Salient 2016 Highlights

 

Another year has gone by, and here at Salient, we have lots to be excited about!
Here 
(in no particular order) are just a few things that made our year great:

Salient 2016 HighlightsSalient Highlights

  1. Working with a wide range of customers on over 160 products this year; ranging from leaf blowers to sippy cups and from playground
    equipment to oceanic drones.
  2. Winning the Prospera Business Network’s 2016 Innovator of the Year award
  3. David Yakos won “Toy Innovator of the Year” at the ChiTag TAGIE Awards
  4. Being Finalists for two TOTYs (Toy of the Year Awards) {the Oscars of the Toy & Game world}!:
    1. Toy of the Year Finalist: Mega Tracks
    2. Game of the Year Finalist: Circuit Maze
  5. Acquiring a new 48×36 Laser cutter for large format cutting and etching fun
  6. Launching a Soft Goods Department; including new industrial sewing machines, heat-cool press, Optitex workstation, hot air welder and seam taping machine
  7. Purchasing a new FormLabs Form2 SLA 3D Printer for fast prototyping in multiple materials
  8. Attending the Outdoor Retailer (O.R.) Summer Market
  9. Attending HATCH Experience in Big Sky, Montana, and HATCH LatAm in Panama
  10. Participating in the Montana Department of Commerce’s Montana Pavilion at ISPO in Munich, Germany
  11. David addressed the Montana Ambassadors Annual Meeting & Conference as their Keynote speaker
  12. Steve addressed MMEC Compete Smart at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort
  13. Winning the People’s Choice Award at Blunderbuss Maker Faire 
  14. Enjoying delicious nitrogen-frozen gelato made by Kevin from Big Horn Valve Company
  15. Attending the NY Toy Fair and receiving a Best of Toy Fair 2016 award
  16. Being written up in Forbes for creativity
  17. Collaborating with Helio + Company to create the first-ever 3D printed movie titles, which were used in The Fourth Phase

Check out some photos from all these happenings, below, and check out all the links above for more detail on our wild year!

We hope your year was fantastic, and that 2017 is filled with good things,

~The Salient Team

Salient-Helio Collaboration: 3D Printed Titles

Earlier this spring, Zach Johaneson of Helio Collective approached Salient about creating physical movie titles for use in-camera (instead of the typical computer-generated graphics we’re all used to seeing) for the opening credits of Red Bull’s recently-released Travis Rice snowboarding film, The Fourth Phase.

From Zach:

“For intro title sequences in films, you always start by identifying how the sequence should contribute to the film at large. For The Fourth Phase, Director Jon “JK” Klaczkiewicz had a vision of starting the film off with an elemental look at the hydrocycle. Helio & Co. has been in the graphics business for about ten years now, but with this project we really wanted to push ourselves into trying something different that would also contribute to the films overarching story. This is where the idea to shoot all of the titles in camera was born, but the execution was a total mystery. After a bit of experimentation, we reached out to Salient Technologies and they helped us realize we could actually 3D print very small titles that we could then place in these different states of water. For one instance, Salient 3D printed an incredibly small and detailed title and a jig so we could freeze it into a solid block of ice and then film it. Their ability to understand our end goal and then engineer solutions to achieve those goals was absolutely critical to our success.”

Salient and Helio explored many methods for fabricating the titles, including SLA (Stereolithography) and SLS (Selective Laser Sintering) 3D printing, laser cutting, decal cutting, and waterjet cutting.

SLS & SLA 3D printed lettering

SLS 3D printed titles on Left. SLA 3D printed titles on Right.

In the end, due to size and quality constraints, we settled on SLS and SLA printing for the titles. For some of the close-up macro shots, the letters were minute – as tiny as 2mm tall. Since they were to to be shot at 6K resolution, the prints had to be very detailed and high-quality. Take a peek at the end result here:

The Fourth Phase: Opening Title Sequence from Helio + Company on Vimeo.

If you were especially perceptive, you may have noticed that “Principal” was misspelled (or misused) in a couple of the images, then corrected in the intro sequence with several more names added. A consequence of actually printing out titles and creating complex setups for filming in-camera effects (as opposed to using computer-generated graphics) is that when there are changes, they take considerably more time to fabricate. Re-printing, finish, setting up the shot, re-shooting, and re-editing is far more time-consuming than editing the spelling or content in a video program digitally, and then re-rendering. To our knowledge, this is the first use of 3D printed titles in a feature film, which is pretty exciting. Being pioneers, and making “firsts” takes sacrifice!

All images in slideshow were provided and used with the permission of Helio + Company. Helio staff featured in photos include Alex Gappa, Zach, Johaneson and Jim Menkol.

To see other work from Helio & Co, go to www.wearehelio.com

Fourth Phase 4K Trailer https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2JHE2zkRfW4

 

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