Award-winning music video is a beautiful nightmare

A geisha and an octopus perfom an elegant underwater dance in this beautiful, abstract music video for UK electro-duo Plaid's track, 35 Summers.

Last year's Siggraph Dailies was won by UK electro-duo Plaid's promo for their track, 35 Summers. All the CG and VFX was created by Soho VFX house Golden Square, for Warp Records. The video took about three months to produce. This included research and development, shot production, revisions, comp from Aman Kang, and colouring at MPC.

"Ultimately the film’s vision was that of the director, Richie Burridge," says lead CG artist Edd Dawson-Taylor. "My task was to create realistic-looking tentacles that would blend seamlessly with an octopus they filmed in a tank, as well as interacting with the geisha character, who was also shot underwater.

The Golden Square team was tasked with creating realistic-looking tentacles

"In addition to the build I also textured, lit and animated most of the shots. The textures were from real octopus photographs, and I used those to drive an SSS shader to get the jelly feel.

"For the lighting I used a caustic gobo that matched the pattern on the footage of the geisha. I also had help from Adam Lindsey with tracking and bits of the lighting. It was probably one of the more script-heavy pieces of art I have made - in fact, more time was spent scripting than doing anything manually," he adds.

This article originally appeared in 3D World issue 175.

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