First edition of VAM Summit & Awards wins hearts and concludes on a high note

Boosting industry connectivity, highlighting emerging technologies and honouring of excellence in the VFX ecosystem, AnimationXpress’s VAM Awards, took place on 20 February 2021.

Co-powered by Unreal Engine, with WorkDeer and Autodesk as session partners, disguise as technology partner, SpeedGaze as award fulfilment partner, ICE Studios as innovation partner and Huion as support partner, VAM Awards became the first premier and most comprehensive awards with its aim to showcase and reward excellence in the VFX sphere in India.

With jury members hailing – both from India and abroad – giving their verdict, the event saw an exquisite line-up starting with Jellyfish Pictures CTO Jeremy Smith’s keynote surrounding VFX in the post-pandemic age.

Giving insight into the future of visual effects and animation studios in a post Covid-19 world, he shared, “There is a massive uptick in cloud technologies throughout the industry to work remotely for the pandemic. We really had to ramp up certain things, be it teaming up on zoom call with the team, storage, security, and so on to work remotely. We literally had to adapt because it was illegal for people travelling during Covid-19.”

Having pioneered the adoption of virtual studios, using the cloud and technologies such as Teradici’s PCoIP to create one of the most scalable and flexible studios in the world, Smith spoke about the benefits of a blended studio.

Autodesk India and SAARC Technical Solutions specialist Media and Entertainment Samit Shetty hosted a session, Connect, Collaborate & Conquer your Creative workflows in 2021 with Futureworks Media founder and CEO Gaurav Gupta and Futureworks Media pipeline specialist  Siddhartha Basu.

Shetty elaborated on how Autodesk’s software Shotgun simplifies creative project management and unifies visual effects (VFX), animation and gaming teams of all sizes. Shetty discussed various features of the tool and how by using them, organisations can ensure co-ordination and save cost. He added, “Productions are going global as all artists need to work from home which again, becomes an independent location for facilities, so the complications started becoming bigger and global and to overcome that we have this tool Shotgun which does production management, creative collaboration and integrated workflow.”

Next session was graced by Digital Domain 3.0 VFX producer Praveen Kilaru and VFX producer Suresh Guttula explaining some of the most challenging shots and the techniques that were deployed to create the imagery in the telugu movie, Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy.

In a fireside chat with AnimationXpress founder, chairman & editor-in-chief Anil Wanvari, SpeedGaze CEO Upen Desai spoke in detail about the myriad benefits of their cloud computing services. Desai noted, “We have our own data center in Thane. We run 24/7. What we’ve built is a simple application whuch works on Windows and Linux. Our app takes care of downloading and uploading. Our idea was to create a simplified solution.”

With an assortment of some of the best minds of the VFX industry, the VAM Awards saw a definitive interaction amongst all the advisory committee members who helped weave together this VFX extravaganza. One by one, the panelists offered their comments on how they see the “Indian VFX Industry: Vision 2025”.

VFX stalwarts reflected on the trends and developments in every aspect of the business and technology associated with the highlighted projects.

In the presence of industry trailblazers, thought-leaders, academicians, filmmakers and VFX professionals and every other stakeholder in the value chain who witnessed the honouring of the best imagery in the effects industry, VAM awards aggregated the community and set the tone for the year ahead

The VAM awards indeed set a benchmark, raising the industry standard for the visual effects industry with a vision to highlight the best practices and inspire the next generation of artists.

Here’s the entire VAM Awards coverage: