Honored in Hollywood: SMPTE Award for contributions to on-set color workflows

Honored in Hollywood: SMPTE Award for contributions to on-set color workflows

On October 27th, the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) once again granted multiple awards during the gala of their yearly “SMPTE Summit” conference in Hollywood, CA. We’re proud that Patrick Renner, Pomfort’s Co-founder and Head of Product, was among this year’s honorees, receiving a medal award for his work on Livegrade!

Since 1955, SMPTE honors “commitment to the highest standards of quality and innovation in motion picture post-production and distribution services” with the Natalie M. and Herbert T. Kalmus Medal. SMPTE’s announcement states: “Patrick Renner will be honored this year for his vision, actualization, and continued refinement of on-set color management and color grading tools, as embodied in the Pomfort Livegrade software platform, providing cinematographers and digital imaging technicians a system that is creatively flexible yet technically robust, with an underlying image and metadata pipeline architecture supporting a wide range of workflows, resulting in ubiquitous adoption on live-action sets.” [1]

Honored in Hollywood: SMPTE Award for contributions to on-set color workflows
SMPTE Awards Gala 2022[2]

We feel that with this award, SMPTE and the award jury do not only honor Patrick and the team at Pomfort, but also give attribution to the user community in camera departments around the globe who don’t regularly get the recognition they deserve. Hence, we’d like to use the opportunity to thank SMPTE and further extend our gratitude to the entire Livegrade community and everyone that helped build it.

The fact that Livegrade was born and continues to evolve out of a collective approach really becomes evident as Patrick recalls a few milestones:

With Pomfort, we had the great opportunity to be part of the transition from film to digital cinematography when it happened. I was personally involved in software projects ranging from color management for scanned film to packaging media in a then brand-new digital camera. That was a great starting point for building products in a newly found company.

Ten years ago, the conversations with a DIT in Munich motivated us to start working on Livegrade. We were for sure not the first ones with the idea to modify an SDI signal with color wheels – but it seemed that the time was right to build something for the camera department with a new twist.

From the beginning, the open conversation with the actual operators on sets worldwide was essential for developing our products. We grew together – the DITs and their role on set, and we, as a company building products for them. We learned a lot about what you need and want – and then oftentimes, we did something a bit different. But I feel we are hitting the spot most of the time.

I also need to mention all the vendors and partners with whom we have great relationships. Our software holds together a system consisting of many hardware products, monitors, SDI hardware, controllers, and so forth – so many parts from multiple vendors need to play well together.

And last but not least, this would not have been possible without our fabulous team at Pomfort. I’m very proud that I have colleagues that continue to mindfully listen to the feedback from the film set, to constantly analyze what’s important, and to implement things elegantly and efficiently. Thank you very much, SMPTE and Technicolor, for recognizing our joint work with this award.

– Patrick Renner, Pomfort
Honored in Hollywood: SMPTE Award for contributions to on-set color workflows
Patrick Renner with the Natalie M. and Herbert T. Kalmus Medal[2]

Patrick joined the gala at the conference hotel on Hollywood Blvd to collect the award in person. It has previously been awarded to a long list of renowned scientists and engineers contributing to advancements in the motion picture industry – including Harald Brendel, Rod Bogart, Joseph Goldstone, William (“Bill”) Feightner, and Joshua Pines to name a few.[3]


[1] Retrieved from: https://www.smpte.org/blog/smpte-announces-2022-honorees-honorees-to-be-recognized-in-hollywood-at-first-in-person-awards-gala-in-three-years

[2] Image credits: ©The Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers

[3] Retrieved from: https://www.smpte.org/about/awards-programs/kalmus-award and https://www.smpte.org/about/awards-programs/technicolor-kalmus-award