The Revolting World of Stanley Brown | TV Series | CBBC | VFX Production

The Revolting World of Stanley Brown | TV Series | CBBC | VFX Production from JK Studios

By: JK Studios  28/02/2013
Keywords: Graphic Design, video production, Animation

Case Studies: #1 // The Revolting World of Stanley Brown // TV Series // CBBC // VFX Production Tasked with creating a brand new CG character from scratch for Freemantle’s childrens edu-tainment series, Platform Post Production approached JK Studios to design an original floating robotic ‘orb’ that would be an accomplice to one of the main characters. This robotic ball, called Olivia, also had to have the ability to communicate and transform into other objects, such as a stereo, monster and most importantly, a viewing screen to display video footage to the other characters. Using 3DS Max to create some concepts, James Kearsley created some initial designs on an idea he had and visited the set at Shepperton Studios, to co-ordinate the development with the shows director and producer. The important transformation requirements for Olivia dictated the design from an early stage, as functionality was key. The screenshots to the here show the development of the concepts towards the final, signed off design. After coming up with an initial set of CG concept images, James created a set of test animations to show that it was possible to inject life into a floating ball of metal. It was vital that Olivia’s character was cheeky and could project humour and emotion. Over the course of two weeks, the designs were finalised and signed off by the head of CBBC. The next task involved using 3ds Max to animate Olivia over the live action plates in a set of low-resolution wireframe animatics for each of the shots in an episode. These were once again signed off by the directors and producers before being rendered using Vray. These were then composited using the Flame suite at Platform Post to the corresponding shot. One of the most complex sequences occurred at the start of the first episode, requiring placing the characters into a futuristic sequence – but one that would only be used once. James designed the futuristic building that would house the teleporter – taking care to not make the teleporter itself too scary, and retaining the appeal for children. The time-traveller character ‘Archie’ was filmed against a bluescreen, which was then keyed out and the footage colour corrected to match the CG environment. All of the CG elements then had to be individually rendered and composited together (including splitting the glass orb that is the main part of the teleporter in two!), before adding motion blur and post-production FX, such as floating cars and light shafts. All of this was achieved using After Effects. You can watch some of the initial character tests and morphs, followed by a very quick VFX breakdown below:

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