Soma Fashion
Network’s 360 video was produced for the HTC Vive.
HOLLYWOOD— Cognition
recently applied its color-grading magic and technical expertise to Underwater, a new 360 video created by
Soma Fashion Network for the HTC Vive virtual reality system. The facility’s
engineering team designed a custom workflow that allowed senior colorist Mike
Eaves to grade the video in real time and view the results in 360 space. The
groundbreaking process paves the way for other VR projects and keeps Cognition
at the forefront of the new medium.

Underwater was created by Soma as a showcase piece for the immersive
experience delivered by HTC’s premium grade Vive platform. Users are welcomed
into an ethereal fantasyland where magical mermaids, sensual dancers and
exquisite models glisten, showcasing the latest in swimwear.  It is a tranquil setting where sight, sound
and sheer beauty transport visitors into a modern day Monet-like painting. “We
created a fantasyland that completely envelops the user,” explains Soma
Creative Director and co-founder Karen Morgan. “No matter where they look or
how many times they experience the piece, there is always something new and
magical happening.”
 The piece was shot entirely underwater by
virtual reality production specialist Vrtul using 360Abyss VR camera technology
and stitching software. The cast included nearly 20 featured performers.
Post production conforming and color grading was
completed at Cognition in Hollywood. Conform editor Mike Williams used an SGO
Mistika system to conform 4K stitched images, originally edited in Premiere
Pro, into the facility’s timeline. Workflow consultant Gustavo Mendes worked
with SGO to set up a 360 viewing node using the Mistika’s robust toolset. That
allowed images to be mapped on a sphere so that Eaves could view graded
material in 360 space. “It was quite an accomplishment,” says Eaves. “We could
see things very much as they would appear in the final wrapping.”
“In an initial pass, I graded the shots with
primaries to match the footage cut to cut,” Eaves adds. “I then used the HSL
keyer to isolate and color the water, and to isolate highlights and make them
golden. Both HSL keys added an ethereal feel. I added a gradation filter to the
surface to control the daylight and diminish the clarity of objects above the
water. I added a darkening gradation filter to the bottom for greater depth.
Additionally, I added various windows and shapes to color certain areas lighter
or darker, and to blend certain objects into the water color.”
The finished piece is spectacular. Eaves
worked closely with Morgan to finalize the video’s dreamlike quality. “Color
plays an important role in creating the atmosphere and telling the story,” says
Morgan. “It was exciting for me as a director to see my vision come to life on
the screen. Mike did an incredible job in pulling out the golds, pinks and
greens, and the texture of the water to make the magic happen.”
Soma Fashion Network specializes in producing
unique marketing media for luxury brands, and Underwater was its first venture into VR. Morgan credits Cognition
with helping to make the project a success. “We’re thrilled with everything
that happened at Cognition,” she insists. “Their professionalism and expertise
from media management to the final grade was outstanding, especially
considering everything in the VR workflow is new. It was a beautiful process!”
Cognition is located at 900 N Cahuenga Blvd.,
Suite B, Los Angeles, CA 90038. [323] 874.4487
WP2Social Auto Publish Powered By :