Update: added pricing information
Ron Proctor sent in the following press release:
OGDEN, UTAH, USA -- Following the success of a prototype workshop in August, the Ott Planetarium at Weber State University has announced plans to offer fulldome production workshops based on Blender and other free software titles.
"We've produced over 8 hours of fulldome video using a Blender-based, free software pipeline," said Ron Proctor, production director of the planetarium, "why should we have all the fun? We want to promote a culture of cooperation and learning in the planetarium community. There is a lot of great talent out there."
"Blender is a great platform for fulldome production," said Proctor, "we've been able to introduce the interface in a way that is less intimidating and more intuitive -- leading to faster adoption and mastery than if a person was learning the software alone."
In August 2008, the Ott Planetarium hosted the Mediaglobe Users Group Conference. Delegations from Casper Planetarium, of Casper, Wyoming; The St. Charles Parish Library Planetarium, from New Orleans, Louisiana; The Greensboro Science Center Planetarium, of Greensboro, North Carolina; The J. Fredric Ching Planetarium, of Salinas California; and Audiovisual Imagineering, of Orlando, Florida were in attendance. A video sample of their projects can be viewed at:
"I was very pleased with the end results," Proctor said, smiling, "they (the conference participants) completely blew away my expectations of what could be accomplished in only four days of production work while learning the software at the same time."
The Ott Planetarium now offers Blender-based fulldome production training at novice and advanced levels. They also offer a "project incubator" -- a retreat-like environment for intensive production work on the client's project. Workshops at the Ott Planetarium include the use of 16 quad-CPU Mac Pro workstations, a 128 CPU render farm, sound recording equipment, and a digital planetarium.
Our introductory base price for the workshop is US$1000 per day for up to 10 participants.Â This includes 2 of our instructors for up to 10 hours per day, use of our workstations, use of our render farm, our sound recording equipment, and our digital planetarium.
The cost can be shared among groups, making the per-student cost as low as US$100 per day.
The cost of the August workshop was almost entirely offset by the sponsors.
The August workshop included 4 days of intensive work, plus a half day to review the project results, decompress, etc.