As a turnkey creative studio, Hinge constantly improves and reinvents industry approaches, processes, and pipelines. The team specialize in bringing unique stories to life through design, live action, 2D & 3D animation, post-production visual effects and VR/AR.
Founded in 2009, the studio is built on more than 60 years combined experience. We set up a Q&A with Production Manager Tiffany Purkeypile to uncover the studio’s intense emphasis on remote collaboration….
What have been some of the most exciting and unique projects of your career?
I worked on some amazing movies during my time as a production assistant and coordinator at PDI Dreamworks, but I feel like the most unique and rewarding projects have been here at Hinge. I would say the project that really holds a special place in my heart is “Suitcase” for Adopt US Kids. I was given free reign to develop the story of how a teenager in the foster system found their ‘perfect’ family. It was my first time writing copy for our characters, in addition to my role as a storyboard artist and production manager.
What would you say your specialty is as a digital artist?
My specialty would be a dual role as storyboard artist and production manager here at Hinge. I’ve been very lucky to have such a hybrid role, where I can start a project as an artist and develop a vision for our clients, all the while managing our team and pipeline. I get to be involved in absolutely everything.
How important is remote collaboration to your pipeline?
Remote collaboration is extremely important to our studio’s pipeline. Hinge works with so many clients and fellow artists spread out all over the US. Our studio has to be accessible in order to be successful here in Portland, Oregon. Hinge also thrives through our ability to present our work in a collaborative setting regardless of location. Clients and artists need to be able to voice their feedback and thoughts with user friendly collaboration tools – like Frankie.
On what project did you start using video review tools?
This one is tough. We have used Frankie for so long and on so many projects. We started with cineSync, but moved to Frankie in 2013. We moved over to Frankie because it offered the power of cineSync with the ease of use of a web based interface. Frankie’s user friendliness is particularly important for our collaboration with a wide range of clients. They love Frankie! I believe our earliest projects with Frankie were with Adidas and Microsoft.
Was there a specific feature of Frankie that you immediately responded to?
I love the collaboration tools! It is so helpful to have our clients use the laser and pen tools, making notes directly on stills and frames so it’s clear what their vision is. Our clients always seem to be a fan of them! Frankie then saves out all the notes and markups to PDFs, which is completely automatic after we close out the session. I then take the PDF and send copies out to our team – which has been a lifesaver.
Overall, I love how user-friendly Frankie is. Even the most technologically challenged user can log in, navigate through the uploaded work, and make notes using the tools. It’s like a visual ‘VFX For Dummies’ book! I have used many different remote collaboration and video review tools throughout my career, but Frankie has been the easiest tool thus far.
What type of project is the most challenging to tailor to a client’s needs (invisible VFX, explosions, sci-fi, commercials, etc)?
I think our most challenging work would be particle-based VFX work. Dust, explosions, cloud formations can be very hard to hit with clients, plus the creative processes can get very technical. When particle VFX doesn’t look right it can be quite jarring to the client. Render times can be rough as well.
Simply put, it’s helpful to have a tool like Frankie so both the Hinge team and clients can be looking at footage in-sync, immediately answering concerns as they arise.