Go2 Productions was brought in to handle the technical solution/execution and content production for the ‘never been done before’ mountain-wide projection mapping, for the Audi Q7 TV commercial – A Projection of Greatness. The entire shoot was spread over 4 nights, at Fortress Mountain in the Rockies, 7500ft above sea level in -25º temperatures, pushing both technology and personal limits to the maximum.
The result is a truly unique TV commercial, where all the visual effects were caught in camera – happening live on site using multiple projection rigs and techniques, with no post production visual effects being added to the commercial.
The concept – A Projection of Greatness – was the whole driving force behind the making of this commercial. All the visual effects needed to be planned out in our studio and tested in similar conditions to the shoot location first, to ensure we could complete the shots as planned and capture all the visual effects in camera using projection mapping techniques, with no visual effects being added in post production.
Working closely with Zulu Alpha Kilo, Audi’s creative agency, we began by creating a series of test sequences that we took to Whistler BC in January 2016, for projection tests and planning. Based on the results, we went back to our studio and started designing and animating the 16 animated plates required for the commercial.
3D projection mapping works best when you take into consideration audience perspective – we knew that if we placed the cameras in specific locations during the shoot, we could actually make the projected Audi appear to have volume, making it appear to be a real Audi Q7 made of light. Special high ISO cameras with an ISO of more than 450,000 were used to shoot the commercial in the dead of night, making the projections really pop.
For some of the shots, we had projectors synced over several hundreds of meters to ensure we made the car appear to drive up the side of a mountain, while others required our projectors to be mounted on a truck while we shot the projected Audi Q7 merging with the real Audi Q7.
The actual shoot, high up on the summit of Fortress Mountain in Alberta, was a very packed 4-night schedule, in -25º temperatures with a snow storm thrown in for good measure. We encourage you to watch the behind the scenes video to see how we made it happen.