Hi, my name is Kevin Burke. I’m a director and musician (artist name Nomadic Sun) living in San Francisco. In my current project, I’m creating a CG music video for an original song I composed and performed called ‘Waiting to Be.’ I have always been in love with music video. I admired the artists who could not only make great music, but also deliver it with astonishingly unique visuals. Some musicians who come to mind are Björk, David Bowie, and Tool. Tool was a very special one to me. I remember at 15 reading a Guitar World in my friend’s bedroom and learning that Adam Jones, Tool’s guitarist, created all of their impressive animated music videos. They also had these amazingly bizarre video projections in their live shows. It opened my mind to the possibility of doing two things I loved and that music could (and should) be a multimedia experience.Given the personal importance of this project, I was emphatic about finding the right hardware and software. It has taken a lot of research and demoing, but I now have a setup with which I’m very happy.

I priced out workstations with about every major company in the US. When I contacted Christopher at mediaworkstations.net I was really charmed by his candor and suggestions for what would give me the power I needed to produce this animation single-handedly. I also contacted Maxon, who said their software performed best with many CPU cores. Because of that, I went with the 24 core i-X2 mediaworkstation: Dual 12-core Xeon E5-2697 v2 2.7GHz CPUs. I also knew I wanted the option for GPU rendering, so Christopher proposed a system optimized for OctaneRender 2.0. I went with an NVIDIA Quadro K6000 and three NVIDIA GTX Titan Blacks.

As my 3D package, I was pretty sure I was going to choose Cinema 4D as I use it daily in my motion graphics work. I had used Maya for character animation in the past, but I really like Cinema 4D’s Character Object and thought it could be great for rigging the many characters I need to animate. Next, I considered the renderer. I tried Furryball, Indigo, mental ray – iray, V-Ray, and OctaneRender. I preferred the speedy, photorealistic results I got with OctaneRender. The Cinema 4D plugin version is also really easy to use. I made an Octane for C4D Tutorial after only a couple weeks (using Dirt Map), which got a nice response as there aren’t many Octane tutorials online:

Ultimately I think real-time creativity is the key. I finally feel unbridled by my tools to create the visions in my mind. My i-X2, Octane and C4D allow me to do that. The music video is now in its previs stage. The production has been a long road, but I’m working on a lifelong dream. Thanks to Christopher and mediaworkstations.net for delivering the workstation I needed.