On June 26, 1987, Greg Hermanovic and I incorporated Side Effects Software. With the support of our families, we ventured into a brave new world of art and technology. PRISMS was our first product and its key innovation was a procedural approach to 3D. Houdini continues that tradition and artists around the world use it to create feature film VFX, high-end commercials and state-of-the-art video game content. The evolution of our industry has been an exciting ride and we are so proud of what our staff and our customers have accomplished.
Recently, I spoke at the Canadian Embassy in Washington where I discussed Canada’s rich history in computer animation starting with Hunger/La Faim produced by the National Film Board in 1974. It was the first computer-animated short to be nominated for an Academy Award and inspired a generation of animators and programmers. Over the last 25 years, Side Effects has contributed its part to this history and has won its share of awards. But the industry continues to evolve and we know that there is lots of work to be done. In many ways, I still feel like Side Effects is a start-up company getting ready to take on the world.
As I look at the group of people working at Side Effects today and reflect on all the talent that has helped shape this company, I am a little overwhelmed. Their dedication to excellence in what they do and their ability to work closely with all our customers is fulfilling the vision Side Effects started out with just 25 “short” years ago.
To celebrate 25 years, Side Effects staff from our Toronto and Santa Monica offices got together for a couple days of celebration. After a few quick business meetings, we built bikes for local kids then met at the ballpark to watch the Toronto Blue Jays. The next day, we hopped on a bus to visit Niagara Falls. It was fun to watch as in-house artists and developers sat analyzing the falls as if it was a fluid sim not yet conquered. We also visited a winery in the Niagara region to explore other kinds of fluid dynamics.
Celebrate with us at SIGGRAPH 2012
At SIGGRAPH 2012 in Los Angeles, come and join Side Effects as we celebrate 25 years at the ESPN zone on Tuesday August 7. This will be a fun evening with a big focus on bringing the Houdini community together in celebration. You will also be able to find us in booth #528 where we will be demoing Houdini 12 and hosting Houdini artists from top studios.
Side Effects Facebook Timeline: Tell us your Stories
To celebrate the big day, we have launched a SideFX facebook page to run in parallel to our Houdini facebook page. This page is in timeline format and we would love for you as a member of our community to add your thoughts and contribute photos. Show us your first PRISMS/Houdini project or tell us when you got your first PRISMS/Houdini job. For us, the last 25 years is more about what you have accomplished than our own milestones. Please join the timeline and help tell the story of this amazing community of artists...