Natt Mintrasak

Visual Effects Technical Director

SUMMARY

I am a technical director and digital artist in the visual effects and animation industry with experience in feature film from Hollywood productions. With formal background in digital art and extensive experience in academia, merging art and technology will always be my top interest.

WORK

Effects/Pipeline Technical Director, Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2, Walt Disney Animation Studios, 2016-current

Maintain and develop effects/pipeline tools for the show, and the front-line point person for fx-destruction team. Ongoing development/maintenance on foundation effects tools for a mid-size effects team while engaging in heavy support on shot work issues for effects department. Developed and standardized tools for setting up temporary and foundation effects between effects and layout department.

Animation/Pipeline Technical Director, Zootopia, Walt Disney Animation Studios, 2014-2015

Maintain and develop animation/pipeline tools for the entire studio, and the front-line point person for animation supervisors and leads regarding the department’s workflow. Continuing work on development/maintenance on animation tools for a very large animation team (up to 100 animators) while engaging in heavy support on shot work issues for animation and technical animation department. Additionally, focus on development on streamlining the pipeline side with our proprietary geometry cache format.

Animation/Pipeline Technical Director, Big Hero 6, Walt Disney Animation Studios, 2013-2014

Maintain and develop animation/pipeline tools for the show, and the front-line point person for animation supervisors and leads regarding the department’s workflow. This includes overseeing a wide range of tool set such as custom tweening tool (DTween), IK/FK bake and switch, world matrix transferring, shot pose continuity tool, animation publishing data flow (Disney’s proprietary), and setting up animation rendering system to name a few. In addition, heavy involvement with the development of Disney’s new crowd variation build system (on the data handling side for export and publishing). Also develop FK transfer system for the crowds team to transfer Massive© agent animation cycles to Maya.

Pipeline Technical Director, Maleficent, Digital Domain, 2012-2013

As the main front-end pipeline TD, develop/support all ingestion pipeline from external clients. Examples include vendor camera and tracking ingestion, plate ingestion, mocap body/facial ingestion, witnesscam ingestion, etc. All data funnel in through our Venice location for which the ingestion system properly distribute crucial data across to our sister studio in Vancouver, allowing artists for prompt/rapid delivery in order to begin work in crucial production schedule. In mocap ingestion, develop multiple transfer system of mocap data to production animation rigs with solving methodology on various needs of mocap and anim rig skeletal structure. The facial pipeline development include utilizing of tracking marker locators and hook up to the studio’s facial solve system. Also heavily involve in animation related work such as building an offset camera rig rendering system that utilize image plane conversion and rendering.

Animation Technical Director, Iron Man 3, Digital Domain, 2012-2013

Develop/support animation tools for the show under direction of animation supervisor such as animation transfer tools, namespace handler, and animation publish data check mechanism in the interactive Maya session. Also conduct frequent training sessions for the animation team for usage in show/facility specific tools and act as front line support for animation related issues.

Animation Technical Director, Ender’s Game, Digital Domain, 2012-2013

Develop and support animation tools for the show under direction of animation and pipeline supervisor. Built and support character swapping pipeline between various rigs including animation transfer which also requires database registration and assetmanagement. Support animation library manager which stores and publishes animation clips and static pose. Developed vehicle-build tool for animators/layout artists to load a collection of vehicle rigs, including complete assembly rig within the scene. Also act as front end general show TD support.

Animation/Pipeline Technical Director, Jack the Giant Killer, Digital Domain, 2011-2012

Work closely with Animation/Pipeline Supervisor to develop, enhance, and maintain various animation pipeline and tools. Developed swap giant pipeline for secondary and tertiary giants, animation render pipeline, and work as front line support for animation publish system including development of all animation tools for remote site animation team of 30+ animators. Built a robust motion-capture ingestion pipeline around a multi rig system (adapter to anim rigs) with distributive farm mode to ingest shots with over 250 background giants. Also developed postviz pipeline for animators assembling the scene for layout which utilize mocap curves library. Developed a facial mocap data ingestion pipeline and a facial solve publishing/render system (includes head mounted cam references and calibration ingestion). Also built the plate ingestion pipeline for stereo exr with 5k support.

Animation/Pipeline Technical Director, Real Steel, Digital Domain, 2010-2011

Worked with the CG Supervisor and show leads to develop, enhance, and maintain various digital publishing pipelines to insure proper data flow from different departments (with concentration on animation).  Built a robust motion-capture ingestion pipeline around an existing skeleton retargeting system for the show asset rigs with a solid quality control on data ingestion that included multiple publishing system and an automated render check system.  This insured proper data acquisition for 600+ shots that was ready for animators and lighters as soon as data is received.  Along with building various animation tools and workflow, I was the frontline support for all animation issues and acted as general TD support for a variety of show needs in order to keep production running as smooth as possible.

Animation Technical Director, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Digital Domain, 2010-2011

Developed/maintained animation publish pipeline for the show that generated various data types such as bgeo, live rig, and geometry cache that flowed to lighting and FX team.  Also worked closely with animation supervisor to build animation toolset to enhance existing workflow and solve animation needs.  I also provided full support for modeling team to enhance model clean up tools and model publishing system which exports Maya file types, obj, and bgeo capping off with an automated rendering in V-Ray™.

Technical Director, Thor, Digital Domain, 2010-2011

Built plate ingestion pipeline for all plate formats required for the show, working closely with Compositing Supervisor on plate processing solution.  I also built the show’s initial backend setup dealing with asset database, job system, and subversion repository.

Technical Director, The A-Team, Digital Domain, 2010-2010

As the show only TD, I provided full setup/support for animation, lighting, and FX.  Being a small show with a demand for quick turnaround, I managed to setup solid working pipeline for publishing models and animation while setting up some 2D pipeline including final deliverables process and plate ingestion that required different formats.   I also developed a solution to tackle geometry caching problems of animation publish for lighting and provided technical solution to various show issues.

Assistant Technical Director, Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, Digital Domain, 2009-2010

Provided support for proprietary animation publish pipeline and the only frontline support on animation technical issues for a dozen plus animators.  Supported and enhanced the automated animation render system using Renderman® and background plates.

Technical Assistant, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, Digital Domain, 2008-2009

Worked with DFX Supervisor on managing resources for insuring smooth operation of the show.  This included render management, disk consumption, and all other resource management tasks.  I also developed tools to monitor resource consumption, render/disk projections, and automated report generation with considerable data gathering.

Technical Support, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Digital Domain, 2007-2008

Worked with the show technical assistant to wrangle render priority and provided support with disk consumption cleanup.  Developed tools to assist with render wrangling and automate priority system.

EDUCATION

Master of Fine Arts in Electronic Visualization, University of Illinois at Chicago, 1998-2001

Studied/researched computer graphics and animation with emphasis on virtual reality programming.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photo/Film/Electronic Media, University of Illinois at Chicago, 1993-1997

Studied fine arts with heavy emphasis on time base medium.

SKILLS

Very detail oriented, strong communicator, and always 100% committed on every task.  Good understanding of most key aspects of 3D graphics.

Tools: Python, MEL, C++, Shell Scripting

Software: Maya, Houdini, Nuke, Photoshop, After Effects

Operating Systems: Linux, Windows, Mac OS X

FACTS

Languages: English (native), Thai (native), Spanish (proficient verbal and written)

Active Member of Visual Effects Society

Active Member of ASIFA-Hollywood (International Animated Film Society)

Active Member of ACM SIGGRAPH

natt@tumbleview.com – 312.296.3266


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