Currently found in the National Museum of Denmark, Shilo and Atelier Brückner's animated Viking installation is set to come to London in 2014, as part of a new Viking exhibition at the British Museum.
The installation is designed to accompany the longest Viking warship ever found, which, at 37 metres in length is one of the exhibition's star attractions. Artifacts have been made to appear "embedded" in the animated panorama surrounding them, which was brought to life by creative production company Shilo using original hand-painted oil paintings.
Shilo creative director Tom Green says that Atelier Brückner envisioned a hand-drawn approach to the installation from the beginning. "It could only really be reproduced by painting each frame individually," he explained. "We took aspects of traditional hand-drawn animation and modernized them with today's technology."
Shilo and Atelier Brückner worked together to develop a story that spans two one-minute chapters. The first chapter illustrates the violence of Viking military actions, while the second chapter has a much softer side. "We were able to show a more touching side to the Nordic inhabitants in chapter two, by showing that they were not just raiding a village for enjoyment, but rather, they were doing so to provide for their families." Shilo co-founder Jose Gomez explains.
The process required artists to create matte paintings in Shilo's studios, which were then animated using Flash, and were then imported into Photoshop, where hand-painted textures were added over the original animation. Wacom tablets also played an important part in the creation of the animation.
"A key factor that really helped was having the matte painters create an A and a B pose for each character in each scene," Tom continued. "Using those start and end-points, the Flash artists animated the 'in-betweens' and sent that content to the 2D team."