Airbnb Aircover

2022

Airbnb’s new “Aircover” insurance has your backside (and money) covered while you enjoy your stay. We stepped in to help visualize memorable moments through a miniature, architectural dreamland built entirely by hand while a cast of composited CG characters revel in the joys of a stress-free vacation. Ahhh, the thought alone gives us itchy feet.

New Dog, Old Tricks

The stylized, letter-shaped houses—inspired by actual exotic Airbnb stays— were all constructed by hand.

After completing the tactile build and surrounding environment, we mixed in CG characters to give each location a habitable, lived-in feel.

A couple of our all-time favorite jobs (Share Your Gifts and Tinder) helped set the parameters for the look, albeit with a new magical twist.

Aircover: Treehouse

Dainty in the Details

Each aspect of our utopic Airbnb dreamland went through a scrupulous design process. The houses, the interiors, the characters, the changing landscapes, and the transitions all had to be unique and identifiable even at a miniature scale.

House Special, our partners and expert micro set builders, helped bring those practical little details to life. The Desert Home, for instance, features a watercolor painting of a golden retriever belonging to the CEO of Airbnb.

Aircover: Pool House

Little Folks with Familiar Tales

For each house, we created a little backstory to help bring our 3D characters to life.

A family skiing in the Alps, a multi-generation family meeting up in a Brooklyn brownstone, a couple relaxing in a tree house (the male partner doing a Zoom call wearing a shirt and tie with pink boxer shorts) in Oregon, a family enjoying a pool house in Bali, 60+ yr old friends celebrating a birthday in Joshua Tree, a couple and child coming back to their geodome after a hike in Chile, and a couple enjoying a sunset from a cottage in the South of France.

We wanted the viewer to feel like they went around the world in a day.

To achieve this, we carefully crafted the lighting to begin with a sunrise, following the sun’s journey through morning and afternoon, and ending with a sunset over an idyllic landscape.

The landscapes also needed to reflect the design of each home, but a problem quickly surfaced: the kerning (the space between the letters) of the “Aircover” logo was tight, meaning there was never enough negative space around each house for the viewer to fully enjoy the environment.

So we made two sets — one with a very wide kerning so we could beef up our landscapes and zoom tighter into the details, and another for the opening shot and end tag that compressed the homes and their surroundings from a more panoramic perspective.

Miniature Home Homies

The stars really aligned on this project. Airbnb gave us the space and creative latitude to develop our miniature world from the ground up, and House Special felt very much on home turf with us as we translated our designs into the building process.

Their flare for set construction and ability to quickly course correct with last-minute creative changes on a tight schedule was a dream come true.

We’d cop the cleaning fee for either of them any day—big love!

Credits

BUCK

Group Creative Director

Joe Mullen

Creative Director

Marcelo Garcia

Global Executive Producer

Nick Carmen

Executive Producer

Kirsten Collabolletta

Head of Production - Live Action

Trish Rigby

Senior Producer

Fernanda Garcia Lopez

Producer

Alex DeSanto

Fernanda Garcia Lopez

Production Coordinator

Christine Choi

Kyjahana Irizarry

Leeann Sands

Global Head of Design

Brian Won

Head of Design - LA

Kenesha Sneed

Steve Day

Art Directors

Jacob Myrick

Zack Williams

Concept Art

Arron Ingold

Conor Smith

Dan Muangprasert

Jack Usephot

Jong Lee

Joshua Harvey

Monica Grue

Sol Lee

Tuo Kan

Vanessa Cheung

Character Design

Amelia Chen

Grace Park

Gunnar Pettersson

Hanna No

Jacob Myrick

Jamiel Law

Production Design

Alex Kiesling

Freya Yeh

Heewon Kim

Joao Lavieri

Jose Flores

Kuu Chen

Kyle Strope

Mike Ellis

Tom Moore

Vicki Liu

Zack Williams

Storyboard

Shelby Chan

Global Head of 3D

Doug Wilkinson

Head of 3D - LA

Alex Dingfelder

VFX Supervisor

Marc Steinberg

3D Supervisors

Alex Dingfelder

Marc Steinberg

3D Lead

Kien Hoang

Rigging Supervisor

Ernesto Ruiz Velasco

Rigging

Ernesto Ruiz Velasco

Hernan Ares

Jing Huang

Jordan Levitt

Juan Carlos Barraza Mendoza

Modeling

Alex Liki

Chloe Tu

Eugene Goryachev

Fernando Ruiz

Hernan Ares

Irmak Semiz

Jing Huang

Kat Smith

Kien Hoang

Peter Sandeman

Look Development

Chloe Tu

Eugene Goryachev

Kien Hoang

Rui Huang

Tina Chao

Lighting TD

Jens Lindgren

Lighting

Chloe Tu

Kien Hoang

Lead Compositor

Sam Smith

Compositing

Chloe Tu

Chuong Vu

Dave Chen

Fiona Lu

Joshua Studebaker

Justin Wilcott

Kien Hoang

3D Animation Director

Alessandro Ceglia

3D Animation Lead

Tyler Lancaster

3D Animation

Alessandro Ceglia

Cesar Tafoya

Elizabeth Golan

Hillary McCarthy

John Fielding

Josh Baum

Peter DeSalvo

Teri Shellen

FX Artist

Carlos Moran Villanueva

R&D

Jens Lindgren

Global Head of 2D

Daniel Coutinho

Head of 2D - LA

Peter Kallstrom

2D Animation

Angelica Fernandez

Esteban Esquivo

Fabian Morison

Filipe Consoni

Lisa Kim

Peter Kallstrom

Rafael Araujo

Zackary Miller

Global Head of Post Production

Paal Rui

Colorist

Marc Steinberg

Editors

Billy Kostka

Dave Conte

Heather Bartholomae

Fabrication

Animation Production

HouseSpecial

Director

Gee Staughton

Creative Director

Kirk Kelley

Executive Producer

Lourri Hammack

Senior Producer

Karly Richter

DP

John Nolan

Technical Designer

Chris Herndon

Matt Cross

Spirit Birks

Graphics

Dominick Carachilo

Head of Sets Department

Chris Herndon

Fabrication Lead

Morgan Muta

Rachel Schmerge

Prop Fabricator

Anna Glanton

Arwen King

Greg Fosmire

Ilan Schraer

Joe Schmidt

Katie Mello

Kevin Shaw

Margaret Meyer

Max Shepard

Nina Lee

Suzanne Moulton

Yuna Cheong

Set Fabricator

Charles Daniels

Emily Neilson

Greg Fosmire

Sarah Wells-Lamont

Solomon Burbridge

Timothy Finlayson

Will Martin

Motion Control

John Livingston

Swing/ Electric/ Grip

Clay Connally

Russ Eaton

Wrangler

Charles Daniels

Set Dresser

Emily Neilson

Morgan Muta

BTS Videographer

Silas Bell

Production Liaison

Alix Iverson

Production Coordinator

Brooke Burgess

Sara Coleman

Production Assistant

Aaron McAdam

Christopher Reed

Megan Bina

Facilities Coordinator

John Averill

Media Tech Support

Josh Macy