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1 2The term "pipe" was introduced in A pipe is an input-output data structure that eliminates the need for program A to write acomputer jargon with the development of stream of data to a file that will be read and processed by program B.UNIX. 3 4The concept of moving computer data And so "CG process" became "CG workflows" and these became "CG pipelines”through a series of software modulesbecame work process by progressing thework product through a series of specializedworkers. The Pipeline Story
• The traditional way of thinking about a pipeline is the production pipeline.• Production Pipeline is modeled after post-industrial assembly systems where workers specialize in a given task.• The assembly line is a system where the work product moves past a series of work stations at a fixed speed, forcing each specialty to be constrained to a fixed duration and narrow set of skills.• Computer graphics is unlikely to achieve the efficiency of automated manufacturing line, but the concept of specialization has been embraced.• CG production is of phased nature, like model construction, motion construction, lighting, shading, rendering and compositing to break up the work.• Not all work missions will support the same production pipeline profile. Production Pipeline
Data Management Asset Management Review Management An asset management system forms the You need to figure out deadlines, who signs off onEvery CG environment involves the heart and mind of the data pipeline. what, and stick to it.delivery of a product, a shot, a sequenceor a complete show. An asset management system allows Almost everyone works better in collaboration, so users to figure out who is saying "Yes" to an element, orAlong the way assets are gathered and calling a retake.intermediate assets or work products areconstructed. Track the progress Review management system will track approvals, retakes, progress etc and feeds the productionAssets used as inputs may include with status of the show.footage, stills, and reference materials. Navigate assets A key material in any pipeline comprises theOne persons output becomes the next Find task / relationships aggregate of direction and instructions about apersons input. Hence the need for particular work product (a shot or element of apipeline. shot at the finest level). Controls the versions and revisions.Managing the flow of materials through Managing this data involves collecting, organizingthe studio is an important sub-pipeline. and distributing the information to the right persons. It involves a decision loop, the approval pipeline is itself a looped pipeline with an iterative nature.Pipeline Essentials
Resource Management Naming Convention If you have a bulletproof naming system, you A render farm, storage and servers are are vital can write batch scripts that automate large for large productions. amounts of painful work. You need lots of storage space, and you need it Moving directories, renaming files, secure that is, someone makes rotating backups categorization, even simple compositing tasks or automated backups. (burn-in, watermarks, etc.). Depending on what you can get for servers, it In some environments this was not really may be preferable to have the artists copy the possible, so the more youre able to automate data locally to work on it, instead of reading it stuff, the easier life gets. off the server which is also being read from and written to by the render farm. This also will help the asset management system identify relationship for each shot. A job queue is essential to farm jobs to the servers.Pipeline Essentials
• A CG pipeline belongs to one of three classes: • production (task) primary • material (data) secondary • approval (meta-data) tertiary• A CG pipeline is comprised of three structural dimensions: • People • Process • Tools• A CG pipeline utilizes technology but is not the technology• A CG pipeline divides a work-flow into separate and meaningful tasks assigned to two or more persons• A CG pipeline tasks divisions are determined using a tree of specialization across the three dimensions• The CG pipeline structural form is dictated by • The business purpose • Resource availability • Studio culture• A CG pipeline is malleable CG Pipeline Summary
Selected Credits V K GUPTA | CG Pipeline Architect | Twitter @kgvinnakota | Linkedin http://in.linkedin.com/in/vkgupta