Tag Archives: Fine Art

BMW / Full CGI Client: BMW Creative Supervision BMW: Florian Hartmann, Julia Obermeier Concept & Art Direction: Alessandra Kila CGI Artist: Kristian Turner, Carlos Pecino, Anna Toropova Post Artist: Pepê Alram, Kate Brown, Riikka Eiro, Maria Luisa Calosso

Making Of: BMW 7 Series, Full CGI with Alessandra Kila

“The ethereal elements of light, colour and haze transmit feelings and emotions. This has been a great project to experiment with the translation of these emotions from the normally more sterile environment of CGI” – Alessandra Kila

The artist brings her unique creative vision to the new BMW 7 series, in a campaign driven by light. Inspired by exhibition spaces where light interacts with installations to become part of the work, she intersected the sculptural forms of the car with the angular shapes of sharply cut sunbeams, laser curtains and light screens – innovative imagery to reveal the lines of a visionary vehicle.

Originally developed from a creative partnership with the BMW design department, Recom Farmhouse London collaborated intensively with the artist to realise her vision in pure CGI.

Simulating light in volumetric space is challenging enough, and quick previewing of iterations fast enough as to not inhibit the creative process raises further issues. In order to deliver such ambitious images, we developed an intricate technical framework within the CGI software. This custom lighting rig can abstract the visual effect of using a fully physical lighting simulation, but render in a fraction of the time, allowing creative freedom and experimentation. For the final rendering we used the fully physical lighting model for accuracy and photorealism. Take a look behind the scenes here:

The team called on Alessandra’s strong experience with still life art photography to set up varied and subtle lighting for depth and believability in the car and environment. A myriad of tiny details, such as effects of bleeding and darkening, give a natural look, along with elements of photographed neon tubes and illuminated screens. Further lighting directed the balance of warmth and cold in the images.

To create the required atmosphere, she drew on her ongoing exploration of the use of haze to soften light. Here, the haziness carries the light and colour that are central to the project.

BMW / Full CGI Client: BMW Creative Supervision BMW: Florian Hartmann, Julia Obermeier Concept & Art Direction: Alessandra Kila CGI Artist: Kristian Turner, Carlos Pecino, Anna Toropova Post Artist: Pepê Alram, Kate Brown, Riikka Eiro, Maria Luisa Calosso

We introduced dust to give a liquid silkiness to the light. Algorithms that mimic the movement of particles create a heightened atmosphere of dusty air moving in warm light.

Colour was a vital part of this project so the post artists hand tinted the lightwaves being carried through the haze in tonalities of greens, aqua and gold. By literally mixing the colours directly with their virtual paint brushes, they painted the light with the colours of the campaign.

As the car slices through angled laser beams and sheets of pouring light, there’s a tactile and almost synaesthetic quality to the images. The interior shots in particular are hugely innovative: re-imagined as a magical space where anything could happen, and brought to life with light beaming in.

See the full series here on our site and on Behance:

BMW / Full CGI Client: BMW Creative Supervision BMW: Florian Hartmann, Julia Obermeier Concept & Art Direction: Alessandra Kila CGI Artist: Kristian Turner, Carlos Pecino, Anna Toropova Post Artist: Pepê Alram, Kate Brown, Riikka Eiro, Maria Luisa Calosso

Client: BMW
Creative Supervision BMW: Florian Hartmann
Creative Direction BMW Group Design: Julia Obermeyer
Concept & Art Direction: Alessandra Kila
CGI Artists: Kristian Turner, Carlos Pecino, Anna Toropova / Recom Farmhouse
Post Artists: Pepê Alram, Kate Brown, Riikka Eiro, Maria Luisa Calosso / Recom Farmhouse

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

 

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 on our website and on Behance

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

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Victimhood with Jonas Lord

It’s always one of our favourite experiences when someone turns up out of the blue with a really extraordinary project for us to work on – makes our mouse hands itch to start!  – and this series, inspired by Dutch and Flemish paintings, was a truly inspiring collaboration.

Jonas Lord explores the culture of victimhood in various metaphorical visuals with staged surreal scenarios. Post Artists Pepê Alram and Maria Calosso at our London studio helped Jonas with the series – this was a great combination, with the team working very smoothly together in a real synchrony of vision and ideas.

Jonas describes the series in his artist statement below:

“The series begins with an image of baby tigers – the symbol of the east – on a chopping board about to be consumed by rapid westernisation”

Photographer: Jonas Lord Post Artist: Pepe Alram, Maria Luisa Calosso

“It then speeds up with an image of a woman’s body devoured by wolves on a dinner table speaking about consumerist scrutiny of the female form in our culture.”

Photographer: Jonas Lord Post Artist: Pepe Alram, Maria Luisa Calosso

“In one of the photos, a tied up woman is calmly staring at the camera–she’s chosen to be in the position of an objectified woman. It’s not to victim blame but to comment on how society grooms certain people to consciously take part in their own victimisation.

We desperately snap Instagram pictures of ourselves from the best angles in hopes to be admired which ties us up to the desperate daily dose of admiration.

In this photo, the men are also reduced to faceless stereotypes who turn into animals as they step on the chess board.”

Photographer: Jonas Lord Post Artist: Pepe Alram, Maria Luisa Calosso

See how this image came together from the elements of its composition in this quick “Making of” video:

 

“We desperately try to adhere to whatever beauty standards are on trend,  which I explored in the pic with two teenage girls awkwardly posing while shaving their body hair. I juxtaposed them with sheep in the foreground the inspiration for which came from a feminist protest in 1969 where protesters dressed up a sheep as Miss America.”

Photographer: Jonas Lord Post Artist: Pepe Alram, Maria Luisa Calosso

Do retouchers dream of electric sheep? How we did it…

 

“Through these visual metaphors I was looking for ways to explore the manifold nature of victimhood. Do we choose to be victims? Are we groomed to be victims?”

Photographer: Jonas Lord Post Artist: Pepe Alram, Maria Luisa Calosso

We’re delighted that Jonas Lord approached us with his fascinating series and we’re stoked to work with this amazing new talent.

Credits:

Photographer: Jonas Lord
Post Artists: Pepê Alram, Maria Luisa Calosso, Kate Brown / Recom Farmhouse

Victimhood on recomfarmhouse.com

Volume of Light - Undecided

Volume of Light by Thomas Brown

Volume of Light is an innovative and interactive project, created in the studio by our friend and regular collaborator Thomas Brown. Beginning as a small series, it extended in scope to become a four year mission.

In an intriguing new approach to the way art is marketed, an online campaign encouraged people to adopt one of 469 images. We adopted image № G_150204_0097 – Just been thinking.

Recom's image

As an adopter, you receive the book which is a directory of all the images. The book comes with a print of your adopted image, which is a limited edition of one, just for you. Each image is also shared on Instagram and Twitter with its newly bestowed name.

The project culminated with exhibitions in London and New York, and the recently published book.

It’s a beautiful object, with iridescent cover and rainbow foiled type – the video shows the lovely textures and colours.

Thomas explains:

“The assigned titles will forever be linked to the image.  Volume of Light wants to know what you see, how you see it and begin to understand why certain choices are made. It is an exploration and investigation of semiotics, the phenomenon of Pareidolia and authorship….Each image represents the record of an action, a passage of time and a movement of light…In their abstraction they represent no thing but leave space to become everything.”

 

“I can’t say VoL offers a new way of experiencing art…people are visually assessing the world every second of the day, but maybe for some people it causes them to think a little bit more about what they were looking at, or to reflect on their experience of looking. It certainly offered an interesting way to interact at the exhibitions.”

Volume of Light Exhibition

With all the images on display as small postcards the viewers were encouraged to take them from the wall to get a closer look and move through the space, breaking the conventional gallery environment.

You can adopt an image of your own at https://volumeoflight.com and see more of Thomas’ work at http://thomasbrown.info

Cyan II by Øystein Sture Aspelund

Stuff we like: Bright geometry in modern architecture

It’s always amazing when someone shows us a new idea in architectural photography.

Norwegian photographer Øystein Sture Aspelund‘s vision of modernist architecture focuses in on details and textures of modern masterpieces, found by searching through Brasilia, Sao Paulo, rural Bulgaria, Valencia, Bratislava and the Italian coast. Infusing them with strong yet delicate tints of sunsets, cyan and rose, the sweeping and beautiful lines are reminiscent of a new colony on another world.

Your imagination can fill in the rest from these precisely observed details….

Cyan II by Øystein Sture Aspelund Cyan II by Øystein Sture Aspelund Cyan II by Øystein Sture Aspelund Cyan II by Øystein Sture Aspelund Cyan II by Øystein Sture Aspelund Cyan II by Øystein Sture Aspelund

Cyan II by Øystein Sture Aspelund Cyan II by Øystein Sture Aspelund Cyan II by Øystein Sture Aspelund

All photos © Øystein Sture Aspelund
More work  at http://oysteinaspelund.com
The full series is also available for your appreciation on Behance.

Stuff we like: Synchrodogs

Ukranian duo Tania Shcheglova & Roman Noven work under the name Synchrodogs.

Using strictly film cameras “with different levels of crappyness” they create dreamlike and hauntingly beautiful visions with almost no retouching. Central to the work is their own nude bodies in expansive landscapes, with a constant stream of details, abstracts, patterns (and just whatever catches their eye) as accompanying wildcards.

Although they’re determinedly lo-fi artists, working with props, body paint and whatever chance provides, they’re already looking at a future direction in VR art. It will be fascinating to see what their agnostic creative force might bring to a new medium.

The Dallas Contemporary Art Gallery recently exhibited their latest project, Supernatural, inspired by “their own meditation technique”. With help from print sales and uncompromising fashion and editorial work, they took a 4000 mile road trip in the American Southwest –  from Big Bend to White Sands, from Vermilion Cliffs to Antelope Canyon.

As they say themselves: “Describing pictures makes it less interesting for the viewer to see them” so here’s a selection.

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All images © Synchrodogs 2012-2015

More at:

http://www.synchrodogs.com/

https://twitter.com/synchrodogs

https://www.instagram.com/synchrodogs_official/

GoSee AWARDS : Gold and Bronze for C. Ascher and A.Kila

We are very pleased to announce that “In the Garden” by Clemens Ascher and “Exogenesis (or Life outside of Earth) by Alessandra Kila have respectively won gold and bronze at the GoSee Awards in the categories “Art” and “Stills“. We have helped Clemens build his dystopian visions by adding some CGI architectural elements to his images and we we have added some magic to Alessandra’s otherworldly images.

Check out the making-of here and here.

Photographer: Clemens Ascher Fashion Stylist: Alice Whiting

Hair Stylist: Craig McAtear CGI Director: Kristian Turner / Recom Farmhouse 
CGI Artist: Florian Einfalt / Recom Farmhouse Post Artist: Pepe Alram, Kate Brown, Andrea Tosello / Recom Farmhouse
Photographer: Clemens Ascher Fashion Stylist: Alice Whiting

Hair Stylist: Craig McAtear CGI Director: Kristian Turner / Recom Farmhouse 
CGI Artist: Florian Einfalt / Recom Farmhouse Post Artist: Pepe Alram, Kate Brown, Andrea Tosello / Recom Farmhouse
Above : “In the Garden” by Clemens Ascher – CGI and Retouching : Recom Farmhouse

RecomFarmhouse_A_Kila-3RecomFarmhouse_A_Kila-4 RecomFarmhouse_A_Kila-2

Above: Exogenesis (or Life Outside of Earth) by Alessandra Kila – Retouching : Recom Farmhouse

Making of : Exogenesis by Alessandra Kila

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Alessandra Kila is a photographer and close friend of ours. She pops in and out of the studio nearly every week and when she asked us to help her with her new series of images, we were as usual very happy to collaborate on her fantastical voyage to another planet as her work is just unlike anything else. And it’s stunning!

In this series called Exogenesis (or Life Outside of Earth) Alessandra ventures to unfamiliar territories looking for life forms beyond our planet. In her pictures the carefully constructed sets are overturned by the surprise of the unexpected. Alessandra is indeed an avid collector of oddities. All of the organic matter encountered in her still life comes from places she travels to – from the Atlas mountain of Morocco to the slate quarries of Snowdonia.

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When she goes on a trip she always takes with her empty boxes and rucksacks that she then fills with stones, rusted metal wires, seeds, flowers and everything else she stumbles upon. She then re-assembles everything in her studio creating new juxtapositions which are both evocative and surreal.

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We helped her in creating the lush colours of these fantastical worlds by refining the strong tonalities of her pictures and by blending together the many layers that form these not-so-still still life photographs.
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Stuff we like : Magic on Earth by Jean-Claude Moschetti

We recently came across the beautiful series of images by Jean-Claude Moschetti‘s «Magic on Earth». Jean-Claude is a press photographer and this is his long-term project about traditional secret societies and voodoo in Africa.

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