It’s created quite a buzz – from a number of perspectives. DStv’s HD television ad is a digitally animated creation by specialist animation company, LUMA, and ad agency, Underline. Produced in less than two and a half months by a 12-member Johannesburg-based crew, the team comprised modellers, texture artists, animators and compositors, who created a photo-realistic advert seen through the eyes of a macro photographer following a nectar-seeking honey bee.
“The challenge was in the meticulous detail,” says Luma director, Paul Meyer. “We had to go beyond photo-realism as conventionally applied in most of our projects. Our client mandated us to bring to life a creature in such minute detail and follow its movements so closely, that the audience – viewing on conventional TV – would immediately be persuaded that high def TV carries a far superior viewing experience.”
The bee buzzes from flower to flower and over a pond, before alighting on a window sill. Through its multi-faceted compound eye it notices another life-sized flower inside the room. Unknown to the bee, the flower is a high definition broadcast image on a flat-screen TV. The bee immediately flies over, trying to harvest nectar from the virtual flower, as a child’s voice is heard saying, “It’s so real, it’s unreal,” culminating in DSTV’s standard audible payoff line, “DSTV High Definition, So Much More.”
Meyer says that with rapid advances in technology, the use of animation in television advertising (vs. Traditional ads) is fast becoming an attractive option for marketers. Animation allows advertisers more freedom from many of the creative limitations of traditional ads – such as location constraints and the task of securing actors – while often times providing significant cost savings.
Under the direction of Meyer and the agency team: creative director Lambertus Dormehl, art director Sandile Ntlemo, copywriter Fezile Marubelela and producer Cathi Williams, LUMA produced the commercial for pan-African client specialist agency, Underline Advertising and Marketing.