Press Release - for Immediate Distribution
PD Pro Digital Painter 3.6 update:
Motion Tracking, Dual Monitors, Color Correction, Improved Animation, new Art Filters and more
February 21, 2006 - San Diego, California and Santa Clarita, Califormia
Dan Ritchie and Philip Staiger of TheBest3D.com today jointly announced the release of a new free update for current users of Project Dogwaffle Professional and PD Pro Digital Painter: PD Pro version 3.6.
"I call this the productivity release", said Staiger, adding "because we think it will make professional animators have some fun while being more productive. Dan has added yet again a number of fabulous new features."
What's new in 3.6 ?
- Improved Brush Keyframer
There are new shortcuts, by keyboard and mouse for scrubbing through the timeline while quickly setting or removing keyframes. There are also speed improvements.
- Motion Tracking in Brush Keyframer
The Brush Keyframer now has a motion tracker that can aid in automated path generation to render new brushes for post work along moving pixels. While it is already possibly to create such paths manually with keyframes, and while it's even faster now with the keyboard and mouse shortcuts, adding an automated tracking option will sometimes be of great value in creating a tentative path. The keyframes can then be edited further manually if needed.
- Dual Monitor support
Professional users with dual-screen configurations will love this new focus on supporting their systems.
- Art Filters
An 'Oilify' and a 'GraphicPen' filter were added, with a vast range of parameters to play with numerous features. It is now even easier and faster to turn a digital photo into an apparent work of hand painted art or techno sketch!
- Improved Browser: Faster, Better overall
Multiple browsers are supported, with drag-and-drop, and the new detailed mode also includes a mini-thumbnail to show a preview image along with size and date, even of images such as .png, .tga and .psd files
- Memory Management for Animations
When creating new animations, estimated memory requirements and availability are displayed to help the user make decisions about closing other applications to free memory or use memory management tools and avoid 'going virtual'.
The Most Recently Used Documents and favorites in the browser helps in quickly switching between many project files.
- new Lua Scripts
A collection of new Lua scripts were included. Lua scripting is available for all versions of Project Dogwaffle and uses a free plugin by Marco Pontello that implements gluas-like functionality found in the GIMP. Lua is a fast, free and portable scripting envirenment originally developed in Brazil with a grant from oil&gas industry PetroBras. Lua carries a small footprint and is very fast, explaining why numerous popular game engines have used Lua in recent years. The DogLua implementation by Pontello adds interactive GUI-server based component support. Guiserver is a free product by Dan Ritchie and has been adopted by other imaging application developers such as the makers of Artweaver. The new scripts allow for special fx filters to be shared and exchanged between users of various applications that use the same Lua features.
- non-photo-blue removal
This tool has been improved to better clean up blue shades which are often use in concept sketches and storyboards by cartoonists. Traditional 'old-school' animators will find this a great feature.
- Color Correction
In the "Adjust Color" filter, there is a new tab with various options for adjusting the color in Shadows, Mid-tones and Highlights. It allows for color-correction in ranges of lightness instead of globally.
- Plugins and Layers
PD Pro 3.6 has added support for plugins to affect layers separately. There is also a new TestLayer plugin which is aimed at developers who want to make specific features from their codebase available in Dogwaffle as free or commercial extensions. It takes only a few lines of code to an existing standalone program to establish a connection to the dogwaffle server and act as a plugin to it, or to send its image data to pd pro.
Many other little details that improve the workflow for professional animators and matte painting artists. Details and illustrations of examples are found at http://www.thebest3d.com/dogwaffle/whatsnew
"It's been a bit quiet here in recent weeks and months", added Ritchie. "I've been working on a number of projects, including Silver Squirrel 2 and the next major release for PD Pro 4, and other stuff to be released shortly. For the anniversary of the 3.0 release, which was a major milestone in software architecture, I'm happy to release these new features in PDpro 3.6. These are things which I want the current community of wafflers to have now, not in 6 months, or whenever we're done with v4. I've already had great feedback from several professional animators and cartoonists. We hope that these new features will enable more artists to develop their skills and excell at their passion for drawing and animating, which is what they do best."
There have been several feature updates, all free, since 3.0 was first released in early 2005: 3.1, 3.1a, 3.2 and 3.5 last Fall. There were also some separate 'doggybags' for Halloween and other occasions to offer new filters and plugins to users of PD pro and other versions such as the freeware 1.2 and 2.1b users.
The new 3.6 updater is available for free downloading to current legitimate users of earlier 3.x versions including Project Dogwaffle professional. Visit http://www.thebest3d.com/dogwaffle/patches for details
Users of 2.x are encouraged to upgrade to v3 in order to take advantage of the new features.
*** About Dan Ritchie and Squirreldome.com
Project Dogwaffle is the result of 8+ years of development by Dan Ritchie, a Hollywood special fx artist and the author of "Silver Squirrel". Based on active-X server technology, PD Pro easily lets developers make new filters, plugins and enhancements, such as the Lua scripting front end or fun and entertaining things like spooky clocks or med/mod music players. Project Dogwaffle is available in several forms, including a freeware and a professional edition.
*** About Philip Staiger and TheBest3D.com
Philip Staiger expresses his love for 2D art, 3D, space, kids and other natural disasters at thebest3d.com where he consults and helps artists find their visual muse through affordable software for painting and animating. Philip used Project Dogwaffle in the making of "Cosmic Eye", the artwork on Dj D'Artagnan's new music CD, some of which is being featured at the Winter Olympics in Torino, Italy. Philip was also the winner of the 2005 Digital Iron Artist competition at DragonCon Atlanta.
Philip and Dan can best be reached through the contacts page at http://www.thebest3d.com/dogwaffle/about
*** Press contacts
For Press inquiries and NFR copies to arrange for a review please contact Philip Staiger at
Project Dogwaffle is a trademark of Dan Ritchie. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners and only used for identification purposes.