Three warriors. commercial

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Arni Thor Jonsson


BBDO Moscow

Radioactive Ukraine


VFX supervisor:
Evgeny Barulin

VFX producer:
Angela Petrosyan

Artem Golikov

3D departament:

Lead 3D animator:
Michail Bazjutkin

3D artists:
Evgeny Barulin
Artem Voinsky
Ilya Vostrov

2D departament:

Digital compositors:
Artem Golikov
Nikolay Malyshev

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Interview with Evgeny Barulin to CGTALK.RU

CGTALK.RU: It is known that “Ulitka” studio and you worked on the digital character in a commercial «Three bogatyrya». Could you tell about process of creation CG of a dragon? What difficulties were there? How and who worked on CG a project part? How many versions of a dragon have been created?

Evgeny: Absolutely right! " Ulitka" really worked on commercial «Three bogatyrya». We did post-production both for video with a goldfish, and for video with a dragon “Gorynych”. These two videos filmed simultaneously, and work with CG for them has been made even in the summer, but they have been started on broadcast with a wide interval on time. We have started to work on videos in the end of April. They were done in approximately within 3 months, but it taking into account film-making process, a stage, installation and other work which have been not connected on a straight line with CG.

About process of creation of dragon G (a dragon Dzhi – so we’ve nicknamed it. A dragon Dzhi and Troyes Shevale). In the beginning we have drawn a quantity of sketches of a dragon. At this stage drew almost all: who worked and even those who didn’t work in " Ulitka" . Then, after some editings brought by the client, we have combined the most successful pieces. So there was an initial drawing on which we did model further.
Simultaneously with drawing we worked over preparation for shootings. Has been made three-dimensional animatic. As we with directors have worked all demanded for carrying out of shootings so that then we could combine qualitatively a picture and our digital character. Shootings was in Ukraine near Kiev in memorial estate " Pirogovo" , within 4 days on two videos. As it isn’t strange, but we have kept within this term.

They call it windblower

Filming fire

Knight fights stick 

Before filming

On a stage I photographed reflecting sphere then to redeem position of light sources or to use photos as a structure for ambient occlusion. One more course which we have thought up are a swing which played a role of necks of a dragon Gorynych. They have added realism in play of actors as they had to make really efforts for resistance to movement of this swing. Directors guys even have torn off youngest of athletes from the earth.
It is a lot of time we have spent for animation. Interesting that animation of struggle of dragon G with “three bogatyrs” has occupied, as it is strange, not so long time, and here some plans with a dragon hanging over the earth were altered on 5-6 times. However, thanks to exclusively professional animator – Michail Bazhutkin, everything that we have conceived, it has turned out. I, for example, very much like last shot where the dragon hums – looks very lovely.

Ambient occlusion normal pass

Ambient occlusion pass

For shading a dragon I have prepared a certain mix from different technologies of rendering. There were some unsuccessful tests. As a result optimized ambient occlusion with use multishadow technology which has been developed by me earlier, has yielded good result and the most important thing – comprehensible render timings. In some scenes I didn’t use light sources at all, and used exclusively multishadow ambient occlusion. The traslucence effect – wings is thus considered even, for example, are appeared through, and bluish light if to look from below… Other question that after rigid color correction, which should be made to correspond to stylistics of the finished shooting picture these nuances aren’t so appreciable. Reflected lights from fire in a shot when the dragon is spat by a flame too are made by addition of a bright stain on an environment map.
By the way, color-correct was very long, the dragon didn’t want to be stuck in a picture. It is, by the way, a problem which we haven’t considered at first. As neither the director, nor the operator, and in general anybody, never saw the present dragon G about its color nobody remembered too. And on a final stage the picture has turned out very contrast especially in a green range though skin color of the person has turned out pleasant. At attempt to adjust a dragon under such stylistics it turned out almost black, as it is dark-green-brown. But as a result of several sleepless nights in the company with AfterEffects and several re-renderings, I finally put dragon into a picture.

Environment light only

Keylight added

Light inside mouth added

Yellow spot added to environment map

As to a flame – we have decided it not to model in 3D, but shoot the real one. In advance have seen those plans in which there will be fire, and then late at night (that the background was black) have arranged shooting with the fireworker from suitable foreshortenings. The general statistics such: for the Dragon we have spent for computer graphics about one and a half months of pure time. Ilya Vostrov was engaged in modeling. Animation: Michael Bazhutkin. Texturing and Rendering were made by: Artem Voinsky and me. In addition to it I was engaged in technical support, writing and debugging shaders, compositing, color correction… in general, all a little at a time. The Most part 2D works was made by Artem Golikov and he supervised film-making process and was the film editor on this project. Each shot rendered approximately 15-20 minutes on one processor. In total in a render-farm 8-10 processors worked.