Here’s to new friends and old! Ten meetings. Two days. Aly and Allison rocked their way through San Francisco, ’wining and dining’ with SF’s top ad agencies and mastering its public transport.
By BART, bus, trolley and foot, these ladies made it everywhere from the beautiful shorelines of the Embarcadero to the historical docks of Fisherman's Wharf! Our friend, Angus at Dolby, welcomed us by taking us back to school. Wait, we mean Skool - a delightful lunch spot in SF where the menus were appropriately printed on binder paper! While our new friends at First Person were introduced to us over cocktails at a hip speakeasy bar named Local Edition.
We also had the opportunity to meet with Doremus, Eleven Inc., and OneWorld…just to name a few. Everyone is so busy! So it was a great time for our team to see what these agencies are working on, and share our own work as well.
Filming at Harrah's Resort, Southern California what a blast! A strong collaboration between I.D.E.A. creatives Ryan Berman and Joe Nafziger, Harrah’s Ryan Thompson and Jeffrey Lamont Brown. With 9 setups in one day, we were lucky to have the incredible Nicole Miller, Amy Lorenzen and Harrah’s very own Patty Olvera making everything flow as smooth as the lazy river.
The concept: “See it up close” opens with extreme closeups of guests enjoying the key amenities of the property. Massage, juicy steak, beautiful hotel room, lazy river and a win in the casino. We cover a lot of ground in 30 seconds with this spot. And oh yeah, we shot some cool slow-mo helicopter footage of the new hotel tower for the end card!
Look out for this television commercial; it’s enough to make you say, “DAMN!”
Tallgrass Pictures shoots it’s fourth national spot for San Diego State University. The assignment: To highlight the research and science opportunities the school has to offer. Boring you say? Not! We open the spot to a lab full of students making bionic limbs; then walk directly onto the deck of a 100ft boat doing cutting-edge virus research, launch the Mars Rover, and end with an ensemble cast at Hepner Hall, all in one continuous shot. Cheers to our CGI team for all their hard work to make those transitions flawless!
Shooting at sea can be rough and even seasick we didn’t fall overboard. The team stayed strong and got incredible footage. Great job! It was a combination of every team members’ individual efforts that let us get so many shots that appeared effortless.
We also couldn’t have accomplished getting that warm atmosphere of campus without the Aztec students who volunteered as extras. We’re excited to premier the SDSU spot; look out for it this coming spring!
On our last day of our lifestyle shoot Christmas week, we headed to the cliffs of Torrey Pines, where we had 2 cameras right at the cliff’s edge. Our talent were champions, running up narrow goat trails and posing in stretching positions above the legendary Black's Beach.
We ended the week of shooting in the chic offices of Digitaria. We capture amazing views of both our talent and "aerials" down into PETCO park baseball stadium at sunset. To get so many great images in such a variety of places took complete commitment from everyone involved, and, wrapping that day, everyone felt extremely proud to be a part of this dedicated team.
Day 2: Downtown San Diego. We were immersed in San Diego’s downtown Gaslamp quarter. The weather was sunny and beautiful for shooting, but so warm that it posed a threat to the "Ice Cream" scene. APC Britney, literally ran from the ice cream shop to our set to keep the tub of cones from melting!
By the time the sun was setting that same day, we decided to capture some extra shots at our final location: Goorin Brothers, a stylish downtown hat shop loaded with Fedoras, Boaters and many other cool hats. To get enough light in the store’s second floor terrace, G+E stood in the street with shiny boards to capture the remaining sunlight. Inside, JB shot above from a bird’s eye view, while Gavin rolled low angle "B" camera. By the time the sun had gone down, we knew our clients were going to be spoiled.
San Diego, CA, Oct 14, 2013 - Tallgrass Pictures just completed an ambitious 3D animation project in collaboration with Ferguson Presents for Nestle's Hot Pockets Brand Sandwiches on their latest music video titled, “You Got What I Eat”. The spot is a mouth-watering spoof starring Snoop Dogg & Kate Upton, capturing the epic battle of Team Crust vs. Team Meat.
Our task was to create 13 seconds of 3D animation that links two live action worlds. Tallgrass Pictures’ lead animator, Beau Runnels, created an 8-bit world complete with pepperoni nunchuck fights and flying bad guys. By taking frames from the live action footage and using them as a base for the animated characters, Beau was able to make a seamless transition from the dueling celebrities to the animated world and back. When the animated character, Oliver, twirls his pepperoni nunchucks, our animators made sure that the motion was identical to the live action nunchucks. These smooth transitions that the team meticulously perfected are what give the viewer the feeling of floating along in a dream sequence.
Within days of its release, the video was featured on a handful of leading news sites and reached #6 on the Ad Age Viral Video Chart with 3.3MM views. AdWeek named it one of the top ten commercials of the week. According to an AdWeek article about the video, it’s the combination of hilarious lines “and psychedelic imagery [that] produces a crispy finished product” that is being so well received.
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Animation: Tallgrass Pictures
Agency: Threshold Interactive
Director: John Montgomery
Copywriter: James Littlejohn
Producer: Jessica Mingo
Production Company: Ferguson Presents
Director: John Montgomery
Producer: Jesse Trott
Production Designer: Tomas Verde
Hair/Make up Designer: Stella Tzanidakis
Storyboard Artist: Rudi Liden
Editor: Cameron Rumford
Compositor: Ferguson Presents LLC
Creative Director: Michael Grgas
As a part of our ongoing efforts to meet new collaborators, our Head of Business Development, Aly Bucholz, traveled to New York last week. There she met with producers and creatives from 15 of the country's top advertising agencies, from Ogilvy to the Wall Street Journal.
These stylish New Yorkers are always busy, but they have appreciation for seeing quality work, so they were more than happy to meet with Aly. During her visit, Aly found that the offices were impressive and the pace incredibly fast, yet all of the people were laid back.
Besides making new friends and eating some great food, Aly enjoyed discussing the new and innovative projects underway at some of the world’s best ad shops. We are looking forward to working with them soon!
Once a month we concept and produce a shoot that is all our own. It gives us a chance to express our creativity and train our production team. This month it’s a water-based shoot at La Jolla Cove by our creative director, Brad Copeland. The cove is an amazing location, full of wildlife and beautiful vistas.
The greatest challenge on the shoot was managing a dozen cast and crew on paddleboards, kayaks & rafts, which was extremely demanding both technically and logistically. It was amazing to see how we kept everyone safe, had fun and kept $50,000 worth of cameras and equipment safe and dry. We got to do all of this in the company of several sea lions, some of them brushing us underwater!
Another obstacle we faced was the weather, as real world ocean conditions make for challenging shooting conditions. While paddling in these waves, JB broke a paddle. Jeni saved the day when she hooked his boat onto her paddleboard and towed him away from the cliffs.
It’s adventures like these that demonstrate how the Tallgrass team is always there for one another. We’re excited that the product of our teamwork on this shoot is a collection of fantastic photos for our ever-changing portfolio.