animation agency dubai

Mac Vs PC For Animation Content Production

Posted by | Animation | No Comments

As an animation agency, we are asked this question quite a lot and to be honest – it is not a quick answer and we sometime choose to stay out of it! The reason why is that it can cause powered debate’s in the animation content production industry as people feel very strongly about the systems they use and its capabilities.
To stir up a conversation like this we may actually say that a MAC is a PC! After all – a PC is abbreviated from a “personal computer” which is exactly what a MAC is as well. This has absolutely nothing to do with the hardware or software on the actual device. They may look completely different from the outside; however, this ethic disappears quite quickly once you to start to look inside of the machines as they are both made up from similar hardware components.
Essentially the real differences in the two are within the operating software. So, let’s take a look at these below:

1. Operating systems
When it comes to a preferred operating system, everyone has an opinion. If you think about how ingrained our computers are in our everyday life – no wonder people feel this way. So the three operating systems in competition are run on most desktop PCs, Apple’s OS X, Windows and the various Linux distributions. Not to forget mobile operating systems but they are completely separate to these.
Comfort zones are a big factor here as people fall into the either/or mind set and are not willing to try anything else but their chosen.
As Ben Franklin’s now-famous quote says, “Time is money”. Although this may be a bit more literal for 3D artists, we know that in general the more efficient you are, the faster you can get your project finished and move on to the next. Or tweak your current making it the best it can be and this falls outside of any operating system. So, we think that it is vital that any 3D artist uses tools that help them accomplish their tasks quickly, what saves you time and your personal organisation for your current projects.

2. Pros and Cons of Macs
Apple has done a great job of positioning Macs to be the chosen computer for creative artists. Functionalities like the Adobe’s suite of software and even the tag folders visually with colors have helped perceive this mindset. This doesn’t mean that 3D artists will benefit from these and take advantage of the visual nature of the beautifully designed interface in OS X.
Getting straight here – some of the tools just aren’t available with OS X. The biggest being its 3ds Max. To take place of these there are like for like versions available such as Maya, MODO or CINEMA 4D.
However, we need to be practical and honest in that computers will be computers! They can fail at any time no matter what make or model. However, as Apple have locked down the OS X to avoid any customization it saves time completely by not having to tweak the hardware

3. Pros and cons of Linux-based PCs
Linux isn’t a mainstream operating system but it is quite commonly used in the 3D animation industry. You could do anything with Linux from supporting your 3D programs to run faster by stripping out any extraneous software running in the background. On the other hand, generally speaking Linux often isn’t regarded as a user-friendly operating system. This has to do with the customization that can be built into Linux. So, while that customization can ultimately save a lot of time, it can also mean that a lot of learning is required.
We see Linux as a great option for those who do love customization and like to deal with complicated coding now and then. As far as we can see – there isn’t an official “boot camp” for Linux PCs functionalities and techniques and we think there doesn’t really need to be either. You always have the option of dual-booting Linux and Windows and there are plenty of tutorials online to help you do this.

4. Pros and cons of Windows-Based PC’s
We generally see a lot of love / hate relationships with windows, however it is by far the most popular operating system according to Net Market Share Online. Most people will be using it now or have used it before previously. The reason why us 3D artists may favour it is that just about every tool you could wish for is available of Windows including 3ds Max. Macs are great for anyone who doesn’t mind changing their systems and Linux systems are good for those who want extreme customization. Then Windows-based PCs are a great middle ground between the two – giving ease of use and customization
On the other hand there is more chance of serious unwanted viruses or malware with the window-based PC’s. Other operating systems definitely aren’t immune to viruses but as Windows is the most popular operating system it also means it’s the biggest target for malicious code. As a 3D artist, you’ll more than likely need internet security software running at all times. One disadvantage is that this can take away some of your processing power for your 3D programs and, depending on the security software you’re using, could completely freeze your 3D programs so this is something to be aware of.

5. So which operating system is best for you?
There is no one size fits all when it comes to operating systems so you need to find one that will help you be as efficient as you can be for your 3D projects. So, it is best to focus on what is best for you and not what you want or think that looks good. Once you come to the conclusion of these two points it should be a lot easier to look at your options in a more objective light.
At Zaini Media we always advise to go for one that is completely dedicated to your 3D work. By keeping your work computer separate, the space shall be dedicated to your work and so will the operating system. Now that you’ve had a chance review the pros and cons for each operating system, we would love to hear your thoughts and what you have chosen to work with and why!

How to build a successful video production agency in 2018 and beyond

Posted by | Film Production | No Comments

Some of the most asked questions we get at Zaini Media on a daily basis are “what tips can you give for starting your own video production company in Dubai?” and “What are the first steps to take to set-up a successful video production agency?”.
This is definitely one for Zaini Media’s CEO Hashem Zaini to answer as he started the business 6 years ago with 2018 now beings its strongest

A good starting point is to firstly decide the type of business you want to have. Such as a free lancing, picking up new projects from time to time and working solely. Or maybe you favour a more medium size business where you might be involved in the sales side and hire free lancers or outsource some of the project work. The last option being a larger enterprise business where individuals would be required to carry out a range of different roles from HR to design and project management. This option means you can choose the role you want and love such as editing as your employees can fulfil the other jobs.

Hashem started Zaini Media carrying out most of the tasks himself from videography, project management and sales with the plan to hire employees at the right time which were highly skilled in one of these areas. This meant that projects were delivered to the highest standards by having absolute expertise in each area. The sales roles were the first that Hashem hired so that the increase in revenue allowed the business grow before taking on the highly skilled professionals.

In 2018 Hashem is now managing strategy and creative – being the head creative director at the video firm – handing over projects to the now team of 11.

Here are Hashem’s top 3 tips to survive in the early days of set-up

1. Have the video technical capabilities and understanding whether that is from yourself or you have the ability to hire people who do.

2. Have a strong understanding in sales and proposing projects to prospects and clients. This involves establishing and building relationships, networking with the ability to connect with your target customers. Such as finding and connecting with multiple types of businesses if you are aiming to deliver corporate videos.

3. Analysis is one of the most important components where you plan your resources and strategy to reach the correct prospects. You must understand what has worked well for you, your employees and what has not so that you can improve. For instance, if video creation is not your strong point – hire a really savvy videographer and become potential business partners. You may take lower fees yourself but the ball will start rolling which is effective longer term.

In general it is quite hard to find exceptional, good and strong video agencies so having the best resources is extremely vital to growing your agency and becoming a successful firm – beating the competition.

Now moving onto the creative aspect. We see many agencies and businesses turn into mass production houses for films and video which means one thing. High client turnover, low retention and non-existing lasting relationships. This type of business growth usually means the most important creative aspect is lost which is the one of the most valuable parts of your business.
Essentially your network and clients will always come back for more if the outcome is unique and one of a kind which does not happen when you are mass producing. Creating this level of high calibre work allows you and your team to grow your creative skills and always keep improving the exceptional work you are delivering.

Your company values and beliefs should be what drives you through each project and process. Not getting caught up is large revenue generators when you have the opportunity for your creativity to flourish with a project full of inspirational opportunities.

Don’t forget why you are doing this

Zaini Media Dives into Virtual Reality in Dubai

Posted by | Social Media | No Comments

As a content provider for animation and story based adverts for the past 5 years in Dubai,
Zaini Media set a new goal to it’s arsenal of achievements, and that is to transform it’s
animation and storytelling skill set into the virtual reality and immersive technology.

With the advent of high level hardware such as the htc vive and the oculus rift, a
new age of developers and game based first person story tellers has emerged
With virtual reality and augmented reality being a scarce medium in dubai and the gcc region
for the lack of the techinical know how that surrounded it’s early onset development,
The company has invested in up and coming artists and developers that have seen the
opportunity as medium that will take over the virtual storytelling scene by storm.

Virtual reality in Dubai is no longer a boring, copycat medium, Our vr team has come to shore.

Animation video

Top Ten Video Animation Tips from Zaini Media

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Mastering any type of animation requires hard work and continuous learning, being described as one of the hardest skills to learn. It can take year and years of practicing the techniques to become an expert.

As a experienced animation agency we have put together our top ten tips for you which we have seen happen many times and some simple changes could really change one’s animation quality. We wanted to share these with you and hope you find them valuable.

1. Start working in different spaces

Within our team we have seen output and delivery timings become significantly faster when we work remotely. There are no interruptions and of course you can increase your generation of ideas with extra inspiration from being in a completely different surrounding. In the office – having a comfortable setting and being somewhere you can let your imagination wander would be perfect! Good to have your colleagues at a close call so you can brainstorm your ideas too.

2. Listen and understand the brief, amends and feedback

Yes we did said you need to use your imagination and create unique new ideas. However if these do not follow feedback or even the original brief then your hard work is pointless. You can be the best animator in the world but if it is not in line with requirements then there will be an issue.

3. Take constructive criticism

Positive or negative feedback is there to help you create the best possible animation. When you have had your head in an animation all day, really living and feeling it – you can easily miss a main point. Also two or more brains work better than one. Some of our top animations have stemmed from a team brainstorm or a chat over a coffee or lunch. So do not be dishearten if you receive negative feedback as we should all be grateful for any type of feedback.

4. Over animating does not improve your animation

Animation really does not mean moving a character or object around as much as possible in each frame; it means making something look real and essentially bringing it to life. We have seen many times before young and eager animators move their assets around a lot. Instead you should step back and breath, thinking what does this type of character need to do to get their point across? Rather than just moving the object from A – Z. Try to become the character and get into their head. Even act it out yourself and get a second opinion. This way we guarantee you will not need as much movement.

5. Do you have a doubt? Throw it out!

We all want our animation to be perfect and to be like how we imagined it in our minds. If this is not working out and additional parts are being incorporated then we advise you start again. Andrew Gordon and Robb Denovan are the two directing animators at Pixar Animation Studios in USA. Both animators have quoted many times that one of the most seen errors amongst animators is over complex scenes. So what they do and recommend is that if a scene is becoming too confusing or complicated, then save your work, and start again from scratch. We could not agree more! Less is more or as some say – keep it simple.

6. Ask for feedback when ever you can

Yes we know that negative feedback can hurt sometimes after you have spent hours or even days on the animation video. However if you look at this in the way that if you have a dramatic and very funny ending but this is not portrayed in the characters faces – then changing it will completely improve the whole piece. Feedback to make your team laugh can be a good goal and feedback that will change your piece.

7. Quiet moments really are important

After many years of working with different levelled animators we have seen that silence and quiet moments are missing, when actually the most important. Think of a silent moment as your chance to share the impressions of the character and get their feelings during that scene across. This also gives the audience a chance to connect with the character. So all in all this is a win win tactic.

8. Know your ending before you figure out the middle

Endings can be the hardest part of any story. So tackling it at the beginning or latest the middle will really help you out. Once you are clear on what it is there the rest will fall into place we promise!

9. Try not to add to much information in into a shot

Trying to wedge as much information in one shot is another trait we see on a regular basis. This can really effect the characters and the whole storyline as the essence will be missed by trying to share too much at once. Again we will safe simple is the most effective.

10. Do you like animation or do you like to animate?

We worked with R&R agency to create the Dubai Font animation video. Rosana Urbes, owner at R&R Animation tells that before you jump into animation you need to understand if you want to become an animator. Admiring someones animation video is very different to carrying it out. It takes countless hours and days repeating the same scenes and sketches to get the perfect scenes. Motivation and pro activity is a must as well as a lot of hard work.

Zaini Media launches the official Dubai Font Animation Video

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Zaini Media had the honour to work with Y & R agency to produce the official animated video to showcase the first city being Dubai to launch its very own font.

As an award winning video and animation agency, we worked with Dubai’s crown prince, Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum to support the launch of their very own Microsoft font through a spectacular animation video.

We have now been established in the region for 11 years and were chosen to strategise and deliver the work, being part of the One Book Project. The collaboration also involved working closely with the talented composer Don Fuego, the former VP of legendary Los-Angeles based label Def Jam.

We have seen out of this world results so far, having received over 50 million impressions worldwide in a matter of weeks and this is expected to keep increasing. Being part of a worldwide talking point is a great feeling after all the effort and hard work the team put into this successful collaboration. We have seen the video posted by Dubai’s Prince Hamdan where he explained that the font was for self-expression meaning strength and freedom. The official hashtag trend he started was #ExpressYou which has gone viral since the post was published on Social Media channels. The font will now been adopted and used in all official correspondence in government institutions worldwide.

Hashem Zaini, founder and CEO of Zaini Media, spoke to the press about this piece of work “This is the actual reward and the absolute best reward of being in this business and the financial aspect is just a way to spread good vibes and creativity around the globe. The animation demonstrates our ongoing commitment to every client we service. Our team work and creative execution was very well thought out and now has been showcased worldwide which we are very proud of. International recognition and adding to our awards is the next natural step”.

View the animation 

Download the Font

Hilarious TV commercial gives us a fun and slow-mo peak at the perks of good hotel service for Booking.com

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Whats not to love with epic exaggerated commercials? Ad agency Wieden+Kennedy brings us this funny new Tv spot for Booking.com to highlight the little things we enjoy in our hotel vacations.

Mixed up with dramatic slow-mo acting, a long haired dude and his electrifying  blowdryer, round things and amazing footwear, this commercial is fun to watch from start to finish backed up by awesome nonsensical narration  by John Dimaggio, Bender’s voice from the animated series, Futurama.

booking-epic-hed-2014

 

More than crazy humor, this ad shows what stunning visuals and great performance, not to mention a pretty enjoyable script can do to make a company stand out. People like to watch fun videos and this ad is definitely content-sharing worthy. Its bold and its surprising and the kind of commercial we don’t just skip in Youtube.

Watch the Commercial here

Source: Adweek.com

 

Tutorial Preview: Model your own CG bullets

Posted by | CGI And Rendering, Postproduction | No Comments

We all love those gritty action films with Bruce Willis punchlines, Rambo rampage and guns with  unlimited bullets.

In case you want to make your own action film, bullets will always be on top of the list, and lots of them.

We know that bullets are kinda expensive and we don’t advise that you use real ones. So to help you out with that bit, CGtuts+ gets into detail with modeling and compositing your own digital bullets right at your own computer.

Bullets and Peww peww

Bullets and Peww peww

 

To get you geared up you’ll need more than just Illustrator on this one so make sure you have a powerful computer and a lot of free time.

Let’s start by going here: Bullet Compositing Tutorial

Daryl Feril and his Lovely design illustrations

Posted by | Design | No Comments
Design Illustrations by Daryl Feril

Design Illustrations by Daryl Feril

 

Stylish, intricate and highly sophisticated, the Philippine based illustrator and Graphic Designer, Daryl Feril has once again made another remarkable piece of work in his latest addition on his portfolio.

The Artwork was created as an entry to the Makati Bloom Arts Festival, a collective of Filipino based design and illustration right at the heart of the Philippine capital.

Illustrations by Daryl Feril

Illustrations by Daryl Feril

 

See the whole Project in his Behance

Or visit his website: http://www.darylferil.com/

Awesome branding for Coffee House London by Reynolds and Reyner

Posted by | Design | No Comments

Creativity mixed with great flair for branding, the popular  Ukrainian design agency Reynolds and Reyner has swept to new levels in design as they showcased their project with Coffee House London.

Coffee House London branding

Coffee House London branding

YouTheDesigner and writer Kerby Rosanes details the intricate and creative craftsmanship involved in their branding process

Reynolds and Reyner brainstorms their concept from sketch to final design and we recommend this to aspiring designers  and get a glimpse of how we do branding.

Designed by Reynolds and Reyner

Designed by Reynolds and Reyner

See more of it on their website:

reynoldsandreyner.com/coffee-house-london

The Hobbit takes us deeper into Middle Earth with its amazing website

Posted by | Film Production, Web development | No Comments

With the recent release  of the Hobbit sequel :The Desolation of Smaug, the makers of the the franchise has launched its very own interactive website that lets visitors  have their own little adventure.

Interactive website of the hobbit

Interactive website of the hobbit

The website opens up to different locations and characters in the film, providing a great insight into who and what lies within it as well as provide an interactive path to middle earth.

The website  experience is  completely available  for interactive viewing in tablets such as Ipad Air and Nexus.

Hobbit

Elrond Half- Elven

The website opens up in a parallax animation with a few accessible areas as Rivendell, Dol Guldur and Thrall shaws ending with a short mini game. There are still locked areas yet to be opened like Thranduils hall and Erebor and we are more than excited to try each one out.

View the website Here

 

 

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