Last week, Danny Cohen (the BBC director of TV) declared that the corporation would stop producing entertainment shows such as QI and Mock The Week with men-only panels. This brings a whole world of opportunities for women comedians, subject specialists and journalists.
During the same week Eléonore Pourriat’s ‘oppressed majority’, a feminist film depicting a world of inverted gender roles, went viral on YouTube and received almost 7 million hits in less than 2 weeks. It would seem that the issue of gender representation is at the forefront of the media conscience and it got us thinking about how we deal with these issues at Napoleon Creative.
Diversity of representation is really important to us when we are creating our videos. A good example of this the film we did for the Capgemini’s t-Police offering last year. To illustrate the product, which is used by forces in the States and across Europe, we created graphics based on photos of real police people in action.
After revising our original animation we realised that virtually no women were being represented, because there were so few women in the photo sources. So we replaced some male figures with female ones.
We also decided to give our existing women a more active and authoritative role, as you can see below, she makes the transition from being the passive listener to being the one giving the information.
This t-Police video is an example of how sometimes at NC we choose to represent the ideal through our work, rather than showing the often unequal reality. Hopefully Danny Cohen’s actions at the BBC and an increased interest in videos like ‘oppressed majority’ are good indicators that we are starting to shift towards this.
Tonight our most recent TV spot will be shown just after Coronation Street on ITV! We’ve been working with British Airways who have joined up with Visit California (VCA) to give a special offer on flights to sunny California. Doesn’t that sound appealing right now?!
We had a lot of fun working on this project. Using existing footage we created a 10 second spot to link with the 20 second VCA spot. With a new voice over and contrasting visuals, the challenge was to link them seamlessly. Extending the music was the first step. We then had the new voice over start over the end of the VCA spot. This wouldn’t always be appropriate, but the first line was actually the VCA tagline! Finally we graded the somewhat cloudy footage to give it more of a Sunny California style.
For us this advert proved that you don’t always have to spend £££’s on production to get a good result. Sometimes the content is right in front of you. You just have to find the best way to use it.
As a seasoned rail commuter, there’s rarely anything of note to catch my eye until I get to take in the views of London on my cycle through the city. But this morning was different, I was greeted by the 40m long x 3m high full motion digital screen brought to us by JCDecaux in Waterloo station. A description in their own words “The landscape LCD screen offers superior quality and clarity of text and colours, which allows a captive audience time to engage with your brand… offering increased depth of communication and engagement. Showcase content across the entire screen or split the screen into segments depending on your creative needs.”
The official launch is 10th February 2014, so for now we are treated to some lovely looping animations. I’m looking forward to next week to see how brands will take advantage of this new space, using this super-wide format.
Earlier in the year, we were approached by Habitat to animate the robot character who hosts their present choosing app. He’s not the friendly, cheerful sort of robot. In fact, he hates Christmas. Click here to visit the site where if you answer a few questions, the cranky robot will give you the perfect presents to offer them.
This was a really fun project, giving us scope to make Kris-bot a little evil!
On Tuesday I took a workshop on how to write a CV for the creative industries at part of the Gen Up course, run by TRC Media.
There were eight keen media graduates, all trying to find their first jobs in the industry. It’s the third time I’ve done the session, and the Gen Up classes are always a tough crowd, because they’re keen, smart and have such varied backgrounds! I had a cameraman, someone who wanted to go into development, someone who wanted to work on kids programming, someone who wanted to be a producer…
Now that you’ve commissioned your production company, you should start clarifying your ideas with them. We always start a commission with a meeting, preferably face to face. We ask you questions about the project like:
- What are you trying to communicate?
- Who are you trying to communicate to?
- What are the calls to action?
- How can you qualitatively and quantitatively define the project a success?
- Who is your audience?
- What are the essentials we need to communicate?
- What do they want to know?
- When is this to be delivered?
- Who will have sign off?
Once we’ve had this discussion, as a production company we know more about what you’re after and can better help you develop your message and script.
Then next part of your meeting should cover the creative, talking about what styles you like. We always come to a first meeting with visuals to get the ball rolling.
Also at this stage you should be providing your brand guidelines and art works etc. so that work done can stay within them.
With this meeting finished, we would be able to really start work on your project at full speed!