Discover a Heart-Warming, Stop-Frame Spot Directed by Hayley Morris

Prepare to be moved by the latest online commercial for the eco-conscious baby brand, Charlie Banana, where we are introduced to the heart-warming story of a mother bonding with her newborn baby while pledging to take action to create and protect the future of our planet, our home.

Watch our fun behind the scenes

Teaming up with Curiosity, we mixed two marvellous animation techniques; stop-frame and hand-drawn animation to develop the whimsical online commercial. This beautifully crafted piece walks us through what it takes to make a better world for future generations and celebrates motherhood and all-around sweetness.

‘’ Am I choosing the right products to put on my baby’s skin? Am I taking action to protect the environment for future generations?‘’ Milana Karaica

This was a very relatable situation for Milana Karaica, Executive Producer at NERD Productions who was eight months pregnant when the script landed on her desk. We were thrilled to craft the ultimate maternal bond at this extraordinary time.

‘’ Working with a brand that cherishes sustainability and has it as their mission statement feels very special.’’ Hayley Morris

Hayley is coincidentally, currently eight months pregnant and has a real passion for sustainability in her own work. Throughout the creative process, Hayley used sustainable and recyclable materials.

Every element in this stop-motion animation was entirely handcrafted, from the characters to the plants and flowers, using layering and watercolour techniques.

To bring this delightful film to life, even more, Hayley created jointed paper dolls to heighten the interaction between mother and daughter through to the end of the blossoming visual tale.

An essential part of telling a story is to feel the characters’ emotions. To really make the characters extra charming, we started by making the puppets with blank faces. Facial expressions were then added frame by frame using an animation style hand-drawn technique and tracked to the stop-motion film.

Milana says ‘’We were proud to be able to feature and hero a mixed-race family which is important for us at NERD. Even if they are animated characters, they are essentially our actors so we want to craft those carefully and make sure that we are representative and reflect the reality of our audiences.’’

At a time where diversity & inclusion is talked about a lot in the advertising industry, actions are more important than words. It was particularly vital to us to show characters that will make the world a more inclusive and tolerant one for the future generations to come. We believe that championing diversity is the key ingredient to producing powerful visuals that stand out and engage with real people across the world.

Click here to view Hayley’s portfolio.

Want to work with Hayley Morris or another NERD? Click here.

NERD’s Black Stories: Animation Director, Corinne Ladeinde

Although our peers feel that efforts for a more diverse industry are being made; we still think that the actions taken are surface level, and black people are a rarity in our industry.

We spoke to black creatives who contribute significantly to their field and have asked them words of advice for current and future artists of colour wanting to break through the creative industry.

Next up is Animation Director Corinne Ladeinde.

Corinne is an award-winning animation director with a passion for storytelling, design, animation and illustration. After working as a lead compositor on projects such as The Snowman and the Snowdog and We’re going on a Bear Hunt! for Channel 4, Corinne further pursued her directing ambitions and has since directed a range of commercials and online films for clients such as Dove, Bach, Bonjela and Liz Earle amongst others.

When did you decide to become an animator/illustrator?

From the age of 6 and growing up, I had in mind that I will become an animator; but once I had graduated and dive into the professional world, I realised that I love storytelling and from then on, started directing.

How has your upbringing influenced the work that you do today?

My mum is a true stoic. She is my inspiration to always investing my time in the things I truly enjoy. My mother used my brother and me as an excuse to watch the latest animated Disney films at the time. I grew up on a diet of animation from the Lion King to Aladin and The Nightmare Before Christmas. When I was a kid, I was reading a lot, attended regular arts and crafts activities, theatre and galleries. All these things have influenced my vision as an artist.

What advice would you give your younger self?

“To act as if it’s impossible to fail”. This is an Anthony Hopkins quote, that I have learned to live by.

How has it been transitioning from composing to directing?

Directing my first spot was challenging and also very rewarding. It was such a pleasure to work with a team committed to support and nurture young directors.

Working with NERD Productions has allowed me to work with other directors of different disciplines which have helped me to broaden my horizons and offer clients a more varied approach to their work.

Click here to view Corinne’s portfolio.

Want to work with Corinne Ladeinde or another NERD? Click here.

NERD Productions’ Roman Bratschi crafts mouth-watering visuals for Sephora

Sephora is launching its first natural ingredients perfumes collections this September. Roman Bratschi, tastefully designed the gorgeous CGI ”DO NOT DRINK” key visuals for the campaign – so good; we want to taste these!  

The collaboration between Roman, NERD Productions and Sephora is a splendid one, just like the mix of elements inspired by nature and texture details that ultimately enhance the overall aesthetic of the products. We spoke to the team about the ways they brought these mesmerising concepts to life.

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NERD Productions’ Billelis Continues To Reach New Mythical Heights With An Epic TROY Key Visuals & Animation

After last year’s legendary collaboration, NERD’s Billelis, SEGA & Creative Assembly bring back some new epic artwork to support Total War Saga game: TROY launching on August 13th. Set against the stunning setting of the Bronze Age, TROY explores the epic conflict from both the Greek and Trojan’s perspectives. 

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Live-Action Director, Brett de Vos’ Guide To Supporting Friends / Family Coming Out To You

This year’s Pride month marked the 51st anniversary of the Stonewall Riots – when transgender people, gay people, and drag queens protested against police brutality for six days after a brutal raid at NYC’s Stonewall Inn. Because this year’s celebration overlays with a global human rights movement, we should continue to liberate, educate, and celebrate voices of the queer community – stand in solidarity and, become better allies. Pride isn’t a one-off event and at NERD Productions we are proud all year round. We are committed to amplifying the voices of those who are underrepresented and produce work that reflects today’s society. In this heartfelt read, Live-Action Director, Brett de Vos, discuss the best ways to support friends/family coming out to you.

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Starting A New Job While Working From Home

Starting a new job is usually nerve-wracking, yet, if the Prime Minister announces that a national lockdown will take effect on your first day, due to a global pandemic, that definitely adds an extra layer of anxiety. Prior to coronavirus getting cozy in the UK, I had been following how the pandemic unfolded in different parts of the world, and in all honesty, I didn’t think that Europe would get hit that badly. Never in a million years, I would have thought 2020 would be the year of the whole world getting shut down.

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