Animation and design studio Nathan Love recently delivered a 3D animated spot for Kellogg’s new Froot Loops Treasures with strawberry-flavored filling. The spot “Froot Detector” is Nathan Love’s second project for the brand, following a debut that introduced Toucan Sam and his trio of boisterous nephews in contemporary high-quality 3D. The New York-based animation studio handled layout, animation, modeling/texturing, lighting/rendering, effects and compositing for the spot.
“Leo Burnett and Kellogg challenged us to find creative ways to visually reinforce these new strawberry-flavored treasures throughout the spot,” Nathan Love creative director Joe Burrascano explained. “Our solution was the concept of an oversized strawberry jungle. One of our goals with this ongoing Froot Loops campaign is to create a continuous sense of wonder and ignite kids imaginations, and with each spot we try to develop fantastic worlds for our heroes to explore. Strawberry cove was just the latest of these worlds.”
The imagery is filled with subtle touches that both build the personalities of each character over the long term and appeal to Froot Loops’ target audience. The shortest nephew, for example, is the mastermind of the group, and he creates a “froot detector” to locate the strawberry treasures beneath the sand. The detector, however, is an imaginative contraption cobbled together from Froot Loops, heater coils, art supplies and an old toaster.
Nathan Love built on its experience with the brand’s 3D debut, improving on cinematography, effects and storytelling devices. The artists benefited from this familiarity, delivering an upgrade to the look and feel of the hero characters, decking them out with detailed and realistic feathers, shiny, new beaks and fancy, new feet. The experience from the past campaign also streamlined the production pipeline, making for a speedier delivery and smoother end-to-end workflow.
“The beauty of this campaign is the longevity that comes with it, and having a chance to really get to know our clients and build a strong relationship with them,” Nathan Love head of production, Derrick Huang said. “With every new spot, we can learn from the one that came before it and continuously improve on the quality and detail at every level. Our animators get deeper into the characters they bring to life – understanding their motivations, refining their idiosyncrasies and mastering their performance.”
One special challenge entirely new to “Froot Detector” was the water effect, which appeared in almost every shot and had to look and act like a real body of water that interacted with the characters on cue. The company approached this challenge by treating the wave like another, very complex character. Following several weeks of R&D, simulating natural wave currents, interaction with the shore, collisions against rocks and acutely timed splashes, the animation team laid the groundwork for timing and basic wave shapes, then handed it to the effects department to bring to life, which went so far as to alter the texture of the sand as the waves receded.