We wanted to put BARCO’S LightSteering capabilities on display with this film. With a whole new range of possibility opened up in terms of HDR, it inspired us to explore the concept of light entering a dark world.Clyde Bessey – Creative Director
TRAVELING NEW ROADS
Every project is its own unique journey. But there is something special about hitting the road with a few of your closest friends – who also happen to be your co-workers – driving up the California coast until you reach the Redwood Forest, and spending several days creating art together. That’s real movie magic.
The idea for this project came about when we connected with the team at Barco (@Barco_nv). They were interested in finding an innovative way to show off the capabilities of their new “Lightsteering” HDR projection technology. But rather than just a bland summary of the product features, the goal was to create a short trailer that would emulate the actual experience of going to the cinema to see a film. After all, that’s what it’s all about!
When we were developing the concept for, “LIGHT BRINGER”, we wanted to capture a feeling of adventure and mystery that will bring audiences into the story, and leave them wanting more. And as it turned out, we had that exact same feeling of adventure and discovery when we were capturing it. And when the shoot was wrapped, that was really just the beginning.
INTO THE WOODS
“There is a thrill in the spontaneity of collaboration on set. And there is a real satisfaction in imagining a story, and then seeing it come to life before your eyes on the monitor“Kelly Pratt – Creative Producer
The Origin Point crew took off from LA on a Tuesday morning, with our production van packed full with our gear and duffle bags. While taking in the beautiful Springtime scenery along the way, we listened to music for inspiration, making note of any tracks that could be references for the final score.
The story of this short narrative trailer follows our hero as she finds a secret key to seeing the world in a new way, and uses it to illuminate her environment which has been cast into darkness.
When we arrived at the location, the beauty of the area took us aback. Beyond the built in production value, there is a difference in the air up in Northern California. It fortified us with its freshness. We were ready for anything.
Our talented local crew were invaluable to the success of the shoot. We were trekking over rough terrain with heavy equipment, searching for a cell service, and constantly chasing the perfect light, while always making sure to avoid any negative impact on the immaculate environment we found ourselves in.
“Conceptualizing a project from Pre through Post requires an immense amount of planning and coordination, but most importantly team synergy. From our accelerated timeline to filming in remote locations, Lightbringer was both logistically and creatively challenging, requiring top level performance from everyone at OP and our local crew.”Tyler Heckerman – Creative Producer
This was the kind of shoot where we had to be willing to get our boots wet – both figuratively and literally. Everyone on set was a great team player, unphased by a little dirt, or a huge banana slug hanging out on a nearby tree.
Our incredible lead actress Assiya Mukanova (@assiyayoga) was a true rockstar MVP – running through patches of brush, climbing rock faces and balancing on mossy logs with no fear or hesitation. And we all had to be especially careful of poison oak, which would pop up in unexpected patches throughout the course of the day. But with our strict safety measures in place and first-aid on hand, we made it through without a hitch.
We had the opportunity to work with the gorgeous Atlas Orion Anamorphic lenses for this project, thanks to the awesome team at Atlas Lens Co. These paired perfectly with our RED 8K Monstro Full Frame sensor, giving the entire piece a truly epic, cinematic feel.
The Atlas lenses provided a beautiful canvas for us to capture such an immersive story. My personal favorite is the 65mm, it really draws us into the subject while allowing the background to shine.Clyde Bessey – Creative Director
There’s no WiFi in the depths of the woods. That’s part of what makes it so beautifully pristine. And also a challenge when you’re trying to communicate and view footage on set. We had the ultimate solution from Sclera Digital. This allowed us to create a signal for real-time camera monitoring, so we could literally watch each shot as it was happening right on our cell phones.
“Shooting on location always has its challenges, especially in remote locations where cell service is practically non-existent. Sclera Digital’s system provided a strong wireless signal for both our logistical needs and camera to cloud from the middle of the forest, allowing our editor and the Barco team to see proxy versions of each clip after we call cut.Tyler Heckerman – Creative Producer
THE INFINITE K
We needed to travel light in terms of lighting out in the forest, everything was run from solar power generators.Jason Mitcheltree – Creative Director
You can bring all the lights in your arsenal, but you can’t make them shine like the “infinite K” of the sun.
The continuity of our lighting was more crucial than ever on this project. One thing we decided early on was that we needed to shoot this project as day for night. We took our time doing the research on the best ways to achieve the effects we were looking for in each shot – a dappled “full-moon” look that blurs the line between reality and fantasy.
We did extensive testing before we went out to scout the actual locations, so that we knew which areas would give us the best results, not only in terms of what is in frame, but in terms of opportunities to create texture and depth with the light itself.
But of course, the sun is a fickle friend. The unusual weather patterns of 2023 worked against us at times, with much of each day being overcast. We found ourselves adjusting on the fly, flipping the schedule and working out angles to capture every minute of perfect light that we could. We are never ok with compromising on the visuals, even if it means taking more time or resetting for one more take.
And all that hard work was worth it to see the final result. The dappled rays coming through the trees were a sight to behold, even before any color correction was applied.
The most challenging shot comes at the center of the story, where we have a large portal illuminating the veil into another realm. We combined practical lighting techniques with graphics added in post to create the glowing effect needed to sell the illusion of opening a portal to an alternate dimension.
OPENING THE PORTAL
What would it look like to peer into another world? That’s the question we had to consider when we originally conceived this piece. Everyone may have a different answer. When we were imagining someone who lives in a world of darkness, the answer was simply – Light. Enlightenment. The allusion to the things that are always present, waiting under the surface, that we just never pay enough attention to see.
The trick to capturing a sense of realism in shots like this is a blend of virtual and practical effects. There are several ways to add a portal into the scene, but our aim was to create a subtle yet surreal difference between the “real world” and what lies beyond. This is to convey that what is really happening is a shift in perspective, rather than an entry or gateway.
There is no doubt we were ambitious with our vision for this project. But we have a secret weapon on our side, our very own wizard of VFX, Jason Mitcheltree.
Our heroine essentially opens a portal letting light spill into her world, we revealed it by blending both exposures for day and night.Jason Mitcheltree – Creative Director
SPEED OF SOUND
Music and sound design played a huge role in bringing this story to life. We commissioned the talented Stephen Spies (@_) to compose an original score to enhance the epic, dreamlike feel of the piece. With a fantasy adventure like this, the possibilities are infinite. Stephan also crafted the sound design for the film, adding so much definition to the setting. In one iteration, our temp sound design had a somewhat sci-fi, technological feel. But Stephen was able to come in and create a much more character-centric score and soundscape. It drives the action, and takes the visuals to the next level.
The final product is tailor-made to be displayed in a theater setting on Barco’s exquisite HDR projector. Gypsy Sound (@ came through in the clutch finished and delivered in Dolby 7.1 surround sound, because nothing less would do. The end result is a truly immersive experience.
We couldn’t have created the next-level color palate in HDRx without the talented team at Deluxe (@Deluxe1915). There’s no substitute for the mind blowing dynamic range that we were able to achieve, with the help of Barco’s cutting edge projection technology, of course. We knew that we had to collaborate with the best artists, using the best tools in the business to achieve full cinema quality, and we would except no substitutes.
Our team spent several sessions coloring with Deluxe, dialing in every detail to perfection. You MUST watch it in HDR to get the full experience.
This was a project to remember in more ways than one. We learned a lot along the way, both through our journey to the heart of nature during production, throughout the world of bleeding-edge technology in post-production. Our experiences making this project are sure to stay with us as much as the finished film.
Watch the full video HERE.