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IKEA Fascinatingly Shows What Goes Into Its Plant ‘Meatballs’ In Artful CGI Film
By Mikelle Leow, 03 Aug 2020
Video screenshot via Studio Taktil
Despite being the master of flatpack furniture, IKEA has been going all out in the plant-based food invention scene, and has not only developed an option for its famous hotdogs and soft-serve ice cream, but also its culinary piece de resistance, meatballs. While these food items are iconic and are great incentives to stop by for new storage units, the greatest draw to the vegan versions is that they don’t pretend to be the originals.
IKEA’s plant ball, the HUVUDROLL, is definitely a thing of curiosity, so to reveal what goes into it and how it is prepared, the Swedish furniture giant enlisted Stockholm-based 3D designer duo Studio Taktil to break down the plant ball in microscopic detail using CGI. The studio—made up of Elias Klingén and Gustav Larsson—was previously commissioned by IKEA to create exhibition visuals for its museum in Älmhult, and the impressed home solutions company decided to reach out again, the duo told It’s Nice That.
Taktil endeavored to portray the plant ball process “from ingredient to finished plant ball in an eye-catching way.”
Unsurprisingly, this was no easy feat, and the menu item’s plant-based makeup didn’t make the challenge of visualizing food through CG any easier. Klingén related that the actual production process of the plant ball from a “brown paste” of ingredients didn’t look pretty “and we knew we had to make something more tasty looking than that.”
The puree was thus revitalized magically by having its individual ingredients depicted in slow motion and multi textures. Suddenly, the scientifically-engineered plant food is more art than arghhh.
The duo also drew inspiration from the art style and lighting of Rembrandt’s still lifes, and later washed the film with warm tones to make the plant-based ball look more “inviting.”
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the studio had to move its “big clunky PCs home” to render the visuals at home. This posed even more problems that resulted in some “sleepless nights.”
“If you don’t know, the process of rendering 3D animations requires some serious hardware that produce a lot of heat and noise when used,” Klingén told the publication.
Luckily, the final incredible product reveals none of that struggle.
[via It’s Nice That, video and cover image via Studio Taktil]
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