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Creating the Sun


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#1 Rob Webster

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 09:33 PM

Hi Guys,

I'm shooting a commercial for Robinson's Fruit Squash as part of the European Kodak Commercials Competition.

The idea is based around a pastiche of a perfume advert featuring a woman walking in silhouette towards camera, with a giant orange glowing orb behind her. She is silhouetted throughout her walk until she reaches a head and shoulders close up where there is some dialogue and a pack shot.

Here are some images of roughly what we are trying to create (in terms of scale and effect, although we are looking for the orb to be more uniform than the still from "Sunshine", and not look quite so much like the actual sun)

"Sunshine" DIR. Danny Boyle

The Weather Project- TATE MODERN EXHIBIT

We have come up with a number of ways of doing this:

Practically
We build some sort of huge light source in the studio at our university, and shoot the whole thing in real time as a long take.

Unfortunately our budget is tiny (virtually non existent), so my first idea of using a lighting balloon seems out of the question.

We also thought of constructing some kind of huge lightbox out of semi-translucent perspex, with a number of high powered lights behind, but again this will be a massive stretch on out budget.

VFX

We shoot the girls performance (walking towards camera) against a green screen, and then shoot the "sun" effect seperately as a background plate. We thought we could shoot a chine ball, projector beam down the lens, spotlight through diffusion, various lightbulbs etc and then comp the two together.

However we shoot S16mm, transferred to DigiBeta, and obviously cannot afford a scan so i'm worried that resolution will not be high enough to carry any kind of VFX work convincingly.



Just wanted to see if anyone had any ideas about which stock to use (was thinking 7212) we have to use kodak obviously, and more importantly how do we create the sun effect. I would love to be able to shoot it practically, but think it is unlikely we will be able to rent or build a source this big for our budget.

Any help greatly appreciated.

Cheers,

Rob
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#2 Rob Vogt

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 09:41 PM

Rob,

Why not shoot the actual sun... its free?

-Rob
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#3 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 10:37 PM

I'd go with actual sun and a green-screen comp.
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#4 Rob Webster

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Posted 12 November 2009 - 03:12 PM

Very much planned it so it would be in a black void.

Much like the images in my post above.

Obviously filming the actual sun would seem like the simplest option, but i like in the UK, it's winter- the sun is tiny, the sky is always grey, the zoom lens we use is awful and we can't afford a scan, so this is kind of a massive compromise for us.

Thanks for the suggestion though guys!
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#5 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 12 November 2009 - 03:45 PM

Check to see what stock footage houses have of sun, and/or NASA imagry. Then composite that on black.
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#6 Rob Vogt

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Posted 12 November 2009 - 04:11 PM

A 300mm lens should make the sun appear large enough on the horizon for your purpose. (Maybe you can ask the rental house if you could see it outside of their shop). If the background sky is a different enough color you can key it out and make it black.

Maybe you can make a painting and then just blast some lights into it to bump up the exposure if you're in a studio.
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Glidecam

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