3D Artist

The Foundry launches new VR toolset

Steve Holmes

MODO and MARI developer launches new NUKE plugin, CARA VR

The Foundry launches new VR toolset

The Foundry has announced today that it has launched its new VR toolset, CARA VR, which is a plugin for its popular compositing software NUKE.

Following on from the announcement of MODO 10 Series, which will focus on real-time content creation for games and VR, CARA VR will function within NUKE to deliver high-end VR experiences.

“Our research team is dedicated to solving the big challenges that our industry faces with new technologies,” said Andy Whitmore, chief product officer at The Foundry.

“We have a long history of bringing products to market that take away some of the pain points of content creation and make it easier for artists to focus on being more creative. OCULA, which was developed in response to the rise in stereo 3D, is a great example of that.

“Virtual reality presents an exciting challenge for us and for the industry.

“In order to make sure we developed tools that actually helped our customers tackle that challenge, we worked in close collaboration with them to understand their requirements and the challenges they face in working with this new medium. Our customers were already using NUKE on VR projects, but CARA VR streamlines those workflows, making high-quality VR content creation faster and easier without leaving the NUKE environment.”

According to The Foundry, key features of CARA VR for NUKE will be:

● Stitching tools that enable artists to solve the physical layout of the cameras in multi-camera rigs, calculate their focal length and lens distortion, and use depth-dependent warping to merge the multiple video sequences into an uninterrupted 360° view.

● Tools for making plate corrections that include the ability to match exposure and color balance between cameras, stabilise footage to remove horizon roll that can cause motion sickness, and manually correct stitches to create a seamless immersive experience.

● Compositing workflows that enable artists to work in a spherical image space, including tracking, paint for rig removal, and ray-trace rendering to place virtual elements into the real-world environment.

● An integrated live review process for the Oculus Rift headset that enables artists to evaluate their work in the context of the end viewing platform directly from within NUKE, including timeline playback in NUKE STUDIO.

A release date is nowhere to be seen at present, so you’ll have to hold your horses for now. However, the public beta for CARA VR is now live, so go and check it out if you have an existing NUKE licence. Alternatively, The Foundry offers a 15-day free trial.