When your work includes technical setup and support for most of the blockbuster films made in New Zealand over the last twelve years, it’s a good indication that you are at the top of your game.
This is certainly the case for Atomise, a company that provides film and television studios with industry leading editing, post-production and media storage solutions from its sites in Wellington and Auckland.
Established in 2008 by Richard Kelly, Atomise has a well-deserved reputation as the industry leader and it’s not just due to the quality and performance of the hardware it offers.
“Our job is to provide and support the tools that enable talented people to create amazing things for your screens. If you’ve been to the movies to watch a New Zealand based blockbuster, its likely that we’ve been working in the background,” says Kelly.
The cornerstone of the Atomise solution offering is the Avid range of hardware and software, often regarded by filmmakers and media creators as the best in the world. But its not just the product range, says Kelly – the Atomise secret sauce is the expertise and capabilities of its team.
“Between myself in Wellington and Andy Wild in Auckland, we’re 2 of only 7 certified Avid technical trainers in the world. This means that we are continuously trained by Avid to deliver the very latest tools to the industry’s most talented creators and support them throughout every project, as well as enabling Atomise to provide Avid Certified training to our clients.”
Screens of any size
Once established as the go-to company for technical solutions in big-budget feature films, Atomise was recognised by leading content creators in the small-screen world too.
Kelly says that by 2015 Atomise had a lot of movies under its belt and had begun to attract the attention of local media companies looking to raise the bar on how they produced content.
“When we started working with local media companies, we often had to take them on a technical journey and uncover the enhanced capabilities they were searching for. Many projects began with a technical refresh and deployment of completely new production solutions,” he says.
This led to the establishment of Atomise’s Auckland office with Andy Wild at the helm, who had actually trained Richard Kelly in Avid products years previously.
Kelly says that Atomise operates in a niche of an industry where reputation and ability to deliver is everything. Television and movie production is made possible by an pool of talented freelancer specialists who tend to work on a project by project basis.
“We really are another freelancer with a specific set of skills and we maintain a small team that continuously develops and enhances our knowledge and capabilities. We need to be on board right from the outset of a project all the way through to it being enjoyed by audiences,” he says.
As with any project, a lot of the job is being able to anticipate challenges and have the experience and expertise to make confident decisions in dealing with them. Atomise maintains a state-of-the-art testing environment where Kelly and his team can replicate the production suite of any customer project.
“Our testing environment is quite unique, enabling us to recreate technical issues and without impacting or disrupting our customers. We can overcome technical challenges with certainty and quickly deliver solutions in a world where time is exceedingly valuable,
“Beyond the top-end production tools from Avid we also provide hardware and software from leading brands such as Hewlett Packard, Dell, Apace and JMR Storage. We’ve selected the right mix to tailor technical solutions to the specific requirements of each unique project and support them long-term,” says Kelly.
To deliver uninterrupted excellence, Atomise solutions require total confidence in the power supplied to equipment. Loss or corruption of data is unacceptable in any field however when it comes to the solutions that Atomise supports, it could derail a project worth millions of dollars.
Kelly says that securing power is a crucial part of any solution and an uninterruptable power supply (UPS) is among the first things on his build sheet for every project.
“We’ve entered a world of 6k media where data is transferred to creators at speeds of around 5 gigabytes per second. This means that any interruption to the delivery of data or the work being done at the editor’s desk could be catastrophic,” he says.
Early in the Atomise journey Kelly met with UPS Power Solutions, who already had experience deploying Eaton products to companies in the film and television industries. UPS Power Solution’s understanding of how critical power is to these projects established a partnership that has delivered across countless productions.
“UPSPS is an important partner at the outset of each solution we create and they have a deep understanding of what operators in broadcast need. Having the right UPS as part of our build sheet is vital for each project and through UPS Power Solutions’ knowledge and experience, I can have total confidence in every project,” says Kelly.
Beyond the scope
Similarities in the values and principles of both organisations were obvious from the start and this led to UPS Power Solutions supporting Richard Kelly’s other great love – motor racing.
A life-long passion, driving his 2008 Juno LMP3 in the New Zealand Sports Car Championship provides Kelly with a complete change of scenery, albeit sometimes at speed of up to 170 km/h.
“I’ve driven pretty much everything on four wheels and I’ve been proud to carry the UPS Power Solutions logo on my car since 2006 – they’re definitely part of my winning team both on and off the track.”