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:30 Animals Animation B&W Cartoons Family Females Kids Males Music Video Shoot Boards Storyboarding Toys Uncategorized VFX

Talk, Read, Sing! First Five California – Storyboards

Here’s a very fun project I did a while back, that I’m excited to share- storyboards for the First 5 California “Brainy Birds” commercial, which was part of their Talk, Read, Sing! campaign.  Basically: talk, read, and sing to your kids, and watch their little brains grow!  What a fun message.  And I can attest (I’m a new dad myself), kids soak up your words pretty quick, and you gotta watch what you say! Lol!!

There were a lot of challenges on this project- very tight timeline, multiple layers of client approval, and of course, character designs and music lyrics all undergoing revisions as I’m drawing the boards- sometimes it’s like trying to hit a moving target!  But I’m used to it, so it never phases me.  I still had fun with it, and I’m sure that comes through in my drawings.  One particular storyboard issue when blending live action with animation, is whether or not the “animated” parts should be drawn differently from the “live action” parts- like how do you make the animated part of a shot look different from live action, when it’s all “drawn” by nature of the fact it’s a drawing to begin with? But in this case, only the bird characters were animated, so it’s wasn’t as much an issue.  At some point, people have to use their imaginations.

I really enjoy working on animated projects as well, and drawing happy families for me is a snap, so even with all the known and unknown unknowns, I remember this being a fun project.

Here’s the boards:

And here’s the final spot!

 

Hope you liked it!  See you next time.

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:30 Action Animation Color Pitch Boards Set Design Shoot Boards Tech Tips and Tricks

Top Secret Commercial

Here’s kind of a funny notion- a commercial that’s top secret while you’re working on it, and barely disclosed as it airs, and you can’t even guess whether or not you even contributed towards it.  How fun!  Well, I drew the following boards, and the following commercial was aired shortly after, and that’s about all I know.   You might think you know even less, but, you probably don’t!

I doubt I need to spell out the challenges of working on a project in which you – A:) Know nothing about the product or company itself; B:) Can only guess if any other competitors are bidding on the same project; and C:) after the fact, searching for the final aired commercial, and finding no clear trail to trace back to anything you drew, nor to any known competitors of your clients.

Did I work on this commercial?  Was it all a dream? Well, it’s on youtube, and resembles my drawings.   Your guess is as good as mine.

If it makes you feel any better, the projects for Major Brand Names are like 1000x more secretive.  Sleep well. LOL!

 

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:30 B&W Family Females Humor Kids Males Pitch Boards Samples Storyboarding

Love, Depicted

I’ll leave out the specifics on what product/company these frames were advertising for; suffice to say, it was a collection of short spots of families and loved ones reflecting on the nature of their relationships (with some product placement tastefully featured in the periphery).  Rather, Let’s consider these boards an example of how I really try to bring a sense of acting and characterization to my drawings- bringing forth a sense of deep human connection when called for.  I think the work speaks for itself.

Just as often as I’m called upon do depict amazing action scenes, or elaborate fantastic worlds, I’m then called upon to draw a tender moment of kindness, or humor.  That’s the world of Storyboarding Commercials- you draw everything and it’s thus I believe it’s the best artistic training ever.  The work demands you never get too comfortable drawing the same thing every day- I draw vehicles, animals, people, places, animation, live action, humor, horror, sci-fi, and even in new media like VR!  It’s a new challenge every day and I love it.

Thanks for stopping by!

 

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:30 Action Animation B&W Internet iOS/Mobile Males Storyboarding Vehicles VFX Video Games War

“War Planet” Storyboards

Hi!  So here’s a fun one, if, I guess, you think war and conquest is fun… just kidding, of course you do!  What could be more fun then kicking your friends’ butts in online multiplayer combat via iOS or Android device? NOTHING #LOL

But seriously, I LOVE DRAWING WAR, something about it just flows out of me, even easier than all the other stuff that I enjoy drawing.  It’s just FUN drawing stuff blowing up!

The spots for this project kind of distilled down from 4 spots, to 2, to 1, so there’s some splicing and melding going on in some of these boards I’m about to show- but it’s helpful (I’m sure) to see how this kind of thing can happen!  In these modern advertising times, client needs and specs have to pivot on a dime! New apps/smartphones are released every day and that’s your ENEMY out there! That’s WAR for you!

My favorite part of this project, aside from the ‘realistic’ treatment of the weaponry and setting- was the emphasis put on the various commanders as CHARACTERS – which always inspires as being a board artist forces you to become part ACTOR as well as ARTIST.  Enough said, let me know what you think of my ‘performance.’

And another ‘take’:

Not bad eh?  Well, you’ll see in the video to follow: They’ve pivoted among other things, the TITLE of this project!  So now we are WAR PLANET.  Good to know! Hey, first thing’s first, right?

I think it turned out great! I’d play, but it wouldn’t be fair to everyone else, you know?  Hey, I’m just being honest.  See you next time!

 

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BATES MOTEL | Promo Pitch Boards

So here’s a riddle:  When are you HAPPY that your favorite binge-able show finally is finally axed?  WHEN IT MEANS YOU CAN FINALLY POST your storyboards for the promos!!!  I’ve been dying to show these off for a while now.  Of course, these were just pitches for promos, and as far as I can tell, none of the concepts I drew were produced, which totally slays me.

I thought these were some really killer concepts, but maybe the client thought we butchered the execution.  Ok, enough pun-ishment.  Wouldn’t want you to get “board.”  Lol!

First board set: Bates’ “Room”; The room seems to close in and crack under in intense psychological pressure:

And second board set: Bates’ “Stairs”; We follow our hero up a set of stairs and meet our horrific fate:

That’s some creepy stuff!  I hope you enjoyed watching these.  BTW, I did all these boards and MORE in a single 8-hour day.  What can I say?  I really do BLEED for this job!  Bwhahahahah!!  See you next time….

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:30 Action Animation B&W Cars iOS/Mobile Nature Pitch Boards Shoot Boards Storyboarding Toys Uncategorized Vehicles VFX Video Games War

“Asphalt Xtreme” Storyboards

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Woohoo!  Here’s another fun project from earlier this year that I’m very proud to show- fun video game racing action! The “Asphalt” Series is well known in gaming circles as a premium racing product and I was very excited to be involved with my clients at PSYOP for their pitch and production of this great spot.

Conceptually, it’s very simple:  Showcase the main themes of the game series: Racing, Mayhem, and Variety.  Variety of cars, and variety environments.  Hate to say it, but this was kind of an easy one for me… A commercial like this has no room for subtlety, so it’s just a matter of attempting to give equal weight to the important elements (variety of cars and environments) and balance that with a ramping of the action to an ultimate climax, all within 30 seconds!!  EXTREME!!!

 

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It’s crunch time!

 

This project had two parts- the pitch and the production.  For the pitch (in which we try to “win” the job), we kind of had a looser goal- wow the client with, well, creative compositions to showcase the action and variety.  Promise them the moon and see if we can deliver. There were all kinds of different ideas being tossed about- mostly the idea was to bring a realistic visualization of the gameplay to the screen.  Also on the job were some very talented 3d and concept artists, and we all pitched in to contributed pieces of the final puzzle.  The pitch was won on the merits of this collaboration- some of which I’ll share with you below (they didn’t make the final cut, but helped advance the job along, and look cool, besides!).

 

a
I liked the idea of a rally car using a hidden rope bridge to find a shortcut to get ahead of the main pack! Many video games have hidden passageways, and this was in that spirit.

 

b
As above, so below; an early concept of the dune buggy jump- it was an earlier understanding that these cars would “find” the best route forward based on their natural abilities.

 

c
I really liked the sense of speed in this early frame- many of which were drawn based on other artist’s tight compositions.

 

d
Among the natural environments, we assumed there would be a mandate to have more urban or industrial environments as well, but not so much in the final edit. Nevertheless, we had prepared works in the case of that possibility. Here, the racers surge towards an active loading dock area.

 

e
Again, we see the variety of cars and car abilities in their approach to surmounting the dynamic racing obstacles before them.

 

f
Seeking to really emphasize the sense of racing through rally courses worldwide, we seized upon opportunities to utilize highly recognizable landmarks and locations.

 

g
Concept for a “desert” title composition.

 

h
Another alternate concept for a “Jungle” title composition.

 

It was a great team effort, and we won the job.  Now comes the hard part- execution.  They had me back to refine some concepts and nail transitions into something that hit all the marks.  You ready for the boards?  Here you go!

 

And here’s the final spot!

What a wild ride!  Soo….. Sometimes I have a massive amount of input on a job, and I feel like I get to pick all the shots, and control the pacing, and the visual storytelling (remember, for many jobs, and certainly in this case, I’m not even given a script or shotlist).  BUT in this case, much of the concepting was done by talented 2d and 3d artists working concurrently- and so about the only idea I want to point out that I specifically contributed was the opening transition where the camera appears to be POV from the view of the bumper, but pulls out to be the POV looking into the reflection of the bumper.  As far as I know, I “invented” that, at least in this kind of car/racing/bumper context.  The thing about that kind of camera move is, it’s something you can only pull off in CG, so you’d never see that in classic cinema- since you’d have to magically “erase” the reflection of the cameraman.  So, there you go, I did something cool.  But even so, just as much if not more credit goes to the director and the CG artists for actually pulling it off and making it look amazing- you never know with uncharted territory, but that’s life… TO THE XTREME!!!!

Thanks for reading, see you next time!

-Max