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WEEK 1: Pre-Production and Concept Development

Updated: Mar 30

This project is part of a 10 week collaborative production class between SCAD and the Mill where we were assigned groups and tasked to create a 3-10 second commercial with the theme "vehicles are not necessarily cars". Our group, Team Xscape, is made up of 4 people: myself, Amanda Jayapurna, Gen Li, and Ken Kuroiwa, each with our own strengths to contribute.

When our team first met, we brainstormed cyberpunk-style concepts with motorcycles, but later began thinking about music-based ideas, which is when we came across this Eurostar ad where the guitar strings look like train tracks:

This ad inspired us to use our common team strength, lighting, to create an empty stage scene with atmospheric lighting that would invoke the same kind of nostalgia, anticipation, peace, and excitement of traveling on a train.


This is our first storyboard concept for the project, drawn by Amanda. We wanted to set the scene with the establishing shot 01 and and then transition to the next shots that would focus on the train coming out of the guitar hole as if it is a tunnel. The angles we chose are deep and will use a very shallow depth of field to create focus on the train itself and add bokeh effects to the background. In shot 03, we plan to make the tracks move behind the train in time to the music playing like guitar strings.

The guitar strings/tracks moving idea was inspired by this video:

After figuring out our basic shots, Amanda created this color script and color palette that transitions from warm to cool colors to show the excitement building up as the train starts moving up the guitar handle.




Here is our 3D previs, in which we all met to decide camera angles and set the scene up together using models we found for free online. The confetti was created by Gen in Houdini and exported to Maya as a .abc file. I edited the video together and helped guide the camera motion and transitions.



REFERENCES:

Here are some video references edited together showing how the lens flares and light bloom on the train headlights might look as the train approaches and passes by the camera in shot 02. (Originally from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MmO7ZCMgZEU&ab_channel=spencerhughes2255)

This video is a one of our references for confetti motion. I'll be in charge of compositing the confetti and working with motion blur and depth of field in Nuke!


General Mood Reference Collage:



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