Flair Timelapse Commercial
New York-based creative agency The Garage, were approached by production company Taylor James, to create a new heartburn commercial, utilising a time-lapse effect to illustrate the duration and physical discomfort it causes.
The Director’s vision for this commercial was to show that heartburn can strike at any moment, and to visualise the passing of time while the subject suffers through the sensation of pain and discomfort. The use of a time-shifting effect was to help visualise the idea that suffering from heartburn can feel like it lasts forever.
Flair’s ability to scale the move’s timeline was the primary feature that came into play on this job. Once we’d programmed in our moves, switching between a 24fps and a 1fps time base was simple.
The Garage Rentals
There were a number of challenges with the shoot, in particular, the time-lapse effect with the movement of actors on set. It was vital that blocking was consistent to ensure that the primary actors weren’t obstructed, therefore making post-production simple to composite the multi-layers with everything lining up and actors hitting their marks. Due to the complexity of movements in the scene, precise repeatability of motion control had to be used, which aided in working out the best positions and paths the extras can move along. Using motion control meant the scene only needed a few rehearsals to dial everything in and get the correct timing setup.
There was also an issue with location; the initial rig of choice was a Milo, but given the restaurant’s access was particularly difficult, due to the constraints of tight doorways, elevators and floor spaces, the Bolt was the best portable rig for the job. Fortunately, the Bolt is specifically designed to pass through tighter spaces and fit perfectly into the restaurant to successfully capture the required shots.
I can’t think of how one would accomplish this shot without the use of motion control.
The Garage Rentals
Flair’s ability to scale the move’s timeline was the primary feature that helped capture the Directors vision for the commercial. Once the moves were programmed, it was a simple matter of switching between a 24fps and a 1fps time base. Flair was also used to send an external trigger signal to a laser bloop (for lining up the shot in post), along with a beep box (for cueing talent), and a “move start” signal to the DMX lighting board — programmed to change the lighting over the course of the move. Flair also made it easy to program a perfect “dolly zoom” (Contrazoom), which perfectly complimented the time-shifting effect.