Coherent Images Communicates Across Cultures
Art is communication. Bucking words, art communicates ideas and emotions in a way that is visceral and visually economical. Art takes the place of words in immediate ways, offering ideas and emotions distilled into images and composition. It was art that Coherent Images employed to communicate their campaign for Tuttle Publishing's phrase books, not words. Tuttle's offerings help users who speak different languages bridge communication gaps. That pursuit seems academic and technical on its face, considering the structure, syntax, and grammar of different languages. But at its heart it is a human issue, helping those who share no common form of communication find a middle ground to span cultures. As Thomas Simpfendoerfer, illustrator from Coherent Images, explains, “They are melding the idea of people who are communicating across cultural borders with these books.” Communicating the idea of how these phrase books impact the lives of their users, Coherent Images created 3D CGI illustrations of books fanned open representing a face from one culture that shifts into another culture as the pages go by.
To create these mind-bending (and face-slicing) images, Thomas and Coherent Images used photographs projected onto 3D reliefs that they created, and then sliced up digitally to create each page. Essentially, Thomas created the perfect 3D representation of the human subjects and then sliced them into hundreds of sheets. “And they all really were sliced,” says Thomas. “In the computer of course, each page was one slice which follow the relief of the face.” After slicing each image about 500 times, they were lined back up, bound like a book, and composed into the images you see.
After the demanding challenge of turning these 3D composited faces into the pages of books, Thomas faced another challenge that he wasn’t expecting. The space between the pages that was created when digitally binding these face books sapped a considerable amount of color from the final images, and Thomas had to explore how to reconstitute that element into the images. “We had to bring back color into these cracks. That took some experimenting,” he says. Once that was solved, Thomas and Coherent Images arrived at the final compositions. It was a welcome success. The challenge had taken real time and effort, and Thomas couldn't be happier with the results. "I thought it was a very cool," he says.
Agency: Publicis Singapore
Creative Director: Tattoo Yar
Art Director: Kok Wei Tay
Photographer: Lavender Chang/ Amanacliq
CG: Thomas Simpfendoerfer/ Coherent Images
DI: Simon Ng/ Studioark
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Coherent Images was included for a set of futuristic bugs created to advertise a Bayer insecticide. "I paid special attention to detail in hi-res rendering," Thomas Simpfendoerfer explained. "I wanted the insects to look 'natural' also in exhibition panel size reproduction. 'Natural' is an important, but ambivalent word for us CGI artists. We are of two minds, as the object is digitally made, but should be utterly convincing, as if it could exist in our natural environment."
Serial Cut's ad for L'Auditori, home of the Orquestra Simfònica de Barcelona i Nacional de Catalunya, fell under the volume's "Objects" section. "The shapes coming out of the box represent classical instruments, but, at the same time, the shapes are not totally clear, though they appear tactile," Sergio del Puerto noted. "We leave it to your eye to draw them."
Ars Thanea's work for Discovery Networks, Disney, and Nvidia received recognition.
A trio of projects by Lightfarm Studios was also selected: a promo for Sony 3D Television meant to capture an OMG moment frozen in time; an extraordinary visual for Radio New Zealand's classical music battle that depicts the frontline struggle between two scores; and an advertisement for So Good Almond Milk. "We originally thought about photographically shooting the glass and milk elements, however we decided the best outcome for reflection control would be to create it in CGI," Denny Monk remarked. "We also found that once all of our almonds were in place, a slight hiccup occurred ... with so many of the same-looking objects put together so closely, an interesting moiré pattern appeared. With the flexibility and control via CGI, we were able to quickly remedy the issue."
Read about B&A in Communication Arts' Photo Annual here.