Pixar is a Research Firm
Take Carl Fredricksen’s house in Up. The residence is as central to the movie’s plot as Russell, the dog Dug, or Carl himself, and Pixar’s designers treated it as such. It’s based on a Victorian-style home in Berkeley, California, and an annotated diagram on display at Cooper Hewitt shows where the designers specified nearly microscopic details like patina’d copper at the base of the chimney and the scale and frequency at which cracks in the paint would appear.
“When the house floats up and you’re looking at the infrastructure, it was really important that pipes connect in the right way, so if a plumber was watching the film they wouldn’t go, ‘oh, they took a lot of license,’ ” says Cara McCarty, curatorial director at Cooper Hewitt.
I wonder if they’ve ever shared work with a video game developer – similar work in that a lot of it centers around rendering.