Click 3x creates short HD, CG films for latest New Balance sneakers
(December 15, 2005)
When New Balance Athletic Shoe Inc. needed innovative design and animations to showcase two of its new sneakers, it turned to New York City-based digital production studio, Click 3x (www.click3x.com). New Balance tapped Click 3x to produce two all-CG HD films for its upcoming, company-wide sales conference. New Balance is also incorporating the films into their in-store installations, online advertising, trade show installations and possibly as cinema release commercials.?Working with New Balance has been a great experience because they have been true partners in the creative process, said Jason Mayo, Executive Producer and Partner for Click 3x. ?They have allowed us the freedom to push the design of the graphic identity of the NB Zip and Abzorb EX sneakers with the stipulation that the design be bold, targeted and clearly communicate the benefits of the technology. Mayo went on to say: ?To be successful we had to really understand the sneakers technology and what New Balance wanted to say about these products.
In an effort to educate the sales force on the sneakers many selling points the two films provide an inside look at the engineering that goes into designing the NB Zip and the Abzorb EX. The challenge for the design team was to convey those features in a visual and arresting manner making it all the more difficult since no voice overs or live action footage were incorporated.Each sneaker is targeted at a different market so the team had to creatively determine how to communicate the message to two separate audiences.The sneaker, NB Zip, is geared to a younger demographic (15-21), while the Abzorb EX is aimed at a more established runner willing to spend $100 + per sneaker.Click 3x painstakingly modeled the sneakers as realistically as possible so people could learn how the shoes are constructed, how the advanced technology works and why the shoes offer the best performance.Utilizing a color palette of primarily bold oranges, yellows, reds, blues and muted greens, pieces of the elements and detailed typography are examined in a series of rapid, flowing scenes that pull the viewer into the artificial environments. Additional graphics throughout both films evoke an abstract world made more manageable by the commanding nature of the sneakers and the branding prowess they emit.In the more abstract youth oriented film, NB Zip adorns a weight lifter doing squats, a young woman kickboxing, a basketball player hitting his groove on the courts, a woman running on a suburban track and a young man jogging in a city environment. All of the athletes are portrayed in silhouette, offset by a high energy, hip hop dance music track. Scientific looking graphics and a liberal use of diagrams and mathematical text are used throughout to add texture. The film illustrates the responsiveness of the NB Zip technology. For the Abzorb EX spot slower music is incorporated at the beginning of presentation as the sneakers disparate parts are shown flying together before it hits the pavement ready for a serious workout. The artists show glimpses of the Abzorb EX in a film title fashion using liberal text and flash frames. The music takes on more energy as the shoes are shown jogging around a representation of the Central Park Reservoir.The film transitions to the shoes jogging down a flight of stairs and then through a cityscape environment. In both films time is spent deconstructing the part of the shoe most beneficial to the terrain the jogger just experienced.?For Abzorb EX, the storyline is very linear, very clean cut and very premium looking, said Design Director, Tim Dingersen. ?The biggest challenge was coming up with a look that was appropriate for each sneaker.Kevin Quinlan, Sr. Visual Effects Artist said: ?It was a really fun project. Its a great piece of theatre. The films were created using Adobe After Effects, Photo Shop, Illustrator.3D modeling was performed in Maya, and compositing took place on the Flame. About Click 3x Click 3x is a digital production studio specializing in the design and production of digital imagery for the advertising and broadcast industries. Located in Manhattan , the studio is equipped with the latest in imaging technology and staffed by a team of world-class designers, artists and producers eager to take on any challenge. Click 3x was founded in 1994 as the industrys first all-digital production studio. Since then, it has continued to pursue innovation and to break down creative boundaries while working with the worlds best advertising agencies, broadcasters, production companies, directors and editors.
Click 3x is located at 16 West 22nd Street, New York, NY10010. For more information, call (212) 627-1900, or visit www.click3X.com.