His name is Shudu. She is a black model working at high fashion photo shoots for Vogue, Elle and Cosmopolitan. She is great: she perfectly fulfills the vision of the creative director, she has perfectly worked out poses and facial expression. After the session, he returns to his folder in the computer's memory. Shudu does not really exist in the real world.
Shudu works at The Diigitals . This is the first modeling agency that does not use real models, but from 3D models. Seven models currently work at The Diigitals, including Galaxia, a character from another world.
The agency carries out photo sessions for top fashion magazines. This is the first attempt to replace models with realistic 3D models.
This is also the first attempt to replace fashion photographers with 3D artists.
Let's think about it: a fashion photo shoot generates huge costs. You have to rent space, pay the photographer and the model, take care of the equipment, the lighting division, make-up, stylist and creative director. On the set there is a staff of people who depend on the effect of the session. Added to this are logistics issues related to transport and organization of the plan.
Would not it be easier if such a session could be done without leaving the office? How much convenience would it be to be able to save makeup and styling for later, to change them without wasting time and without generating additional costs?
This was the goal chosen by the The Diigitals agency. It all began in 2018, when the artist Cameron-James Wilson accidentally created the character of Shudu and decided to use it as a digital model.
Cheaper, faster, more efficient. And surprisingly real.
What strikes the most is that the Diigitals models are able to look like people at the first glance. This is somehow the aftermath of the current state of the fashion photography market. Fashion sessions are retouched in a very strong way, so you can get the perfect complexion and make-up. This perfection makes the photographed models look unreal. Digital models of The Diigitals stand on a similar level of unreality.
Such photographs are not accompanied by the valley of eeriness , i.e. the discomfort caused by the observer with too much similarity to the real man, mixed up with the conviction that we are watching an artificial creation.
The Diigitals works at a similar level as the three-dimensional model of Leia and Tarkin imitated in new parts of Star Wars. We feel that "something is wrong", but we throw it at the too intensive processing of the real material.
Digital models are also a big responsibility. The creators have no restrictions. They can create new, unattainable standards of beauty that can affect young people's psyche. It is therefore a completely new level of responsibility.
If I was able to do it in the Ikea catalog, why should it not work in modeling?
It's no secret that creating a series of renderings is much cheaper than creating a series of photos. It has been used by Ikea since 2004. It was the first time that three-dimensional models of furniture were put on. Today, virtually all Ikea catalogs are photorealistic renderings. The interior render technique has reached such a level that it is virtually impossible to distinguish it from the actual photo.
We observe the same in other areas of advertising. Cars? Today, most automotive advertisements are based on renderings. Taking pictures is currently an artistic choice, comparable to recording films on tape instead of a digital recording.
The new technologies are no different in our industry. Just look at the websites of top electronics manufacturers. You will not find photos there. You can see renders everywhere.
Advertising photography has a vague future.
Technological progress in the 3D graphics segment is unlikely in recent years. The view of Beckham talking on one shot of advertising in nine languages is slowly surprising me, and this is just the beginning.
If the future in the ad, it's probably not the ISO and snapshot, and CGI and VFX.
Photo-Wednesday: if furniture, cars, smartphones and models are renders, why do we need a camera?