Interviews

Large format projections: The challenge of content

Good communication between the event agency and the content producer, attention to timings, updating of software and hardware are some challenges highlighted by Ricardo Guerra, from Hello Movement.

What challenges do large-format projections bring today to those who produce their content?

There are many challenges to take into account when it comes to producing content for large-scale events.
Some challenges are more practical, such as the complexity of the screen to be used, the type of content to produce, or even production timings.
Other challenges are more in the creativity side. For example, how we are going to transmit a certain message, what type of graphics or animation may be the best for this or that brand, etc...
In my opinion, there has to be excellent communication between content producers and event agencies so that we can go as far as possible to meet expectations. Actually, it is the agency that best knows the end customer and its objectives.

Are customers sufficiently aware of timings involved, whenever there is a change in content, for example?

It much depends on the experience customers have in this type of productions. A client who has already produced content of this scale, who regularly visits the studio, or even who has some notions of content production is certainly a customer more sensitive to production timings.
It is necessary to have perfect notion that changes or refinements will always reflect in content, since their approval has many constraints and they are not always centralised in the same person. I think the solution is not to go against changes, but to create optimised work processes so that we can deal without major damage with last minute changes.

Can you give examples of what happens, what steps have to be taken, and how long does it take to make a simple change, such as a logo?

There are different degrees of change... ranging from changing font, colour, or an image to most dramatic changes, ranging from “nothing like this” even after all steps have been approved, to a “the screen will no longer have this configuration” because, for example, the event venue had to be changed for compelling reasons...
As I said, there are many people involved in the approval process, and there are also many “external” factors that can change the course of the event regardless of the amount of time that has already been spent and the amount of time that we still have available to operate these changes.
We have to face these changes as necessary, and organise work so that we get everything ready in time.

Has your equipment changed a lot to keep up with this need / trend of large format projections?

Equipment is always an effort element. Projections are getting bigger and bigger, renders are getting more demanding... No matter how good machines are, it is always possible to maximise their performance for a more beautiful result. We must always be aware of hardware and software updates that meet our needs and help us to offer the best response.

Is it possible to have a plan B? That is, how do you deal with or prevent against technical failures, since much of these events depend on projections?

An event is an ephemeral act, set in a period of time always shorter than desirable and rarely rehearsed at all. Usually it runs well and is a huge success for both the client and participants, but we can not forget the reality of being a technically very complex operation and that carries the risks of these possible technical failures.
Technical flaws that can be minimised with good suppliers and technical equipment, but the reality is that they can always occur.
One paradigm of this is redundancies and what we might call the “video project paradox”. It is a fact that a video projector can fail (rare in view of their current reliability, but a possibility), but let’s imagine we ask the client: can we double the number of projectors to have a back-up projector for each one in use to safeguard a technical failure, knowing this safety measure entails more costs? The client replies: more costs? No, that’s not my problem, if I’m paying for a video projector, it has to work, that’s your problem.

What, in your perspective, is the added value of using this type of projection / content?

When a client invests in an event, he has two goals in mind: to surprise and to communicate. And these projections and content are nowadays the main tool for these purposes.
Content produced in large projections is used as support for brand presentations or speaker speeches, both with large audiences. This way it is possible to reinforce the message in a more dynamic and impactful way.
The scenographic aspect of content is also a great asset. Nowadays, it is possible to achieve a total transformation of a venue using video content and large projections, thus ensuring a much more envolving environment in which the audience breathes and lives the brand or the message to be transmitted in that event.

How do you measure the impact these solutions have on participants? Do you get any feedback?

Feedback is measured at different times. The first is felt at guest arrival. The impact upon entering the room is obvious.
It is always great to watch the audience looking at the screen in amazement, often looking around noticing the details. I like to call it the “WOW factor”, and it is one of my benchmarks in evaluating the content produced.
In social media we can perceive the impact of a given production or event by the amount of images, posts and comments shared.
Feedback from our customers is also very important and “easy to feel”. You see, however demanding a production is for all involved, whether content producers, event agencies, audiovisuals or even end customers, as soon as the event ends, you can feel the harmony and the energy of a job well done, and this is very enriching, being a unifying factor for all teams!!
Then there is a later feedback, when for some reason we end up talking about content that was produced months or even years ago. Usually it begins with an exclamation such: “Ah, you were the ones you did the...”, and a pleasant and rewarding conversation follows.

Tags: Projections, Content, Events

29-07-2019