You don’t have to have kids to appreciate the humor associated with this animated short from Studio Lovelock. “A is for Albert” is an animated alphabetical adventure about the highs and lows of parenting. Along with the short animated video, there is a corresponding website where each letter of the alphabet is broken out into its own animated section. Produced by Joe Lovelock this was a side project that took some time to complete while he was working on getting his studio off the ground. Built with simple shapes, a soft color pallet, and nice little soundtrack, the video is a breath of fresh air in a sea of negative soundbite, news blips, and uncertainty these days. Below the video is an excerpt from Lovelock on the project.
Like all side projects this has taken ten times as long as I thought it would, about three years to be more specific.
I put that down to the unforeseen issue of having to use all 26 letters in the alphabet, and secondly I’ve just been busy. It turns out the little man who inspired the whole thing is pretty demanding timewise, compounded by the fact that somehow that one little man became two. On top of that I’ve been trying to build a design agency (studiolovelock.com). It turns out that’s pretty time consuming too.
Truth be told I’m not entirely happy with it, but I’m proud of the fact that I’ve managed to finish it and can finally move on to something new. I’m also proud of the two little champions that inspired it. Their mum’s pretty awesome too.
Google introduced their 360 Spotlight Stories a little over a year ago and they have been gaining steady traction since. If you haven’t checked out the VR tech you can see all of the videos on YouTube here, and if you have a VR headset that is connected to the internet I suggest giving it a view that way as well. The films themselves are really well done with compelling stories and solid animation to match, and while this has the opportunity to be a huge marketing tool for any number of industries it really shines as an entertainment vehicle. Case in point the video below that has been nominated for an Oscar at this year’s Acadamy Awards. Yes, Google is in the running for an Oscar for the animated short “Pearl”. The five and a half minute animated short tells the story of a girl and her father as they travel the country in their car chasing dreams and bonding over
The five and a half minute animated short tells the story of a girl and her father as they travel the country in their car chasing dreams and bonding over song, life, and the open road. To get the full experience of the short film you need to actually pan around the environment. You can get the full impact of the story by simply watching, but the experience is far greater when you actually dive into what Google offers here, which is an immersive experience that extends the story.
Google has only released a handful of these short films, all of which are available on their YouTube channel. I think that is a testament to a couple of things. How long it takes to produce quality content, and how complex crafting this kind of immersive environment can be. I’m pretty excited to see how far this can be pushed, and I’m really looking forward to Google releasing a full development kit for this. The potential is huge on so many levels.
It’s a beautiful mid-winter afternoon in the midwest. The sun is shining and it is a surprising 60 degrees for the end of January. For the last week, everyone in America has been bombarded by the new president’s “Alternative Facts” and shifting misinformation. No, I’m not going to go on a political rant. I am however going to post this nice little piece of eye candy with a message that might make you stop and think. Produced by T
Produced by Territory Studio / ODD, Division and Unity is a black and white animated short narrated by Oli Whitworth. The message is a comment on how our digital age has shaped and influenced us, and a message of how we’re stronger together. It is also a message about how people bend the facts to meet their needs and attempt to influence those that now live by sound bites, and 120 characters as though they were absolute truths.
Oh and it’s quite lovely to look at, so if you don’t want to hear the message, turn the sound off and just look at the nice visuals.
Most people never realize just how much work goes into producing a TV commercial. For the most part what we see, if we are fast-forwarding over them, is the fifteen-second edit of the original sixty-second spot. They whiz by in a blip sandwiched between other ads that blend into a seamless stream of no one paying attention. But occasionally someone posts a video showing how things get done.
Have you ever wondered how they match the 3D animations to live action footage? Blend shots together? What the total production of a video looks like? The video below for Canal+ shows you. No it doesn’t go into any lengthy detailed VFX breakdown, but it does give you a pretty solid idea of what it took to produce the promotional spot titled “The Kitchen”.
I really like this video telling the story of how Deep Purple came to write their epic hit “Smoke on the Water”. Maybe it’s because it is one of the first songs I learned to play on the guitar. The video has a great look to it and the story is compelling enough to draw you in and keep you engaged until the end. What I don’t get is why the marketing team for Genesis cars thought this would be solid advertising for them. There is no connection between the band, the song, the story or the car. There isn’t even a car in the story, so who thought this was a good way to sell cars? At the end of the video there is the tag line “Inspired by Genesis”. Are they trying to say our cars are so great they are like a casino burning to the ground at the end of a Frank Zappa concert? It just seems like it is the wrong message. This kind of reminds me of Disney using Iggy Pop’s “Lust For Life” to advertise family cruises, or Lee Jeans using Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Senator’s Son” to sell jeans without actually listening to the lyrics in the songs.
Perhaps the marketing department was looking for a long shot and thought if enough people talk about the fact that this makes no sense we will actually move some automobiles. Maybe someone at Genesis is a huge Deep Purple fan. Great video though. Solid story, great animation, nice look from rom Great Big Story.
About a year ago Google launched a new line of video shorts for YouTube called Google Spotlight Stories, a specific immersive video platform with mobile users in mind. The video below can be panned through as the action takes place, but where this really shines is when you watch the video on an Android or iOS device in the native YouTube app.
Rain or Shine directed by Felix Massie is the latest in the series of shorts and is really quite impressive beyond the technology. The story and character development are superb drawing the viewer in and engaging with them as the explore the environment as the story plays out. The story is simple yet clever. The main character, Ella puts on a pair of magical sunglasses and travels through her London neighborhood creating chaos before learning how to use the glasses for good.
This really is a better experience on your phone, so if you have a chance watch it and the other Google Spotlight Stories there.
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Over the last year I have noticed an emerging visual trend that has started popping up in all sorts of videos, and will probably make it’s way to the rest of the creative world. It is a black and white, lo-fi, grainy, not quite 8-bit look. It reminds me of 1980’s video camera footage that has been mashed up with a sort of hand-drawn style. I say sort of, because like in the video below it is obviously digital. The lines and shapes have a hand-drawn quality to them, but they are to clean. Like the art brushes that come with Adobe illustrator. Then there is the background texture, in this case paper, but in a number of other videos I’ve seen it’s is fine digital noise. Fake signal noise that has been added to the clip to give it a dirty analog look. I’m curious how long it’ll be before this makes it’s way to mainstream advertising, at which point we can add it to the “jumped the shark” list like so many other trends of late. (sketchbook, stop motion, hyper color, 8-bit graphics and sound…)
By the way, this is quite hypnotic. Consider yourself warned.