Over the years, we have almost mastered the craft of projection mapping, and are constantly working to add more and more art to it. But, it was not always the same, initial years were full of energy but come short of confidence. We knew we needed to do it ever since we saw video of a projection mapping show that happened in Europe.
We had a whole lot of enthusiasm, but nothing to start with, so we decided to do something about it. The first thing we needed was a projection surface as complicated as can be.
As we talked and passed by this toy shop in Hauz Khaz market, Hemkant and I got struck by this toy fire truck. It was the perfect size for experimentation; it had the details to be explored. After glancing at it from all angles, we both came up with the idea of experimenting projection mapping on a car. This was how the “Splatruck” concept transpired!
The Captivating Fire Truck
The process was long; it took us over 6 months to complete the experiment. The projection was easy; making a seamless workflow was difficult. First and foremost, we made a model character with multiple techniques. We then, tried photogrammetry, scale modeling using measurements, structured scanning, and blueprint method. We wanted to have multiple ways of handling this, so that we were better prepared for the gruesome and unpredictable production environment of the industry.
The Labeled And Marked Truck
When we were done making sure that we had the same result in multiple methods, we got down to automating the alignment process. Splat had recently worked on a show for TV channel Epic, called “Danav Hunters” where Hemkant had created some custom scripts to automate the VFX process used in the show in order to save time. We chose the same approach in multiple trials. Then, finally we were ready with a projector alignment process which ensured we were able to project on complicated surfaces in the least amount of time.
With the two critical step covered in our stride, we were ready for any output that came along. Collaborating mapping and a car was a tedious task, we had to use every kind of software we had to enhance our experiment. We were rather lucky we the backend software which magically fits in our concept. It was used to co produce what we called “Startruck”.
The Experimented Truck On Divergent Variations
After a successful attempt of the experimentation, we finally got the approach to work out on our car mapping projection. And, it’s astonishing that the “Startruck” experimentation brought us first client who were none other than the biggest car company “Hyundai”.
The global car manufacturer was reluctant to believe that an Indian studio was ready to create ACTUAL 3D projection mapping on a car, we had to create a full scale demo. This was a first time for all of us, in the production environment, but it worked like a charm, and we ended up doing 3 projections mapping for Hyundai in the coming years.
Splatruck gave us a humble start, which eventually enabled us to create much bigger shows on more than 11 automobiles, 4 big architectural projection mapping shows, and hell lot of other stuff!
When you visit our studio next time, the “Splatruck” will greet you at the reception. It will be happy because now you how it made its start into the company and the legend of its story lives on!