Concrete has completed full postproduction work on a quirky 30-second commercial for Red Bull, which included the creation of realistic 3D graphics, editing, compositing, grading as well as sound design. It was designed and produced for university intranets for students by creative director, Neil Cook at Agency Kastner Network & Partners in London and produced by Vicky Hearn.
The commercial depicts a Red Bull can given life-like qualities showing its reactions to being blown about, slapped, banged into, scratched, slapped, crushed and squeezed by an invisible force. The team at Concrete were responsible for creating the CG can and giving it human qualities. Chris Jennings, head of graphics and his 3D artists, Al Stiglic and George Humphris worked tirelessly on the project to ensure the effects took shape within the deadline.
"This was a really interesting project to work on," explains Humphris. "For the R&D we spent hours in the studio filming and photographing the abuse we inflicted on the Red Bull cans, such as crushing, twisting and scratching. This reference proved invaluable when we recreated the damage in Maya. The only setback we had was overnight our studio cleaner removed all of our 'empty dented cans for modelling reference' and so we had to start all over again the following day.
"The real work was choreographing a symphony of destruction on one CG can. There were over fourteen custom dents and "wounds" to sequence over the thirty seconds plus the character animation."
Humphris was also responsible for the compositing in After Effects. Stiglic made a model of the Red Bull can using Mental Ray for rendering and Maya's Ncloth simulation in order to obtain realistic folds and creases in the can's material.
"Duncan Brinsmead from Autodesk, gave me few tips and was a great help on the project." commented Stiglic. "We really enjoyed working with the clients, they gave really good direction and were brilliant throughout the whole project, a pleasure to work with." adds Humphris, Concrete.
Senior audio designer at Concrete, Dino Sofos was then responsible for adding sound effects to the piece as a showcase of his 3D design, where he added squeezing, slapping, wind blowing and crushing sounds to enhance the striking visual effects.
The commercial depicts significant details which makes the piece come alive, such as the Red Bull can being blown, making the ring pull vibrate slightly, as if it were being blown by a strong wind. Along its dented and slapped surface, a series of lines begin to run up and down, as if from invisible fingers delivering a series of scratches.
The can is then cleverly crushed by the impact with the edge of the frame. It then crashes around the screen frantically, being banged against all four sides and up against the screen itself. At this point, significantly misshapen, the can comes to rest once again in the centre of the screen, rocking a little on the spot from its exertions. When final title appears, we see a word sliding in from the left of the can, the other from the right. The two words collide with the can centre-frame and squeeze its mid section together.
The force of this pressure causes the can to pop out from between the words. It shoots up to the top of the screen, where it is squeezed further against the edge of frame. At the end of the sequence, the can is entirely flat as slides off the screen and falls into centre frame again, where it makes ever-decreasing circles for a few seconds, as if were a coin being spun and coming to rest, before giving up the ghost entirely and coming to a halt. The Red Bull Can Make Music logo is then revealed behind it.
The piece will be shown on university intranets throughout the UK for students to view, or at www.canmakemusic.com