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Jason Laramie of Laramie Studio: An Unlikely Creative Path

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Jason Laramie of Laramie Studio: An Unlikely Creative Path

Jason excelled in art and science, leading him down a unique path to 3D medical animation and workflows that need a powerful, reliable workstation computer.

By his own admission, Jason Laramie was not the best student in high school. He was a good athlete, playing for the school lacrosse team and football team. But the problem with high school sports is, you have to have good grades to stay on the team. And while he struggled with some subjects, he noticed that, fortunately and for some reason, he was doing quite well in two seemingly unrelated subjects: Art and Science.

“High school was hard for me,” Jason recalls. “Math, English, I really struggled with them. But Science was different. Science was more memorization, and I was excelling in Art. In fact, I was always the best artist in the class! I was taking a lot of art classes and lessons when someone brought the idea of ‘medical illustration’ to my attention. I hadn’t thought of it before, but my mother was actually a nurse, so had access to a lot of literature and images on the subject. And I realized it was a subject that blended my two strengths – science and art!” 

“I was taking a lot of art classes and lessons when someone brought the idea of ‘medical illustration’ to my attention… I realized it was a subject that blended my two strengths – science and art!”

Jason Laramie

Then the time came to think about college. With less-than-stellar SAT scores, Jason didn’t feel he had a chance at all. But his father encouraged him. “It was my dad who pushed me to apply to a school that I thought I had absolutely no chance of getting into: the Rochester Institute of Technology. So I applied, quite sure nothing would come of it. But then a big, fat envelope came in the mail for me from RIT. I got in! And from the moment I started until I graduated, I was on the Dean’s List, every year! I found my niche!”

From there, Jason entered the field of medical illustration, first starting out at medical institutions such as Dartmouth Medical School and then on to working for medical publishing companies in Boston. And it was at the point when 3D animation started entering the scene. “I was intimidated at first,” Jason reflected. “But then I started to pour myself into it and really understand what was out there. I discovered Cinema 4D at that point and realized it was the best one for me, it was easier to tackle.”

Anterior Sphincteric Artery Complex Render by Jason Laramie

Making the Switch from Mac to PC, Not So Intimidating After All

“However, I was really struggling with the animations I was working on with the Mac. It was a Mac M1 Mini but it was so slow to render! It’s also important to note that at that time, I had been a Mac user my whole life. They were always better for the arts in the past, their graphics were better – but then something changed. Macs started becoming more of a consumer product, it wasn’t a professional tool anymore. I realized it was time to get a PC. It was a tough decision because my whole life was on a Mac, making the switch felt intimidating.”

“I started paying attention to what other people were using to run Cinema 4D. I read an article by Cameron Slayden of Microverse Studios. This was a studio that was at the top of the medical animation industry, doing work for all the big pharmaceutical companies. I attended one of Cameron’s workshops at the AMI Conference on how he creates biological environments, animating what happens when different drugs pass through a membrane. He then wrote an article about how to set up a proper studio to create these kinds of works, highlighting every detail – from systems and monitors down to standing desks and treadmills! It was in this article that I learned about Puget Systems. Even though he wasn’t a customer, mind you, he highly recommended Puget Systems!”

Discovering Puget Systems: Service is Key

“I was still nervous about making the switch from a Mac. I was thinking, ‘I’m about to get my first PC and I don’t know how to run Windows OS! What if something goes wrong, I’m going to need help! And I don’t want to have to ship my computer somewhere.’ But then I realized Puget Systems is only a half-hour drive away from Seattle. That was reassuring!”

“So I made the phone call and started working with Terrell Barnes from Puget’s consulting team. And right off the bat, what I noticed first was that Terrell answered his phone! And he called me back when I needed him to. The competition? They never answered the phone and they never got back to me! It was then that I learned that, when you’re working with Puget, someone is always going to pay attention to you, and that’s huge!”

System Performance is Top Priority for Super-Realism

“One of my primary areas is working for attorneys who represent victims of malpractice, product liability, and injuries from automobile accidents. Part of my training is to take complex information and distill it into visual images, while not preying on the emotions of those viewing them. It’s an interesting position to be in where I rely on my skills of blending art and science, but now being sensitive to the law and what’s admissible in a trial situation. While people have become somewhat desensitized to graphic imagery, the attorneys need an edge if it’s part of their story about what went wrong for the victim. So my challenge is to create animations with super-realism and accuracy but also careful not to cross the line and be considered prejudicial by the judge. So I have some insane tools in my tool kit that enable me to do it, but they require some serious horsepower!”

Pulmonary Trunk Embolism Render by Jason Laramie

In addition to Cinema 4D, Jason also relies on tools like Red Shift for rendering. When dealing with courtroom cases, realism is critical. And timeliness even moreso!

“The realism I can achieve with Redshift is amazing! I can get as graphic and detailed as I need to. But to get this level of realism in 1,000 frames – and do it in a timely manner – you need a system like Puget Systems. If it takes my Mac several minutes to work through a sequence and figure it out, I’m not going to bother. But if I can visualize it in real-time, that’s a game changer.

“But in all seriousness, it wasn’t until I got my workstation from Puget Systems that I realized that, not only was I working faster, my work was actually better. I can see things right away, I’m no longer waiting forever for things to render, I can see the simulations in real time. That is so important to the creative process. What took 13 minutes on my Mac would take 13 seconds on my PC. It made me realize that there’s so much more I can be doing, so much more time for creativity. When something just works, when the tech gets out of the way, you become a better artist.”

“… it wasn’t until I got my workstation from Puget Systems that I realized that, not only was I working faster, my work was actually better.”

Jason Laramie

Jason’s System: A Peak Under the Hood

To provide the kind of power Jason required to significantly boost the performance of his 3D animation workflows, the team at Puget System built precisely the system he needed.

Here’s a snapshot of some of the specs:

  • Intel Core i9 13900K 24 Core CPU
  • Kingston DDR5-5600 64GB RAM
  • ASUS GeForce RTX 4070 12GB GPU
  • Samsung 980 Pro 1TB M.2 SSD
  • Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus 2TB M.2 SSD

To learn more about Jason Laramie and to see examples of his amazing work in Biomedical Animation, Illustration, and Design, please visit the Laramie Studio website.

For more information on Puget Systems, check out our About Us page. To see our recommendations for various workflows, visit Workstations for 3D Design and Animation, Rendering Workstations, or our Solutions overview page.

Jason Laramie's Desk and Workspace Featuring His Puget Systems Workstation

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