A wonderful project to work for, three commercials feautiring millions of leaves and trees. The challenge this time to build a world where these amazing actors could live in.
I couldn’t believe my luck when we got the job and my bad luck when I didn’t make it to the shoot and witness a masterclass in acting from two legends of cinema, and no, I am not the kind of guy that has idols or anything like that but it would have been exceptional to see this life.
The job involved substituting all the leaves on the trees for different currency notes, from british pounds to japanese yens, and populate trees with them.
Technically we learned trees have a lot of leaves, to the extent that our renders did had to be heavliy massaged to make them run through the render farm.
Technique I designed was based on particles instancing of different types of branches with different currencies so the first thing was to build a library of possible variations, sizes and of course currencies.
Interesting enough when I started to count the number of leaves on those trees I was blown away we could manage to do all sorts of things like translucency, shadowing and global illumination with these numbers in mental ray, up to 30 million leaves per tree were necessary to get the correct feeling and we could put easily 20 trees in one pass.
The render ties were slow of course but acceptable… less than 30min a frame.
A true amazing experience to be involved in a project with such actors as Donal Sutherland and Gary Oldman.
Director: Dante Ariola Agency: BBH Production: MJZ Task: Lead Animator