Another brilliant commercial with visual effects by Prime Focus Ltd. Lets watch the commercial before Prime Focus tells us how the project was executed.
This whirlpool television commercial is one of the most challenging projects that we have worked on in recent times. The brief that Prime Focus received from the advertising agency was that Whirlpool water purifier makes water so pure that it brings smile to the face of even an unborn baby.
The biggest challenge for us was to create the womb holding a baby, as the task was to make it as realistic as possible using computer graphics. The agency wanted a good-looking baby that smiles. So like every other project we started off by doing extensive research on the texture, look and feel. But the time provided was very less and so we to save time we created a dummy model and started playing around with various camera moves to fit into an edit on the basis of the storyboard received.
We had very few references to work with and each one of them were different from each other. Some had realistic baby with blood vessels developing seen through the skin, realistic probe lights, back lighting and some showed very chubby baby some had a skinny baby. All these complicated the task of zeroing on a final concept. The baby had to go through 3-4 different iterations before we could lock on the model
Look development also had its own difficulty. The mandate was to show developing stages of a baby in a womb. But it was equally challenging to make it visually appealing and acceptable. We always stumbled upon healthy debates like how much colour details of blood vessels to be revealed, translucency for the skin during the early stages of production. The lighting and compositing team spend hours experimenting with different passes and how to create them. And finally we decided to do different lighting for the different passes to get to the look. Surface scatter was used in a big way to bring the soft baby skin feeling. The placenta and background were the supporting elements, which gave the feeling of the womb.
Texturing and Shading test
Finally we came up with the right match of the baby structure with the look and feel. At the same time the camera moves and edit were shaping up quite well. Now came the final challenge of making the baby smile. We were confused on whether the baby should have ear-to-ear or sober child smile. This we tried multiple blend shapes to get to the desired smile as was asked by the agency
The internal motion of the baby added the additional feeling required. The animation and rigging team looked through all footage available to understand a baby’s movement which seems to be a jerky one with simple hand, legs and head movements. Iterations were developed for approval and then finally the whole film looked awesome with some floating womb particles and smart pieces of composition.
And finally around 10 artists delivered the project in 12 days.
Agency- Contract Advertising, Delhi
Director- Francois Merlet
Producer- Sunil Manchanda
Production House- MAD Films
VFX/Animation Supervisor- Merzin Tavaria [Prime Focus]
Prime Focus Ltd