It’s exquisite. It’s everything I dreamed of when I was a kid- robotics, in-camera film effects, precision. The San Francisco based firm of Bot & Dolly has pretty much upped the game for everything involving projectionmapping in real-time and combined it with extreme robotic film making. It seems a natural progression though, and I can’t think of anyone more capable and qualified to do it. But before we give in to our Robot Overlords, let’s remember they still need to be told what to do. It’s just that they do it over and over again with ridiculous precision and razor-accuracy. I don’t know what they used for projectors, but I suppose it wouldn’t take much in terms of lumens for a project like this. Projection software on the other hand was accomplished with Touchdesigner. As advanced as Touchdesigner is, the more you watch what they’re doing with the Iris robotic arm the more you realize that projectionmapping is the easy part. They have an entire array of tools at their disposal- BD Live, BD Time, and the stunning BD Wheel- a hand-held control wheel that allows you to scrub through a shot or attenuate playback speed. If you’ve ever been to the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago and seen their toy manufacturing display – this is like that x1000. They have a couple of Motoman robotic arms that you can race and play against…but this scale is entirely different.
It’s not hard to discern where or how the effects are in-camera, but the marriage of the elements is what overwhelms me about Box. That, and the sound. That first big whoosh at 1:24 is just plain sensual.
Tobias Kinnebrew of B&D explains: “Box explores the synthesis of real and digital space through projection-mapping on robotically controlled moving surfaces. The short film documents a live performance, captured entirely in camera. Bot & Dolly created this work as both an artistic statement and a technical demonstration. It is the product of an experience vision realized through the integration of multiple technologies pivoting on our software platform BD Movetm for precision control of robotics.” It doesn’t take a lot of imagination to extrapolate where you can go with this type of gear on a film set. With the extreme precision and playback capabilities, the possibilities are truly endless. I gotta get out to the coast and see this in person. That’s all there is to it.
Absolute heaven. Dig it!
I’ve been a Clancy fan from the beginnings of Rainbow Six to the latest release of Splinter Cell- even going so far as to join gaming ladders and lose myself in FPS overload. So I was absolutely giddy when I saw the latest press from Leviathan. Looks like Touchdesigner was the weapon of choice for the mockups and playback…read on:
From our friends to the North:
CHICAGO – Aug. 27, 2013 – The principals of the award-winning Leviathan creative studio are very proud to showcase their artistry for Ubisoft(R) Entertainment at this year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) trade show. At its global press conference streamed live worldwide this past June, Ubisoft dramatically announced the forthcoming release of the next blockbuster title in the critically acclaimed Tom Clancy franchise. That title, Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell Blacklist, was released last week in the U.S. and Europe. (more…)
Got a great tip from Erick Calderon over at Light Art Interactive- his new projectionmapping app for iOS called- you guessed it- Light Art. Erick works a lot with Touchdesigner and got tired of using giant computers to come up with mapping schemes, so why not make a tablet app? I haven’t had a chance to download and use it yet, but it looks fascinating. As soon as I procure an iPad, I’ll let you know how it goes, but in the meantime, for those of you with an iPad with an HDMI interface, give it a go and let me know…better yet- let Erick know!
The incredibly inventive folks over at White Kanga recently did this huge industrial for CTL Logistics. Utilizing eight 22k projectors and Touchdesigner, they transported the audience on an intergalactic themed presentation, and then fed live video of the entertainment into the animated video frames. These guys do some amazing work- make sure to check out their piece that appeared on PF previously… MPS v1.0
CHICAGO—(Nov. 14, 2012)— Since launching in 2010, the principals of design-focused production studio Leviathan have collaborated with many leading agencies, brands and filmmakers to render scores of sensational projects across all markets and industries, earning award recognition along the way from the Association of Independent Music, Communication Arts Magazine, the AICP, The One Club, and the Themed Entertainment Association. Several of those projects have involved Waveplant, the personal brand of composer and sound designer Joel Corelitz. Today, along with Corelitz, Leviathan’s principals are very proud to announce a new creative alliance between their two companies.
“Our alliance is born from the idea that creating audio and visuals should be part of the same process, not something we seek to unite afterwards,” explained Corelitz, who has earned rave reviews internationally for his original scores and sound designs for high-profile videogame, cinema and commercial projects. “Together, we want to focus even more on handling projects that cannot be done any other way.”
Among the sensational efforts that united Leviathan and Waveplant in the past are major projects for HP, Dodge Dart and Kelley Blue Book, to name but a few. In particular, the two HP projects produced for Designkitchen (ed. link here on PF) promoting HP’s TouchSmart computers may represent the perfect application of Leviathan’s and Waveplant’s talents.
“For those projects, our team at Leviathan started with multiple layers of surface-mapped real-time animation, paired with a variety of small and large environments and custom-built sculptures,” Hutson said. “From Waveplant, the contributions included a constantly evolving original music score, split into various tracks and instruments with controllable filters, where the audience was allowed to control it all via touch interfaces on HP TouchSmart computers. We were all involved in these projects from the earliest discussions, and we feel that they represent the type of phenomenal audiovisual approaches that result in projects people get super-excited about. By virtue of this new alliance with Waveplant, we hope to increase our involvement in such forward-looking and innovative experiential projects.”
Both HP “Play Big” projects were finalists in the 2012 One Club Entertainment Awards, as well as being shortlisted in the 2012 AICP Show’s Next Awards.
For further information on Waveplant, please visit www.waveplantstudios.com.
Well I finally had a chance to see Amon Tobin’s iconic ISAM 2.0 show in Chicago at the Congress Theatre last weekend. I had to restrain myself from just jumping in at FOH and bugging anybody about the setup, but there were two pairs of what looked like Barco FLM-HD20′s and Peter Sistrom’s control bridge. Behind all that was the excited crew from Leviathan. The visuals from V Squared Labs and Leviathan didn’t disappoint and the Congress’ killer Nexo line array thumped with authority. I wanted to hang around after the show to chat up the crew, but since I get to Chi-town once in a blue moon, I left to go hang with some close friends. Plus, Amon didn’t take the stage until fairly late- and I’m old. Kidding.
It’s hard to explain what I saw exactly. There’s a lot going on and one only needs to see some footage to really understand….which, by the way, you can do here:
This is a behind-the-scenes look at the process behind creating the visual work for “Wooden Toy”. Check this great article over at Spinner.com, too.
All in all, it was a fun time. I rarely get to actually attend a concert unless I’m working it, so it was a treat to see. Hats off to the whole crew that put their efforts into this one-of-a-kind event.
I know….yet another Amon Tobin plug- but this is only because I am excited beyond measure to be traveling to Chicago this weekend to see ISAM 2.0! I’ve heard all the hype, I’ve had friends that raved about it, and now I get to witness firsthand what Gizmodo calls “The Concert of the Future, Today”. Being that it’s in Chicago, I am hoping to run into the folks from Leviathan (one of the primary drivers behind the production) as well, so expect a full report. I promise no incriminating photos…..
Arkam.tv recently were involved in making the visuals for the after-hours party at Google I/O. Their overall size was 80′x20′, rear-projected. They also came up with a really inventive playback system using Android pads with Touchdesigner as the control, of course. There’ll be a write-up over at Derivative’s site soon so check there for more details.
Adam explains: “Falcon Northwest was nice enough to provide us with their newest micro tower build, The Tiki, for this project. It was running a NVidia GeForce GXT 680 which gave us an option for up to four outputs. The show’s output resolution was 2560×640 and we split that into two 1280×640 signals. Those signals were pumped out the two DVI outputs on the video card into a proprietary video mixing station from Riverview Systems. Once it entered their system they used some customized software to re-composite the two signals back together. Beyond that it was all in their hands and we didn’t have anything else to do with the signal. They were able to split the signal into three outputs that fed into corresponding projectors. (edit- looks like they used the Barco FLM 22). It was a rear projection set up. The full resolution of the combined projections was 4320×1080. The scaling on the projectors was so high quality and sharp that we decided to build our project at 2560×640 in order to maintain a high fps since our graphics were running in real-time.”
As if VSL didn’t have a good enough year…..
Here’s a really cool vid with some time-lapse and production shots of them in action with Infected Mushroomand Vita Motus Studios. You gotta dig Touchdesigner and the Smithson Martin Emulator DVS on stage right. As always, VSL puts out some really quality visual work and this is just a simple reminder of that. Check out a great write-up of the process over at Fastcocreate.com.
The Vivid Live! Festival will be streaming the Amon Tobin set from the Sydney Opera house on their Youtube channel this weekend HERE Time is 9PM AEST on Jun 2,- 7 am EST so pretty early for you right coasters. I’ll be up though. Coffee and breakfast with ISAM:Beyond 3D….what could be better?
Following sold out tours across Europe and North America, Amon Tobin’s audiovisual spectacle ISAM Live comes to Sydney Opera House – a landmark development in concert presentation. Taking projection mapping, electronic performance and technological syncopation into more immersive territory, Amon Tobin’s reputation as an innovative artist has long been recognized by critics and peers alike; with ISAM Live, he has finally captured the imagination of the broader public worldwide.
Sydney Opera House, in partnership with Google, will stream two full matinee, back-to-back ISAM Live performances on a dedicated YouTube channel on Saturday, June 2nd starting at 9PM AEST (7AM NYC / Noon London).
The live stream series will premiere a custom camera application called FRONTROW, which will allow the audience to use pan and zoom features to change their view and take photos during the live stream, apply lens filters and immediately share with their friends through Twitter, Facebook and Google+.
From the Rolling Stone site comes this clip of Amon Tobin’s Lost and Found. I don’t know whether to laugh or cry….it’s a beautiful thing. I’ll try to keep up with the tour by posting clips as they come. To be clear: Amon’s people have not contacted me, nor have Rolling Stone’s…well….nor have anyone else related to this tour…but it LOOKS GREAT. V Squared Labs, with Peter Sistrom at the digital helm, have outdone themselves this time around. This, I think, is what concerts will look like (and how they will be produced) in 20 years. If you’re in the Midwest and want to see this visual orgasm, here’s the closest they will come….
And from Thinktank Media comes the incredible packaging video for the ISAM box set.
Quality production of any kind, projectionmapping or not, always requires so much more than people think. This video is a great example of that. We ran a piece a while back on Leviathan’s Dodge Dart campaign for Union Ad Works that showed a ridiculously cool projectionmapping featuring the once-lowly auto. The Dart was reborn onto a sleek, mesmerizing projected soundstage complete with rich colors, 3d backgrounds, and zooming landscapes. This video gives a bit of a peek behind the scenes into what it took to pull off a well done piece of work- great camera work, Touchdesigner, and Panasonic projectors…..what more could you want?
Make sure to stay tuned for some coverage of the upcoming Amon Tobin ISAM tour, which has been redesigned and reworked with help from the experts at Leviathan.
Check out this extremely cool interactive model from White Kanga. Touchdesigner figured heavily in the creation naturally, and it’s a great example of how this powerful software can be utilized for very different aspects of a project. Peter Kirn, of CDM, talked with the project’s creators, Rafal Bielski, about the ins-and-outs- check it out on the CDM page!
Realtime projection+servo+augmented reality.
Rafal Bielski : Programming, CG
Arek Rekita: Progamming, Devices
Rafal Osmolski: Support
Luftwerk gets to project on some pretty amazing architecture and sculpture and now they get to project (well, reflect) on another iconic piece – Millenium Park in Chicago with Anish Kapoors ‘Cloud Gate’. Petra Bachmaier and Sean Gallero are a duo from Chicago who have done (more…)
I’m a huge fan of Vello Virkhaus’ (V Squared Labs) work and it seems he’s lent his touch to a car reveal. Projection on cars has been in the news a bunch recently- I guess everyone just jumps on the bandwagon at some point, but I happen to like it. Cars are perfect for this type of treatment….sleek lines, interesting shapes, smallish (so a really bright projector can look great), and you can use a lot more than 1 or 2 projectors if need be. V Squared Labs put their touch on this reveal for Scion and while they (more…)