If you’ve ever worked on video production and attempted to animate without preset motions, you know it can become a painstaking and extremely time consuming process.
Mixamo, a startup based out of San Francisco, Ca., has launched a character animation service and raised $4 million in VC funding to get it off the ground.
The financing comes from Granite Ventures and Keynote Ventures.
Mixamo sells character animations. For example, if I needed a realistic 3D animation of somebody kicking a soccer ball, I could try and find it on Mixamo's site. Its service offers me a character playing out this motion, which I can customize to my needs - change colors, tweak animations, etc, then purchase and incorporate into my own animation build. Mixamo currently supports Maya, 3ds Max, and Motionbuilder.
This service would appeal mainly for people working on animations that don’t have the time or budget to do some serious work on. Its technology comes from research at Stanford’s Bio Motion Lab, in which real people’s movements are studied using multiple cameras and body sensors. The goal over there wasn’t to sell 3D animations though, it’s actually to study and treat musculoskeletal diseases and injuries.
The Mixamo advisory board consists of several leaders in the game development and animation industry including, Jim Levy - CEO of Blizzard which created Warcraft, Luc Barthelet - former CTO of EA, and Isaac Babbs – former GM of Alias.