Agency Cramer-Krasselt devised a novel use for the Pepper’s ghost illusion as part of their campaign for the 2018 Porsche 911. In an upcoming issue of Fast Company magazine, they would ship a foldable prism as part of a tear out ad. A reader could then place the folded prism on top of their iPad after following a link, and be treated to a unique "holographic" view of the legacy of the 911.
Partnering with Bent Image labs, Henchmen created all animation and visual design elements to suit the medium and bring the idea to life.
Of course, we can't neglect our duty to create a classic 16x9 version for all you non-holographic viewers out there.
Thinking inside the frame
The biggest visual challenge was how to create an animation that looked as detailed and technical as possible without running off the edges, betraying the illusion. On a 16x9 screen, we have the luxury of creating an image all the way to the edge, but here, we wanted it to feel as if the image was floating. We focused on keeping content in the center, but when pushing in for closer views, relied on masking and glitching techniques to break up the image as it approached the edge.
We also wanted to bring in a little of that "imperfect technology magic" into the renders that make them feel like what we are used to seeing in a Hollywood hologram. Hopefully when real holograms show up, they won't be quite so glitchy.
The usable area of the screen was quite small, since 4 copies of the film would need to be placed within it to create reflections for each side of the prism. There was a delicate balance of visualizing fine details, while also maintaining enough contrast for it to be visible in the reflection.
The video was designed to be played back on a tablet, using a square image with an indicator in the center for prism placement. The indicator doubled as an "emitter" which helped sell the effect of this illusion once the prism was in place, making it feel that the image was being projected from the surface of the tablet.
Chase Massingill - creative direction, animation, design
Toros Kose - art direction and animation
Mike Senften - 3D lead
Krzysztof Pianko - additional 3D
Produced in partnership with Bent Image Labs