At the start of the year I was in the early stages of planning a multi-country shoot.

Our client, a pan-Asian corporation, needed us to film in China, Hong Kong, Indonesia and Singapore. Logistically challenging but these are the sort of jobs we love to do. I had developed and pitched several ideas and we had agreed on what the film would look like. Then Covid-19 struck.

COVID-19 AND RESHAPING THE INDUSTRY

Like most industries the pandemic is reshaping film production and we are still to see the full extent of these changes. With borders closed, planes grounded and uncertainty over when, or even if, normal life might resume the outlook could be bleak for producers.

But as always, the solution to any challenge is to get creative. If you can’t film then what can you do? In this case we had pre-shot video, stills and there is always stock footage to use. But how do you make these disparate assets sit together? Well, that’s where you do need a top motion graphic artist (and luckily we have one in house like our Ryo Sanada).

GRAPHICS AND DEVELOPING A TREATMENT

We developed a cut and paste style that takes the best elements of our existing assets and fuses them with a graphic treatment which we came up with.

We deconstructed the businesses logo to use one element as a recurring visual motif. This has given us the ability to transition and combine elements that might not otherwise work in a traditional linear edit. Its bold, there is no denying that, but it also works and the client is fully on-board.

This approach has actually been liberating because there is now so little limiting what we can make. By setting our key constants of visual style, colour palette and motion, we can now play with the content and still stay true to the overall film.

Overcoming challenging situations has always been a key part of successful production. No creative process will ever be completely smooth but how you deal with and adapt to those challenges can define the end result. As an old director friend used to say to me ‘make your problem the solution’ I think they are still right.

This approach is already paying off with a second client now who is interested in exploring a similar approach to their comms work. They are an environmental NGO, so the content will be very different but the key creative ideas will remain the same.

So the future is definitely not looking bleak, just different.

If you also have a production in lockdown and would love to share you experiences, please get in touch hereTo find out more about Andy and the work he does, email him directly here and if you are interested in getting some graphics or animations feel free to speak to Ryo or Shaz here.