I’ve been giving a lot of thought to the split that is happening within holographic technology.
We have come to a fork in the road. Analogue Holograms (the kind that are made from physical objects using lasers) are what we began with in the early 1960’s and they continue to evolve (examples of this evolution can be seen in the convincing full color holograms of rare and precious objects in museums and the work of fine artists who continue to experiment with the medium) but digital holograms open up a different realm. In this digital realm we are seemingly only limited by our imaginations and our skills with very sophisticated software. The artists with those skills are now working all over the world - a large percentage of whom are employed in the global film industry.
I said that we are seemingly only limited by our imaginations because I believe that to create amazing digital holograms you have to first understand what analogue holograms are and their unique properties. Only then can you create content that will go beyond being hard copy of a 3D animation and be a great digital hologram.
To address that fork in the road...... on the one side of the fork there are analogue holographers who largely started working in an era that was pre digital and many have not made the leap into that 3D digital world. Many do not have skills in 3D animation, special effects, and the broad spectrum of computer graphics but they do have vast skills in visualizing complex and sophisticated dimensional images from multiple exposure techniques, unique properties of optical holograms and chemical processing techniques (to name a few). These are very sophisticated artists with highly developed skills. On the other side of the fork there is a lack of CG artists working in the digital realm because most know nothing about holography, in either analogue or digital form.
So right now we have analogue holographic artists with no access to creating digital holograms because of lack of digital skills and 3D animators who do have the capability to create content but have no knowledge of either analogue or digital holography and are thus not doing it either. There are a handful of holographic artists who have crossed the digital divide and a few CG Artists who have stepped into the holographic world but we need to build bridges across that gap and link those two paths.
I just read Marty Shindler’s piece on his blog “The Shindler Perspective” titled Bracing for Correction at http://bit.ly/15sMmqc. In it he predicts a coming contraction in the movie business that he feels will impact all levels of employment within the industry. He advises anyone in the movie industry to be planning now for new directions and be prepared when the contraction happens. I think that it’s time for some of you CG artists to look further afield and to embrace some new technology. Digital Holography is crying out for experimental creativity, a whole new technology is beginning to open up and is waiting for good content. Take his advice and don’t wait for the correction to happen, be proactive and look for new ways of working. Try making some Digital Holograms, learn about the many ways of imaging them and explore the evolving new markets for dimensional images.
I would like to invite you to learn about Analogue and Digital Holography through my online course and make two of your own holograms each at a different facility. Read about it in my previous blog or contact me directly for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org.