With an increase in e-commerce shopping, more companies are moving mostly or entirely online. These companies need a way to stand out and visually communicate their brand in an overcrowded market. Animation captures attention and creates delight for the viewer. A good animated logo will make the brand more memorable and convey its personality and the message in a handful of seconds.
The goal of this project was to create three animated logos for existing brands that could use motion to help tell their story. The animations could be used as short interstitials or at the beginning of a longer commercial. In the case of an online publication, such as WIRED, the animation can be used at the beginning of video stories on their channels.
The three brands that were chosen had to fit a list of criteria. First, the companies should not have existing logo animations as part of their branding. Second, they should provide services that are different from each other in order to provide variety for this project. Third, the brands should function entirely or almost entirely online. The brands chosen were Chewy (an online retailer of pet-related products and food), WIRED (a monthly magazine, published in print and online, that focuses on how technology affects culture, the economy, and politics) and Wayfair (an online retailer of furniture, home-goods, and appliances).
The first step in creating the animations was to write out the “feel” of the brand and then ideas from there. This was accompanied by quick sketches of possible assets and basic storyboarding steps. Writing first proved to be the most efficient way to get ideas on paper, then sketching came second.
Once a visual direction that fit the feel and message of the brand was decided on, assets were created in Illustrator. All of the logos needed to be digitized as well and the layers separated to prepare the file for animation in After Effects.
Assets were traced in Procreate and a frame-by-frame animatic was created to lay out the basic steps of the animation. These animatics helped to solve any large problems relating to the storyboard before jumping into After Effects. In the final pieces, common principles of animation were used, such as: Squash and Stretch, Anticipation, Follow Through, and Overlapping Action, Slow In and Out, Timing, Exaggeration, and Appeal.
Time management and consistent note-taking were necessary when keeping on top of these motion projects. In every step of each animation, it was important to remember what is appealing about motion, find ways to retain the viewer's attention, and consistently utilize the principles of motion. These steps helped when making decisions on how to proceed. Each logo animation gives the viewer a sense of what the brand is about in one succinct and engaging story.