What is CGI, computer generated imagery, and how does it change communication

The digital communication changes very rapidly and, alongside the more classic models now accepted everywhere, there are much more ambitious advertising campaigns that exploit the CGI (Computer Generated Imagery) e artificial intelligence.

A technological phenomenon that is having a great impact in the world of marketing and, despite a use that is still “limited” to the big names in the sector, we are talking about a context that is becoming more and more frequent, radically distorting the idea of ​​communication as we know it today.

What is CGI and how it works

CGI computer

and in recent years it has become increasingly common, especially in the field of advertising and marketing.

This technology essentially relies on incredible potential of generative artificial intelligence and brings into real life digital animated imagesvisible only through the filter of modern mobile technologies, such as smartphone, tablet and (albeit still limited) smart glass.

The task of CGI is to insert digital images into real life, eliciting reactions from people and engaging them with a brand or product

The operation of this system is (relatively) simple and via complex AI algorithmsallows people to insert virtual images into real lifegiving life to what we define as “Augmented reality” which, although often paradoxical and excessive (as the most “courageous” marketing would have it), manages to capture the public’s attention and, naturally, get people talking about it.

And this is precisely the fulcrum of this CGI: creating a something hypothetically concrete (or in any case perfectly integrated into reality) starting from a crazy and completely unrealistic idea, thus arriving at the paradox mentioned above made to shock and amaze the audience.

We’re not talking about witchcraft, it’s just technology and, given the assumptions and the extraordinary reactions of the public (especially on social media), there’s a good chance we’ll hear more and more about it in the future.

Where CGI is used

Special effects

As just said, Computer Generated Imagery recently met with the world of marketing and advertising, generating incredible worlds, imagined to amaze the spectators and bring them closer to a given brand or product.

Naturally the idea has its roots deeper and, at least at the beginning, referred to 3D graphics and the world of cinematic special effects which, especially in the big Hollywood blockbusters, have allowed increasingly ambitious directors to create incredible universes that until then could only be imagined.

CGI has its roots in the world of cinematographic special effects which make each film unique, leaving the viewer speechless

Let’s think about what a science fiction film would be without what we call “special effects”; let’s think about what a disaster movie would be like without actually being able to destroy (digitally, of course) a large city; let’s think of a documentary without the possibility of reconstructing, for example, a city from the past or a historic battle.

If we think about these three examples but without CGI it is possible to understand the scope of this technology which has allowed all of us, precisely, to no longer having to just imagine somethingbut to see it projected before our eyes, precisely as if it were real.

The marketing implications are the same, smaller for now, but still just as effective.

Certainly, as mentioned at the beginning, it is a technology with still relatively limited use because, given the management costs of the entire system, it is still not very accessible, especially to the smaller names on the market who for the moment have to settle for more classic advertising models or less impressive solutions than those we will see in the next paragraph.

Famous examples of CGI

CGI Marketing

In recent years we have witnessed the birth of viral advertisements that we can easily define as “memorable”; among these we cannot fail to mention that of Maybelline who brought her eyelashes and her mascara on board the London Underground, under the amazed gaze of people.

Naturally no one has installed such an apparatus on trains and stations, but the “noise” generated by the many videos shared on social media was truly impressive, with those who laughed at it and those who, instead, fell completely into the “trap”. ” by CGI.

The other campaign that was nothing short of legendary was the one engineered by Netflix for the presentation of the new season of Sex Education, the beloved (and controversial) series that appeared on the streaming platform.

In this case the use of CGI levered even more on provocation, with a gigantic hand unrolling an enormous condom on the Buenos Aires obelisk.

Legendary, ingenious, provocative are just some of the adjectives to define this advertising campaign, fully in line with the TV series and which, naturally, has generated a very strong debate on the web, also raising the question of the possible limits that advertising should have.

CGI can be considered as a visual art and as such can take liberties that more classic marketing cannot achieve

In this regard, it is interesting to reflect on one thing: can we talk about limits when something doesn’t really exist? We have just said that no one has put false eyelashes on the London Underground carriages and even less no one has put a condom on the famous Argentine obelisk, so why be indignant?

CGI can be imagined as a visual art and, as such, it can (and must) too shock and amazeeven in a negative way if necessary and then, of course, it must be talked about and create viral content.

Furthermore, in these forms, it represents one really harmless technology which, apart from a bit of fuss and a few laughs, does not cause harm to anyone and then, those who do not want to attend such shows can easily keep their mobile phone in their pocket and observe reality as usualwith your own eyes and without any filter.

To know more:

  • What is it and what is meant by digital advertising
  • What it is and what is meant by digital marketing

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