From January 1 to February 1, 2018, in the desert, 120 kilometres from the capital of Saudi Arabia, the city of Riyadh, King Abdulaziz Camel Festival takes place, which includes more than 20 events: competitions, contests, cultural events and educational initiatives. One of the most notable activities of the festival is the 360 dome projection, created by Russian studios Sila Sveta and Dobro.
The dome with a diameter of 19 meters, where the fulldome film “Stars Vision” is regularly shown in Arabic and English, is located on the territory of the festival. Spectators of the 10-minute projection become participants of a bright action: they go on a flight over space orbits and also learn about the structure of the universe and the history of astronomy in the Arabic world. Sila Sveta Studio is responsible for the development and implementation of technical setup, as well as for the overall project production, its implementation and provision of on-site work. Studio engineers have fully developed the dome interior space design, configured the video projection setup consisting of 10 Panasonic DZ870 projectors, Cranberry Media Server setup with automatic projection calibration for regular playback of content in 5K resolution, as well as the necessary layout diagrams for all the equipment. Within the framework of this project, Sila Sveta Studio expanded its expertise to the level of technical consulting: the engineering solutions developed became the basis for the work of all production companies participating in the project.
Aleksey Makrushin, Technical Director of the project, Sila Sveta: “One of the most stressful moments occurred at the stage of choosing the projection surface: finding conventional solutions on the local market is not an achievable task, so we had to go through a large number of analogues before we could give an opinion. Given the timing in which the project was implemented from scratch, we did not have time for experiments inside the studio. We were able to find a new projection material in a warehouse in Dubai, ship it to Saudi Arabia and go on an expedition for conducting tests. The final result was highly acceptable under internal standards, and we defined a new tool for further projects”.
Alesia Zhulinskaia, Producer, Sila Sveta: “In truth, when I was given a project in Saudi Arabia, I didn’t realise what a whole new world would open in my professional practice. From the outset of negotiation, the communication with the client was very difficult; talks were orientally subtle, we often had to take into account the cultural differentiation, yield and stand our ground at the same time. But, thanks to the fact that I was born in an Asian country, many work-related issues were familiar to me, the code of conduct was established by oriental parenting and t was much easier for me than for my colleagues. Preparations for the project were carried out in a dramatically tight timeline, on the eve of the New Year, and I certainly wouldn’t cope without our highly professional team, which dealt with each new task with enviable self-control in a race against the clock. Our project is still ongoing, but even now, every time after the show, the audience applauds enthusiastically, and a new crowd is gathering in front wanting to see, undoubtedly, one of the highlights of King Abdulaziz Camel Festival.
Dobro Studio developed content for the fulldome projection. The creative team created the project using virtual reality technology (VR). This made it possible to find and to perfect the techniques looking the most attractive and appealing in the dome space, thereby immersing the viewer into the endless expanses of our immense universe. And now each visitor of the Festival will be able to follow the sunrise and sunset, take a trip to the Moon, see a meteor shower, learn about the role of astronomy in the life of Arab civilisation.
Aleksey Dimkov, Creative Director, Dobro Studio: “The process of creating the project took three weeks. We were working in an uncharacteristic style for the first time. We liked that in “Stars Vision” our designers were guided not only by well-known images of planets, stars and so on but could also convey the atmosphere, colour and mood, characteristic of Arab countries, in abstract forms”.