We had the privilege of shooting all 46 sponsored idents for TK Maxx and Homesense, which have been featured during the advert breaks on Channel 4’s Sunday Brunch for over a year. Each set of idents (ranging between 5-15 seconds each) took 2 weeks to produce. It was quite a feat, as the project took up all of our studio space at once, but as you know, we love a challenge here at A+C Studios!
We started with the TK Maxx idents first. The brief was that they would mostly be top-down or front-on shots in a bright, colourful world which has no limits. These images were clean and bold – making the product pop in each of the scenes. We set up 3 stages throughout our 2 studios so we could animate 3 idents at once. This meant that the entire studio was taken over, but we were able to offer an economy of scale because we would only need to charge one director fee, one producer fee, one studio fee and so on. Our clients were getting 3 idents produced simultaneously – bringing costs right down. This was ideal for our client, who had not worked with an animated project before.
After our stop-motion animators had worked their magic, bringing quirky TK Maxx kitchen products to life, it was then over to the post-production team to clean up the shots, ready to deliver. Whilst this was happening we were setting up for Homesense idents – which were a whole other kettle of fish! These required more space per ident because the worlds we were creating were realistic settings such as kitchens, living rooms, and even an entire beach scene! We had to be a lot more dynamic in our problem-solving and scheduling to make it work.
We also had the logistics to of getting all the products in and out of our model-making studio to contend with. Although the studio is quite large, this was harder with Homesense because the products and props were twice as big! There was a lot more set building for these idents too – we had to install French windows, attach wall plugs and sockets, paint panels and pace everything in the right way to show the products off in gorgeous high-end rooms.
We are extremely proud of the work which went into these idents and how they turned out. It goes to show that stop-motion animation is absolutely perfect for advertising products – bringing elements of human expression to inanimate objects. This is the true magic of stop-motion and it’s at the heart of what we do. Audiences respond well when there’s an element of human emotion, and that’s what our animators were bringing to every ident we made.