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MOTION DESIGN HISTORY MINI-SERIES

Motion design history
mini-series

To start off our journey into the world of social media we wanted to have a look back on the past and honor those who created great motion design way before us. So here's our Motion Design History Mini Series.

http://www.studio-emmar.com/wp-content/uploads/IG_POST_SAULBASS_01B.mp4

#1 Saul Bass - Cowboy (1958)

Saul Bass is kown as the founding father of motion graphics. Though he certainly wasn't the first to design title sequences, he incorporated contemporary graphic design and added his personal style to transform this informative part of the movie into an exciting prologue. There are a lot of great examples of his work like and its well worth to watch and study pieces like "the man with the golden arm", "anatomy of a murder" and "oceans eleven" just to name a few. This piece is not as well known as others, but we like the playfullness and naivity of it.

watch here:
https://youtu.be/UgqHf5HTFDg?list=PLRvO-XFZ2nu6H2SDOuwMtXnAw6nZ48Vj_&t=14

http://www.emmar.info/wp-content/uploads/IG_POST_MAURICEBINDER_01.mp4

#2 Maurice Binder - Dr. No (1962)

MauriceBender is famous for his work on 14 (!!!) James Bond title sequence s including the first one, Dr. No . He invented the iconic gun barrel opening sequence that was shot with a pinhole camera so the gun barrel and the actor were both in focus. Binder is also known for women dancing, jumping or shooting weapons and also are trademarks of the James Bond films.

watch here:
https://youtu.be/oTo3YtPxG5k?t=4

http://www.emmar.info/wp-content/uploads/IG_POST_PABLOFERRO_01.mp4

#3 Pablo Ferro - The Thomas Crown Affair (1968)

Pablo Ferro was a graphic designer and film titles designer from cuba. He is known for his work on Dr. Strangelove, Bullitt, The Addams family, and Men In Black. He even worked with the Grandmaster himself Saul Bass on the titles of Hitchcock's Psycho! His work for this Steve Mcqueen movie incorporates the graphic design style of that era and uses motion and sequence of the images to add a little fun…

watch here:
https://youtu.be/Pt0Y_vdxE_g?t=5

http://www.emmar.info/wp-content/uploads/IG_POST_KYLECOOPER_01.mp4

#4 Kyle Cooper - The Island of Dr. Moreau (1996)

Kyle Cooper is know by most for his genius and breathtaking design for Se7en back in 1995. This is a lesser known piece that i stumbled upon in '97 just after i started out working as a motion designer. i admired the typographic work of David Carson and went to Drum & Bass parties at night so to me seeing this piece felt like i found the holy grail! Check out Cooper's company Prologue Films, They still rule the title design game.

watch here:
https://vimeo.com/159291269

http://www.emmar.info/wp-content/uploads/IG_POST_SIMONCLOWES_01.mp4

#5 Simon Clowes - X Men: First Class (2011)

Simon Clowes is a british designer and director living in LA where he worked for Kyle Cooper's studio Prologue Films. He did a lot of amazing title sequences including “Elementary”, “Aquaman” and “Power Rangers”. Most of his work is more dimensional and highly detailed 3D imagery, but this piece is more graphic based, a clear reference to the forefathers of motion design, almost like the little grandson of Maurice Binder’s Dr. No .

watch here:
https://youtu.be/UsGo5TBQfa4?list=PLRvO-XFZ2nu6ymBJQoecTZt22HK0JYgoL&t=5

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THE MOTION DESIGN MANUAL

10 ingredients for your killer MOTION DESIGN production

Our guide to the most important components of an effective and successful motion design project. 

Videos and especially motion design pieces are a powerful tool for communication and marketing. But creating an appealing and effective motion design project requires a lot of planning. The creatives’ task is to coordinate and orchestrate all the design elements so they align and support each other and create a powerful communication for the clients brand. So here's our manual for motion design, a guide to the ingredients of an effective motion design project.

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This guide is for clients and creatives that want to use the power of motion design for their corporate and brand communications.  

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WHATS YOUR DAILY RATE?
EMMAR_NOTES_VALUE_01

Time is money. Time is valuable.

This applies especially in the business context. So the most common practice to calculate the value of a design project is to take the hours spent to create the work multiplied by the hourly/ daily rate that the client and the designer agreed upon. But when the designer is able to deliver the solution faster, he’ll not be able to charge what he calculated and when a project takes longer, without the client's fault, they have to pay more for the same result? - That doesn’t make sense...

THE COMMON PRACTICE

The client is pursuing a certain goal and so they don’t care about the hours worked. They care about price. Hours are just a way to understand the price the project has for their company. Hourly billing is an accounting method resulted from industrial ages. It was never meant as a practice for setting prices for creative services. Basically, it’s not even a pricing method, it’s a billing method. But the problem is even more profound: The client and the designer have completely different goals for the project.

The client wants to finish the work as quickly as possible to minimize the expenses.

The designer wants to take time more for quality of concept and design on each project.

THE NEW PERSPECTIVE

So we have to change perspective on time and value in creative services and establish a new practice for setting a price for design projects.

The client wants to invest in the right team that will help them reach their business goals, minimize risk, and deliver the most value.

The designer wants to deliver the most value to the client by focusing on achieving their goals and delivering the right solution. 

So now the client isn't paying for time, they're paying for solutions. And the perception of a design service shifts from an expense to an investment. Customer and designer are much more aligned to achieving success and delivering value. This allows them to have these most important conversations about what the client wants to achieve, what defines success in this project and what is the solution worth to them.

THE BENEFITS

There are no hidden costs. The client knows the total price up front, leaving no room for argument about additional costs at the end of a project. It shows commitment from the client that they’re willing to invest in the designer, and from the designer to provide a solution that leads the client to their goal and adds value for their company. There's less admin, no more logging your hours, no more feeling rushed and stressed about completing work without going over budget. Focus on getting good work done rather than how long it takes. The designer is rewarded for efficiency, it encourages them to be more wise, efficient and focused. The client is not penalized for slowness or misjudgments, this builds trusting relationships. The entire focus is on value, not time. Obviously, you want to meet deadlines, but what matters the most is providing the client with the best solution to achieve their goal and creating value with a professional approach.

THE CHANGE

We will partner in our client’s success, meaning that this is a change of mindset for both us and our clients on how things are done.

We start by exploring our clients' ideal future state. We mainly focus on what goals they have, where they want to be and how important or prioritized these goals are. And is there a valid reason they are coming to us, and us specifically. Then we focus on what the success of the project looks like, the metrics measuring the effectiveness of the project, what it would look like if the project fails and what is at stake? The monetary value is determined by what value our client gets from the answers above. Through our process and consultation with them, we help the client to uncover their value of our solution. Values, at their core, are emotional, they are different for every person, they are personal. This fundamentally changes pricing because what we provide, even if it’s the same exact thing is valued differently by each person or organization. 

So when we get asked: "What's your daily rate?", we ask back:  “How much is it worth to you to reach your goal?”

Learn more about our 5 Step Production Process in our NOTES-Section.

OUR PRODUCTION PROCESS

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THE CREATIVE BRIEF (PLUS FREE TEMPLATE)

The creative brief is the foundation of any creative project.

It outlines objectives, provides all relevant information for the team and all stakeholders, keeps everyone on the same page, and acts as an anchor during every stage of the creative process. Whether you’re gathering informations for an external team or working on your own teams' project, being able to craft an effective brief will have a huge effect on your project right from the start.

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THE PROJECT WORKSHEET TEMPLATE

Over the years we developed a set of questions we ask our clients before we start a project. From this set of questions we built our PROJECT WORKSHEET, that we use whenever we talk about a new project. Learn more about our 5 STEP PRODUCTION PROCESS. Every project is different so not all questions may apply in every case. We consider this more as a framework or a guide that leads us through the initial conversations with our clients and partners on an upcoming project. Sometimes we give this to our clients in advance, so they can fill in the blanks and discuss some issues with their stakeholders before we even start to talk about the project. We hope the template is helpful for you. We'd like to hear about how our project worksheet works for you. Let us know, write an email.

But before start writing your creative brief, here's a few things to consider and keep in mind to make it comprehensive and effective. 

1. Start at square one

You may have emailed, held meetings and had good conversations about the project, and yet they are not your starting point. Include everything a person would need to know if they never heared about the project before. Your creative brief influences your brainstorm, so it must include both small and big picture issues. The more comprehensive the brief, the better-prepared everyone will be.

2. Define the problem and the goal

The most important piece of information is the problem and the end-goal. It's about the core challenges you’re trying to solve, it is NOT to explain how to create the solution. The whole creative process will be driven by your primary objectives, so it is critical everyone is clear on what those are.

3. Only include what’s necessary

The creative brief has to point out the most relevant information. Try to reduce the volume and complexity of key information. Use clear hierarchy within your text, provide context only when it’s helpful.

4. Use clear language

Avoid acronyms, industry buzzwords, jargon or company slang. If a particular term is important, explain it in plain language. Don’t leave room for interpretation and make sure that everyone understands possibly confusing content before you move on.

5. Get approval

Get all stakeholder to sign-off on your brief. Avoid having to make changes during production because of misinformation, information gaps, inconsistent messaging, or other issues in the brief. So make sure your brief is water-proof and in line with the decision-makers involved.

6. Check back with your brief

It’s easy to get overly excited during the creative process and you could lose focus of your original core objectives. Check back with your creative brief at every stage of the creative process. This will keep everyone on track and excited through all production phases.

Download our free Project Worksheet Template PDF

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VIDEO MARKETING TRENDS FOR 2019

THIS IS OUR 4 FAVOURITE VIDEO TRENDS FOR 2019.

Video is still the #1 type of content consumers say. Studies state that over 90% of people discover new brands and products on YouTube. And over 50% of shoppers say they decide on a specific brand or product to buy based on online videos.

 

As more brands and businesses realize this, they’ll be incorporating even more video into their marketing throughout all stages of the customer journey. Video drives awareness, with interesting, educational, inspiring, and entertaining content, made to capture the clients attention and build the brand image. 

1. social media and ad campaigns

With video content you can reach your target audiences on social media platforms like facebook and instagram. And video isn’t only about awareness. Though people might not watch a video with the intention of buying, they’re open to discovery.Many brands showcase their expertise and answer common questions or give reasons for undecided customers. Close the deal with a video that incorporates a call to action to purchase. Plus: on social media you can reach your target audience without spending big budgets.

2. Video marketing for B2B brands

Until now, video has been largely used by brands and businesses that are selling to consumers. But there’s a huge opportunity for B2B businesses to reach new potential clients with videos. According to LinkedIn, video content is shared 20 times more than other content formats in the LinkedIn feed. And that’s not all. LinkedIn video ads are generating view rates close to 50%

3. Videos as an educational tool

People watch online videos to learn new skills, improve themselves or pursue their passions. That's why educational videos are on the rise as an important tool for companies. As people watch videos to learn, they’re open to brands and products that help them reach their goals. Inspired by the potential of something new, this often sparks further research. And in the past years, online education (e-learning) using video exponentially increased. Educational videos are an informative and exciting way to clearly visualize the material they contain. Video training programs have been very effective in training and engaging many employees at a low cost. When content is relatable, it motivates people to go from watching to doing. High quality content makes learning or buying less intimidating and gives people the confidence they need to take action.

4. Video in email

Everyone reads emails, but a video can help to cut through the noise in your clients inbox. Studies suggest putting “Video” in your subject line leads to higher open rates. And video thumbnails will lead to more clicks than plain links! Plus, the use of videos adds some personality to your marketing emails. Newest addition to the trend: employees add a video to their signature, so it’s easy for clients to put faces and voices to the names.

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OUR 5 STEP PRODUCTION PROCESS

A GUIDE TO OUR 5 STEP MOTION DESIGN PRODUCTION PROCESS.

Not all projects are the same, so no production process is alike. That’s why, over the years, we developed a set of processes and use them for our production framework. It outlines every step along the way and works like a blueprint that can be adapted to almost every project. These tools help us and our clients to align on goals, ideas, timeframe and budget of the project and allow us to carefully plan and keep track of every step along the production process. Depending on the project we might skip or add one in between, but in general this is how we set up our production workflow.

1. The discovery

We love to start our projects with a workshop. It’s a great opportunity to get to know each other, exchange ideas and make the project truly collaborative. Together we take a look at the brief and any other relevant information from the client and discuss every detail. Sometimes clients have a script, a voiceover, some visuals or other references that we need to have a look at and talk about. Now we outline all the details and requirements of the project, i.e. the objectives and goals, the target audience, context and environment where the movie will be watched, the deadline and the budget, etc. To fully understand the clients needs and the purpose of the movie we like to take some extra time and ask more questions. We really like to identify the core function of the animation and approach the task from multiple angles. The results build the foundation of the project, so this step is critical for the success of the movie.

2. The concept

Now it’s time to digest all the information we gathered in our discovery. We take all requirements and restrictions into account and come up with a basic idea that we put in a few words. This can be in many forms like a draft description of the information displayed in the movie, an interpretation of the storyline or the style or visual language, or maybe a first draft of the voiceover. And we’ll talk about money asap. We like to have an open conversation with our clients about effort, price and budget so we can readjust the idea or project scope if we have to. And if that’s out of the way, we lay out a rough production timeline displaying all the key production phases, including feedback and approval dates, to get an idea of how long the production is going to take, and who is going to be involved.

3. The design

We start dreaming up the best possible style direction for the idea. First we look for inspiration and reference materials that matches the idea and concept and aligns with the intended look and feel of the project. If the client has an existing design or campaign we use this as a starting point and adapt and expand on that. During research and development, we explore styles and techniques we can use to visualize the idea and we validate feasability so we don’t promise what we can’t keep. These visual styles, together with other design elements like typography, grid, illustrations, etc. are merged into the style frames (or style scapes) that show a mix of the key design elements to get a better idea about what the final product will look and feel like.

4. The storyboard

A key element of the production process is the storyboard. It represents the building blocks of the animation, and gives an idea of how the script will match up with the visuals. All the scenes are mapped out to give an overview of how the animation will support and enhance the script. The storyboard is purely for narrative explanation, the style frames in the previous step are the visual direction. Creating the storyboard and sharing it with the client ensures that we’ve included all the main elements of the script and we’re all happy with the path we’re about to take together.  Another very helpful tool is the animatic, it is like a storyboard in motion. We sometimes supply a very simple voice-over or text over image played along with the storyboard frames, so we and the client can get an idea of how the timing will work for each scene. Or we put together everything we’ve got so far, draft camera movements and raw scene animations and create a fully timed-out rough film. Its purpose is to demonstrate timing, flow and pace alongside key movements and transitions.

5. The execution

The reason we devote a lot of time and attention to the previous steps is to ensure everything is in place before we dive deep into the animation process itself. We start preparing all the footage, modelling 3d objects, texturing and lighting the scenes and creating all the graphics and other elements for the animation. Then it’s finally time to set the main elements in motion, animate the environment and move the camera. We are bringing the story to life frame by frame and create those inspirational moments that turn the piece into a highly engaging visual experience. At certain dates scheduled in our production timeline for feedback and approval, we will provide work-in-progress-clips, low-res .mp4 files for the client to review, provide feedback or sign-off on our work The rendering process is where all the images for the movie are actually created. When there’s a lot of hi-res 3D included, this can be a very time and computing power consuming process. For most project requirements we render all frames in-house, for more challenging projects we work with 3rd party rendering services. When the final renderings are ready we compose all generated elements, add effects, fine-tune colors and the overall look and add final touches to the piece. Now we edit the music track, mix in the voice over and add sound effects where needed. Or we just drop in the final soundtrack from the recording studio. The final version is ready to be signed off by all key stakeholders. We'll generate all the different formats and resolutions of the final movie for all the different purposes, platforms and applications. Finally the approved film is ready to be shared with the world. Enjoy!

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