R/GA brought me on as a compositing art director for the Samsung Best Buy Retail 2k & 4k TV screen content. The ask was two takeover moments, which were specially created CG shots that covered the entire width of every single TV screen in the Samsung area of Best Buy Stores as if it were one single image, to really exploit the ultra high-definition televisions Samsung offers. To give you an idea of the scale, there were about 5 screens across, with minimal lateral overlap, so the image resolution ended up being about 33,000 pixels wide. This meant we would be using Nuke to composite, since After Effects is unable to handle a canvas that large.
My role was mainly to dissect the New Zealand forest photograph and map out which trees in the forest we would be cutting out to projection map. Then, as our 3D artist and Nuke artist used my map to set up their files, I spent a ridiculous amount of time to create mattes for each tree, and enlisted the help of a few additional roto artists to make sure we got to every single tree on the map. Seriously. The amount of moss on those trees is out of control. By projection mapping the trees onto 3D “trees” and adding a camera move, we were able to bring the viewer into the forest with a subtle effect that looked really cool in person.
It turns out that most compositor tricks are pretty useless when the canvas is a New Zealand forest full of super mossy, mostly green trees. We tried every trick in the book, as well as a few new ones we thought up as our hands cramped up and eyes began to twitch.
The entire render and workflow process had to be very meticulous and well communicated because the renders, even with a large render farm, took overnight to complete, sometimes longer if both scenes were being updated and our high-end matte artist was working remotely and file transfers of this scale are no speedy matter once you get to the exr and psb dimensions. By the end of the project, I had learned the ins and outs of Nuke compositing and done updates on both the mountains scene and the forest scene.
Here is a situational example of the forest scene below.