Watch Party is a Q&A style interview series where we discuss a recent Demo Duck video production with the team that brought it to life.
Karen Schmitz is a Senior Producer, Jarrett Hothan is an Associate Creative Director and Jeffery Lawson is a Jr. Art Director here at Demo Duck. We all gathered 'round to watch the animated video they made for Logitech, and chat about how they approached this corporate video production.
How was it creating a video about a physical product vs. a technology product or educational content?
Jarrett: The interesting thing about that is we actually use Logitech mice every day at Demo Duck. Not only is the product something that we were already familiar with — all of its attributes and features — but we've seen how certain Logitech mice apply to our own experience of working in these hybrid settings. We were able to take our own learned experience and apply it to the video’s different creative components.
Karen: When we were brainstorming, one visual that came to my mind was Rachel, our Operations Lead, struggling with the office reopening and creating these helpful kits with keyboards and cords for people to return to the office and how much of a headache that was for Demo Duck, a small company. Now, imagine an enterprise-sized company. Logitech for Business develops these systems so everything is easy, streamlined and ergonomic. It’s all the things you could want for a big business with all the different ways people are working.
Jarrett: Exactly, so our concept ended up being an optimistic spin on some of the pain points related to how the workplace has changed. Even though our audience for this is a product that lends itself more to a straightforwad business video, we still wanted to take a commercial video production approach to soften the messaging.
What was is like to work with a well-known brand like Logitech?
Karen: This was a great example on how big, bold and playful visuals can work with serious, ergonomic, sleek products. Logitech’s branding is filled with bright colors that you might not expect, so we took their established look and ran with it. It shows how that juxtaposition between playful and serious can be really complementary and engaging.
What made you decide to go with the 2D/3D animation style?
Jarrett: We had guessed that the client might have 3D CAD files of the mouse itself, but the concept we pitched them wasn’t totally dependent on having access to those files. More so, ‘Hey, if you have 3D files, here’s how we could elevate this product animation even more!”
Spoiler alert: We were, in fact, able to access their CAD files.
When we pitched our concept, “Every workspace, Every worker,” Jeffery created a bespoke style frame to show how we could build a 2D world wherein their 3D Logitech devices could live. Interesting to note is that the mouse in that style frame isn’t actually 3D, but it served the purpose of getting the client to visualize how the style could look.
What advice do you have for other brands who want to turn their 3D assets into a cool video?
Karen: It can be a lot of back and forth between departments to make sure we are getting the right files. Ultimately, we needed to establish a line of communication from our animator to our client’s product designer, and depending on the size of the organization, there can be a lot of middle men in between those two people. Our partners over at Logitech were very accommodating at getting us the assets we needed.
Jeffery: Of course, it’s also important to have a creative team that’s skilled and seasoned in 3D animation. We had the pleasure of working with one of our trusted freelance creatives who brought a lot of expertise to this style. Plus, the versatility of the Logitech brand allowed us to create with flexibility and to play around and have a little fun with the products and visual concept—which isn't always the case in corporate video production.
What are some visual moments that stand out to you all as the creative team?
Karen: I like the opening and having the featured product highlighted, especially way it swoops in front of you. We did that with the idea in mind that this video could be one in a series of videos about different products in the Logitech for Business offering. We were thinking big picture there!
I also like the flying USB and the way it launches into the computer. That's one of those utility features that could be boring to show, but instead it’s one of the most exciting parts of the video.
Jarrett: Also, in the final moments, when the character is in the coffee shop and then the frame becomes divided into fourths with some additional characters appearing. That moment adds this closing feeling of character warmth where we get to see all the different ways people work. Which is a good reminder about the product being in service of a workforce of human beings.