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SGO Mistika for Doha UN climate conference

by Chris Newbould on Jan 22, 2013

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Image courtesy WRG Qatar LLC.
Image courtesy WRG Qatar LLC.

When industry veteran and Mistika VFX Artist and Colourist, David Cox was asked to post produce a high-resolution, wide-screen presentation to be projected onto a seventy-metre wide screen for The United Nations Climate Change Conference, Mistika was the obvious choice.

The presentation, produced by global corporate communications agency WRG Qatar LLC and directed by Ollie Solman, consisted of five separate films, shot in varying locations including The Maldives and Madagascar. These were introduced and linked by a presenter who was filmed in a green screen studio. The final combined film was post produced at an ultra high resolution of over 7000 horizontal pixels and projected by four side-by-side HD projectors at the U.N. conference based in Doha, Qatar.

David Cox explains “These types of projects are quite challenging, but also a lot of fun to do on Mistika, because of the freedom Mistika provides to work in high resolutions and unusual aspect ratios.

This project pushed the boundaries and utilised Mistika's capabilities to the fullest, including compositing, grading, conforming and delivering.”

David continues “The first few minutes of the film feature a presenter who was shot against green screen. This was changed for a digital “white cyc” background with weather effects, shadows and animated graphics added behind and around her. Then there were five location-based films that were introduced and linked by the green-screen host. Each of these were shot in locations from around the world and on a variety of cameras including RED Epic, Canon 5D and Go Pro, which were all conformed and graded within Mistika.”

The size and shape of the final films demanded a specific resolution and aspect ratio. The conforming, compositing and grading were carried out on a single Mistika post production system in an uncompressed environment, at a resolution of 7104 x 1080, which provided the very wide aspect ratio of almost 7:1.

David elaborates further about the complexities of working at high resolutions and bespoke aspect ratios; “Obviously the frame shape is very different to the normal aspect ratios of the supplied images. Where the source material was from RED Epic, Mistika allowed me to work directly from the 5K footage without transcoding, allowing me to frame and grade the shots as needed in real-time, without processing. Where the source material was from a lower resolution format, such as Canon 5D or Go Pro, I used Mistika's compositing features to multi-layer shots to make up a collage of images to fill the frame.”

David concludes “The most impressive aspect of Mistika in a project of this scale is that despite the high resolution and odd frame shape, was that I was still able to work in real-time for almost all of the grading and multi-layering of the images. When it came to the green screen sections, all of the keying, tracking and shadows were also completed in the same Mistika and on the same timeline. These aspects were essential to being able to react to client feedback promptly and to deliver this complicated project within a very tight post production schedule.”


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