We were approached by Sasol who wanted a very specific and complicated VR Experience,
to sit as a passenger inside a race car as it speeds around a track.
The POV shot which we rigged at head-height in the passenger seat of Sasol’s BMW GTC to give the viewer a truly immersive and visually convincing experience of what a lap in this beast is really like, as you join Head of BMW M, Driving Experience & Motorsport at BMW Gennaro Bonafede on a exhilarating lap of this historic race track in 360 degrees. Zwartkops, is an international standard race track of 2.5km in length and the home of Sasol racing.
please see the youtube optimised experience below , or if you would like to view this and similar projects in a head mounted display please get in touch.
How we did it
This project came to us before the launch of professional 360 cameras we are so spoiled with today such as the Insta360 Titan or Kandao Obsidian which provide sync-locked footage, calibrated for stereo out-put that would be perfect for this piece today, but shooting a production like this pre- 2017 was a completely different set of challenges.
To get the best resolution possible while being mindful of the space limitations we decided the GoPro Omni would be the most pertinent camera rig available to us at the time, with 6 Cameras and GoPros proprietary stability & sync software it was the best camera choice, our bigger 3D printed rigs at the time were just too bulky and the DIY sync system we had developed for them was simply too complicated and cumbersome for the confined cockpit that was our set.
We also brought along our custom built automated dolly system, which allowed us to create completely stable and comfortable moving shots.
for the post production process we made use of some of GoPros calibrations tools we mainly used the legacy stitching software AutoPano Pro & Auto Pano Giga combined with SGO’s Mistika VR to get the best 4k stitches possible out,
We then created the motion graphic speedometer and gauge displays using Adobe’s After Effects, to bring the value of AR into the experience.
Once all of the visual parts were ready we then fired up Adobe Premiere Pro for the main 360 edit, in which we layed down our Pro-res equirectangular fine-stiches & proceeded to add all the vfx layers, Spatial audio masters, logos & cleanups that were done in Photoshop, which has surprisingly powerful 360 VR tools.
handling All of our spatial audio from capture to mix & master was Samkelo Mahlalela who has since gone on to start PixelWave Audio a specialised VR 360 audio company, we still make plenty of use of Sams spatial skills and he still a valued team-member to the VR Capture crew.
The final product is a combination of countless years of experience, multi-disciplined professionals and some incredibly innovative software, a piece we are still proud to display today, even if its not quite as sharp as the new Ads on the block.