The AV Awards 20th anniversary celebration just wouldn't have been complete without a birthday cake. But this culinary creation needed to have an innovative edge. Projection and video mapping specialists Motion Mapping suggested combining sugar craft by artist Angie Harris with technology to map a six foot cake complete with on-theme content – all powered by a Datapath Fx4 display processor.
Stuart Harris, creative director at Motion Mapping, took on the project, ensuring the projection mapping was aligned with AV Awards assets such as virtual brand ambassador 'Gizmo' and fonts.
The project needed to be worthy of the AV Awards 20th anniversary, where up to 1,400 industry professionals would see the technology in action, not to mention the countless 1000s who have viewed the videos online and via social media. With a virtual Pac-Man game running around the cake, plus other animations, Stuart relied on a variety of tools for the awards mapping, including Green Hippo Amba media servers, Epson 1755U 15k lumens projectors, ZBrush, Cinema4D, After Effects and Illustrator for content creation – all distributed via a Datapath Fx4 controller with HDMI output.
Audio Visual creativity, plus cake, are not a typical fit but Stuart and his team delivered a tasty solution. "The technical process consists of projection mapping on the front two faces and sugar craft modelling on the back tiers," says Stuart. "We 3D modelled a version of Gizmo using a 2D reference image and animated various components of Gizmo."
Once Angie Harris, Cake Artist had created a scaled and accurately sized cake which was fondant covered to precise measurements, sugar sculptures and edible decorations were designed. The next stage involved creating animations and video content to map on the cake faces and utilising media servers to align the cake with the animations and manage the Epson projectors. Finally, a detailed plan for the rigging and projector placements was produced to accurately map onto the cake.
"The size and physics involved in producing a cake such as this were always going to be a challenge purely from a scale perspective," says Stuart. "To achieve this, we ensured all measurements of the different parts fitted together perfectly in the early stages." The end result was a stunning centrepiece that caught the eye of all 1,400 attendees at the industry's premier awards ceremony."We can always rely on Datapath to perform the high workload needed for these creative projects," added Stuart.