Our stages of production
Much like a drama production animation needs clear stages in its production to help the process run smoothly and effectively. We choose to work in this way because it helps to show not only the client how we work but also it helps us to keep our work streamlined and stay on track when we have more than one project on the go. Presenting all this information to the client is important as it shows transparency and ultimately gains their trust.
What we've learnt so far is this way of working works!
When we have a client contact us interested in an animation or motion graphic, we try to find out as much information as possible. This usually includes any examples of work they like. There are times when the client isn't entirely sure what they want, but they know they want a video. Once we have a general idea of what’s needed, we start putting working with the client on the brief.
We prefer to meet the client in person to find out exactly what they're about and why they want the video. We’ll talk to them about where the video is going to be used, i.e. on social media, their website or TV. These details are important to know right from the start as it’s likely to effect the style and the script. The aim of the video is also very important. For instance, is it for driving more traffic to a website, to sell a product or to strengthen the company brand. Lastly is there a deadline in which this animation needs to be completed by. Once we’ve found out all the relevant information we will develop an initial concept. We’ll present a PDF document which will outline our proposal, the concept, some style ideas and an estimate.
As the brief is an integral part of the production, we need to have this signed off before we go into production.
Scripting & VO
Our next step in the production is to write a script. It’s important that everyone’s happy with the script before we proceed with the production. Their are a number of reasons for this, but the most the important is that we’re all on the same page right from the start. Having a clear script that everyone understands means the client knows what to expect of the final animation. Once we have the script, we can start with the design stage.
Design & Asset building
This is our favourite part of the production. Sometimes we have a clear idea of what the style will be like and other times the doors wide open and we can experiment. Either way the design needs to fit the brief and be signed off by the client. Sometimes there’s lots of back and forth between ourselves and the client, but this important to make sure everyone is happy. Once we have a sign off, we’ll build the assets required. This is building everything from in the script without actually animating it. Yet.
Before the animating starts we’ve found it’s handy to send the client an animatic, which is an animated storyboard. This is so they can see what each scene will look like and how the story develops. It helps the client to see the pace and flow of the animation. This stage also allows us to iron out any issues there might be in the script or storyboard before the animating begins.
Now we have the pre production signed off, we’re at the exciting stage of animating. This is where we bring the story to life. We like to send the client the first few seconds of the animation so they can see the progress and hopefully feel confident knowing that the production is going well. We send the client the first draft via Wipster, a video review and approval platform that we make use of. This software allows clients to comment on the exact points they like or dislike.
Delivery & sign off
It's important to us that the client is completely satisfied with the final animations so with this in mind we allow 2 rounds of changes. For efficiency and time saving we encourage our clients to get all feedback from the necessary people so we can work through everything in one go. Once the client is happy with the final animation, we deliver in whatever format the client requires. As we already know where the animation will be used from our initial meeting, this stage usually passes quite easily.