Geomedia Scores For Time Warner!
The Wood Agency brought us this challenging project for Time Warner Cable just in time for kickoff of the 2006 season. The spot features rabid sports fans with elaborate face paint, highlighting TW’s sports packages and pricing offers. In order to leverage the spot across multiple markets, individual offers and channel information on the actors faces would need to change, as not all packages and pricing are available in all markets. Additionally, Spanish language versions would be required. The logistics of re-painting actors faces to cover all possible combinations was a major concern. To overcome this obstacle We proposed creating the face paint logos in CG. Tests conducted during pre-production convinced the client that this would be the way to go.
Geomedia employed the talents of local face painter Liz Alaniz of WOW Artistry. Liz and her assistant painted base designs and any logos which would be persistent throughout all the spots. Areas on the actors faces which would receive “CG face paint” were left blank except for small tracking marks. Actors were filmed against a green screen and directed to perform as if they were rowdy fans.
Geomedia artists prepared logo artwork to create a hand-painted look. These files were tracked to the actors faces in AfterEffects. Once tracked the logos were keyframed to warp and stretch to match the distortions of the actors faces. High contrast texture maps were derived from the clean plates and blended back into the composited logo artwork to create specular highlights and skin imperfections. Edges of the logos were distressed to simulate uneven paint strokes on skin. 3D tracking and animation in Softimage/XSI was utilized on shots where actors had extreme movement or rotated their heads. Rendered artwork from XSI was brought back into AfterEffects for compositing. Geomedia also managed casting, production and all editorial, versioning and finishing of this simple yet tricky campaign.
For years we’ve been encouraging our clients to get us involved early in the concept and pre-pro phase of a production. As was the case with this spot, we were able to bring technical and creative solutions to a problem in a way that enabled the feasibility of the concept while keeping it within budget constraints.