Visual effects for a four-part drama serial based on the novel by Thomas Hardy.

Post house: Ascent 142

Client: BBC Drama

Brief: To offline, online, create audio and VFX for the BBC drama based on Thomas Hardy's famous novel.

How was it done: Much of the four-part drama was recorded day for night, which saved money on the production but left a great deal of work to be done in post. Many day scenes were graded by colourist Trevor Brown to give the appearance of night, and the audio team lead by dubbing mixer Alan Sallabank hremoved the sounds of daytime birds.

Many of the summer shots were desaturated in the grade to give the appearance of winter and during the online a number of shots had to be recreated to fit with the period, time of year and general look of the production. For example, blue sky was replaced by rolling clouds, telegraph poles burglar alarms and plane trails were removed from the scenery, and several scenes were enhanced using CGI.

The audio team, who were involved with the production team from the outset had to recreate much of the sound recorded on set. During a scene that sees Tess fall asleep on her horse-pulled cart the team removed the sound of the engine (a vehicle had towed the cart) and replaced it with the sound of horses' hooves. Sallabank said: "The director was looking for a sound that resembled a feature film, and was quite experimental in many ways. Very few TV dramas are recorded with 5.1 so this in itself was innovative."

Watch it: Sundays on BBC1 at 9pm.