department supervisor   º   crowds   º   pipeline engineer   º   technical director
allen.stetson@gmail.com   º   19677 crystal springs ct. newhall, ca 91321 usa   º   661.857.4023
       
year: may, 2005
role: technical director, animation
duties: working with tools and techology of dreamworks animation's first-ever cross-site team, educating animators on pipeline tools and processes in place to accomplish their goals and increase efficiency, authoring tools to assist in the production of our feature, trouble-shooting the animation software and process as well as renders and baked model generation, performing tasks that ease the process of animation for our artists.
direct manager: michael min (supervising technical director)
notes: not far into production on madagascar, i was selected to move from pdi/dreamworks in the san francisco area down to the glendale-based dreamworks animation campus so that i might help in our efforts to unify our pipelines.

i was the only technical director for our entire team of cross-site animators and was tasked with teaching them the software, techniques, best-practices, and trouble-shooting methods in place at pdi/dreamworks. in those early days of remote video conferencing and data sharing, i was charged with monitoring and troubleshooting the many problems that arose with network latency, failed connectivity, and cross-site communication. i assisted shot animators and cycle animators in their efforts to produce quality footage at an acceptable speed.

i assisted in the animation of cycles by adjusting completed animation that was transferred to different body types to eliminate inter-penetrations and unacceptable rig deformations. i wrote tools to assist in the copying of animation data for both cycles and production shots and authored a web application as part of a new standard of practice that i enforced for cycle animation which eliminated many common problems in the communication regarding cycles. perl and php were used in my code development on this show.
year: jun, 2012
role: pipeline engineer
duties: authoring portions of proprietary next-generation software and data formats, specifically relating to crowds and lighting. collaborating with R&D and department heads in the design and implementation.
direct manager: amy mcdonald sandjideh (department manager, pipeline engineering/r&d)
notes: during my time in pipeline, i earned credits on three feature films, including this one. although my efforts were not specifically focused on this film, it and all films in the future will benefit from my time spent in pipeline.

i was initially drafted into the pipeline engineering group because they were under-staffed for their work on our next generation of software and because it lined up well with my schedule to lend them my services for a finite amount of time. although well-versed in our old studio language of perl, i had only limited exposure to our new studio language of python. perhaps for that reason, i was paired up with several top-performing python developers who proceeded to bestow upon me their vast quantities of knowledge, techniques, and advice. under their guidance, i grew my skills to a point that cultivates much personal pride in my current abilities.

during my time in pipeline i worked on such projects as a data conditioning process which took data from our current pipeline and converted it into data compatible with our next generation of software; a technology that allowed for metadata associated with all renderable assets to be collected, stored, and used in our next generation of lighting software; a technology that separated the level of detail in our crowd data from the geometric complexity of a crowd asset thereby allowing an artist to choose the most prudent geometry setting for any level of detail; an updating of crowd software libraries from reading current generation world-space matrix files into next generation local-space heirarchy xml files.