In 2013 we already had extensive knowledge of 3D animation, programming, rigging, compositing and special effects. That is why we have set ourselves the task of implementing a project whose implementation requires skills in all of these areas.
We chose Lego Technic 8297 as the main “character” of the project, which was a very interesting and at the same time very challenging object. We had to make a mathematic and kinematic model of a moving car.
Then we had to decide where the action would take place. We chose the place because the necessary footage could be shot without additional markers for the 3D tracker and most of our friends knew it well and when looking at the video they would not have idea that the car is not real.
After we had already specified the basic parameters of the project, we got to work. The first step was to virtually assemble the Lego car and get it open in the 3D software we used, which took us about a week. Then we develop a mathematic and kinematic model of a moving car that required two input parameters, a curve to follow and speed. Once the most complex task has been resolved we went and shot the video. A few days later, we already had a 3D track and we were choosing how the car would move around the frame. From now on, we only had to make final touches and wait for the renderers to finish.
Once the video was ready, we decided to check how well we merge the 3D animation and footage so we showed it to our friends without explaining anything to them to see if they would see what is going on. To our surprise very few people (only one) asked at all whether the cart was real. Which made us make an extended version of the clip, featuring a breakdown of how the car is placed in the original footage so that the viewers can see how exactly the final result was achieved.