Over the last few months we’ve seen two new companies formed around the concept of providing tools based on deep learning for visual effects. The positive responses they’ve received so far already along with the multitude of opportunities in the field are sure to mean that they will be the first of many.
Kognat aims to “turn the hype into tools” and is currently testing its “Rotobot” plugin for performing segmentation of scenes. It’s developed against the OpenFX APIs and thus is compatible with a wide array of tools. The initial results are promising yet there appears to be a way to go before production-quality results are fully automatic. We are sure to see improvement as their user base expands and the underlying technology matures.
Cronobo, on the other hand, is starting out with a much more specialized tool, Nexture, which adds data-driven microdetail procedurally to facial skin textures and can also generate specular or albedo maps from displacement due to the ways that their neural networks have learned rich underlying representations.
We’ll be keeping a close eye on both companies and wish them every success as they take the first brave steps into this new world!