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Making an impact with forced perspective

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Kelly Ross digital

2021 seems to be the year for forced perspective 3D LED advertising. We’ve seen the concept explode on billboards and captivate crowds across the globe, including prime locations in New York, London and Seoul.

First spotted in Asia, using flagship 8K LED Samsung digital signage, DOOH creative agency d’strict created an 80m by 20m giant wave which was crowned the ‘world’s largest anamorphic illusion’.  When viewed from a certain angle, the rectangular screen in Seoul, South Korea, gives the impression that the massive wave has volume. The project took four months from start to finish, including three months of digital design work.  

The wave then made its way over to New York where the LED illusion appeared in Times Square showing it crashing into a blue whale on a 1,400 sqm 10mm LED screen and a waterfall that cascades down four vertical LED screens totalling 102.5m in height.

Image credit: Timeout

Recently joining the attention grabbing trend was LG with its back-to-school themed animation series on curved LED digital signage again overlooking New York’s iconic Times Square. Taking full advantage of the curved design, the 3D animation plays with the power of forced perspective with an explosion of crayons, scissors and school buses dancing around the screen. Slowing to a stop, the school supplies form together to spell out “LIFE’S GOOD”. This is the latest in LG's efforts to engage with viewers directly around seasons that people experience universally, despite the distance created by the new normal.

Image Credit: LG Newsroom

It’s not just the tech world that’s been taking advantage of the arrival of quasi-3D advertising. We recently saw fashion company Balenciaga team up with Fortnite in an attention-grabbing campaign at key locations across the world. The immersive billboards used deep screen technology which is seen as the future of digital-out-of-home (OOH) advertising.  The partnership, which Vogue described as ‘digital-to-physical’, allows players to purchase a collection of in-game garments along with limited edition physical garments. The digital clothes, which were influenced by Balenciaga's previous collections, were created for four in-game characters. Players of Fortnite, a battle royale video game developed by Epic Games using the Unreal Engine platform, are able to purchase the skins and accessories to customise playable in-game characters.



Image Credit: The Drum

A slightly different approach was taken by retailer Zara who commissioned a CGI animation by motion designer Shane Fu. A wave of colourful balls appear to swell around the windows at its New York store in a video shared on TikTok, mirroring the 3D billboard effect. But in reality, this hyper-realistic creation only existed online and fooled many viewers into rushing to the store to see it in real life.

To create the animation, Fu visited Zara's Soho location where he filmed a slow pan of the storefront. Using 3D software, he created the illusion of a three-dimensional room behind the windows filled with a swarm of rainbow-coloured balls. Fu posted the video on his Instagram while Zara shared it on TikTok.

Image Credit: Instagram