Category: Mograph Published on Sunday, 10 January 2010 Written by Adriene Hurst
Zspace played a vital role in the Nine Network rebrand this year, giving the company a
warm, familiar graphic treatment to welcome viewers back with the tag line ‘Welcome Home’.
|The initial brief was quite specific. “Nine wanted a look to embrace their 1980s and ‘90s branding style, big, glossy and welcoming,” said Producer Jackie Archer. “We designed about five different looks for the idents and various promo looks and layouts. This went through a lengthy process of refining back and forth with the client for several weeks until we reached a solution that they were happy with.”
Under direction of the Nine Network team and Creative Director Andrew Peace, zspace storyboarded and executed the entire concept, including various idents, presentation package designs for VizRT implementation and promo packages. The turn around was a tight four weeks.
“The New Nine look involves several 3D elements,” said Jackie. “Maya 3D was our main tool for modelling and animation, and mental ray for rendering. In After Effects, we composited the promo packages using 3D cameras, with nulls and type style guides to position any type and additional text, and also as image sequences depending on how the team at Nine will use them. The project was then delivered as After Effects files for the client to version internally. It is becoming more common to provide working files like these. The delivery was quite large with around 100 different layout variations for the promos. The hero idents were composited in Flint and After Effects.”
To prepare the designs for VizRT, zspace usually gives a styleframe or styleguide and VizRT rebuilds the scene from scratch, taking models and textures from Maya or 2D elements from Photoshop. Then they animate and light those objects, adding text fields for the placement of the relevant information. This information can be either entered manually into the VizRt or the system can be programmed to find it from a database such as a presentation playlist.
The main difference between broadcast design and other types of design is that there are constraints on image size and colours used for broadcast. “Furthermore, we have also noticed that more networks are now asking for After Effects files for delivery, in order to suit their in-house designers. This means that we have to keep other designers in mind who will be using the files, and make them ‘user friendly’ for those with no knowledge of the existing job. They need to be able to sit down and immediately start plugging away very easily,” Jackie said.