Our first full-blown foray into animation, we wanted to play around by evoking the essence of our favourite sci-fi films to generate a futuristic, epic feel, before breaking the illusion down into a gritty London environment. Taking the CAD data for a sophisticated, future-proofed watch (the Mars Orbiter, by HS Design), we treated it to the full fly-over treatment, presenting the watch face as an intergalactic city before panning back to let the watch’s true form take shape.
We drew on our twenty years’ experience of manipulating colour and light to evoke a very particular sensation for the viewer, giving a great deal of filmic drama, ethereality and gravitas to an otherwise quite modest product. We then commissioned a fittingly soaring orchestral soundtrack from We Write Music to juxtapose with the high-energy, electronic finale.
of population and life to the space setting, steam vents were added as well as a stream of fighter jets to suggest the play of time and draw the viewer eye through the shot.
The delivery is a photo-real style of aesthetic, so the lighting and texturing as well as modelling assure the highest degree of quality control and attention to detail. The degree of textural detailing required was intensive due to the extremely close proximity at which the camera travelled over the CG surfacing.
To increase the realism of the spaceship illusion, imperfections were added to the watch surfaces including scuff marks (scratches, scrapes and indents), stains (oil, grease and water runoff) and specular variations.
The film involved various 3D disciplines in combination with HDRI stills camera and seamless VFX compositing integration.
The audio composition and sound design was important in helping to set and in turn to twist/distort/warp the sense of time and place which was of great importance since the spot plays with audience expectations and time/place/space displacement.
The piece not only shows off our animatic techniques and capabilities, but also demonstrates how accessible this high level of 3D animated marketing material is for any type of product. We learnt a thing or two, as well – useful stuff we’ve been able to put into practice on TV and online projects since.
More animation and VFX: