Tag Archives: creative retouching

Project: Tate Britain Flood / Julia Fullerton-Batten Photographer: Julia Fullerton-Batten CGI Artist: Kristian Turner Post Artist: Riikka Eiro

Making Of: Flooding of the Tate 1928 with Julia Fullerton-Batten

Julia Fullerton-Batten has been working on an ongoing series called “Old Father Thames  “…choosing, investigating and photographing a selection of cultural and historical narratives from along its banks.”

For this particular image, she asked us to flood the Tate with water.

“My image captures the aftermath of the flood in the Tate Gallery when a massive wet painting was carried by a group of porters to safety…Miraculously, despite their immersion in muddy Thames water for several hours, only eighteen paintings were damaged beyond repair.”

Here’s a photo of the original event from 1928:

Tate Flood real photo

Our retouchers Riikka Eiro and Maria Calosso joined the photographer on set at the Tate Britain (which was only available at night) to see what would need to be done, to absorb the feeling and lighting of the room, and to take the thousands of photos to produce an accurate photoscan. This would be used for the reflections of the water, as a very high level of verisimilitude would be vital to conveying the shock of seeing such an iconic room flooded.

Take a look behind the scenes of the shoot in Julia’s film:

The CGI and retouching had to be worked on simultaneously, as the image had to be composited and graded before the water was added, to allow for accuracy in the reflections and adjustments for the overall look.

We modelled a simplified interior of the room from our photoscans and then camera matched so that the distance and perspective we would use for the water would match the rest of the image as we were compositing.  Kristian Turner, head of CGI, worked out the angles within a simplified geometry of the room, and then used that as a camera to project the reflections of this into the water.

Next, we made a basic geometry so that we had the depth in areas where the people intersected with the water. The rest of the bodies were only needed in 2d, for reflections, composited as ‘cards’.

To create the height and pattern of  waves created by the people moving in a room,  we searched for reference on the internet – news photos of floods were a good source. We looked at the way that water moves inside a building and also at what happens when people interact with the water – how their movement as they slosh around inside a room creates ripples and turbulence. It’s possible to map exactly how this would actually look via simulation – but we needed greater artistic control for the right effect.

It’s of huge importance to this project as a body of work that the water is believable as being from the Thames. We used volumetric rendering – normally used for mist and smoke – to add opacity in a realistic way, working with reference photos and our own observations of the river.  In reality the water would have had much more debris. For the image it was important that it retained a river-water look, and that the parquet floor, so familiar to visitors of the Tate, was visible faintly below the water, distorted by the ripples.

Each person’s interaction with the water was individually mapped, such as the movement of the water around their legs. Wet splashes on their clothes were added with retouching.

The shoot was actually done at night, so we added daylight to the room. The figures were all shot with a softbox flash, and we softened them further for a painterly feel. With painstaking care, we removed all signs of modernity in the room – light switches, alarms, cables and so on, and carefully fine-tuned the colours in the image to reflect the volume of muddy water in the room.

See how we did it stage by stage here:

Final image here:

 

The final, graded image reflects all the hard work…when the Tate posted it on their Twitter feed on a rainy day, people asked if it was a real picture. We’ll take the compliment 🙂

The project has been featured in many publications including Creative Review,  The Eye of Photography and The Association of Photographers , and the series will be shown in Barcelona later this year as part of the 5th Biennale of Fine Art & Documentary Photography.

See it on Behance here

And on our site here:

 

Credits:
Photographer: Julia Fullerton-Batten

Photoshoot Team:
Digital Operator: Gideon Marshall
Assistants: Sebastian Niespialowski, Ken Street, Jason Lewis
Work Experience: Matt Darlington, Jo Cock, Jamie Buckle
Models: Alan Byrch, David Newton, Martin Reines, John Lauri, Paul Orchard, Frank Gordon, Peter Charlton, Christophe Philipps
Stylist: Graham Cruz

Post-Production Team
CGI Artist: Kristian Turner / Recom Farmhouse London
Post Artist:  Riikka Eiro / Recom Farmhouse London
On-set support: Maria Luisa Calosso & Riikka Eiro / Recom Farmhouse London

 

Nick Meek for Nissan

On Location: Nissan Juke

We travelled to Spain with Nick Meek to shoot the new Nissan Juke in a series of elegant architectural settings. For post-production, this involved a wide spectrum of skills – from shooting duplicate cars in order to avoid complex reflections, bringing sunshine to a rainy day, and finally a dramatic day-to-night conversion.

For this shot, the reflections of the structure were too much to be removed in post, so Nick photographed duplicate cars inside and outside the building. The two can be seen here:

Nissan Juke - Recom Farmhouse On Set

Christoph captures additional backplate elements.

Quick retouch on set to confirm that everything is in place

 

The next day, the heavens opened…

Nissan Juke - Recom Farmhouse On Set

But the rigshot must be completed!

Sunny weather again for the harbour shot

Nissan Juke - Recom Farmhouse On Set

 

…and out to sea to shoot the skyline. The cityscape that you see in the shot was puzzled together from many separate shots to get the perfect backplate, evocative of an attractive city without detracting the viewer from the car as the hero of the shot.

Nissan Juke - Recom Farmhouse On Set

Nights are drawing in! After the shoot was completed, Nissan wanted a night-time version of one of the shots. This was a very interesting challenge – moving a very high key image to be ultra low key

The car is a new, special edition model, so the alterations were complex – far beyond just changing the colour. We re-rendered the paint and the interior of the car – only tyres and lights remain from the original model. Using the HDR spheres that we’d produced at the time, we re-rendered the building and environment. The floor was taken from the original (pre-retouching) imagery, so retained its texture and was accurate at night. We replaced the city at skyline at the back with sourced material to make a new nightscape.

The new shot retains the elegant simplicity of composition that is a key part of the original, whilst adding the distinct ambience of a moonlit night.

Nissan

See the process here:

And the whole campaign on Behance here.

Client: Nissan Europe

Agency: TBWA/Paris

Art Director: Elisabeth Ribeiro

Assistant Art Director: Maude Muller

Art Buyer: Marie Moulin

Photographer: Nick Meek

Production: New Moon Productions

CGI Artist: Kristian Turner (daytime shot), Carlos Pecino (night time shot)

Post Artists: Pepê Alram, Ulf Cantignon, Christoph Bolten

Recom Farmhaunt

Recom Farmhaunt

Inexplicably a few brave retouchers lived through the night at the Recom Fearhouse forest cabin last Halloween, and the shaken survivors climb back into the veneer-sided station wagon for the next instalment. Escaping the woods, they arrive in a lonely town at dusk…

What warped levels of darkness are layered and blended with a mask of normality?  Will our artists be ready for their “Post” Mortem? Reveal All below….
Peer out from behind the sofa and press play….if you dare.

No horror movie is complete without a poster:

Recom Farmhaunt poster

 

CGI Artists: Luke Burke & Alex Bowen
Retouching: Federico Chiesa
Art Direction: Federico Chiesa
Music composition for animation: Federico Chiesa
Audi Q8, photographer Ben Stockley, retouching by Recom Farmhouse

Making of: Audi Q8 with Ben Stockley

Dark matters in this dramatic Audi campaign. We created still images in a huge variety of media formats, and also animated cinemagraphs.

From the early bidding stages onwards, our London team was heavily involved in the technical realisation of both still and moving imagery. This was some of the most intense post-production work we’ve been involved with and we are all very proud of the final results with their unique mix of realism and epic style, inspired by movie posters.

The biggest challenge in these shots was that the usual process was reversed. Normally, a car is shot on a location that is as physically similar as possible to the final backplate, and the original plan was photograph the car on the site. However as the Q8 is a completely new Audi model, with only a handful of prototype cars in the world, there wasn’t one available for the shoot in Scotland. So for these images, the backplates had to come first. Ben Stockley started out by capturing cityscapes in Scotland and London which we used to make initial compositions.

With the backplates shot, post artist Pepê Alram joined the photographer and art director Raymond Chan to shoot the cars in the studio with the initial background compositions projected onto giant screens. We fine-tuned the process together through constant experimentation with everything from the size of the car to the colour palettes. We refined the look tirelessly, with on-set input from Christoph Bolten, head of Recom Farmhouse London,  until we had completely realistic reflections in the sheet metal and had captured the filmic quality we were after.

In our London studio, post artists Kate Brown and Pepê Alram worked alongside Ben & Raymond to meticulously piece the puzzle together by merging studio and background shots. CGI elements replaced outdated model parts, we added a wet road, layers of rain, lens flares and other foreground elements. The reflections were eventually reduced for a more subtle and natural feel, retaining the perfect placement that we worked on so carefully.

The still images: 

Audi Q8, photographer Ben Stockley, retouching by Recom Farmhouse

 

Audi Q8, photographer Ben Stockley, retouching by Recom Farmhouse

 

Audi Q8, photographer Ben Stockley, retouching by Recom Farmhouse

At all points of the process, we had considered how these images would work with their added motion elements. The final piece of work was to fine tune the looping animations and bring three atmospheric cinemagraphs to life – a rainy night, lightning flickering around a foggy bridge, and a sparkling cityscape under racing clouds.

The Cinemagraphs

See how the layers build up to create the ambience of a cool and rainy city evening in our making-of here:

The campaign is currently on display on digital billboards across the UK.

Client: Audi

Agency: BBH

Photographer: Ben Stockley

Art Director: Raymond Chan

Copywriter: Simon Cenamor

Post Artists: Kate Brown, Pepê Alram, Riikka Eiro, Aljaz Bezjak, Maria Luisa Calosso, Nuria Segura

Animation: Aljaz Bezjak

Agency Producers: Adam Overton, Aine Donovan

Photographer’s Agent: Siobhan Squire

 

 

 

 

 

 

Making of Frame Magazine Covers with Thomas Brown and Andrew Stellitano

Frame Magazine assigned photographer Thomas Brown and set designer Andrew Stellitano to create visual interpretations of four themes for their four latest issues – they always work in series for their covers, which they treat as an art project in themselves.

This way of working was an ideal fit for Thomas and Andrew, who enjoy the process of creating a thematically coherent series with colour and abstraction as the central concepts. The only stipulation that Frame made was that the images should be colourful, and there should be an environmental, spatial feel to the images, with architectural depth.

Having worked often together before, they took the initial proposal as a framework but built on it as the work progressed.

One of the most enjoyable parts of this project was the discovery of new ideas to try, as they arose from the initial concepts. It wasn’t all chin-stroking….there was a lot of laughter along the way, as these behind the scenes photos show – enjoy!

 

Nº 1 of 4: Doubt.

This was inspired by the idea of image as deceptions – thinking about the current geopolitical situation, fake news, the difficulty of knowing what is actually real.

“For the cover of this issue, we created a spatial experience that is all in the mind. The world seems to have flipped on its head, and nothing is as it seems. A tunnel that extends off into the distance is, on close examination, made out of a modular toolkit of materials”  — Thomas Brown and  Andrew Stellitano 

‘Using wood, paper, watercolour, acrylic, glass, organic materials and glycerine, …[they] built a multilayered world that hovers between fantasy and reality. Aptly titled Doubt, it’s their first cover in a series of four’

—  Frame Magazine

Nº 2 of 4: Ephemeral.

Exploring the idea of temporality and events such as fashion shows that are hugely involved but fleeting. Flashes in eight different colours captured blocks falling around the static forms.

“Inspired by the speed at which the world is changing, we wanted to create a sculpture that is more than the sum of its parts and that can be captured only as a photograph. With our camera, we compress time.” — Thomas Brown and  Andrew Stellitano 

 

“Using stroboscopic lighting in combination with long time exposures the photographer captured moving elements around a static object, creating a feeling of impermanence.” —  Frame Magazine

Nº 3 of 4: Environment.

Here, the duo considered the enviroment in conjunction with illusion and image-making. It’s full of opposites – bringing the outside inside, gravity defying rocks, objectifying the natural and slicing the outside into contained bars in the background.

“We were inspired by a Diane Arbus photograph taken behind the scenes at Disneyland. The image shows huge boulders on wheels against the vast Californian landscape – an artificial backdrop at second sight. It’s a spellbinding scene that puts our expectation of reality into flux. ” — Thomas Brown and  Andrew Stellitano 

 

 

“An outdoor environment that doesn’t play by the normal rules of physics. Rocks become easily transportable objects, and panels function as portals to an alternate reality” —  Frame Magazine

 

Nº 4 of 4: Food.

For the final image, they chose the theme of food. Though it’s ubiquitous, it’s not often an environmental element. The can is revolutionary – its invention changed our relationship to food completely. Its reminiscent of a bitmap, modular, reactive with its simple silver surface which both renders it invisible and responds to the environment around it with reflection and distortion. The shallow water below joins the elements by rising to the right height to make the cans appear to unite, and the projection of Kyoto adds yet another layer of texture and colour.

Shallow water was just below to join elements

“Photography can be a wasteful business, but the contents of all the cans on this issue’s cover were either donated to food banks or turned into amazing corn bread, corn curry and corn fritters. We never want to eat corn again”

— Thomas Brown and  Andrew Stellitano 

“To round off their series of four covers, designed to explore materiality and space [they] … chose food packaging as their medium. Stacked to form primary shapes, the tins create an intriguing landscape.” —  Frame Magazine

Client: Frame Magazine
Photographer: Thomas Brown
Art Direction: Studio&
Set Designer: Stellitano Studio
Post Artist: Aljaz Bezjak / Recom Farmhouse London
Photographer Agent: Webber Represents

 You can also see the final images without the magazine type on our website and on Behance

Recom Farmhouse is on InstagramFacebookVimeo and Twitter!
More work at recomfarmhouse.com.

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Client: Mercedes Benz Photographer: Tomek Olszowski Post Artists: Aljaž Bezjak  , Maria Luisa Calosso, Ulf Cantignon

Mercedes with Tomek Olszowski and Bartek Hlawka – Behind the Scenes

We loved working with Tomek Olszowski and Bartek Hlawka on this project in set in Croatia, for Mercedes-Benz’s #MBvideocar campaign – the raw power of the car as it roars through the otherworldly setting of a remote island makes for a dynamite short film.


Thanks to Tomek for this detailed look behind the scenes of an extraordinary piece of work!

“The idea.
The idea was simple – to create the feel of another world. No trees, no natural green landscapes…we wanted volcanic black sand or rocks, some raw, unearthly and hostile place to be a setting for an insanely extravagant car.

We found the perfect location in a high mountain pass between France and Italy, and sent our concepts to Mercedes, who loved the idea and gave us the green light to use one of their their monster-engined new models – the AMG GT S

However, by this time, our Alpine location was under several unexpected metres of snow….We needed plan B! So we fired up Google Earth and began to explore…

That’s how we found Pag and Rab – two islands in Croatia with spectacular roads to their ferry harbours. They made the perfect choice for our vision: the harbour has lots of free asphalt space, there’s sea water to keep the ground wet, and the traffic is limited because of the ferry schedule.

Travelling.
So I jumped on a plane from Cracow to Stuttgart, picked up the Mercedes AMG GT S model and drove it to Croatia. By the way, the car is awesome – not only a great powerful toy to play with, but also enough comfortable to travel. Very nice experience.

As the November weather was very unpredictable we were worried if we would get any sun in Croatia. The forecast looked strange – on Pag we had a window with great weather – sunny and  18°, but 20 km away on continental Croatia it was snowing and 5°C .

And actually, that was it exactly how it was! I was driving on a Croatian highway at 3 C degrees, in heavy snow, feeling pretty depressed. And right after emerging from the 6 km long Sveti Rok tunnel…the winter was gone. I had full sun and temperature jumped from 3°C to 16°C! How is that even possible? The answer is simple: very strong wind blowing from the sea – and that wind was to cause us problems.

Stills shoot.
Studio Tecza Production drove from Warsaw to Pag Island in our tech car with all the necessary equipment including cameras, tripods, rigs, lights and grip.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - behind the scenes

We had a Nikon D800 camera to shoot handheld surrounding shots, plus a PhaseOne XF 100mpx tethered to a computer station. We wanted to shot many rigshots, as I just received my custom built carbon fibre 8m long pole back in Poland.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - behind the scenes

The first day, we were tech scouting the harbour on Pag, preparing the car and planning our schedule according to the sun position.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - behind the scenes

Next morning in the harbour, we started the shoot early, pumping sea water to make the ground wet. The light was so beautiful that when I saw first shots in CaptureOne I just instantly felt in love. I had wanted to keep a natural feel, and there was literally nothing I could improve.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - behind the scenes

We had lights, flags and other equipment but none of it was needed in these conditions.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - behind the scenes

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - behind the scenes

We had planned to set up some rigshots on the road as the sun rose higher. Unfortunately, the  aforementioned strong wind complicated things. We managed to get only one proper rigshot as the wind was so variable, and when it was blowing we had to wait.

Stills Shoot 2 

Next day, we started by shooting the rocky parts.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Rocks - behind the scenes

We had scouted some nice spots where the car would look unexpected and strange, but were still accessible.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Rocks - behind the scenesThe wind was so strong we couldn’t even hold the lighting flags, but I was OK with that – the surroundings were beautiful and the natural shots looked still amazing.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Rocks - behind the scenes

We did some panning, and wide landscape shots with the car small in frame as well.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Rocks - behind the scenes

Fortunately the wind started to weaken in the afternoon, so we had some time to mount the rig and take another shot.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Rocks - behind the scenes

 

The raw material felt really great. I was proud of my rig gear, it was the first serious test for this equipment.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Rocks - behind the scenes

I loved the images produced by the new PhaseOne model, and I wanted the colour to be still more unorthodox and unique. I knew the only guys that would understand were Recom Farmhouse!

 

Video shoot.
Director of Photography Bartek Hlawka and his team had arrived on the first day of shooting stills in their oldie but goodie, Subaru Impreza GT 🙂 This car had a real mission, not only to bring the guys and equipment from Warsaw, but also to take a part of the shoot as a pursuit vehicle.  We collaborated closely, discussing everything before each lap up and down the hill.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Video - behind the scenes

Photo production showed that the road was almost like a movie set from a zombie apocalypse movie. We saw maybe 3 cars every two hours and it became clear that it would be a lot of fun having a road for ourselves.

We started recce from a drone to get to know all the bends and their surroundings. The weather was windy, so it wasn’t an easy task. After doing almost 100km over a 5km section of the road, we knew every centimeter of it.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Video - behind the scenes

Finally we chose the harbour as our starting point for all the shots and also as a location for the final shot.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Video - behind the scenes

Our trusted Subaru was very brave on the preproduction day, but the real stuff was to come.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Video - behind the scenesWe planned two shooting days for images, and one for audio recording. Next day we arrived at the first location at 5 am and the view was breathtaking. We already knew that we have something special in our hands. After only a few kilometres it became clear that if we wanted to show speed on the screen the only was it to drive… fast.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Video - behind the scenes

We drove 700km in total on the spectacular 5km course during  two days of pure pleasure!  Combined with hard work and a lot of a high-speed driving, it was a filmmaker’s dream come true. The weather was capricious but it gave us an opportunity to shoot in different conditions.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Video - behind the scenes

Most of the shots were made on a gimbal attached to a Ditogear Vibrafreek stabilizing arm. We chose a Sony camera to have low light capabilities and combined it with vintage Japanese lenses from the 70s. It gave us a nice analogue feel with a lot of information in the image to do the grading.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Video - behind the scenes

After intense two days, we were ready for audio recording. Sound design was always meant to be a huge part of the finished video. We mounted microphones on the exhaust and in the interior, and recorded flybys to have as many options as possible.

Mercedes with Tomek Olzowski - Video - behind the scenes

With the shooting complete, we moved onto the editing, sound design and colour grading.

Bartek Hlawka edited a first cut and composer Michal “Lieke” wrote a powerful and atmospheric piece of music for it,  which inspired the further editing that would tell the story in an interesting way.

Starting with abstract shots of an almost unrecognizable silhouette of the car before dawn, and gradually transitioning to a bright day, we combined all the shots from different weather conditions into a coherent sequence.  Then the plan was to overwhelm the viewer with dynamic and dense editing of images and sounds to the point where we felt we had to stop and breathe a little bit…and finally reveal the car and all its magnificently curvilinear design for a few final seconds on the screen.

Lieke completed the atmospheric music and sound design, with the sound of the engine as an integral part of the story. 

The colour grading by Christoph at Recom Farmhouse was the final touch, enhancing the feeling of being out of this world and bringing the shots together as a coherent whole. The challenge was to harmonise footage shot in with different lenses, lighting situations, and wildly varying weather conditions. Fine-tuned and polished with painstaking care, the united piece flows flawlessly as a story of a perfect day’s driving from dawn till dusk.”

Client: Mercedes Benz Photographer: Tomek Olszowski Post Artists: Aljaž Bezjak  , Maria Luisa Calosso, Ulf Cantignon

Client: Mercedes Benz

Stills:
Photographer: Tomek Olszowski
Production: Piotr Stefanski – Studio Tecza
Post Artist: Aljaž Bezjak, Maria Luisa Calosso, Ulf Cantignon / Recom Farmhouse
Assistant: Adam Gocel

Film:
Direction: Tomek Olszowski
Director of Photography: Bartek Hlawka
Colour Grading: Christoph Bolten / Recom Farmhouse
Music: Michal Przybylski “Lieke”
Chase Car: Karol Szymanski
Production: Piotr Stefanski – Studio Tecza
Assistants: Adam Bonarski, Adam Gocel

 

 

Making Of “Jaguar” – painting sunshine with Marc Trautmann

How to bring the sunshine when the weather just will not co-operate?  This is how we do it:

Marc Trautmann took the new compact crossover E-Pace on a week long shoot to the streets of London for its latest campaign. The brief called for a sunny, late afternoon atmosphere, but the weather refused to cooperate. This didn’t stop our post artist Pepê Alram from using his mad sunshine painting skills, and together the team transformed a gloomy day into a pleasant, bustling afternoon in the city.

See the series on our site here.

Client: Jaguar Land Rover
Agency: Spark 44
Photographer: Marc Trautmann
Creative Director: Nick Hearne
Art Director: Samuel Hennessy
Post Artists: Pepê Alram, Aljaž Bezjak / Recom Farmhouse
Photographer’s Agent: Patrick Casey

Client: Ford Agency: GTB Photographer: John Roe Creative Director: Todd Ruthven Art Director: David Nonthaweth Art Production: Kim Harris, Gerri Kozikowski Production: Roe Photo CGI Artist: Recom Farmhouse Team Post Artists: Recom Farmhouse Team

On Location – Ford Ranger CGI with John Roe

Sling your surfboard into the pickup and join us on location for our ten day shoot travelling across Oregon’s beaches, forests, deserts and mountains. We worked with John Roe and GTB on the launch campaign of the Ford Ranger, marking its return to the US market after seven years.

This was a fun shoot with a great bunch of people. We couldn’t resist setting up the Lizard for a 360 degree group shot. Introducing the Dream Team!

From left to right:
Jason Pachura – Location Manager
Brian Hug – Motorhome
Josh Nagy – Digital Technician
Richard Levene – CGI Supervisor
Phil Treece – DST (Car specialist)
John Kwiecien – Producer
John Roe – Photographer
Dianna Berggren – Production Coordinator
Nathan Garcia – Camera Assistant
Pete Thomas – Camera Assistant
Todd Ruthven – Creative Director
David Nonthaweth – Digital Art Director

We had a Ford Ranger brought in from Australia with the same dimensions and wheel base as the new Ford Ranger, which we would later create in CGI for the final images.

Ford Ranger onset with Recom Farmhouse - lake

This helped greatly for lining up shots, and for the talent to interact with – especially for loading and unloading surfboards, bikes and so on.

Ford Ranger onset with Recom Farmhouse - canoes

Ford Ranger onset with Recom Farmhouse - bikes

We had every kind of weather imaginable – sun, snow, rain and wind but thanks to the Lizard’s super fast capture, we were able to work quickly, even in the shortest windows of sunshine.

Lizard in a puddle

See how this shot was created in our “Making of” video here:

We arrive at sunrise to scout the beach location.

Ford Ranger on location with Recom Farmhouse

Setting up on the beach, in a gorgeous reflected skyline.

On Set for Ford Ranger

The photographer would first shoot the image with the stand-in truck.  Then we would move the truck out of view and shoot clean backplates.  In this way we could easily add the new CGI truck, and composite the talent back into the final image.

Using the stand-in truck for the initial shots:

On Set for Ford Ranger

Using the Lizard to capture the empty beach without the truck:

Ford Ranger on location with Recom Farmhouse

On set in a contrasting location  – a very cold morning as we shoot the truck in the snow.

Cold morning

Ford Ranger onset with Recom Farmhouse - snow

With the truck driven away, Richard sets up the Lizard to capture a spectacular mountain backdrop.

Ford Ranger on location with Recom Farmhouse

The final images from the beach location:

Client: Ford Agency: GTB Photographer: John Roe Creative Director: Todd Ruthven Art Director: David Nonthaweth Art Production: Kim Harris, Gerri Kozikowski Production: Roe Photo CGI Artist: Recom Farmhouse Team Post Artists: Recom Farmhouse Team Client: Ford Agency: GTB Photographer: John Roe Creative Director: Todd Ruthven Art Director: David Nonthaweth Art Production: Kim Harris, Gerri Kozikowski Production: Roe Photo CGI Artist: Recom Farmhouse Team Post Artists: Recom Farmhouse Team

And the completed image from the mountain location:

Client: Ford Agency: GTB Photographer: John Roe Creative Director: Todd Ruthven Art Director: David Nonthaweth Art Production: Kim Harris, Gerri Kozikowski Production: Roe Photo CGI Artist: Recom Farmhouse Team Post Artists: Recom Farmhouse Team

While we were on the shoot, we talked about how it would be fun to put Bigfoot into one of the images, and we put him into a shot as a surprise for the client in the presentation. They loved it! So a couple of “Easter Eggs” made it into the final images and can be seen on the Ford site ..see if you can spot Bigfoot and Nessie! North American Product Communications Manager at Ford, Mike Levine, referenced them for people to find on his Twitter account here:

See the whole series of fifteen images on our site here.

Client: Ford
Agency: GTB
Creative Director: Todd Ruthven
Digital Art Director: David Nonthaweth
Art Producer: Gerry Kozikowski, Kim Harris
Photographer: John Roe
CGI & Retouching: Recom Farmhouse NY & London Team
Production: Roe Photo

Mercedes Benz with Nadav Kander

On Location: Mercedes E-Class with Nadav Kander

The Mercedes E-Class with Nadav Kander for Antoni  – a fascinating project creating an extraordinary car campaign. Strong lines, clear colours and striking textures combine with abstract architecture, surreal volcanic landscapes and of course the sleek refined lines of the flagship convertible.

The concepts contained angular modern architectural elements, contrasting beautifully with rough organic texture of the volcanic rock. Initially the idea was to have a modular set built that could be moved around the platform. However, this had a number of logistical and timing difficulties and so our Berlin team offered to create the elements in CGI instead. We were able to work directly with the art director in the studio to experiment with the utmost flexibility. In this way, we could perfect the shape and angles to match the layouts perfectly before the shoot began, whilst adhering to Nadav Kander’s input of keeping everything as simple as possible.

Testing the layouts and trialling different options:

Scene overview in CGI

 

With the angles confirmed, the shoot began.

Fresh from his fascinating portrait of Donald Trump for Time Magazine’s Person of the Year cover, the Nadav Kander flew to Lanzarote to shoot backplates and HDR spheres.

Scouting for the perfect locations for HDR spheres in the volcanic island landscapes:

shooting an example HDR Sphere from Lanzarote

After Lanzarote, we took more backplates at this spectacular location on the Spanish coast. This was the view from the infinity pool – if you squint, you can just see Africa.

The crew assemble…

Only the topmost graduates of The Handsome Boy Modelling School can throw a towel off and jump in the pool with such verve and élan…

Perfect dive!

perfect dive

Our own modelling efforts are less professional.

Still, everyone looks better with a giant yellow head. You can just see the base of the cherrypicker beside the pool, to take the shot from a direct birds-eye view.

High up above in the cherrypicker

Up in the sky for the perfect angle

 

The Recom poolside cabana is fully equipped! Processing and checking everything will fit together perfectly.

As the car was top secret at the time,  it couldn’t be photographed on location, and was shot at a secret platform on a closed set with high security.  We lived for a few days in a gilded cage, not leaving the hotel with its three shooting platforms.

This was our work view for the week! We have to confess we much preferred the pool….

Super Secret Location

Once the car and backplates were safely captured, we began work on putting together the images. We set the car seamlessly in the volcanic landscapes, and refined the textures and shapes of the CGI architecture.

The results form a uniquely stylish car campaign – Check out the rest of this elegant series on our site.

Mercedes with Nadav Kander

Credits:

Client: Mercedes
Agency: Antoni
Photographer: Nadav Kander
Creative Director: Tillmann Gossner
Art Director: Patricia Scheder
Art Buyer: Valerie Opitz
Production: Seaquist
Representation: Olivia Gideon Thompson at We Folk
CGI Artists: Sebastian Schierwater / Recom Berlin
Post Artists: Jonathan Clarke, Jonas Disch, Stephanie O’Connor, Jonas Braukmann / Recom Berlin

Mercedes billboard

Grow Up Campaign for Mercedes Benz with Alice Moitié – In Context

Grow Up” is the most extensive content creation in Mercedes-Benz’s history.  Produced by Antoni, it’s a groundbreaking campaign centred around five short films. With young stars like rapper A$AP Rocky, the films tell a story that completely revolutionises the image of Mercedes-Benz, with the car becoming a natural ally for millennials in their journey to adulthood.

“Our competition isn’t ads, they’re real films, real TV shows. Stealing four minutes from the time people would be watching their favourite show on Netflix is a tall order, so we tried to be honest with ourselves with what people might actually be interested in.”  – Veit Moller, Creative Director (LBB editorial interview) 

For the accompanying stills, we worked closely with CD Veit Moeller and young photographer Alice Moitié  – printing and re-scanning, adding grain to create a strongly analogue film look, with CGI elements helping with the practical aspects of a worldwide campaign.

Flipping through the print catalogue:
 


 

The campaign’s media locations are as bold and eyecatching as the rest of the execution, with colossal end-of-wall murals featuring single shots montages from the campaign, and big bold statement cubes in high traffic areas.

 

 

The shots were also a big success across digital media, showcased on the innovative website and shared widely on social networks.

Ipad Mercedes

The campaign has drawn wide praise for its radical approach

“Mercedes-Benz’s Most Ambitious Marketing Project Yet Is All About What It Means to Grow Up Tackling the evolution of luxury … and, well, life” – Adweek (Ad of the Day) 

“Mercedes-Benz’s Biggest Content Campaign to Date May Make You Think Really Deeply About Your Life”- Ad Age (Editor’s Pick – Creativity) 

“It’s hard to make a good car ad these days. Audiences are bored of the slick fare they are usually offered, and yet most clients still really, really want that shot of the beautiful new vehicle driving around the cliff edge. In this new set of films, those scenic shots are there …nestled in among a set of stories that are intriguing, and at times a little darn bleak….These new films make a welcome addition to the car-ad-as-short-film genre and sure beat the average shiny car spot.” – Creative Review

Also featured by Hypebeast, Campaign and High Snobiety.

Client: Mercedes Benz
Agency: Antoni
Creative Director: Veit Moeller
Photographer: Alice Moitié
Post Artists: Jonas Braukmann, Thomas Saalfrank, Julia Ackermann, Daniel Mattes, June Lee, Stephanie O’Connor / Recom Farmhouse
Art Buyers: Emanuel Mugrauer, Valerie Opitz, Marjorie Jorrot
Production: Iconoclast Germany

See our selection of the campaign images on recomfarmhouse.com

Mercedes - Grow Up wit hAlice Moitié