Melissa K Fontanini aka MissyKat

is a Digital Artist with degrees from OSU and USC. She's currently working as a freelance 3D Generalist - Artist, Animator, Instructor - as well as focusing on her own tangible art

http://melissafontanini.tumblr.com/

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Mentioned on the TODAY show - InStyle







This is regarding the work Total Immersion did for InStyle magazine's holiday issue with Taylor Swift on the cover.

http://giftsforyou.instyle.com/


Some of the animation I did for the InStyle holiday campaign:

Modeled, textured, and animated the ornament.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Disney Villain Masks

So I'm a little late with posting this project...
I worked on clean up, 3D mask fixes, and some of the website interface images.
Augmented Reality Halloween Masks Article

'Avatar' toys with augmented reality

Article in Variety from November 19, 2009

'Avatar' toys with augmented reality


dvice Article

Monday, November 16, 2009

Coke Avatar



I didn't work directly on this project, but this is one completed by my coworkers.

New York Times Article about Mattel's Avatar

New York Times November 13, 2009

An article discussing the Mattel Avatar Action Figure campaign

By ROB WALKER
Published: November 13, 2009

The action figures for James Cameron’s “Avatar” started appearing in stores last month. The movie won’t be out until December, but the toys have their own multimedia selling point: an “augmented reality” feature. This phrase has become one of the pervasive buzz concepts of 2009, and as is often true in such cases, it seems to describe a variety of manifestations from the practical to the pointless to the pie in the sky.

Very broadly, augmented reality can be thought of as an inversion of the venerable “virtual reality” buzz concept. Instead of plunging us into a completely digital environment, augmented reality means placing digital things into the regular old world. Those things might be bits of information or renderings of imaginary objects. And they, of course, aren’t really in the real world at all — they just appear to be there if you filter your gaze through the proper screen.

O.K., let’s try an example. Suppose you buy the Mattel action figure depicting the “Avatar” character Jake Sully. (Actually there’s more than one, but say you buy the one wherein he’s a blue guy with stripes and a spear.) It’s four inches tall, costs around $11 and comes packaged with a plastic tray that directs you to a Web site. Follow the steps and hold the tray up to the Web cam on your computer. In real life, you’re waving a tray around. In the image of yourself that you see on-screen, however, the tray you are holding now seems to support a complicated control center with a screen that you can move about, scrutinize and admire. Depending on the toy, the digital object might be a fighting machine you can manipulate so that it appears to move around your desk, firing off rounds.

The underlying technology for adding digital information to a real-time image of reality isn’t incredibly new, and in fact, Total Immersion, the company that worked with Mattel on the “Avatar” toys, has been using it for about 10 years for kiosks at trade shows and the like. Basically, a camera “reads” information that’s on a physical object (like that plastic tray) and converts it into something digital that it lays over the real-world image the camera records. The current wave of excitement about augmented reality often involves peering at a smartphone screen, rather than a computer. For example, Yelp, the online service that reviews restaurants, bars and small businesses, has added a feature to one mobile app: point your (properly enabled) phone at a row of restaurants as if you were going to take a picture of it, and in addition to seeing what’s really there, you’ll see the Yelp ratings hovering in front of each.

Augmented-reality hype has also been fueled by traditional advertisers, who are also keen to exploit new technology. Greg Davis, Total Immersion’s general manager of U.S. operations, says this has become the fastest-growing part of his company’s business. Thus Burger King creates an online ad that requires you to hold up a dollar bill in front of your Web cam; you see information about the chain’s dollar-menu items popping over the real-time image of you, holding up a dollar bill. Total Immersion wasn’t involved in that one, but its clients have included McDonald’s, Procter & Gamble, Nike and other huge companies.

The “Avatar” project is a newer direction, tacking the technology on to an actual product to create what Davis calls a “digital accessory.” Total Immersion has also worked with Topps, the sports-card company, on cards that show a player leaping into action and that can be used in conjunction with an online game. But it’s the mobile-device variation that suggests a different way of looking at the world. Core77, the online design magazine, suggested one amusing possibility earlier this year: fold in facial-recognition technology and you could point your phone at Bob from accounting, whose visage is now “augmented” with the information that he has a gay son and drinks Hoegaarden. More recently, a Swedish company has publicized a prototype app that would in fact augment the image of Bob (or whomever) with information from his social-networking profiles — and they aren’t kidding.

If this sounds off-putting, it’s worth noting that most assessments of the augmented-reality trend include the speculation that the hype will fade. Davis doesn’t think so, of course, and argues that hypothetical scenarios making the rounds are “not as far off as you might think.” Breakthrough applications will give consumers the rationale to buy into augmented reality the way we bought into DVD players or texting. One assessment of augmented-reality possibilities suggested a future in which you might point a smartphone at the “Mona Lisa” and access a documentary about Leonardo da Vinci. And maybe someday it will seem normal to look at a Burger King location through a portable screen and see Yelp ratings, diners’ tweets and possibly a character from “Avatar” enjoying a $1 Whopper Jr. Perhaps this will seem advantageous. Why just look at a restaurant, a colleague or the “Mona Lisa,” when you can you can “augment” them all?

Friday, November 13, 2009

InStyle Holiday


InStyle Holiday - model, texture, animate

November 2009

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Avatar toys go augmented-reality, courtesy of Mattel and Total Immersion

Avatar toys go augmented-reality, courtesy of Mattel and Total Immersion






Avatar Augmented Reality Toys

Friday, September 25, 2009

McDonalds BigMac


BigMac - Dancing Hamburger - fix/adjust the model and textures, rig, animate to the music

September 2009

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Hollywood Forever Cemetery Panorama



I've been taking Lighting & Rendering 1 at Gnomon this summer and the assignment this week was to take a panorama.

After figuring out how to use a Kaiden head tripod, I went with two other classmates to Hollywood Forever Cemetery and spent forever trying to get the photography accomplished due to security...Permits, permits, permits, permission, permission, permission! It's for school!! hahaha

At first we were stopped and told photography wasn't allowed (oh people take photographs all the time, but we were sore thumbs because we had a tripod and were sticking to the same area in order to get the full panorama). So after being told such, we went to the Cemetery Office to ask for permission, which we were easily given on a post-it note. Then we continued back to our spot in order to start again. Being that there were three of us, we chose three different locations to do panoramas and throughout our remaining time there, we were approached by security about 5 or 6 more times, twice by the same guy! We showed the permission post-it note we were given and all was okay...I understand they were doing there job, but the same guy twice? "I'm sorry, I just wanted to look at your note again and verify." hahaha

We did have to clear out of the cemetery around 6pm because they had to prep for the movie screening they have on Saturday nights during the summer. It was an interesting day, I am sunburned and drained, but I got the photos, stitched them together and got a descent panorama.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Aquafresh - Work Project


May 2009
I modeled, textured, and animated everything in about a half day to a day.

Structural Graphics - Work Project


March 2009
To match the logo, I modeled and animated a paper airplane with little dots trailing after it.

Reebok - Work Project


February 2009
I animated this 3D Reebok shoe "pumping up" / inflating.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Squeaked



This is an unfinished film I created during the second year of my MFA at USC (2006-2007). The story is about a chewtoy that loses its squeak. There's a T-Bone, Hamburger, and Hotdog chewtoy that gang up on the poor Ball chewtoy because of his malfunction.

I only completed a little over 1 minute of the film, but the continuation of the story introduces a dog. While the food-related chewtoys are ganging up on the Ball, they are causing all sorts of ruckus, which catches the attention of a nearby bulldog. The dog sees these rather large chewtoys and realizes this is an opportunity he cannot pass up, so he charges after them. Initially he goes for the Ball because it is on the ground and couldn't get away. The dog pounces on the Ball, but it doesn't make a sound. The dog promptly loses interest and pursues the remaining chewtoys. So in the end, it is the abnormality that saves the Ball from the jaws of the bulldog.

This was a solo project; I created the story, modeled, textured, rigged, and animated the scenes in maya. The textures aren't finalized and the sounds are only temporary (and some aren't synched properly...definitely rough!!) in order to give the general idea.

Augmented Reality at ComicCon 2009



Now this has been a part of my life since about the moment I started working at Total Immersion. Along with one other 3D artist, I did some modeling and texturing, but mainly rigged and animated many many characters.

Augmented Toys

Related Article

A little background info on the company

Augmented Fantasmic Summer Nightastic



A truly quick project I worked on was an advertisement for the 2009 launch of Disneyland's Summer Nightastic. With only a few short days, I helped model, texture, rig, and animate the dragon...then I cleaned up Tinkerbell's animation and added a few extra sequences (an animation cycle of her flying, and a sequence where she flies up to the front of the screen/camera and flirts a bit).

Fantasmic! 3D
Related Blog

First Job Out of School - Total Immersion



Since the end of January 2009, I've been working as a 3D artist at an Augmented Reality company called Total Immersion. Topps 3D Live is one of the projects they were finishing up when I started. I helped with minor texturing tasks, exports, creating buttons, text....just various odds and ends. It was a huge step for the company and brought a lot of media attention...NYTimes did an article and we were also interviewed for a telecast of the Canadian division of the Discovery Channel.

NYTimes Article About the Topp's AR Project
I created the image in the article captioned "A fanciful depiction of a 3-D image of Ryan Howard of the Phillies from a Topps 3D Live card."

Total Immersion's AR Youtube Channel

Some More of Total Immersion's Work on Youtube

Total Immersion Main Website

Friday, May 29, 2009

Spinmaster


Gandalf - animation - For this, the original animation was done incorrectly, so I had a half day or a day to strip all the animation off of it and start over; also, the rig didn't have finger bones. It's done in animation cycles that all connect together to an idle pose.

May 2009

Friday, April 24, 2009

Cheerios - Buzz


Cheerios Buzz - rig, animate

April 2009

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Motion Capture Work

video


Clips from my MFA thesis Cat Nap.


While at USC, I took Special Sessions: Motion Capture where I learned how to calibrate an IQ system, calibrate actors, run IQ, clean up the motion capture data and apply the animation to digital characters in MotionBuilder. I created and rigged my own characters, a boy and a cat, applied the motion capture data, motion blended scenes together, and counter-animated in MotionBuilder before taking the scenes into Maya to tweak the animation some more, then add facial, finger, and prop animation.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Cat Nap - Mocap Thesis Animation

A version with sound:


A version with some color:


Cat Nap is my MFA thesis animation work in progress. The body animation is motion capture data I captured with an IQ system, cleaned, retargeted in MotionBuilder onto my digital characters, counter-animated, and brought into Maya for facial, hand, and prop animation as well as any additional animation cleanup.

This is a solo project where I created the story, and modeled, rigged, textured all the assets.  Though I did use a friend to put on the motion capture suit and play the boy and the cat.





Monkey See - Stop Motion

video

This was a Stop Motion film I shot on 16mm film, in 4 days, over Spring Break 2006. I modeled each puppet and prop, sewed the clothes, animated the scenes and edited the film together. There was no digital involvement aside from the transfer to a .mov file.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

3D Modeling Work

video
Shot 1:
Rooftop - Maya 8.5 - This is a rooftop I modeled from images given to me to be used in a music video created by Aaron Biscombe

Shot 2:
Cat Nap - Maya 2008 - Boy character modeled with polygons for my MFA thesis film Cat Nap

Shot 3:
Cat Nap - Maya 2008 - Cat character modeled with polygons for my MFA thesis film Cat Nap

Shot 4:
Cat Nap - Maya 2008 - Environment model with polygons for MFA thesis film Cat Nap

Shot 5:
Opal Flower - Maya 8.5 - This is a flower modeled and UV'd from a drawing by Nahomi Maki for her animated short Swimming Moon

Shot 6:
Pansy Flower - Maya 8.5 - This is a flower modeled and UV'd from a drawing by Nahomi Maki for her animated short Swimming Moon

Shot 7:
Bat Flower - Maya 8.5 - This is a flower modeled, UV'd, and rigged from a photograph for an MFA thesis animation by Brittany Biggs

Shot 8:
Squeaked - Maya 8.5 - Bulldog modeled and rigged for 3D animated short Squeaked

Shot 9:
Squeaked - Maya 8.5 - Hamburger chewtoy modeled and rigged for 3D animated short Squeaked

Shot 10:
Squeaked - Maya 8.5 - Hotdog chewtoy modeled and rigged for 3D animated short Squeaked

Shot 11:
Squeaked - Maya 8.5 - Porkchop chewtoy modeled and rigged for 3D animated short Squeaked

Shot 12:
Squeaked - Maya 8.5 - Environment model for 3D animated short Squeaked

3D Generalist Work

video
Shot 1:
Rooftop - Maya 8.5 - This is a rooftop I modeled from images given to me to be used in a music video created by Aaron Biscombe

Shot 2:
Cat Nap - Maya 2008 - Boy character modeled with polygons for my MFA thesis film Cat Nap

Shot 3:
Cat Nap - Maya 2008 - Cat character modeled with polygons for my MFA thesis film Cat Nap

Shot 4:
Squeaked - Maya 8.5 - Clips from my solo 3D film Squeaked where I wrote the story, modeled, rigged/skinned, textured, and animated all the elements

Shot 5:
Cat Nap - Maya 2008 - Clips from my MFA thesis animated short Cat Nap. This short is a combination of body motion capture and keyframe hand/facial/prop animation. I modeled, rigged and skinned all elements as well as captured, cleaned, and retargeted all the motion capture data using IQ, MotionBuilder, and Maya 2008

Shot 6:
Flying Burger - Shake and Maya 8.5 - Using provided plates, I modeled and then animated a hamburger flying through cityscapes.

Shot 7:
Opal Flower - Maya 8.5 - This is a flower modeled and UV'd from a drawing by Nahomi Maki for her animated short Swimming Moon

Shot 8:
Pansy Flower - Maya 8.5 - This is a flower modeled and UV'd from a drawing by Nahomi Maki for her animated short Swimming Moon

Shot 9:
Bat Flower - Maya 8.5 - This is a flower modeled, UV'd, and rigged from a photograph for an MFA thesis animation by Brittany Biggs

Shot 10:
Squeaked - Maya 8.5 - Bulldog modeled and rigged for 3D animated short Squeaked

Shot 11:
Squeaked - Maya 8.5 - Hamburger chewtoy modeled and rigged for 3D animated short Squeaked

Shot 12:
Squeaked - Maya 8.5 - Hotdog chewtoy modeled and rigged for 3D animated short Squeaked

Shot 13:
Squeaked - Maya 8.5 - Porkchop chewtoy modeled and rigged for 3D animated short Squeaked

Shot 14:
Squeaked - Maya 8.5 - Environment model for 3D animated short Squeaked

Friday, March 6, 2009

Resume

Resume

LinkedIn

Click below to open larger



Friday, February 27, 2009

Barbie


Barbie - rig, animate

February 2009