The 'Your Jaw Surgery' project consisted of 10 clinic films, 14 patient stories and 17 surgical animations. 41 films in total for a new online resource for the British Orthodontic Society, for patients contemplating or undergoing orthognathic surgery. Orthognathic surgery means 'surgery to create straight jaws' and is used on patients who suffer various functional problems due to misalignment, such as eating and/or sleeping..
The entire orthognathic process can take up to 18 moths to 2 years to complete. Over a week of filming we followed various patients at different stages of their treatment. The final 10 clinic films represent the entire clinical process. From their initial consultation with the orthodontic and surgical staff, having their fixed brace fitted, the pre-surgery work-up clinic, immediately post surgery (the morning after) and through to their final consultation where their fixed brace is removed and they're discharged from the process.
During the post surgery phase of treatment we also followed two patients that had just undergone surgery, throughout their six weekly follow up clinics.
Overall a very large project with a whole variety of challenges, not least having to film real patients and clinicians in NHS facilities so as not to disrupt the normal functioning day.
Amulet Creative were involved in the consultation of this project from the start, developing the concept, scripts, storyboards, scheduling, filming and post production.
This was an immensely satisfying project to be involved with and a fascinating insight into the intricacies of major jaw surgery and the positive impact this has on the patients and their lives.
Alongside the 10 clinic films we made 14 patient stories. These stories involved previous jaw surgery patients talking about their own experiences. The interviews were filmed in locations in the South East and Sheffield to incorporate a good geographical spread of patients for this national resource.
Jaw surgery can be a life changing experience for those involved, often the patient has experienced years of insecurity and inhibition due to their problem. Surgery can transform their lives and gives them a new sense of confidence. All the interviews we conducted illustrated just how emotional the journey had been for them.
The final aspect of the project involved scripting and voicing a series of 17 surgical animations. The animations themselves were produced by Dolphin Imaging and are normally used in orthodontic practices as a demonstration tool. Under license from Dolphin we wrote the scripts and added voiceover to the films and incorporated them into the Your Jaw Surgery project. The 3D animations were a great help in clearly and cleanly showing just what was involved with the various aspects of surgery, from complex double jaw surgery through to retainers for the teeth.
The World Inside Me is a series of nine internet based films, made for MakeBelieve Arts and funded by The Wellcome Trust. The films were created as an online resource to support MakeBelieve Arts interactive touring theatre show, "Journey to the Centre of the Brain", which toured schools around the UK.
Filmed over six days using locations around south London and a studio setup at MakeBelieve Arts rehearsal rooms, the films had a number of different challenges and a very tight shooting schedule.
Despite all this the films were completed on time and on budget.
Utilising practices we used to make the 'Journey To The Centre Of The Brain' promo, we again set up our portable green screen to add some visual effects into the films.
The miniature character under the Christmas tree developed during rehearsals with the actors. Drawing on our experience with the promo we were quickly able to work out how we would adapt the shooting schedule to realise this additional shot.
One of the scripts 'Balloon Debate' had the four main characters stranded in a hot air balloon as it falls to the ground. They realise they must lose some weight from the balloon in order to halt its decent. The debate centres on which of the four characters (areas of the brain) they could do without, Hippocampus, Neo Cortex, Amygdala or Temporal Lobe. The characters decide that Temporal Lobe (emotional brain) is the least useful and so they throw him out. He then catches hold of a trailing rope and is suspended there until the remaining characters realise that without the emotional brain they lose all concern for their predicament.
Quite a challenge to realise this script, not least the hot air balloon sailing around the countryside. The green screen was again put to good use, filming the actors in the balloon basket. Animated backgrounds were composited in post production and also used to replace certain action, such as Temporal Lobe hanging from the trailing rope.
We also flipped the basket 180 degrees so we could film both the front and back, which meant for a very carefully blocked action with the actors so as the reverse shots could be edited in successfully.
The Neurons script build on a similar script used in the promo and we developed the concept and expanded on the idea. Rather than multiplying the actor into three separate neurons as in the promo, this time we multiplied him into six neurons to help illustrate the network which transmits information around the brain. Some post production visual effects of the energy firing between the synapses completed what was a pretty straight forward shoot.
All the films are currently available to watch on the dedicated website, World inside Me.
Somewhere Only We Know is a 25 minute documentary on the work of John Howell the gardener of The Old Convent, East Grinstead. The Old Convent is an historic building built by the celebrated architect George Edmund Street, designer of the Royal Courts of Justice in the Strand in London. Set in 11 acres, with formal gardens, a woodland and wild flower meadow the grounds of The Old Convent have developed significantly over the past 20 years with John in charge. The film was shot over the course of a year to show the gardens as they changed during the seasons. As he approaches retirement, John discusses his time working on the Convent, how the gardens have developed and how the changing seasons affect his work.
Blackmagic 4k Production Camera
Blackmagic Pocket Camera
Canon EOS 7D
GoPro Hero 3 (attached to the DJI Phantom 2 remote quadcopter for aerial shots)
London Timelapse is a short timelapse film of Canary Wharf, the river Thames and the City of London. Sequences include a day to night 'moon-rise' of canary Wharf, dawn breaking over the City of London and an impromptu shot of fireworks over the Olympic Stadium. The film was made as a personal project to take advantage of the location used to film the David Simon music video below. Some of the timelapse in this film was then used in the music video itself.
All timelapse was conformed using Adobe After Effects CS5.5. Canary Wharf day/night and dawn breaking over the city was shot using Av mode in .jpg format, mainly to get as much as possible on the 16gb memory cards and allowing the camera to adjust the aperture automatically during the changing light. The film also uses some slow motion (50fps) sequences which contrast nicely with the timelapse sections.
Tilt-shift effect was applied in After Effects.
Canon EOS 7D
Journey To The Centre Of The Brain is a promotional film made for MakeBelieve Arts, a Theatre in Education company based in Deptford, London. The film was made to support an application to The Wellcome Trust to fund three ambitious Theatre in Education projects for 2015. We're delighted to say that the application was successful and The Wellcome Trust have given the funding green light for the tours and web films for 2016.
The purpose of The World Inside Me was to demonstrate how film can be used alongside theatre when helping children understand quite complex neurological processes, such as demonstrating how neurons work in creating memories. The script offered various challenges, such as transporting an actor into various locations (including inside the brain). Multiplying an actor to interact with himself, how blinking works and compositing a giant toy dinosaur into the location.
Overall a technically challenging project, on a very limited budget and shot within a single day.
Key Equipment Used:
Canon EOS 7D
Portable Green Screen
To successfully (and cost effectively) make this film we set up our own portable green screen at the location, in order to realise the 12 VFX shots needed within the film, including:-
Compositing an actor into multiple locations: From the rehearsal room main location to an exterior road, into a white space void and finally into the brain itself.
Multiplying actor: Multiplying one of the actors within the location space to represent neurons inside the brain as they establish a network to transmit information.
Changing backgrounds: Although one of the 'invisible' shots in the film some sequences needed to be shot against the green screen in order to replace with a neutral or black background.
Zoom effect and blinking: The script required an explanation of how the brain works when blinking. So this shot included a zoom effect, through the eye and inside the head of the actor. His point of view then demonstrated how we perceive the world when blinking.
The giant dinosaur: This shot required shrinking two actors in the rehearsal room location and compositing in a plastic toy dinosaur.
Neurons transmitting: A close up shot of neurons firing between fingertips, representing the synapses formed when information is processed within the brain.
Let Us Down is a track taken from Artic Melvin's fifth album, "Fake Colour". Shot in a wonderful, isolated (and ancient) woodland in West Hoathly the challenge lay in cloning the artist so that he could sing different parts of the song, playing along with an acoustic and electric guitar, plus moving him in and out of frame, exchanging the guitar and switching positions.
All effects were composited in After Effects and works seamlessly in this terrific location.
Canon EOS 7D
The VFX breakdown can be viewed via the link to the left. The cloning technique called for separate plates of the artist. Three shots were used, left, right and an empty plate of the background. Shots were then composited together using masks, exposure was balanced and a final grade applied.
Planning was an essential part of this process and below are links to the storyboard/previz comparison and test footage.
This video is comparison between the storyboard/pre-viz and the finished video for Artic Melvin's 'Let Us Down' track.
The previz was made to help work out movement and timings for the artist so that he could be cloned in the final video. Timing was especially critical during the section where he exchanges the acoustic guitar with himself.
This is a short test at the proposed location. The purpose was to look at the location, block out the movement and experiment with the cloning technique required for the video. One issue that presented itself in this test was that we needed to make sure the artist was filmed on the exact same plane to the camera, when shooting each separate VFX plate, otherwise the perspective made him look like a Hobbit! This forced perspective was just the technique used in the Lord of the Rings/Hobbit movies to create this illusion. In this test you can see it without us even trying.
It also happened to be a lovely still and misty morning which added to the Middle Earth feel.
Come Down is a track from up and coming artist, David Simon's latest album, "Collision". The concept behind this video was to play with time by having David sing in real time whilst everything around his existed in slow motion. The video was shot in the dockland area of London with Canary Wharf and the river Thames as a backdrop.
Timelapse was also used to good effect as an additional contrast to this time concept.
Canon EOS 7D