Having won the rights to Formula 1 in 2012, Sky Sports launched The F1 Show. This magazine show reviews and previews races, and analyses tactics and technology. It became our latest major project for Sky Sports.
The F1 Show is broadcast from a studio equipped with a 3-sided LED screen. The show’s set designers, BK Projects, had produced a photomontage concept depicting a high tech automotive factory. We were brought on board to turn this into a fully worked out 3D environment.
Having studied automotive architectural references, we decided to include roadways and a circuit into the design. This would be difficult with a square grid, so we developed a hexagonal grid for the design. To help define the tracks, we added paired metal rails. These emphasised speed and movement, and pleasingly resembled the slots of a Scalextric track. These can be seen in the ceiling and on the track surfaces.
Throughout are cars from each F1 team, many rotating on turntables. For these, we used data direct from the F1 teams. For older F1 cars, where no stock models were available, we photographed toy versions at appropriate angles, and inserted in places of significance. The LED screen was bordered by printed lightbox artwork at the top and bottom, requiring careful alignment.
We created depth through design and through the use of forced perspective that allowed Sky to use an extended and dynamic crane shot for the show’s opening and closing sequences, without the perspective device being apparent.
Our animations proved a great success. We turned a photomontage concept into a working three dimensional space and infused it with architectural detail and believability.