VFX and Watchout programming for an augmented dance show.
Dataton Watchout display system
Watchout is one of the leading software systems for the creation and playback of multimedia shows on multiple displays. It is used for both live events and show control for permanent installations such as museums and visitor attractions.
Working as a freelance, I may be involved in different stages of a Watchout production depending on the project:
- Content creation (often at resolutions greater than HD),
- Media encoding and preparation (video compression, image optimisation),
- Show design and programming (animation and effect configuration),
- Watchout operator for live events (including system installation and setup),
I have my own Watchout software dongles, which can be useful for show preparation before rental equipment is available, or for video exports after the event.
A typical Watchout project may involve animating still images, text, video clips and animations, but it is possible to control multiple timelines, and shows can also integrate live video inputs for advanced picture-in-picture effects. If the player hardware is powerful enough, shows can incorporate several layers of HD video. Watchout can also communicate with other show control systems - emitting or following timecode from sound and lighting systems.
Watchout is perhaps best known for the production of large video walls for multi-channel digital video projections, using multiple video projectors and edge blending to create a large (much greater than HD resolution) seamless image projection. The display warping function for geometry correction makes it possible to project onto uneven surfaces. The latest versions of the software include simple video mapping tools.