Montreal-based audio and VFX house, Boogie Studio recently handled CG character animation for an innovative in-store interactive display for Videotron – a leading telecommunications provider in Quebec.
Press Release from Boogie Studio
Montreal: Feb. 8, 2011… Montreal-based audio and VFX house, Boogie Studio recently handled CG character animation for an innovative in-store interactive display for Videotron – a leading telecommunications provider in Quebec. The project, called “Bar A Mobile”, was produced via advertising agency Sid Lee. Now installed in Videotron’s new flagship store in downtown Montreal, the system allows customers to interact with animated avatars via touch-screen displays embedded in the sales counters. Users select a suitable profile, (student, professional, head of the family, social butterfly, techno or globetrotter), and use it to find the right cell phone plan for their needs.
"We know Boogie Studio very well because of their outstanding audio work," said Christian Ayotte, creative director at Sid Lee, who led the project for Videotron. "We knew they had brought in top animation people. We had a very tight timeline so I needed a facility I could count on."
“Videotron wanted to create a unique experience for their customers,” explained Sébastien Dostie, visual effects supervisor at Boogie Studio. “We created a little world, set in a park, and populated it with CG characters. Customers are introduced to the world of Videotron through the park and those characters.”
The agency provided Boogie Studio with the concepts and profile information for each of the avatars. Boogie then created the models and textures, as well as designing the accessories and clothing for each of the characters. The facility relies on Autodesk’s Smoke for online editing and 3D effects and Maya for 3D animation.
Dostie explained that each avatar required about 10 animated clips, which had to link with one another. One of the challenges on the project was creating all of those assets on a tight schedule. “We suggested using motion capture to drive the animations, which was something that they had not done before,” explained Dostie. “We brought the client on stage and they enjoyed and appreciated the process. They really liked the similarities to live-action directing.”
Motion capture was handled at mo-cap stage Mobility Art. Boogie studio added animation to the characters, rendered them and delivered the material to Montreal-based Nurun for programming.
“We had about a month and a half where we were working closely with the programmers,” said Dostie. “As we were creating the content, they were finishing and polishing the interactions and the user experience based on feedback from focus groups. The main challenge for both sides was to be really quick and efficient in terms of turnaround so that we could keep the process moving.”
The store, which opened in December, features six interactive tabletop displays where customers can interactively determine their cell phone service packages.
"We're couldn't be happier with their work," added Ayotte. "Boogie Studio has been in the ad world for a long time and they understand how flexible you have to be as projects evolve."
The Videotron project was one of the first for the company’s new visual effects division which opened last fall under the guidance of industry veterans Sébastien Dostie, Éric Gervais-Després, Philippe Désiront and Eddy Chan. From its roots as an audio mixing house serving the commercial industry, Boogie Studio has grown to offer pre-vizualization, stereoscopic production, online editing, visual effects and motion graphics for commercial, broadcast and film clients.
About Boogie StudioFounded by Benoit Martel, Andres Norambuena and Denis-Éric Pedneault in 2006 as an audio production facility, Boogie Studio expanded in 2010 to offer state-of-the-art visual effects. Boogie Studio’s mission is to provide comprehensive postproduction services for clients in the advertising, interactive and film industries. Along with three fully equipped audio mixing studios and video transfer services, Boogie Studio offers a high-end 2D and a stereoscopic 3D postproduction, online editing, and finishing. The studio boasts an award-winning talent base of artists, including stereo 3D pioneer Éric Gervais-Després. Boogie Studios has served hundreds of clients including LG2, Sidlee, Ubisoft, Y&R, Rethink Vancouver, KBS+P, DDB Anderson Toronto, Cirque du Soleil, Télé-Québec, TVA Accès and Nurun. Boogie Studio is a privately held company based in Montreal, Canada. For more information, please visit http://www.boogiestudio.com.