Our latest collaboration with Lernert and Sander is all about tying ends together, very luxurious satin ends and curly wired ones to be precise. This stylish film for Hermès lets the ties do the talking in a very minimalistic setting.
Bas Moonen, Visual Effects Supervisor, kept the wires untangled and the ties wrinkle free while on set, which is a bit more difficult than it seems. As he explains, “There were two wide shots which were shot as separate plates, one consisting of two and three actors, with a cable between each actor. In each of these composed shots both cables are warped towards its counterpart using tracker markers attached to the cables, eventually tying both together as one. These tracker markers are custom made to float below the cables to ensure they did not intersect with the cable from the camera point of view.”
The minimalistic setting makes the rich colours pop, creating focus on the playful details of the ties. As Brian Krijgsman, Senior Colourist, explains, “Straightforward as it may appear, the colour-grade for Lernert and Sander is always tailor-made. This film is no exception. It is said that the Inuits have 78 words for ‘snow’. So it is for Lernert and Sander. Setting the right tone for the white backdrop, from ‘immaculate’, to ‘mint’, to ‘pristine’, we explored many shades of white. An interesting detail; at the start, each of the characters, the father and his two sons, are given their own shade of backdrop. Which then gradually and skilfully blend together towards the end at the big reveal. Additional time is devoted to perfect the Hermès ties and shirts. Attention to detail, offering made-to-measure work and creating elegant-looking colour grades are part and parcel of the job as a colourist for Lernert and Sander.”
The pristine white backdrop did not only get a grading-touch and is more than a simple white studio, as Moonen recalls, “The wide reveal is actually an impossible camera move. All three cameras move backwards in a straight line but line up perfectly in the end. We tracked all three shots and created a 3D environment with all three cameras. In this environment we projected a combination of all three backgrounds, made to look as one big studio. This background was then rendered through
all three cameras and inserted in each plate, aligning the cameras at the end creating the illusion of the actors standing next to each other. You can see the edge between the plates slowly disappearing when the cameras line up perfectly at the end.” This being a Lernert and Sander film, they wouldn’t settle for anything less than perfection.