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Pine Sol Storyboards – “Powerful Clean, Lemony Fresh”



Here’s a fun spot I worked on earlier this year for my great clients at Mirada.  It’s a charming commercial for lemon-scent Pine Sol, and to provide a brief backstory: the agency had “tested” a wacky concept of small soldiers and ballerinas chanting “powerful clean” and “lemony fresh” as they jumped into a Pine Sol bottle.  And it tested well.  Like, CRAZY well.  So we were asked to put together a pitch on how we might take that concept and flush it out into a fun character animation spot.

The concept is super simple so all the nuance and storytelling is in the directing and camera angles, and really making sure the characters are on target and doing their thing, and so the success here would come down to the execution of the concept.  Aside from the storyboards, there were character designers and concept artists working as well, but we were working concurrently so I didn’t have any direct reference for what anything should look like, so I had to charge forward as best I could.

We actually did have an “angle” if you will- the director was very interested in attempting to channel some of the very popular Taylor Swift video for “Bad Blood,” as in, to make sure we charged the lemony fresh ballerinas with a kind of kick-ass spin.  Something different!  I thought it was a great twist, and you can see in the frames, especially in this one:


Hardcore Freshness Ballerinas and Scrub Soldiers (complete with assault mops), in Pine Sol style, and miniaturized, in a typical household kitchen.  I could picture that pretty easy.  Here’s the boards:


The client apparently loved the boards, because they were not only awarded the job, but they ended up not needing me to revise any of the frames- which is a pretty awesome deal!  Here’s the finished spot:

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Not bad!  Looks like they did away with the “Bad Blood” references- we are back to cutesy ballerinas, but I think that might be a good move, given the overall timing.  Spot looks great.  And I’m glad they kept in the “lemon” parachutes- that was my idea!

See you next time.

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“A Day in the Life” Storyboards

Here’s another one of my famous dancing storyboards.  I don’t quite know how I always seem to be drawing choreographed dances.  Ironically, I’m a terrible dancer.  Oh well.

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These storyboards are for a kinda companion marketed synergistic branding tie-in cross promotional effort between E! channel and Degree (the antiperspirant), starring that Famous Choreographer you recognize from “Making the Band,” Laurieann Gibson and Kat Graham, fairly fresh celeb actress/dancer/singer.

In them, we depict our Choreographer, starting her day early, alone, brainstorming her dance routine for the Grammys and scribbling notes, then tuning and fine-tuning the routine by drilling with her dancers, and then our Actress talent arrives to interview her and pick up a few pointers on how to stay cool… under pressure!  I’m sure Degree brand deodorant helps too.

It’s kinda shot like a documentary, so we have a lot of quick cuts and candid shots.  This is my specialty by now.  Bear in mind, these are shooting boards for a 60 second commercial, and I had 8 hours to draw them.  Here’s the boards:


Here’s the final spot.

Not bad.  I wish somebody told me that Laurieann cut her hair so short.  And it seems that they cut a section of our script which had Laurieann teaching Kat a dance move.  Otherwise, fairly close.

Before I go- for any producers out there- typical fast turnaround on a :60 commercial is TWO days, not ONE, so please budget accordingly 🙂

See ya next week!

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Ugg Boots – Storyboards

When you see a snowy holiday commercial nowadays, bear in mind that it’s probably produced during the Summer season in Los Angeles, where it never snows.  That’s certainly the case with these two spots I storyboarded.

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This commercial campaign was produced by Timber, a great company and I love working with these guys, primarily because they really appreciate good storyboards and know where to get them- from me!

The story of each spot is the same, kinda:  A crew of a dozen beautiful ladies in winder regalia and Ugg boots (of course) parade in front of the camera, shimmy here and there, playfully coordinating their efforts into a final snowflake structure that is slowly revealed at the end.  Very fun.

Here’s the storyboards for the first spot, “Twinkling Lights.”

And here’s the finished commercial:

You know I did a good job when the boards look like the final spot!  And here’s the other spot, “Passing out Presents.”

And the final commercial:


Two spots- two days- 16 hours- 56 frames.  Two 60-second commercials in two days.  That’s kind of a lot of work- but there are mitigating factors:  It was helpful that one of the directors is a talented artist himself and could do some informing sketches of his own to help shortcut the storyboarding process.  The downside was that both directors had to be away for most of the process at a Tech scout (where they and other production crew meet to discuss the shoot on location before it happens), so the sketches were pretty much what I had to go on.  There isn’t much ‘story’ to these spots, as you’ll see, and no script either, so I had to sort of play choreographer to bring the appropriate sense of fun to these boards.  Luckily for me, I draw women well, and quickly, and the backgrounds of the shots were basically nonexistent, so the sets were minimalist and there were few if any constraints in terms of camera angles and blocking.  And finally, these were shooting boards, so while they didn’t have to be super perfect, it was worth doing as well as possible, since it would eventually end up as a sample on my blog, which you’re reading now.   So it was a mixed bag, but not too badly tilted into either camp of hard or easy.

In the end, I love drawing cute girls and I love how these spots turned out- just like I drew them!