Our great friends, Tom Geismar and Sagi Haviv, from Chermayeff & Geismar & Haviv, contacted us to bring another one of their amazing logos to life – this time, for Saudi production company, Rozam.
The essence of the given name Rozam stands for independence, determination, courage, and confidence. Chermayeff & Geismar & Haviv embraced this beautifully and crafted a mark to symbolize this and so much more – a majestic lion.
A point of inspiration [and departure] for us was the team at Rozam made mention of appreciating the classic logo animation sequence for Ridley and Tony Scott’s independent film and television production company, Scott Free Productions. A beautiful classic, indeed. The sequence appears to be done by hand, with paint, chalk and pencil, and features an unexpected moment of metamorphosis.
Our process began with writing and developing treatments over the course of three weeks. Each treatment was prefaced with a director’s statement to tee-up the thinking and vision for each visual narrative and express how it tied to the art of filmmaking and production.
We covered ideas that ranged from showing a lion’s POV, demonstrating he is the apex predator as he charges through his kingdom, to abstract ideas that embrace nature, light, sound, and the patience of pursuit.
Over the course of this exercise, we collectively agreed that showing a lion in any way, shape or form, felt too pedestrian and would not elicit thought or create a sense of awe and wonder.
In the end, we landed on the warmth, comfort and idea of gathering around of a crackling campfire, witnessing its majestic beauty, and appreciating the organic nature of the unexpected. Embers rise into the night air as wind blows to ignite larger flames, which then swirl into a beautiful, controlled storm of light, through which, negative spaces reveal the mane of the Rozam lion. We called this concept, ‘From the Embers’:
Next, we moved into sketching a variety of options to present the Rozam brand narrative. We considered alternate ways for the fire to bloom from a small spark into a large plume of swirling light. Should logs of wood be added to the fire? If so, should we see the hands of someone laying the logs into the fire? Or should there just be a gust of wind? Should we see an environment around the campfire? Trees, sky, stars?
We netted out on less is more. No logs. No hands. No people. No environment. The simple, organic quality and beauty of nature prevailed, both for picture and for sound.
As we worked on refining the rough target frames for the sequence, designer and illustrator Kim Dulaney painted four gorgeous look frames that varied in style, texture, color, and temperature. She worked with different brushes, different mediums, and different canvas materials to serve up a variety of ways for our storyboard to be realized.
Once we locked our visual narrative, we moved into blocking out timings for each scene. Total running time was determined organically by giving the piece the space it needed to tell the Rozam story as beautifully, and as succinctly, as possible.
As our animation team worked on dynamic particle generation and motion studies, Kim armed them with custom brushes to ensure the quality of each fleck and swash of paint would have the photoreal integrity of her original art.
Total running time for the Rozam Brand Signature netted out at 17 seconds. At 24 frames per second, that provided the opportunity to generate 408 frames of original art. Please find a select few frames below and note the delightful bits of unexpected color, tonal depth, and textural qualities of the paint and canvas.
Long-time music partner and friend, Joel Pickard, wrote and crafted the gorgeous custom score. He directed a quartet, including violinist Carla Kihlstedt, to deliver a beautiful swell of strings and truly wonderful musical atmosphere.
Thank you to the following people for your dedication to making this one of the most beautiful pieces of work we’ve ever crafted.
Special thanks to our Head of Production and Producer, Javier Gonzalez, Creative Director, Chris Carboni, Designer, Kim Dulaney, and to our incredible animation team – Djeison Canuto, Zack Lydon, Hao Li, and Alec Iselin…all of whom made zero compromise with regards to making magic happen. Thanks to Joel Pickard for the amazing music and sound design.
And of course, special thanks to Tom and Sagi for your continued trust and faith in working with us and for the fruitful collaboration with you and Kerstin along the way on this one. We’re proud to say this marks our tenth project with Chermayeff & Geismar & Haviv, and we’re even more proud of how wonderful this piece turned out.
Executive Creative Director: Scott Matz
Creative Director: Chris Carboni
Producer: Javier Gonzalez
3D Lead: Djeison Canuto
Designer & Illustrator: Kim Dulaney
Cel Animator: Zack Lydon
Cel Animator: Hao Li
Houdini Artist: Alec Iselin
Creative Director: Tom Geismar
Creative Director: Sagi Haviv
Creative Director: Kerstin Scheuch
Composer: Joel Pickard
Strings: Carla Kihlstedt