Fairy Fabric Softener

These 3 commercials, ‘Balloons’, ‘Label’ and ‘Bounce’ formed a short campaign for the new fabric softener. Each 10 second commercial was a combination of live action footage, model manipulation and traditional cell animation.

First the backplates were shot on 35mm film using a motion control rig. The yellow silky cloth, bottle label and white towels for each film were manipulated in camera with small rigs for the baby animation to fit into later. Once the takes had been transferred by telecine and graded, the selected shots were brought into Autodesk Discreet Flint for re timing, subtle warping where the rigs needed help, general cleaning up, rig removal and retouching. These clean shots were exported as file sequences in ‘doubles’ or ‘two’s for the animators to begin matching the baby cell line drawings to the live action. Once the exhaustive phase of traditional animation was complete, the cells were scanned and brought back into Flint, where each frame was cleaned, enhanced and then coloured before layering all the separate parts of the baby together into a master clip. Each frame consisted of 12 layers of cell animation, including several highlight and lowlight passes, shadow passes, cheeks rosiness, nappy passes and the main head and body layers. The final baby was then composited into the live action where the reflections, shadows and subtle enhancements were added to make the baby seem to be part of the original shot. The balloons on the first commercial were modelled and animated in Maya and composited in Flint.

Client: Itch / Leo Burnett

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