Making of : Duckstein Beer by Markus Mueller

Duckstein_Wolken_main_FinalArt1

For the new Duckstein campaign, photographer Markus Mueller was asked to visualise two men drinking on top of a pint of beer with the foam spilling out and blending into a cloudscape. For this surreal scene Markus contacted CGI director Thorsten Jasper Weese at Recom because he needed to create most of the image in CG. Markus provided us with lots of backplates of real clouds shot during the numerous flights he had taken to photograph the other images for the campaign. We ended up using his shots for the clouds in the distance, and the ground visible through the gaps of the CG clouds. We then developed together with Markus the visuals for the foreground clouds in CGI.

layoutBoxes

The boxes above are called ‘Bounding Boxes’. They effectively define the boundaries of each of the clouds’s volumes that we have created in CGI.

Image converted using ifftoany

The wire frame above explains better the geometry that our CG artist Richard Jenkinson has used for the making of the clouds.

He also created different passes to help our creative retoucher Jonas Braukmann in making the content of the pint look real.

cloudTest04_12_cloud_001_light1

The render of the white cloud pass is the light and shadow created by the sun. The red one has been used to mimic the sunset warm light. The last render is a ‘World Normals’ pass. The colours indicate the direction of each of the tiny parts of the fluid, which all together, make the cloud. This allowed our retoucher to fine-tune the light and shadow.

And this is how Jonas did it.

Client: Duckstein Photographer: Markus Mueller CGI-Director: Thorsten Jasper Weese Post-Artist: Jonas Braukmann CGI-Artist: Richard Jenkinson

CREDITS:

Client: Duckstein

Photographer: Markus Mueller

CGI-Director: Thorsten Jasper Weese / Recom

Post-Artist: Jonas Braukmann / Recom CGI-Artist: Richard Jenkinson / Recom

Making of : The dark side of Los Angeles (part II)

RecomFarmhouse-6

This is yet another image we have created in collaboration with photographer Markus Wendler for the series “The Dark Side of Los Angeles” which visually narrates ambiguous stories in downtown LA. The vintage cars appearing in each image are completely created in CG.
For this one we used a classic Chevrolet Camaro. Markus photographed the backplate, whilst we shot the models against a green screen and we then comped them into our CG car.

Below is how we assembled all together.

It is a welcome change of subject for us to work on old and used cars as we need to add lots of extra details which are at the opposite end of the perfect glossy surfaces we are used to work on. So here for example we had to add condensation on the car windows, scratches, dust, rust, worn tyres and finger prints. All details which make a car look real!

12-106_MAWE_LA_Nighttime_CAMARO_ZOOM1
12-106_MAWE_LA_Nighttime_CAMARO_ZOOM2

See the series on our website or on Behance.

 

CREDITS:

Photographer: Markus Wendler
CGI-Director: Christoph Bolten
CGI-Artists: Kristian Turner, Richard Jenkinson, Simon Watts, Dariusz Makowski
Post-Artists: Kate Booker, Riikka Eiro, Pepe Alram

Making of : Honda CR-V – The Road to Great is Endless

Recom Farmhouse Honda CR-V The Road to Great is Endless

Honda’s endless quest to communicate a never ending commitment to performance and quality has translated into this brilliant Droste effect advertising campaign. The Droste effect is an optical illusion whereby a picture appears repeated within itself in an endless way. Created both as a TV commercial and a print campaign, we worked with photographer Nick Meek to create a set of 3 images in which, every time, a smaller version of the image is repeated within a billboard forever showing the same.

Our CGI director Christoph Bolten worked from the earliest pitching stage with Nick and the team from McGarryBowen to help bringing it all together. He travelled to Spain with the crew to pre-visualise the car on set and to capture the lighting environment for all shots by shooting HDR spheres – see snapshots below.

Once back in London, our 3d-Artist Florian Einfalt created the billboards and power lines, making sure to add enough imperfections and signs of age to have them blend credibly with the landscape. Post-Artist Pepe Alram then created the final composition and look – and this is how he did it:

Honda the road of great is endless

Above: a gif animation showing the optical illusion of the Droste effect.

Recom Farmhouse Honda CR-V The Road to Great is Endless

 

CREDITS:  

Client: Honda
Agency: McGarryBowen
Creative Director: Angus MacAdam
Art Director: Holly Fallow, Charlotte Watmough
Photographer: Nick Meek
CGI Director: Christoph Bolten at Recom Farmhouse
CGI Artists: Florian Einfalt, Kristian Turner at Recom Farmhouse
Post Artist: Pepe Alram at Recom Farmhouse

Making of : Ford Explorer 360 degree

We have already posted the making of the Ford Explorer advertising print campaign in January. This time we would like to show you how we made the amazing 360 degree views of the car that our team in New York and Berlin have produced nearly entirely in CG. Yes, both the car and the pebble floor! The sky and surrounding nature were shot by photographer David Westphal.

One challenge faced by our team was the technical restriction given by the Ford web team. The animation could only be a max of 72 frames (and the current Ford website will only show 36 of them). This also explains why the final videos are not a very smooth animation.

But for our CG artist Richard Jenkinson the main challenges with this project were the size of the area of floor that needed to be rendered, and the level of detail required. The geometry of the pebbles had to be managed in an efficient way to achieve a realistic render-time. The camera gets very close to the floor at one point in the move, so the detail needed to be there, but not everywhere, as this would have been way too much geometry to render effectively. 

In the end we decided to use displacement maps on a low-poly floor. Richard then used normal-mapping to add fine detail to the geometry. Below is how we did it.

Firstly, Richard studied reference photos from the actual shoot, specifically the scale of the pebbles, and how the tracks are formed in them.

trackRef

The amount of polygons required to render in CG the whole floor were far too many to have on one plane. So Rich took 4 overlapping planes in Zbrush, to test whether the repeating texture was going to work as a displacement.

PlanesMaps2

He then sculpted the tracks into the floor in Zbrush. Below is an early test image of the scene with a simple lighting set up made to check the scale of everything relative to the car. It was also used to see if there was enough detail at the lowest point of the camera’s move.

hero_02

For this reason we scattered more pebbles geometry across the floor.

stonesTextured
cameraMove_06_masterLayer_003

Below is the final pebble floor with reflection maps added, and the correct background and HDRI lighting situation ready to be rendered, and composited with the car which was made by our New York team.

360_camera_04_RJJ_02

Below are the final 360 degree views of the Ford Explorer in Ruby Red. The whole range was shown on the Ford website.

CREDITS:

Agency: Team Detroit
Art Director: Andrew Smith
Photographer: David Westphal
CGI Artist: Richard Jenkinson and the NYC Team at Recom Farmhouse
Animation: Recom Farmhouse NYC Team
Post: Recom Farmhouse NYC Team

Renault site specific campaign for Düsseldorf Airport

Megaposter_Nr.65_OMG_Renault (15)_CHR-1

For this site-specific project we were asked by creative director Felipe Nunes Franco to visualise a Renault car breaking through the glass facade of Düsseldorf airport.

Excited by the idea of producing an artwork for a site specific project, a member of our Stuttgart team drove to Düsseldorf for a day to take reference pictures of the actual facade together with the exact measurements of the glass panels. In fact we had to accurately reproduce those dimensions in CG so that the billboard could exactly substitute and replicate the covered area with the car breaking through it.

 

__RefAirport

In our studio in London, our CGI director Kristian Turner started to work on the geometry of the architecture and the car. In order to make the glass shattering into pieces, he found it easier to actually simulate a car crashing against a glass panel. Pepe, our senior retoucher overlaid the cracked glass and flying shards into the final composition.

glass shatter blast by recom farmhouse

 

… and here is the final campaign!

RECOM FARMHOUSE for Renault
Megaposter_Nr.65_OMG_Renault (4)_CHR-1

CREDITS:

Client: Renault
Agency: Publicis Pixel Park
Creative Director: Felipe Nunes Franco
CGI Director: Kristian Turner at Recom Farmhouse
CGI Artist: Kristian Turner at Recom Farmhouse
Post Artist:
 Pepe Alram at Recom Farmhouse

Making of : Porsche Cayman by Thomas Strogalski

Recom Farmhouse-4

When we work on automotive images, we are usually asked to render cars into a photographic environment, but with the new Porsche Cayman GT4 it was exactly the opposite: Thomas Strogalski photographed a real car while the location was virtually created by our talented artists in Stuttgart.

RecomFarmhouse-5

Strogalski beautifully shot the car for plenty of different angles and our team, captained by CGI director Thorsten Jasper Weese then designed and modelled the architecture of an underground parking lot to accommodate the cars. We also matched the photographic car to a CGI model in order to render the reflections of the surrounding location onto the shiny yellow varnish. Throughout the project it has been a very close collaboration between Thomas, art director Tim Buchmüller, creative director Norman Henke and us.

RecomFarmhouse-11

Below few more images of the Cayman GT4.

RecomFarmhouse-3
RecomFarmhouse-2

CREDITS:

Client: Porsche
Agency: Kemper Kommmunikation GmbH
Art Director: Tim Buchmüller
Creative Director: Norman Henkel
Photography: Thomas Strogalski
CGI Director: Thorsten Jasper Weese
Post Artists: Nele Ebner, Thomas Fritz, Tobias Scheuerer at Recom
CGI Artist: Ina Bostelmann at Recom

Making of : Nissan All Mode

Nissan_PATHFINDER by Recom Farmhouse

The Nissan All-Mode campaign has been a great opportunity for us to test our creativity in using a variety of source material. TBWA’s brief was to place each of the Nissan 4×4 vehicles in a location where the tracks of the car would mimic an element of the surrounding landscape.
We constantly had to vary the approach depending on the availability of images, so each final image became a different combination of CGI landscapes, landscapes we photographed, CGI cars and stock imagery. Below is a making-of to show how the Nissan Pathfinder has been assembled together from beginning to end.

 

NissanPathfinder_Makingof

 

See the campaign on our site here

CREDITS:

Client: Nissan
Agency: TBWA G1
Associate Creative Director: Fabian Braun
Art Director: Matthieu Darrasse
CGI Director: Kristian Turner at Recom Farmhouse
CGI Artist: Kristian Turner, Richard Jenkinson at Recom Farmhouse
Post Artist: Pepe Alram, Kate Brown at Recom Farmhouse

Making of : Ford Explorer

Shot by photographer David Westphal, this production of images is another fine example of how realistic CG images can look! Our New York team traveled with David to the amazing forests, parks and beaches near Portland, Oregon. Our team provided both on-set retouching and pre-visualisation to allow everyone to see the car in situ and decide on the angles.

We are so pleased with the outcome of this series of images that we would like to show both the making of, as well as some details of the images zoomed in at 100%.

MAKING OF: FORD EXPLORER

UNRETOUCHED BACKPLATE vs FINAL IMAGE:

14-212_TEAD_Ford_Explorer_SHOT038_CLAY

UNRETOUCHED BACKPLATE vs FINAL IMAGE:

14-212_TEAD_Ford_Explorer_SHOT003_CLAY

UNRETOUCHED BACKPLATE vs FINAL IMAGE:

14-212_TEAD_Ford_Explorer_SHOT008_CLAY

IMAGE ZOOMED IN AT 100% (click on the image to enlarge)

14-212_TEAD_Ford_Explorer_SHOT015_DETAIL
14-212_TEAD_Ford_Explorer_SHOT015_COMP04b_AND

IMAGE ZOOMED IN AT 100%

14-212_TEAD_Ford_Explorer_SHOT016_DETAIL

IMAGE ZOOMED IN AT 100% (click on the image to enlarge)

14-212_TEAD_Ford_Explorer_SHOT042

 

FordExplorer1

 

FordExplorer

CREDITS:

Agency: Team Detroit
Art Director: Andrew Smith
Photographer: David Westphal
CGI/POST: Recom Farmhouse NYC Team

Making of : Tears

BLINKK_Aura_Tear

One day we were called by Damien De Blinkk called us with a rather unusual request: can you make a girl cry? While being a questionable task in the real world, in the virtual world this turned out to be a fun little project! See the making-of below, using ZBrush to model the tear, Maya/Vray for lighting & rendering and bringing it all together and adding those bloodshot eyes in Photoshop finished it off.

tear_zBrush_01

Screenshot of the tear in zBrush.

tear_maya_01

Screenshot of the tear in Maya.

Tear_Gif

Making of: from the 3D model of the tear to the final image retouched in Photoshop.

FinalCloseUp

Close-up of the final image. Click to enlarge.

The concept for the campaign has since changed, but we were very happy with our result as it turned out to be a fun little project! Click on the image above and see by yourself!

CREDITS:

Photography: BLINKK
Making of tear: Recom Farmhouse
CGI artist: Richard Jenkinson
CGI director: Christoph Bolten
Retouching of tear: Christoph Bolten

Making of : VW ALLTRACK

A few months ago two members of our team, Kate and Dave, flew to Cortina D’Ampezzo, Italy to work on the new VW Golf Alltrack brochure and advertising campaign shot by photographer Marc Trautmann. They were on set to speed-up the post-production process providing both on-set retouching and pre-visualisation.

Marc Trautmann at work in Cortina D’Ampezzo, Italy.

Whilst Marc was shooting the landscapes, Dave was doing the on set pre-visualisation of the car to allow everyone to see it in situ and decide on the angles. In the meantime Kate was working closely with art director Camille Lafourcade on low resolution comps of the images as the backgrounds were made of multiple photographic elements. We also shot HDR spheres on location in order to recreate identical lighting for the CGI car.

By the time the shoot was finished, our London studio had already received low resolution composites of the backgrounds and final pre-vis of each car angle. The next stages were to light and render and composite the cars, fine tune the images in high resolution and to create a colour mood. For the final tweaks our team were joined by the photographer, the client and the agency in London to sign off the images.

Above: Making-of of VW Golf All Track

CREDITS:

Client: Volkswagen
Agency: DDB Berlin
Art Director: Camille Lafourcade, Christoph Stender
Photographer: Marc Trautmann
CGI Director: Kristian Turner
CGI Artist: Kristian Turner
Post Artist: Kate Brown, Riikka Eiro, Andrea Tosello