Mar 14, 2016 | By Tess

Chinese multinational computer tech company Lenovo has just released a series of promotional videos that have certainly caught our interest. The promotional spots, which are advertising the company’s popular YOGA convertibles, tabletop PCs, and tablets, are part of the company’s recent marketing campaign dubbed #Goodweird and each of the short videos features an amusing stop-motion animation made up of 3D printed set pieces.

Though the short videos are undoubtedly advertisements, the series of them represents a change in marketing and advertising for the Fortune 500 company, which it is calling a “360° integrated campaign”. If you’re wondering, Lenovo’s 360-degree approach means that they have enlisted the help of a number of different companies and agencies to help bring their campaign to fruition. As Quinn O’Brien, Lenovo Vice President, Global Brand Strategy, Content & Design, explains, “We’ve fundamentally changed the way we think about defining the Lenovo brand, from the tools we use like crowdsourcing and social media to how we get things done with our balanced 360° agency model. The #Goodweird campaign really brings all of these forces to life in a clever and engaging way that’s genuine to the purpose of our products.”

Among the agencies that Lenovo enlisted were London-based production company Blinkink, visual effects studio Framestore, and 3D modeling and printing company Propshop, who collaborated to bring the short film advertisements to life. Directed by Greg Barth of Blinkink, the promotional spots were made to reflect the good-weirdness of the YOGA products themselves by using fun, lighthearted animations to demonstrate the products’ capabilities.

3D modeling and 3D printing were used in the creation of set pieces for the films, which was taken care of by 3D designers at Propshop. As the films use stop-motion animation, much planning was required to create a seamless animation, including the modeling and 3D printing of many iterations of the set pieces. In the 3D printing process, two types of material were used in additively manufacturing the set pieces: a standard, smooth plastic, and another sandier texture, which stand out against the digital background.

As you may have noticed, the films are not entirely stop-motion, as Framestore contributed to the advertisements by adding in 3D digitally animated elements. Some of the digital effects are practical—as the 3D printed sets were manufactured to be only about 15cm in width and height, the actual Lenovo YOGA products could not be used, so Framestore created CG products to move throughout the videos. And of course such elements as the projection were also digitally rendered.

Richard Coley, Framestore VFX Supervisor, says of the series, “Working with Blink and MullenLowe on this series of films for Lenovo was a real pleasure—their craft and process were spot-on. Once we worked through the first spot and got used to the level of detail needed on each and every frame, we really got into the swing of things, and the films came out beautifully.”

If you’re interested in Lenovo’s #Goodweird products, or simply want to check out the cool animation and 3D printing used in their promotional spots, check the videos out below:



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