Filmworkers helped Chicago agency DDB recapture the thrills experienced by visitors to Chicago’s 1893 World’s Fair in a new ad campaign for The Field Museum. The campaign promotes the Museum’s current exhibit marking the 120th anniversary of the Fair and featuring artifacts from the landmark event. One spot shows a woman gazing at a mammoth dynamo as an electrical arc causes her hair to stand on end.
Filmworkers VFX Director Rob Churchill directed the spots. The woman seen in the foreground was a costumed actor. The background environment was constructed from historical still photographs and CGI elements. Churchill created the dynamo from historical photographs and added CGI parts to simulate motion. A much more old school technique was employed to make the woman’s hair stand on end. “We used the old rub-your-hair-with-a-balloon trick,” says Churchill.
Churchill says that it was fun see the project through from beginning to end and to recreate one of the most memorable chapters in Chicago’s history. “It was super fun,” he recalls. “We were all excited. During the last take, everyone was cheering because it was all going so well.”