As long term partners of disguise they have worked on projects such as the New Year's Eve Celebrations at Burj Khalifa, Eurovision Song Contest 2019 and most recently helped us develop the disguise booth and demo’s at ISE 2020. We spoke with Managing Director, Michael Giegerich on their most memorable moments and how they are utilising xR technologies in the current changing climate in live event production…
Who is bright! and how did you start?
bright! studios is a visual design and media technology studio. We basically unite animations, motion graphics as well as 3D, lighting and spatial design with technologies like disguise, tracking systems, drones, sensors, and more, to create immersive experiences for our customers. Our main focus is in the show and entertainment world but we also do a fair bit of corporate projects and trade shows. Our permanent team consists of project managers, AE / Cinema 4D Artists, Unreal and Notch Artists, as well as technology specialists.
How did you first discover disguise?
We first discovered disguise in 2009 when I was working as a lighting director on a fixed installation in Gurgaon, India. It was a musical theatre and the set had some LED backgrounds. Ash [Nehru, Founder and CiNO at disguise] was there to do some support for the servers that were being installed and so I got to know him and disguise. Ever since, I fell in love with the product and I got everyone else at bright! excited as well. We made the first big investment in disguise in 2014 when we invested in four 4x4pro’s and we haven’t looked back!
What are some of the most memorable projects you have worked on?
I think the most memorable ones are mostly large scale projects, as we get to work on them for quite a long time and get to know a lot of new and interesting people all over the globe, making a lot of memories that go down into sort of a ’hive mind’ of the whole team. Shared memories of good and bad experiences are what really brings you together as a team. To name a few I think, the Eurovision 2019 in Tel Aviv where we had the pleasure to use our brand new vx 4’s, the New Year's Eve celebrations at Burj Khalifa 2017 and 2018 where we were honoured to be the first ones to use SACOs impressive disguise driven LED facade; the memory of Yan’an, a fixed installation in China that we worked on for almost 1.5 years or Constellations, a drone show over our home town’s sky are definitely among the ones to mention.
What have been some of brights! biggest accomplishments as a business?
Besides large projects and building bright! as a business itself, our biggest accomplishment has always been mastering technologies at an early stage, experimenting with them and bringing them to life in real projects. So in a way, I think you can say that one of our biggest accomplishments is an attitude of continuous innovation that we anchored in our team's attitude.
During January you hosted a number of Digital Experience Days showcasing the capabilities of disguise’s xR technology, how do you see this technology shaping the future for the industry?
The whole industry is going to see a transformation process over the next few years or, due to recent developments maybe over the next months. Virtual environments will be playing a crucial role in this transformation. We believe strongly that emotionally linked experiences like concerts, theatre plays, performing arts or award ceremonies will still be a physical experience over the next years, product and brand communication measures, sales kickoffs and other commercial related events that we work on will become more and more virtual. disguise’s xR workflow in a combination with Unreal Engine, Notch and Stage Precision allows us to dive into this world and be an active part of this transformation.
Can you tell us about your new fixed xR stage and how bright! plan on utilising it over the coming months?
We have had the plan to build an xR stage for Q4 2020 but had to speed up this process due to recent developments. The stage, of course, is a great playground for us to explore new technologies and virtual environments. We developed a lot of test cases in the last weeks on how to link different technologies within the stage – using Optitrack for world alignments, Lidar sensors for touch applications going into Unreal and then to disguise, link trackers to virtual products, and use point clouds and skeleton detections out of depth cams for various purposes in the virtual world, or joining VR Technologies from HTC or Oculus with the xR stage.
These are all examples that focus on innovation and skill development. Of course, we want to use the setup for commercial projects too. Our plan is to host virtual product presentations or virtual conferences at our studio and stream or record them. We are targeting medium-sized enterprises that are looking for a way to communicate due to limited or cancelled fairs and conferences.
We have also made plans to connect with other xR stages in different places. This way we could do connected conferences and create digital experiences that go beyond one on one communication.