This sleek spot for Colorado ski apparel maker Spyder is a seamless combination of CG and live-action footage shot in the Chilean Andes. The brief for Pittsburgh-based creative house Animal started as a simple logo animation, but became more elaborate as the project developed.
Responsible for everything from concepts and boards to editorial and final colour, the Animal team opted for a 3ds Max, Cinema 4D and V-Ray pipeline. “The Character Tool in Cinema 4D proved very useful for arachnid motion,” says director Sam Hodges.
“Cinema 4D isn’t usually thought of as a character tool, but for this purpose it worked very well. ZBrush was invaluable in the sculpting of the main spider character. We had several sculpts with different detail levels, and were really pleased with the results.”
Less technical techniques helped the team overcome the project’s biggest challenge. “The moment where the fibres overtake and rebuild the broken DNA was very difficult,” says Hodges. “The DNA strands were severely displaced and then rigged, so getting the ‘fibres’ to properly interact wasn’t simple. In the end, a lot of it came down to old-fashioned keyframing, careful use of angles and tweaking, tweaking, tweaking.”
This article originally appeared in 3D World issue 172.