Vizrt Streamlines Production for KWCH, KSCW

CBS affiliate KWCH and CW affilate KSCW recently began broadcasting local news in HD with all graphics powered by Vizrt software. The two stations are owned by Sunflower Broadcasting and share a facility in Wichita, Kan.

Four Viz Engine real-time renderers installed in KWCH’s control room power the graphics created in Vizrt Artist 2.8, Object Store, Content Pilot, Template Wizard and Template Manager 5.1. The station also uses Viz Curious Maps along with Adobe Photoshop CS3 and Adobe After Effects CS3. The new systems are used for all the station’s lower-third, full-screen, and opening graphics, as well as interstitials. California-based Reality Check Studios installed and integrated the graphics systems.

The busy KWCH/KSCW production staff produce a total of seven weekday newscasts, including a two-hour morning show for KWCH, followed by another two-hour morning show for KSCW. Additional newscasts air at noon, 5 p.m., 6 p.m., and 10 p.m. A 9 p.m. nightly newscast is also produced for Wichita FOX affiliate KSAS. The team also produces morning and evening newscasts on the weekend.

Several workflow changes have gone into effect since the HD launch last October. For example, producers can access graphics that have been created by the art department and add a title, a change that has made live production more efficient, according to Rob Gasaway, graphic designer for KWCH/KSCW.

“It is quicker now that producers don’t have to rely on the art department to produce graphics, since what they need may already have been created, but just needs a caption,” said Gasaway. “News production is hectic and fast-paced. This has helped during breaking news situations where speed is essential.”

Producers also create lower-third and full-screen graphics that previously required the work of a font operator. KWCH/KSCW has streamlined production by eliminating the font operator position, with graphics now controlled by a GPI trigger on the control room switcher.

“The graphic artists on staff do appreciate the ease of use with which we can create scenes in Vizrt,” said Gasaway, “and the visuals it produces have been very clean and crisp.”