We were commissioned by Spotify for their 2019 Premium Campaign in which we worked closely with their creative team to develop a series of 11 videos and 25 illustrations on the theme of ever-changing moods and the ability of music to help shape and change our feelings.
Our first challenge was creating a character which would work in Spotify's 72 markets and not isolate any of the audience. We went through various iterations of clothing and style to create an easily-identifiable, modern, gender-neutral character with no specific age or race.
We then focussed on the 12 moods we wished to portray, from positive and full of energy to more sombre and subtle videos.
For this 'Optimistic' character we wanted a more refined and elegant clothing style to contrast with the energetic, childlike animation.
We decided that the character should be jumping over non-specific forms in an abstract world to keep the focus on the mood. As well as playing with the contrast between realistic and graphical elements, using more representational forms allows us to keep the setting open to any audience and create a dream-like world that everyone can identify with.
Each time the character jumps they use a different pose to keep the energy high and the audience guessing.
Our 'Happy' character represents the feeling you get when listening to uninterrupted music - the feeling of taking off like a rocket.
As ever we wanted to find a balance between the realistic elements of the smoke and detailed clothing, and the stylised character. We enhanced this contrast by introducing animated shapes both in the clothing and within the smoke. This made the entire video feel more graphical and almost comic-book like, rather than looking too technical.
To represent the feeling of excitement and energy you get listening to music we created a shining character you might imagine dancing around their bedroom and feeling the power of the music.
We chose two key poses for the stills to convey the confidence and the intensity of this dance.
As well as getting energy from the movement and light, we created a custom pattern for the character's clothing and an animation equally bursting with life.
In this video our character is lifted up and made weightless by the music. At first they are surprised but soon they relax again back into the rhythm.
We made many variations in the clothing to get the right level of detail and realism. The subtlety of the pattern animation adds another layer to the final result, with our character floating in the air totally relaxed by their tunes.
Here our character is experiencing the joy of skipping between styles of music with different clothing and dancing for each.
The clothing is uniquely made for each style - pop, rock, country and hip hop - and allows our character to express themself in their crazy dancing.
Some of the moods touch on the softer side of listening to music. In this more sentimental video we see our character mournfully moving to the music and almost revelling in their emotions.
Towards the end of the video, the character starts to change colour to blend in with the blanket and disappear into it. We wanted to create a really tactile scene, with the fluffy blanket and pyjamas, and a feeling we can all identify with.
Here our character is dancing from dawn to dusk, their movements getting more exaggerated as night falls and they start to glow in the dark.
The feeling of being in love was an essential mood for the campaign and we wanted the animation to reflect the cheesiness of the emotion, whilst keeping the character's modern, cool clothing.
The t-shirt looks like it as a modern, abstract pattern but it is subtly full of hearts which we see only briefly in animation.
We wanted to introduce the feeling of anger or frustration while keeping the video light-hearted and relatable. We decided that a comical, exaggerated animation in which the character even sets on fire would successfully convey the humorous angle we wanted.
The colour palette changes when the character relaxes, with the setting and character itself turning blue and floating as if above a clear lake.
Towards the end of the campaign we wanted to increase the energy and excitement again so created a bright and bold animation of the character constantly changing colour while dancing.
We added effects as accents to some of the character's moves, as though the character is affecting their surrounding and their joy is spilling out into it.
The final video in the series playfully reminds the audience that the campaign is running out soon and it's their last chance to sign up. We decided to reflect this feeling of trying to grab hold of something and never quite catching it.
Even as the character's movements get more exaggerated the headphones always manage to slip away and the cycle continues.
We tie the videos together with the Premium outro made up of the different textures and patterns used through the series. The references to each video are a fun and subtle way of uniting the set.
Cabeza Patata - Katie Menzies & Abel Reverter
Lead 3D Direction
Laura Sirvent & Abel Reverter
Clothing and Textile Design
Clothing Design & Fabrication
Abel Reverter & Laura Sirvent
2D Pattern Design
Lead Character Animator
Chill: Andrea Ferrara
Energetic: Daniela Avilés
Celebratory: Andrea Ferrara
Happy: Pablo Gonzalez
Optimistic: Raúl Ibarra
Empowered: Raúl Ibarra
The Feels: Daniela Avilés
Stressed: Pablo Gonzalez
Love: Charlotte Kristof
Exited: Raúl Ibarra
Confident: Pablo Gonzalez