Artisitic Image (AI) recent completed two campaigns for JWT/ Retail First, and its client Ford. The Atlanta-based animation, production, editorial, compositing house recently took the highly-acclaimed 'Ford Sync Universe’ campaign from concept through completion. The one-stop shop created, designed, animated and produced a sequence of powerful footage touting Ford’s Bluetooth technology, which syncs up an on-board radio with smart phones to provide the driver with a tool for hands-free phone, email and text communications.
“Our assignment was to effectively target Ford’s ground breaking feature to younger drivers,” says AI's designer, director, illustrator and co-founder, Ed Dye, “When we asked ourselves what appeals to this demographic, video games came to mind and provided us with the genesis for the campaign.”
To bring home the spot’s message, 'Sync Universe' incorporates complex animation of Fords driven by enthusiastic young drivers through a video game universe where deserted volcanic planets transition into sleek modern worlds.
Dye knew that Japanese-style anime art would provide the texture and depth needed to take the campaign to the next level, so he explored the medium, studying the works of Takashi Murakami, the acclaimed artist credited with elevating anime to the level of fine art.
To produce the spot, Dye employed a number of three-dimensional technologies. Maya was used to animate the cars, while ZBrush, an intuitive sculpting and painting application, enabled him to sculpt the drivers and create a road, which realistically cracks and releases molten lava. Shake and After Effects handled the compositing, which included 20 rendered layers and 20 more composite layers that integrated a diverse mix of visual effects and corrected colors.
Earlier this year AI was called upon to create Ford's Presidents’ Day campaign. The spots feature six new Ford vehicles in a celebratory way, without predictable presidential imagery. Dye developed a captivating concept that incorporated animated footage of fireworks that exploded, shooting off red, white and blue ribbons - creating a showcase for launching the six new Fords, which bursting out of fireworks in three layers. AI rendered each car in each layer one at a time and composited it all together
Creative Director, Kirk Sieder, says “Fireworks was originally designed to be a Presidents’ Day campaign for Baltimore and Washington Ford Dealers, but once other markets saw it, that all changed. Several other markets, including New England, ran Fireworks as well. It was a retail campaign, for sure, but it has a “cool” factor to it that makes it visually interesting and entertaining. I can say that's true for everything AI creates. They consistently find ways to propel our ideas to a higher level, infusing them with smart details and complex design that make for a rich and sophisticated animated world. And they stay on budget!”
Title: “Sync Universe” Category: National spot one :30, one :15
ADVERTISING AGENCY: JWT Retail First/Detroit - Producer: Michael Dunn, Copywriter: Michael Dunn, Art Director: Joel Becker. ANIMATION COMPANY: Artistic Image/Atlanta - Director of Animation/Designer: Ed Dye, Animator: Daniel Wiggins, 2nd Animator: Jenni Kim, Lighters: James Fetter, Lee Kordel,Compositor: Yesael Sumalave. EDITORIAL CO: Artistic Image/Atlanta - Editor: Ken Soons. MUSIC & AUDIO POST: Soapbox Studios – Composer & Mixer: Nikos Mavrommatis.
TITLE: ‘Ford Presidents’ Day’ TV Spots Campaign: 1:30 & 1 :15
AD AGENCY: JWT Retail First/Detroit - Producer: Michael Dunn, Art Director: Joel Becker, Copywriter: Michael Dunn. ANIMATION COMPANY: Artistic Image/Atlanta - Director of Animation/Designer: Ed Dye, Animator: Daniel Wiggins, 2nd Animator: Jenni Kim,Lighters: James Fetter, Lee Kordel, Compositor: Yesael Sumalave. EDITORIAL COMPANY: Artistic Image/Atlanta - Editor: Ken Soons. MUSIC COMPANY: Riot/Atlanta - Composer: Chris Basta
Maya, ZBrush, Shake, After Effects