Neotopy Studio is true to its mission of creating cinematic VR content with a magical touch, as seen in a recent project — a VR mini-concert that features leading French artist, Yael Naim, for Unibail-Rodamco. Shot specifically for 360/VR viewing, the concert is on a roadshow throughout Europe, with 30 people “attending” the concert every hour at a particular venue. For tour dates, see http://www.bandsintown.com/YaelNaim
Colorist Alexandre Regeffe discussed the development of the VR mini-concert and how Neotopy managed the 360/VR post production process.
“This is a showcase of Yael Naim produced by Ivan Maucuit, VR project manager at Neotopy Studio, featuring two songs in 10 minutes. I was on set for the shoot with Jean Baptiste Villechaize, who worked as both DP and director."
"Ivan and Jean-Baptiste used four GoPro cameras on a customized rig, and we worked with both to get the camera positions and lighting right. GoPros are a great camera for VR — they’re inexpensive and make VR accessible to everyone — but to create a high-quality, professional-looking result, there’s a lot of work in post production.
"There were three takes for each song, so there was a lot of data to resynchronize."
"VR is our raison d’etre, so we’re fully prepared for the complex challenges of VR post. We built new pipelines and our own workflows. We did the stitching and sent the ProRes 4K files onto Assimilate’s SCRATCH VR Suite. We found SCRATCH VR invaluable as all the VR color grading and finishing tools are streamlined into a single workflow. It has advanced features like masks automatically repeating on the right or left side to the equirectangular image. SCRATCH also made it easy to manage the highlights and lowlights within the material, drawing out the depth of shadows and softening the glares.
"With so much material in a 360 shoot, more challenges arise. For example, contextual grading is difficult. We had to avoid seams. Numerous artifacts needed clean up. And while I was working on a powerful Mac workstation with a high-res monitor, I couldn’t sufficiently view the content via a headset (poor definition, but realtime), so I was continually checking the results and making adjustments.
"The target device for the concerts is the Samsung Galaxy s6, plugged into the Samsung Gear VR headset."
"I used the SCRATCH viewing tool so the client, DP and several others could view content simultaneously. That way I could make changes in realtime and run sets of reviews. I also used it to preview the color grading directly in the Samsung Gear Headset, in a streaming way! It’s a huge time saver.”