PAST Events

Aperiodic Monotiles: New Shapes Just Dropped

Date: Thursday May 30th
Time: 7pm
Location: Room 323, 3 Lower Jarvis St Toronto (George Brown College)

Join the Toronto SIGGRAPH Chapter for an engaging talk by Prof. Craig Kaplan, Associate Professor in the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo. Craig is one of the scientists behind the aperiodic monotile (einstein tile) discovery, which is on TIME Magazine’s Best Inventions list.

A longstanding unsolved problem in geometry asks whether it is possible for a single shape to be aperiodic: to tile the plane without ever permitting translational symmetries. We recently proved that a shape called the “hat” solves this problem, making it the first known aperiodic monotile. In this talk I will introduce some background concepts from tiling theory and summarize the history of the search for aperiodic shapes. I will then relate the story of our discovery of the hat and the proof of its aperiodicity. Along the way I will also talk about two other closely related shapes, the “turtle” and the “spectre”, which allow us to derive additional results about aperiodic tilings.

Date: Thursday May 30th
Time: 7pm
Location: Room 323, 3 Lower Jarvis St Toronto (George Brown College)

Houdini 20 with Jeff Wagner – Wed, Dec 6, 2023 6:00 PM

December 6th, 2023 – Houdini 20 with Jeff Wagner – 2 Hours

Event Info

Get a sneak peek into the technical innovations involved in the feature-packed release of Houdini 20! SideFX’s Senior Technical Consultant Jeff Wagner will present on some of the new features and the work that went into the design and implementation. Don’t miss this chance to learn more about the exciting work going on at SideFX!

Jeff “Old School” Wagner has been a part of the SideFX Software technical consulting and support team from the early days of PRISMS leading up to today’s Houdini. Over the years he has accumulated a vast wealth of knowledge and insight and is regarded by many as a true Houdini Guru. If you’ve encountered him online or watched one of the tutorials then now is the opportunity to meet him in person.

Date: December 6th, 2023
Time: 6pm
Location: SideFX Toronto, 123 Front Street W, Suite 1401

MetaVRse: Metaverse Creation for Everyone – WED oct 25, 2023

Zoom Event Only due to Venue Booking Conflict

Come learn more about MetaVRse, a Toronto-based team bringing metaverse creation to everyone!

  • Wed, Oct 25, 2023 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM EDT
  • Bahen Centre for Information Technology
  • 40 Saint George Street Toronto, ON M5S 2E4

Join the Toronto SIGGRAPH Chapter to learn more about MetaVRse from the co-founders themselves!

Julie Smithson, Co-founder of MetaVRse:

Julie’s personal mission is to educate others on how to teach and learn using immersive technologies. To use the technology for good and to think and act in a socially, economically and environmentally responsible way. Through her role as COO of MetaVRse, Julie works with enterprise companies to digitally transform marketing, learning and training globally. She is a recognized leader in spatial computing solutions for enterprise with a focus on integration, implementation and deployment at scale.

Julie is a Co-Founder and Chair of, the world’s largest group of women in virtual, augmented and mixed reality. Previous to MetaVRse, Julie was Co-Founder of Emulator, the World’s most advanced DJ system, which won the prestigious 2011 DJ Mag Innovative Product Award. She scored a $500K deal on the hit TV show Dragons’ Den. Julie is a renowned speaker on XR and Produced TEDx Toronto (2010) She is past-President of the VRARA Toronto Chapter and Former Chair of the VRARA Education and Student Committees. Julie has been featured in MIT Technology Review, YPO, Harvard, The Knowledge Society.

Alan Smithson, Co-founder of MetaVRse:

Alan’s purpose in life is to inspire and educate people to think and act in a socially, economically and environmentally responsible way.

Mr. Smithson is a Co-Founder of MetaVRse, a low-code platform that makes it easy to create & share interactive 3D experiences instantly on the web. He is a proud Father, Business Leader, TEDx Speaker, and Podcast Host. Mr. Smithson co-invented the World’s first touchscreen DJ system, Emulator — featured on Dragons’ Den and winning DJ Mag’s Innovative Product of the Year in 2011. His 10-year-old daughter invented sandals that leave a heart-shaped tan line on your feet called Love Sandal winning Top 20 Under 20 at only 10 years old. He is an Independent Global Advisor on the Business of XR for Fortune 500 Companies and UHNW Family Offices.

This event will take place in-person and be streamed on our chapter Facebook page. Room number TBD

Zoom Event Only due to Venue Booking Conflict

Autodesk Site Visit – Wednesday, September 27, 2023

As the summer winds down, the Toronto ACM SIGGRAPH is excited to launch its fall series of events. Join us for a celebration of the 25th Anniversary of the release of Maya 1.0! For the occasion, Autodesk is inviting the Toronto ACM SIGGRAPH community to a site visit of Autodesk facilities at the MaRS Centre West Tower.

To comply with Autodesk security policies and join the FREE event, attendees must register by end-of-day on September 24th. Autodesk will send further instructions to registered participants on September 25th, to be completed prior to the event. This event will NOT be livestreamed or recorded.

Don’t miss this chance to celebrate the Oscar-winning software Maya and learn about what makes the Toronto Autodesk office unique!

WeFX breakdown: Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities (Lotion Lady+Keziah) – Wednesday June 28, 2023

Effects TDs Rafael and Mykyta from WeFX Studio in Toronto would like to share some of the advanced Houdini techniques used for Netflix’s “Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities”. This talk will focus on lotion simulation for the “Lotion Lady” character and disintegration effects used for the “Keziah” witch character.

The presentation will include utilizing the VDB toolset to aid in the production of goo effects via FLIP simulation, and meshing effectively on a previously animated deforming character. They will also discuss disintegration workflows, starting with a complex model and how it was fractured and simulated using Houdini’s RBD toolset combined with Vellum simulation.

The work covered includes contributions from FX artists Vimal Mallireddy, Rafael Drelich, Darren Lesmana, Mykyta Berezin, Justin Boon, Manidhar Areti and Sisi Huang.


Mykyta Berezin:

Mykyta Berezin is an Effects TD with experience in effects, 3d modelling, texturing and rendering. Currently working as an FX artist at WeFX studio in Toronto. He moved from Ukraine to Canada in 2020 to pursue an education at the Centennial College Digital Visual Effects program.

He specializes in creating realistic and abstract simulated visual effects. Currently Mykyta is interested in learning automation and optimization methods to create desirable effects faster while maintaining high levels of artistic control and flexibility.

Rafael Drelich:

Rafael Drelich is in Effects TD specialized in digital simulations and procedural solutions for photorealistic Film and TV shows, currently working at WeFX Toronto.

He previously worked at Pixomondo, Mr.X and SideFX and created simulations for Guillermo Del Toro Cabinet of Curiosities(2023), From(2023), Halo(2022), American Gods(2021), Raised by Wolves(2020), Ad Astra(2019) and other shows.

Bachelor in Human centered Design at PUC-Rio, has a postgraduate degree in VFX at George Brown College and is currently a Professor at Seneca Polytechnic School of Creative Arts and Animation teaching procedural thinking for games with Houdini.

He believes that team work, hive mind and fast prototyping can solve any creative challenge.

SIGGRAPH 2023 – 50th Anniversary Conference, Los Angeles – August 8-10, 2023


Conference: 6-10 August

Exhibition: 8–10 August

Celebrate computer graphics excellence at SIGGRAPH 2023, taking place in Los Angeles and online starting 6 August. Make bold predictions for the future while reflecting on our journey to 50 years of SIGGRAPH conferences. Attend in-person or view livestreamed sessions virtually, and connect with your community of professionals turned lifelong friends.

Yulio: from CAD to VR/AR at the push of a button – Wednesday, May 31

Join us for an exciting talk on bringing Computer-Aided Design (CAD) models to Augmented Reality (AR)/Virtual Reality (VR)

Join us for an exciting talk on bringing Computer-Aided Design (CAD) models to Augmented Reality (AR)/Virtual Reality (VR) applications! Ian Hall, Chief Product Officer and Lev Faynshteyn, Head of R&D will delve into the work that is being done at Yulio Technologies to bring these tools to life. Whether you’re a game designer, engineer, artist, or simply curious about the future of AR/VR, this talk will offer valuable insights into challenges and opportunities in managing 3D assets for AR/VR.

The session will be both in person and online via Zoom. The Zoom link will be sent to all registered attendees before the event.

Lev Faynshteyn is a Head of R&D at Yulio Technologies Inc., where his main focus is on the development of a proprietary pipeline for DCC software asset export, normalization and rendering. With over a decade of experience in the field, he has successfully designed and developed a broad range of tools, APIs and plug-ins with a primary goal of simplifying the visualization of arbitrary geometric assets on desktop and mobile VR/AR platforms. His particular interests lie in modern rendering technologies and performance optimization techniques. Lev has an MSc degree in Computer Science from Ryerson University. In his free time he enjoys cycling, snowboarding and spending time with his two kids

Ian Hall is Chief Product Officer of Yulio Technologies Inc., a leading VA/AR rendering and presentation platform. Ian is also co-founder of a software design consultancy specializing in human factors engineering and development. Recently Ian and the team at Yulio have been pushing the boundaries of VR/AR as an everyday sales tool for leading businesses in architecture, design, and product manufacturing including Steelcase, Cisco, and Interior Architects. After earning his degree in electrical engineering from the University of Waterloo, he served as product strategist in a range of industries from real time control systems, industrial design, to digital visualization. In 1999, he became the director of product management for Truespectra Inc., an early innovator in real-time cloud based image processing, later acquired by Adobe Inc.

Tom Burns – Dell Technologies Media and Entertainment: Updated Trends In VFX – Wednesday March 29, 2023

March 29th, 2023 – Tom Burns: Updated Trends In VFX – 1 Hour