Well, it took some doing, but now it’s done. The new FME Studios’ Indianapolis video production studio has been operational for a few months now, but transforming it from an empty room to a massive green screen cyc wall was no simple task. This blog entry will give you some insight as to how we designed, constructed and completed the new green screen cyc wall at FME Studios in Indianapolis.
First and foremost, you need to decide how big you want your cyc to be. For us, it was imperative that we could fit large subjects on it like Indy Cars (we are in Indianapolis after all), heavy duty equipment/products and sizable groups of people. We leased an office that had a warehouse area in the back about 30’x 25′ x 16′ tall, this was plenty big for our needs at this location. In the warehouse however there was an odd recording booth/storage room, that had to go. I had a little too much fun demolishing it…
Once the area was cleared out and ready for construction, we gathered the necessary materials which consisted of: 1″ plywood, 1/8″ masonite, drywall and lumber. We began by cutting the plywood to the size we wanted our curve to be. We decided on 30″ high on the wall and 30″ out on the floor. We drew a curve on the pieces of plywood and cut them out using a jig saw. We installed them to the wall by screwing 1×1’s in the studs on the side of the curves. To reinforce the structure, we added 1×4’s and 2×4’s between them, strengthening the cyc wall curve.
Once the curves were installed, we used a nail gun to attach masonite to the curve. We sunk nails into the top across the wall, the plywood curves and the reinforcement beams between them. This creates the infinity wall look. The corner is by far the trickiest part of the whole process. I suggest having a carpenter assist in this area. We used a piece of fabric over the corner area and traced the shape when it was covering the open area. Then we cur the masonite in that same shape. It kind of resembled a shield.
After the masonite was installed and secured, we had a drywall expert come in to do a skim coat and joint compound job on the entire wall and edges. He came back to sand and re-apply a few times until it was seamless. The corner again proved tricky, but after a hefty amount of joint compound was applied and sanded, it looks pretty good.
Next was the paint. green screen paint can be very expensive, but it is worht the investment. It goes on smooth and keys out nicely every time.
Well, there you have it…a green screen cyc wall that can handle jobs big or small, cinematic or corporate.
Be on the look out for my next blog where I detail how we made our DIY custom lighting grid.