Behind the scenes as animation explores the colour of noise

Mr Kaplin, the creative partnership of Robert Glassford and Daniel Zucco, is the studio behind this beautiful, abstract piece for IdN magazine. Here, the duo reveal how the brief and concept came about.

What was the brief and how did it come about?

Daniel Zucco: Late last year we were contacted by IdN World to create an exclusive film for their upcoming motion gallery in the theme of Black and White. At the time we were on a three day motion capture course at Centroid 3d in Shepperton Studios, who happily agreed to collaborate on making an experimental piece for the magazine.

Mr Kaplin joined forces with Centroid 3d on the Idn piece

Did you have a lot of creative freedom?

Robert Glassford: The only restriction was time. We had two weeks from concept to delivery to create the film. The brief was completely open other than to capture the theme of black and white. We began researching the colour spectrum of sound and decided on making a piece that would explore the relationship between black and white noise.

What was your design approach to this project?

DZ: We wanted to find a way to capture the color of noise visually, displaying white noise as a constant frequency and the peaks and spikes of black noise within the sound spectrum. We started testing how audio spikes affect geometry in 3d software and by using constraints (or dynamic ropes) we found we could emphasise the pulling and pushing of the audio movement through negative space. This became our style for film.

We wanted to find a way to capture the color of noise visually

We then spoke with audio design studio BXFTYS about creating two pieces of music, one to represent the characteristics of white noise and the other black. We then spent a day at Centroid 3d, capturing the movements of two motion capture dancers reacting to the audio tracks. We were supplied with the motion capture data and began meticulously connecting geometry and constraints to the animating figure supplied to us.

We created a series of shots and a final sequence which BXFTYS mastered the final audio for.

The team began by testing how audio spikes affect geometry in 3d software

What software did you use?

RG: Cinema 4D and After Effects.

What was the most challenging part of this project?

RG: We did battle over the concept, it took a few days to really grasp how we were going to represent what we were trying to do as we wanted to use motion capture in a way that had not been explored in motion graphics. The experience of Centroid 3d & BXFTYS really made the motion capture and audio design side of the project transparent for us, allowing us to just focus on the design and direction of the piece.

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