Norwich Castle – Christmas 2016

2016 saw a Christmas projection mapping show like no other – with a dazzling creative light show bursting with imagination, drawing people to the city centre. Norwich BID Group commissioned Double Take Projections to create a head-turning projection mapping show transforming Norwich Castle into an incredible winter holiday experience. Our team created a contemporary festive adventure – powerful, graceful, artistic and absorbing.


Contemporary Festive Adventure

Client – Norwich BID
Location – Norwich Castle, Norfolk
Date – December 2016
Project Partners – Arro Lighting, All or Nothing Dance
Projector Spec – 1 x PT-RZ31K 31,000 Lumen Laser Projector

Linear Architectural Features

The Norwich BID Groups’ vision was to make Norwich the number one place in the East of England to visit at Christmas. They wanted to draw the public into the largest city in Norfolk to improve the night-time economy over the period. Luckily, they had arguably the best façade in the UK to project onto – with its perfect limestone texture, linear architectural features, accurate 4:3 ratio shape, lack of windows and its prominent situation in the city centre. We set out a brief taking full advantage of the geometry of the building.
The Double Take Projections team conducted a site visit undertaking an accurate architectural scan of the building. After compiling hundreds of images, we produced a layered Photoshop template allowing us to project the actual building texture accurately back onto its façade. We pulled together different storyboard ideas to create a unique art piece. The result was a one-off contemporary festive adventure, far removed from any traditional festive story. It was powerful, graceful, artistic and absorbing – the perfect way to showcase Norwich Castle.

Contemporary Festive Adventure

‘All or Nothing’, Edinburgh-based aerial dance artists, choreographed a dance piece for the show. The dancers were requested to move slowly and deliberately to create an enchanted, dreamlike effect. Our team undertook the creative process by making 3D scale, green screen models of the castle, which we used as a backdrop to film our footage. Using After Effects, we graded and removed the backgrounds of the greenscreen footage. The characters were overlaid onto the Norwich Castle façade. By creating separate layers in the file, we animated the characters to create the illusion that they were moving the walls. Background colour and ice texture were added behind the characters and texture of the wall, to create a magical effect.

The outdoor projection mapping show lasted 20 minutes – allowing the public to become totally immersed in the narrative of the story. The characters were projected to the full height of the castle, amazing passers-by and forcing them to double-take.

World Top 10 Projection Mapping Show 2016

We were delighted when our event was voted in the top 10 Projection Mapping shows in the world in 2016 on an online poll. The impact of the light show was reflected in the national coverage from the BBC, The Telegraph, The Guardian and more! The Projection Mapping show was installed for seven weeks and was viewed by thousands over the course of the period. Over 9000 people attended the switch-on event, with Ed Balls as the special guest.

“We were extremely pleased with the two Projection installations from Double Take. The Double Take team brought a great deal of technical knowledge as well as a creative spark that set our Christmas campaign apart from the rest. They asked the right probing questions and really listened to our answers to ensure that they were meeting our expectations.”
Martin Blackwell, Norwich Bid Operations Manager

And for another visual treat, original film projections set to music will be projected onto the Castle and City Hall, transforming these Norwich landmarks into the ultimate outdoor cinemas. It’s going to be an amazing evening, so don’t miss out – put the date in your diary today!
Norwich Citizen Magazine


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