Science on Screen
A Case Study
In October 2022 we saw a call out for the Science on Screen Animations, which were ran by Ardán and CÚRAM with the support of National Talent Academy for Animation.
Cúram are at the forefront of medical research developing procedures and devices that can change people's lives. However, sometimes the scientific concepts can be difficult to explain to the lay person. They wanted the animations to take these complex concepts and explain them in such a way that anyone could understand.
We chose to respond by outlining how we would approach the projects, rather than developing a precise concept and storyboard etc. They were keen for the process to be collaborative and we felt that by not defining our response too early we left room for collaboration.
In our application we told them a little about our background, that between us we have studied Fine Art Painting, Sculpture, Animation and Product Design and have years of experience working collaboratively. We pointed out that while we believe the story is important, without emotional connection it doesn’t engage. It's really important to us that we engage our audience before we try to explain anything to them. In our experience, the tactile and human element that is visible with stop-motion can help engage and connect with audiences.
In November we heard that we won the contract to produce two explainer videos!
We spent the next 8 weeks in a back-and-forth process - Defining the brief and developing scripts. Creating storyboards, animatics and style-sheets, and finally, sourcing voice-over artists and musicians.
Our passion is stop-motion, and we wanted to let that show through within the time scale and budget!
The first animation was for a new treatment for Hypertension. After multiple tests we decided to work with plasticine entirely as the physical qualities of plasticine references the internal organs mentioned in the script.
The second animation was for a pain relief system for Osteoarthritis of the knee. We created some simple stop-motion puppets for the beginning and end of the second piece, with the main body of the animation being 2D.
Working with Cúram was a fantastic opportunity for us at Studio 9. The biggest challenge was to find a way to communicate technically complex ideas in a way that everyone understands.