Autodesk's Flame 2021 accelerates creative workflows
April 16, 2020

Autodesk's Flame 2021 accelerates creative workflows

SAN FRANCISCO — Autodesk has unveiled Flame 2021, which introduces new features aimed at innovating and accelerating creative workflows for VFX, color grading, look development and editorial finishing. 

Flame 2021 increases workflow flexibility for artists, expands AI capabilities with new machine learning-powered human face segmentation, and simplifies finishing for streaming services with new functionality for Dolby Vision HDR authoring and display. The release also adds a new GPU-accelerated Physical Defocus effect as well as finishing enhancements to make it easier to adjust looks across many shots and quickly share updates with clients.

“Flame allows artists to create at the speed of thought - whether iterating quickly for client reviews, adding finishing touches to shots, or creating beautiful content that meets modern streaming standards,” says Will Harris, Flame family product line manager. “This latest release  continues to build on powerful VFX and finishing workflows in Flame with new features that support the latest HDR standards and integrate even more uses of AI to accelerate the creative process.”
Useful for compositing, color grading and cosmetic beauty work, the AI-based face segmentation tool automates all tracking and identifies and isolates facial features, including nose, eyes, mouth, laugh lines and cheekbones, for further manipulation. Face matching algorithms are also capable of specialized tasks, including specific mole or scar isolation, through custom layout workflows. This builds upon Flame’s AI feature set introduced back in April of 2019, with built-in machine learning analysis algorithms to isolate and modify common objects in moving footage, accelerating VFX and compositing workflows.

To meet increasing demand for HDR content mastering driven by OTT streaming services, Flame 2021 introduces a powerful new Dolby Vision HDR authoring and display workflow. This enables Flame to import, author, display, and export Dolby Vision HDR shot-by-shot animatable metadata, streamlining creation and delivery of vibrant, vivid, high dynamic range imagery. The update also expands collaboration with Autodesk Lustre and other Dolby certified color grading tools through enabling XML metadata import/export.
The new GPU-accelerated Defocus Effect makes it easier to add depth of field to shots and can be used in Batch as a standalone Matchbox node or in Image Selective in combination with a generated AOV Depth map. Users can choose between Physical and Action Camera focus models, or create custom models by adjusting attributes. Lens artifacting and radial, chromatic aberration can be customized to achieve the level and quality of out-of-focus blur desired. Depth Slices can be increased and blended for more granularity of focus, and highlights can be bloomed using a selection of Bokeh attributes and lens noise models.

Flame 2021 allows users to quickly save and recall color grading and VFX work in the new Explorer, a dedicated “grade bin” and reference comparison area to support artist workflows.

A new video preview mode shares artist viewports, including storyboard, manager and schematic, to SDI or HDMI preview monitors. In broadcast mode, Gmasks can now be observed in the view area during editing along with any other tools you directly manipulate.

And new GMask with pre-made shapes are available for colorists, compositors and finishing VFX artists in the image and action nodes.

Autodesk will be hosting a Webinar ( on April 28th with Andy Milkis, director of visual effects and technology at Lvly, and co-founder of the New York Flame User Group. 

Flame, Flare and Flame Assist 2021 are available at no additional cost to Flame Family 2020 subscribers.