Panoply: Creation at the Speed of Light
Panoply are a collection of creatives, artists and designers. Their philosophy is beauty, with purpose. They are trailblazers in the motion design community and also love pushing tech to the limits
We sat down with Panoply’s Creative Director Mark Lindner and Director, Simon Holmedal (formerly Man vs Machine) to discuss their creative processes, the kit they use, and why they chose to leap to NVIDIA’s Ampere technology.
Panoply are primarily a Houdini, Nuke and Octane house. The artists who work there are extremely technically savvy and creative; a unique and explosive mix. Mark and Simon joined forces in 2018 and haven’t looked back. They were hybrid before hybrid became part of our global lexicon in the pandemic landscape. Their work is experimental, machine generated and procedural. It possesses a hypnotic and beautifully cinematic style and finish. They’ve completed work for clients such as Amazon Studios, FX Networks, Mercedes Benz, Louis Vuitton, and most recently Disney+.
Powered by massive GPUs
The kit they upgraded to has some serious GPU fire power behind it. Panoply made the switch to Ampere half-way through production. Most people would look at this as extremely risky, not them. The risk paid off - it was seamless and stable, and gave them the opportunity to experience ‘before and after’ life with Ampere.
Simon shares that due to the nifty stackable nature of the latest NVIDIA Ampere series cards, their servers hold 17 of the A5000 version. Using the NV-Link - which is a unique feature to the cards, and essentially creates a GPU ‘daisy-chain’- the creative team at Panoply have had the ability to run their farm at full tilt, with no issues, and even have wiggle room for extra smaller renders.
Simon also muses “stuff we would have dreamt of 10 years ago with displacement, refractions and all these volumentrics and particles you can do it now; it’s not even crazy anymore.”
Since the install they have also enjoyed the lack of latency and lag when working on assets of all sizes remotely, allowing Teradici CAS to do the heavy lifting along with the NVIDIA A5000 cards. Hear Mark and Simon share on this...
Panoply’s Creative Processes
To keep themselves, and the team at Panoply fresh, they devised a sub-project called ’Panoply Curiosities’ - an on-going series of work that explores a variety of ideas and concepts from the artistic to the technical.
The philosophy behind this live project is to prevent creative fatigue, to experiment and play on an idea - emphasising that it doesn’t even need to be an animation - and to explore your imagination. This allows the team the freedom to explore and experiment with new ideas, new creative practices and concepts. Outcomes don’t necessarily become client work, though often make their way in, in one form or another, into it. Hear Mark explain more about Curiosities..
If you would like to have a chat with one of the team about the products in this article