This Blog post documents some of the past history and current developments in 3D Scanning and Modeling.
Our team at Icon has been involved with 3D Scanning since the development of the first laser scanners in the mid-1980's at Cyberware and the inception of the computer graphics industry.
During this period one of our founders, Domi Piturro, was a student and teacher at Pratt Institute Autodesk Premier Training Center and 3D Graphics Lab in New York.
While lecturing on the new field of Digital Sculpture in 1994 at the International Sculpture Center Conference in San Francisco, Sony invited Domi Piturro to join the company and to set up the first ever 3D Scanning and Motion Capture lab at the new division SCEA.
During this period he had already been working with Cyberware and Stanford and this research accelerated rapidly. In 1995 the first WB-4 human body scanner was developed at Cyberware. Domi worked closely with the team and created the first scan based animatable digital human. This work is featured on the cover of the 1998 SIGGRAPH proceedings. Arnold Schwarzenegger was the first major actor 3D scanned.
His research and techniques were then combined in with work being done at Stanford. At the lab the team had such success that the university suggested the team form a software company to productize the research and seek Venture Capital funding. Paul Allen was one of the first investors. Paraform was formed. Paraform is the original creator of scan data"Surfacing" technology, now a cornerstone of the industry used in such programs as Autodesk Mudbox and Studio. In 2000 the team won an Academy Award for Paraform's contribution to digital film making.
In 1998 the Digital Michelangelo Project started and the Stanford team went to Florence for a year to 3D scan The David.
In 2000 Icon Imaging Studio was formed. A key objective was to apply all this amazing technology developed in the past decade to Film, Game, Fine Art, Automotive, Medical and other projects. A marriage of Technology and Art.
In 2010 Icon then began collaborating with USC ICT to help develop further and refine the hyper-realistic 3D digital human imaging process and to work with Lightstage technology.