Seagulls Fly “Adobe CS5 – Production Premium”

Q&A with Seagulls Fly

by Michelle Higa, with help from Boca Ceravolo and Bran Dougherty-Johnson

Can you talk a bit about the brief – was it totally open? How involved was Adobe in the development of the spot?
It was quite open. Goodby told us the package’s slogan, “Go from script to screen faster” and emphasized that the film should end with the number 5 as a cinema screen in a movie set. It was very important to show during the film all the new features of the Production Premium.

How long was the production timeline?
2 months.

How many people on the team?
18 people, divided in script, concept and 3D and post-production.

The spot is a great love letter to storytelling/film-making. Can you talk a bit about the brainstorming process and how you ended up with the final sequence? (I’m imagining Godzilla might have made an appearance at some point)
Our central idea was to show the evolution of film resources, going from the script on the paper to a large scale production. Working on the evolution of the elements in a natural way (from the cardboard dolls and plastic cars to the sci-fi scenery) was the most difficult task. We considered using several iconic scenes from the movies, like King Kong, ET, Star Wars, and others, but we decided not going ahead with this idea, because we could have some copyright problems.

The making-of reveals quite a bit of CG, but there’s also a lot of hand-made assets and references to practical effects. Why the decision to use CG for the opening scenes? Or was it in-camera (I got fooled at first)?
Our initial idea was shooting the first part of the film, but with the evolution of the creative process, we realized that we wouldn’t have the same camera freedom and control of the story elements. The film was entirely made in 3D with digitized hand made textures of acrylic painting on paper. The intention was to make the initial 3D to look like it was actually a shooting scene of a homemade production of a stop-motion style and practical effect. For this, we tried to put the failures that would happen in an unprofessional shooting with the cardboard burrs, luster, real hands, the lantern etc.

Were there any new tools/techniques you got to play with while working on the spot?
The film was divided in 3 main scenarios where all the 3D illumination setup was different from each other. Depending on the environment, we’ve made different render passes for the final composition on the After Effects. We have used normal passes (to add a little spotlights on the post-production), Ambient occlusion, Pixel-velocity (to motion blur), Z-depth (to camera DOF), specular, selection of specific objects, dirt texture etc.

Are those two robot monsters fighting in the lower right hand corner when we come out of the 5?
All the elements of the film that represent the new CS5 tools reappear in the studio on the final scene. These are the two Samurai toys that appear on the film, representing the feature Roto Brush, a tool that allows you to make rotoscoping without the green background. We kept playing with this background switch on the online version:

Thank you to FlavioMac and everyone at Seagulls Fly for their time! Check out some of the high-res stills below to see those acrylic textures in action.

Making of “Adobe CS5 – Production Premium”


Agency: Goodby, Silverstein & Partners
Producer: Yogi Graham
Creative Director: Keith Anderson
Art Director: Alex Lyman
Writers: Tom Carter and Steve Payonzeck

Production Company: Seagulls Fly
Director: FlavioMac
Producers: Luciana Jordão and Rafael Elia
Writers: Anderson Gaveta, FlavioMac, Igor Maia, Luciana Jordão, Paulo Visgueiro
Art Director: FlavioMac and Paulo Visgueiro
Concept Artists: Flavio Hoffe, Paulo Visgueiro, Renan Lima
3D Artists: Alan Camilo, Fabricio Moraes, Felipe Lobo, Felipe Luis, FlavioMac, Fernando Reule, Gabriel D’Orazio, Gustavo Schinner, Raoni Nery,
Post-Production: FlavioMac, Fernando Reule

Music Company: Human
Sound Design: Henry Boy