Michael Litchfield, Creative Director from Doremus, came to us with an interesting assignment. He was in the process of creating a new interactive division within the agency that specializes in new marketing and social media strategies. Michael turned to First Person to transform his agency–approved script into an interesting piece of communication that would solidify his vision in the minds of the decision makers. Albeit rich with pertinent facts, the script was dry, full of insider tech speak, and there wasn’t much of a story to expand on. It was a challenge to find a strategy to turn his highly specific message into a visually compelling and entertaining story that also demonstrated the principles of the proposed new agency called Muse.
We tried idea after idea, reaching for visual concepts, metaphors and symbols to help convey the information — but nothing seemed to fit. Then one evening after a brainstorming session, our CEO Drew Fiero brought up a new motion capture technology company in the neighborhood that he was interested in working with. Suddenly, light bulbs started to go on. After a little discussion, we realized the best way to present the Muse script was to turn the Creative Director himself into an animated cartoon. Our senior 3D animator, Brandon, and Art Director, Carlos, immediately began working on a character that could be puppeted using the parameters of the proposed motion capture technology. Michael’s cartoon character was complete on Tuesday and by Wednesday we had a compelling proof of concept that showed what could be done.
Using a camera in the voice over booth, we recorded Michael reading the voice script. We then turned that video footage over to Mixamo, who applied their proprietary face recognition technology to transform Michael’s expression into data for the cartoons mouth and face animation. Next we went to Mixamo and using their 8-camera motion capture stage, crew, and talent recorded all the actions that the animated character performs based on our storyboards.
Applying technical expertise, artistry, and good ol’ fashion elbow grease, the talented team of animators and designers at First Person came through with a stylized animated 3D spokesperson that is personable, visually interesting, and incredibly fun to watch.