Flying Object got in touch to create an ad for Google to communicate the complexity of Google Search in a simple way. This would feature on Google’s Youtube channel. Flying Object supplied a fun script and the theme was about the word “tablet” and its different meanings.

Approach

We decided to feature everyday objects to demonstrate how the Google search function works. This makes the animation relatable as people can imagine the lifeless objects they come into contact everyday coming alive.

We used stop motion with pixilation to showcase this vignette-based story against brightly lit, plain white backgrounds. This helped to isolate the individual elements and tie everything together.

We added a Google twist by incorporating their iconic branding and colour scheme into the stop motion animation. As an example the cake is white to make sure the blue, red, yellow and green discs pop.

Process

Pre-production 2-3 weeks. The script included various disparate scenarios and so we set about researching the props that would best work for each:

  • Card trick – bought several decks of playing cards to study cardistry tricks. We settled on the waterfall shuffe and figured out how to do this using stop motion animation – spoiler alert – glue was used
  • Ancient (Google) tablet – commissioned a custom model that looked like an ancient Egyptian tablet. This had hieroglyphics resembling a popular search engine
  • Playing flute – we worked with an actor to be our flutist

Production made a tall rainbow cake in Google colours which the crew devoured after the stop motion animation shoot. We don’t usually recommend eating props, but it did taste good! Baking a cake for a shoot was a first for us, although it came out so well we might have to find an excuse to make another one.

Post-production was all done in-house. This included rig removal, editing, compositing the butterfly and graphics on the shopping bag and colour grading. We worked with Fonic on the sound design.

Google Magic cake on set

Credits

Client: Google

Agency: Flying Object

Directed, Produced and Animated: Picturesmith

Director of Photography: Peter Ellmore

Sound Design: Fonic