me thank you very much thanks all like thank you thank you mark for your service too is it's a great I’m using it like on every bigger project that I have so it's very helpful streamlining my process yeah yeah great well we were privileged to have you today well you have a great story and you know some of the work that you do is really outstanding so very happy to have showcased it today in the webinar thank you let's tell you about next month or not even next month you're having two in a month you lucky things the next GridMarkets webinar which is just here so as a reminder as promised there is that promo code for your discounted credits 53 credits and for GridMarkets if you sign up using that code and for our next webinar we have Kate Xagoraris. Kate is a Houdini artist and instructor with a passion and talent for creating scientific visualization she's created shots for a number of major films including the umbrella academy bad boys and chaos walking she will be joining us on November 23rd so put that in your diaries November 23rd to cover the topics of her career procedural storytelling and the intersection of arts and science so please sign up for the webinar at the usual place GridMarkets.com/webinars and also this is this has been recorded so if you want to watch it again or share it with your friends and family and whoever else colleagues and you'll be also be able to reach their recorded webinar there as well now we can say goodbye thank you very much for joining and good to chat with you all thank you