Advertisers turn to CGI when filming is out of the question.
As coronavirus-related restrictions and social distancing rules continue around the world, in-person commercial filming has stopped.
Increasingly, advertisers are now turning to production companies with computer-generated imagery, visual effects, and animation capabilities to add the finishing touches to existing campaigns and—in some cases—start discussions about building entirely new ones from scratch.
Production companies have told Digiday that they have received increasing inquiries from advertisers and agencies about how they can switch from live action to CGI and animation.
“About half a dozen CMOs” asked Richard Robinson, managing director of marketing consultancy Xeim Advise, about companies with opportunities like the coronavirus crisis. Robinson said two CG companies also contacted him to remind him of their services over the past two weeks.
Faced with a whirlwind of sales and a looming recession, many advertisers have halted ongoing production and suspended marketing spending. Like many other businesses, CGI manufacturing companies had to adapt quickly to remote work, providing staff with the right, secure technology at home—and broadband bandwidth—and to handle the constant exchange of large graphics files.
Most of the current incoming inquiries are geared towards getting an idea of what might be possible in the coming months, if almost all live shoots and big gatherings are out of the question, production companies say. Most of these clients do not want to spend money in the short term.
“The biggest role we play for [ad clients] is advising, informing them of what’s possible, and being able to think of a different approach to solving a problem.” – Mike McGee, Chief Creative Officer, Framestore, visual effects studio which works. in films, television and commercials. “We’re getting more calls from new customers than ever before.”
CGI studios offer a wide range of options. Extensive projects exist, such as full CG campaigns with photorealistic characters, or the use of “deep fakes” technology to modernise archival footage. For commercials that depend on certain talents, some production companies and agencies have put forward the idea of sending a green screen to an actor’s home to film his lines himself, with the production company adding everything else later. And there is an option to switch to animation technology or stop-motion animation, which do not require a lot of people to assemble on set.
The number of options on offer can be overwhelming for clients who haven’t experimented with CGI or animation before. Manufacturing companies hold workshops to help customers understand what is possible and also try to balance budget and time expectations.
“With live action, let’s say it’s a $10,000 shoot. With animation, yes, you can do it for $10,000, but realistically it will be $100,000 – you will have to lower the quality of the animation or change their expectations to suit the budget they have,” said Toby Wheeler, co-founder of Covert, remotely. a production agency that offers VFX, motion design and animation for commercials. Costs can be reduced by filming a single scene, or by simply lowering expectations for graphic quality, according to production experts.
Wheeler said his agency’s workload is likely down about 20% from normal, but the type of work has changed a lot.
For many media and marketing companies that have cut costs in recent weeks, freelance budgets have often been the first to be cut. Typically, about 50% of freelancers are booked at any one time, but there is now “an overabundance of availability” across the entire freelance network, with only about 10-20% currently booked, Wheeler said. Covert is “very still hiring,” he said, and has hired another freelancer this week, with more coming next week. (Both Framestore and MPC have currently put recruitment on hold.)
Brave Bison, a social video company that produces its own shows as well as content for brands, is exploring the use of stop motion and 8-bit animation. In the meantime, filters available to everyone on apps like TikTok and Snapchat have come in handy.
“We can be more creative at home – it solved a lot of problems,” said Ben Sinden, managing director of publishing at Brave Bison. “If it had happened three years ago, things would have been different.”
Even for advertisers who are desperate to continue to navigate the current challenges and produce their ads without enough information about how the pandemic will unfold, it can be difficult to find a tone that will empathise with the viewer’s mood when it airs. .
“The Christmas scripts will start coming out by now,” said Jonathan Davis, managing director of Moving Picture Company, a visual effects and production studio. “No one knows what mood Christmas will be in this year.”
3 beautifully animated 3D TV commercials with special effects
In today’s films, 3D animation is a very common part. You pick any good movie that has at least 15 minutes of CGI. And for this you need a lot of 3D animators. In fact, computer graphics has become popular because it creates a virtual world created through fantasy. In this post, we have collected 3 inspirational animated commercials for you. They include motion graphics, 3D animation and special effects videos.
Sherwin Williams Safari – 3D Animation
The Sherwin-Williams Company is an American company located in Cleveland, Ohio that manufactures paints and coatings. The company is mainly engaged in the production, distribution and sale of paints, coatings, flooring and related products to professional, industrial, commercial and retail customers, mainly in the Americas and Europe. As of the end of 2020, Sherwin-Willams operated in over 120 countries.
In this video and in general in the entire line of the company, they show color pantones under the prism of the fact that they take colours from nature and do not invent anything. In this example, the video is called a safari, which immerses the browser in the world of Africa.
In the illustrations below, you can see how the concept of the video itself was drawn and thought out. These techniques are used in creating scripts for films or TV shows, as well as commercial advertisements. In sketches or a storyboard, they show what components the video consists of and reveal the whole concept and idea. From which side the camera will move, how many characters will be in the scene, etc.
The internationally recognised creative and post-production center Gravity has completed commercials for the Swiss Emmi Dairy Group. The creative work and post-production of these commercials was challenging in that they were based on the design and revival of typical Swiss forest animals, including marmots, squirrels, birds and butterflies in a forest environment. The forest animals were realistically designed in CGI but with added flair and incorporated into live footage that was filmed in a forest in Austria and underwent the same “processing” resulting in a dreamlike look and feel. The work in this case required the Gravity artists to fully understand the physical nature of the animals, be able to project the movements of the animal, and look with the care necessary to make it nearly believable.
Having looked at these examples of work, we cannot say that the shooting is outdated or not needed. It combines perfectly with computer graphics. Any modern film is now shot on a green background, using computer technology. In 2020, the demand for CGI began to increase, and continues to increase until now.