This past week in Las Vegas, NV thousands of trade show visitors gathered for the annual National Association of Broadcaster's Convention in Las Vegas, NV. While this show doesn't get the same type of news coverage that the Consumer Electronics Show in January it's still a pretty big event. For the Broadcast and Professional markets it's credited with generating 20 billion dollars in business. 2015 was the last year I worked on an NAB booth, it's interesting to see how many of the components I dealt with for so many years are still being used and adapted. From 1999 on each year the booth design evolved like some kind of regenerative organism. Certain limbs were removed and new ones sprouted. Some pieces lasted years, some only stood for the week of the show and never saw the light of day again.
My first year working on NAB was 2000 and my role was pretty minimal. I'd just really started to learn the rendering software the firm I was working at was using so I was mostly working on creating visualizations of the space, like these:
Since this blog is chronological at it's core I wanted to include the 2000 NAB booth but the real meat of the post is the 2001 booth. Most of the 2000 booth was comprised of components from previous years. Every few years the NAB booth underwent an overhaul. The cyclical nature of the process reset every couple of years and in between those resets the existing designs were built upon. The 2001 booth evolved over the next few years and won an award in 2003, but I'll get to that in another post. An request for proposal was issued for the 2001 booth creative. Below are some early space design studies and concepts I worked on in preparation for the RFP response:
Neither of the above sketches made it into the final RFP response. There was a lot of work that didn't make the final cut, below is a selection of spatial studies and concepts that didn't make the final cut.
The above white model shows some concept development of things that started to stick. One would become a staple of the Sony NAB booth for the next few years - the 10' high Sony logo. The other concept presented in the white model and taken further in the rendering below was the idea of this visible data-stream above the booth. In reality the entire booth is interconnected by miles of cables running underneath the carpet supporting live production and transmission needs. The concept presented below used LED tickers and monitors to visually represent the massive amount of data flowing through the booth.
Working with the principle designers this concept was further refined and represented in the rendering below. The serpentine structure that supported this content stream would run through the center of the booth connecting all the demonstration areas.
At this point in my career I was very quickly learning a new rendering software called Art*Lantis. This software allowed for real-time previewing of renderings and was great for working with lighting in 3D models. I'd also discovered it was capable of generating 3D fly-throughs and for this booth I worked on several fly-throughs. The first model represented the RFP pitch design concept and it is the most elaborate in terms of incorporating animation into the fly-through. I did this using Adobe Premier and editing multiple videos together. The quality on this isn't superb - remember this was 2000! I was also literally just learning how to animate a 3D model fly-through. My favorite part of this fly-through is when the camera stops on a monitor to watch a 3D fly-through of the booth - life imitating art imitating art...
The concept of the infinity loop in the floor plan came from the principal designers and this original fly-through featured a lot of existing components. Once the job was awarded the design was moved forward and new structures were developed to advance the design. I worked closely with the principals on this and the second fly-through below is from an interim stage in the process:
For this project one last fly-through was produced to get final sign-off and approval for production. The client wanted to add some music to this version, so this was not my choice is soundtrack. It was also added late so it doesn't really synch up with anything in the video. The final video still feature some interactivity but I also worked on several renderings to accompany the presentation. Below is the final video and some renderings:
I'm going to wrap up this post here, I have several dozen more renderings from the development of this exhibit but I know I have rendering fatigue just from going through them myself. I chose to skip a few smaller projects from 2000 to focus on this one because it aligned with the show dates. Next post I'll be back with some projects about butterflies because it's finally Spring!