Shutterstock, the global provider of stock photography, stock footage and stock music, used disguise to power the virtual production in their recent commercial. 80six and Final Pixel worked with Shutterstock to help answer the question, “What can you create with 100% Shutterstock?”
Co-produced by Shutterstock Studios and Ridley Scott Creative Group’s RSA Films, the new spot was created solely with content available from Shutterstock and shot using virtual production technology by 80six at their Virtual Production Studios in the UK.
Two disguise vx 4 media servers and four rx II render nodes were an important part of the virtual production pipeline streamlining the workflow by facilitating a stable communication between Unreal Engine and Mo-sys StarTracker camera tracking through disguise’s RenderStream infrastructure.
“The disguise workflow with Unreal Engine was streamlined to work seamlessly, which allowed me, as Technical Director, to support the creative team in fully realising their concept,” notes Paul Nicholls, Head of Virtual Production and Real-time Technology at 80six.
The Horizon media agency developed the concept, showcasing “the world of possibilities” that Shutterstock opens up to creatives. Directed by Juriaan Booij, the commercial follows a young woman through a series of colourful, surreal worlds filled with photoreal cityscapes, hot air balloons, pink flamingos, a lush rainforest and astronauts. At the end, the camera pulls back to reveal the woman has been on a stage where the immersive environments were composed of Shutterstock images projected onto a massive curved LED backdrop.
The team at 80six worked with Final Pixel, who delivered Unreal Engine assets, to take 2D elements, such as photography, illustrations and vectors, and create a virtual 3D world, where actors and physical and digital props integrated seamlessly. By projecting the virtual world of Shutterstock images onto an LED screen, the young woman travelling through the different environments could see and interact with the changing, moving elements around her.
They used Unreal Engine to build, configure and customise the virtual scenes and translate the incoming visual data during the one-day shoot to a real-time render with disguise vx 4 media servers. disguise ensured that the LED visuals always adapted to the position of the camera in three-dimensional space. The upgraded graphics processing power of the new disguise rx II render nodes fully unlocked the photorealistic potential of the Unreal Engine content.
“Being able to utilise disguise’s powerful media server capabilities at the same time [as disguise RenderStream] allowed LED screens to be used as lighting sources all while maintaining a quick and easy workflow to support the creative team onsite,” says Nicholls.
At the core of the virtual production set was an 18 x 4.5-metre curved LED screen built from ROE Diamond 2.6mm panels, with a 12 x 5.4-metre ROE Visual Carbon 5.7mm LED ceiling illuminating the stage from above. Both LED screens ran on Brompton Tessera SX40 LED processors.
The 100% Shutterstock campaign is currently running on 19 cable networks in the US, plus Hulu, Roku and Amazon Fire TV, along with YouTube, Facebook and Instagram.