Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Pro development sessions announced for IMERSA Summit 2013 in Denver this February

Ka Chun Yu of the Denver Museum of Nature & Science
All-levels program addresses issues of digital dome image capture, production, and exhibition for content creators Feb 14-15 as part of annual IMERSA Fulldome Summit in Denver, Feb 14-17.

IMERSA, the international trade group promoting advances in digital dome (“fulldome”) cinema technology and creativity, announced a preliminary schedule of workshops that will be part of the the 2013 IMERSA Fulldome Summit & Workshops in Denver, Colorado Feb 14-17. Registration for the event (workshops, Feb 14-15; Summit, Feb 15-17) is now open and earlybird discounts are in effect through January 15, 2012. Workshops take place at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. The first day of workshops (Feb 14) is geared to advanced levels and the second day (Feb 15) to all levels. Delegates may sign up for individual days or for the entire event. Visit

Media producers, video artists, sound designers, animators and educators are encouraged to attend the IMERSA 2013 workshops on Feb 14-15 in Denver to learn about fulldome, a unique, emerging digital cinema format being rapidly adopted, with more than 1,000 fulldome theaters around the world. The workshops are immediately followed by the IMERSA 2013 Fulldome Summit, Feb 15-17, which will be attended by a broader cross section of the industry including operators of museums and planetariums, distributors of special venue media content, members of the giant screen cinema industry and members of the themed entertainment industry.

The IMERSA 2013 workshop programming committee and session leaders include Michael Daut (Evans & Sutherland), Jane Crayton (Digital Media Specialist, University of Colorado), Jay Heinz (Morehead Planetarium), Ethan Bach (IAIA), Brad Thompson (Spitz Inc.), Matt Mascheri (Dome 3D, Jim Arthurs, Carolyn Collins Petersen (Loch Ness Productions), Ryan Wyatt (Morrison Planetarium, California Academy of Sciences), Claudia Cumbie-Jones & Lance Ford-Jones (Ringling College of Arts), Dan Neafus (Gates Planetarium, Denver Museum of Nature & Science), Ka Chun Yu (Curator of Space Science, Denver Museum of Nature & Science), Gannon Kashiwa (Director of Digital Media, Denver Museum of Nature and Science), Jeff Merkel (Merkel Acoustic Research & Design) and Ken Scott (Digital Chaotics).

IMERSA 2013 Professional Development Sessions
Feb 14-15 in Denver, Colorado USA
"Innovations in Immersive Storytelling"

Thursday, February 14, 2013

9:30 am – 7:30 pm

Screening of live action movie sequences
Noteworthy advances in live-action capture for the digital dome.

Seeking the "Ideal" Fulldome Camera
Comprehensive overview of the current options with digital cinema cameras. Starts with a sketch of the ideal, as-yet-unbuilt, camera/lens/sensor and works back to the options that exist today. With Jim Arthurs. Level: Advanced.

Shooting Live Action Fulldome 
Advanced techniques for live action field capture, environments, batteries, equipment, storage, preview, planning, field processing, dollies, trucks, triggers, focus and stop adjustments. With Ethan Bach, Matt Mascheri. Level: Advanced.

Cosmic Cruisin'
Live Uniview free show

Panorama Stitching and HDR Processing

With Matt Mascheri, Ka Chun Yu. Level: Advanced.

Fulldome Production Pipeline
Synchronizing the workflow from concept to premiere. Solid planning and coordinated efforts for faster and better fulldome films. Translating concepts into pictures, scheduling animations and shoots, organizing the flow of scenes and camera moves, reviewing animations in 4K, time/team management, cutting the trailer, editing the show, collecting assets, post production and delivery. With Michael Daut. Level: Advanced.

Pixel Pipeline or Plight of the Pixel
How image data goes from capture/creation to projection. Identifying pixel processes, 3D to 2D conversion (rendering or capturing a real or virtual environment as a bitmap), pixels as data arrays, color spaces & gamma, compositing/warping/stitching & to a "dome master," compression, realities of splitting for dome projection. With Brad Thompson. Level: Advanced.

360 Audio Tools
With Gannon Kashiwa, Jeff Merkel. Level: Advanced.

Perception and the Principles of Immersion
With Ka Chun Yu. Level: Advanced.

Screening: Escher's Universe
Produced by Parque de las Ciencias. Illustrates Escher's use of mathematics, astronomy, optics, crystallography and geometry to artistically explain very complex concepts addressed by Cosmology.

Friday, February 15, 2013
9:30 am – 7:00 pm

Teaching with Real-Time
With Greg Mancari and Ka Chun Yu. All levels.

Discussion - Learning/teaching in the dome
With Ka Chun Yu, Greg Mancari, Jane Crayton, Ethan Bach. Level: Advanced.

Dome Basics
Systems, challenges and opportunities, projectors, servers, programs, software. Equipment maintenance and support, software support and staffing. With Dan Neafus. All levels.

Putting it Together in After Effects
Deconstruction of the fulldome show Bella Gaia with a walk through the powerful tools available for creating dome content using AfterEffects, Navegar Fulldome and other plug-ins. Including image processing, rotoscoping, time and frame matching, color correction, noise reduction and image warping. With Jess Wellington. Level: Advanced.

Basics of Fulldome
An overview of all things Fulldome: History, convergence, architecture, resources, immersive cinema, challenges and opportunities. Basic Operations, Presenting, Programs, etc. With Dan Neafus. All levels.

Workflow Planning and Production Procedures
Practices, packaging, practical guidelines for moving assets to different types of domes. Looks at the dome original (resolution & orientation, file formats & compression), encoding formats (fisheye videos, sliced videos, frame rates, audio formats & time codes), and variations between theaters and systems. With Michael Daut and Brad Thompson. Level: Advanced.

Basics of Immersive Storytelling
Enhancing the script for the dome. With Carolyn Collins Petersen and Ryan Wyatt. All levels.

Cosmic Cruisin'
Live Uniview free show

Examples of Good Immersive Storytelling
With Ryan Wyatt and Carolyn Collins Petersen. Level: Advanced.

Basic Fulldome Production
Steps and considerations for moving your ideas to the dome. Real-time? Rendered, 2D, 3D, music, narration, sound effects. Previewing and program sharing. Shaping your story, identifying your audience, setting your budget, real-time vs pre-rendered, 2D vs 3D, basic workflows, soundtrack production, post-production and mastering. With Michael Daut. All levels.

Stories From the Field
Shooting live-action Fulldome: Tips, tricks and pitfalls. With Jim Arthurs, Matt Mascheri. Level: Advanced.

Adobe After Effects Overview
Applying After Effects to digital dome production. With Lance Ford-Jones and Claudia Cumbie-Jones. All levels.

Basics of Panorama Stitching and HDR Processing
With Matt Mascheri, Ka Chun Yu, Jane Crayton and Ethan Bach. All levels.

Audio Immersion: How to fit a 30-minute script into a 20-minute show
Composing an immersive score and creating sonic landscapes for emotional storytelling. Considerations for sound design, levels and timing and timeline editing and sweetening. Addresses why sound is important, the role of the script, sound design approaches, getting what you need from music composition, and how to fit a 30-minute script into a 20-minute show. With Jay Heinz, Michael Daut, Mark Petersen.

Stories in Surround Sound
All levels.

Language of Fulldome
Fulldome cinema is a unique and evolving medium. Lacking, however, is a cinematic language that adequately describes producing for the 'viewer-centric' experience in the dome. This presentation will feature examples and methods to maximize the creative potential of this unique medium. With Dan Neafus. All levels.

IMERSA Fulldome Summit 2013
14-17 February, Denver Museum of Nature & Science
Theme: Innovations in Immersive Storytelling

Featured speaker: Ivan Dryer, founder of Laserium
Registration is now open at


  • Innovative Fulldome film screenings
  • The art & science of immersive cinema
  • Standards forum
  • Exploring innovative business models
  • Fulldome photography & live action workshops
  • Production workflow seminars
  • Distribution networks
  • Exhibition systems & technology
  • Networking opportunities

Who should attend?

  • Digital system vendors
  • Planetarium operators
  • Museum and science center community
  • Media producers or distributors
  • Audiovisual and technical integrators
  • Themed entertainment community
  • Giant screen cinema community 
Participating affiliate organizations include the Giant Screen Cinema Association (GSCA); Producers Guild of America (PGA); Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) and Denver Museum of Nature & Science (DMNS).

The event will include 2 days of professional development sessions for producers (all levels of experience), 14-15 February (Thurs-Fri) which will transition to the 3-day Summit, 15-17 February (Fri-Sun).


Immersive Media, Entertainment, Research, Science & Arts - is an international non-profit professional organization that celebrates and promotes immersive and fulldome media for education and entertainment in planetariums, schools, museums, cinemas, events and attractions. Mandated to raise the profile and professionalism of its members, IMERSA bridges many disciplines including researchers, artists and technicians. IMERSA is a driver and nexus for communication, collaboration, experimentation, education and promotion of digital immersive media in a variety of formats and functions. IMERSA co-founders are Dan Neafus, director of the Gates Planetarium at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, Ed Lantz of Vortex Immersion and Ryan Wyatt, director of visualization for the California Academy of Sciences.