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KromA Gives Russian Singer Alsou a New Set of Wheels

Studio creates CG vehicle for video directed by Joseph Kahn (August 12, 2004)

Russian Singer Alsou

Russian Singer Alsou

KromA recently teamed with HSI director Joseph Kahn to create a beautiful and sophisticated music video for Russian diva Alsou, entitled Always On My Mind. The studios animators and compositors placed the singer behind the wheel of a photo-real, computer-animated sports car and created a series of sweeping camera moves that would have been impossible to execute in real life.

The follow-up to Before You Love Me, Alsous breakthrough English-language hit, Always On My Mind is the first video from her just released album Inspired on Universal. The video shows Alsou sitting inside a sleek, black coupe, performing the song as the car is showered by a soft summer rain.

KromAs CG version of the car is used in the videos long opening and closing shots with the camera moving around and through the vehicle in dramatic, fluid spirals. The opening shot begins with the camera gliding through the cars interior capturing images of such features as the window controls and ignition in extreme close-up.

?Joseph has developed a very refined technique for creating dramatic camera moves through the use of rotating green screens and CG, said KromA visual effects supervisor Bert Yukich. ?When the live elements and the CG are put together, it creates a spiraling effect that would have been difficult or impossible to duplicate using practical means.

Yukich attended the shoot on a special effects stage in Vancouver and took high resolution stills of the real car featured in the middle section of the video for use by the studios animators in creating a 3D duplicate. He also gathered camera data from green screen shots where Alsou was placed on a rotating rig designed to simulate the motion of the cars interior.

KromA animators created a fully detailed 3D model of the cars interior and exterior, while Yukich handled the compositing work, placing Alsou into the CG car and setting both into the limbo background environment. He used a number of techniques to integrate the elements and make the artificial car look as real as possible, including color correcting and adding film grain to the CG elements. He also applied lens flairs and other lighting effects to the metal surfaces of the car.

The opening sequence ends with a shot of Alsous finger touching the knob of the car radio. In that instance, the singers hand and the knob are real, while the rest of the radio is CG. ?It works well when we can tie the CG with a little piece of real footage, Yukich said.

For the rain effect from the end of the video, Yukich and visual effects artist Adam Fisher used a DV camera to shoot water droplets striking a piece of black Plexiglas. Yukich then mapped the water onto the body of the car, carefully adjusting the size, perspective and direction of the elements to simulate natural rainfall.

Amy Yukich was executive producer for KromA.

KromA is located at 9421 & 1/2 Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90035. For more information, call (310) 282-0370 or visit


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Related Keywords:KromA, Alsou, Joseph Kahn, HSI, animators, compositors, Bert Yukich, Adam Fisher, Amy Yukich,


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