Facebook News Show Pilot

PITCH DECK

Quartz is launching a Facebook news show in July and I am serving as its art director. Here are some selected pages from the pitch deck that I designed. It provides a preview of the overall art direction of the series. It's bold and modern, but also has a sense of humor and a bit of quirkiness. The colors reflect Quartz' established palette and uses the more saturated colors. The intense blues and pinks will catch the eye of even the most apathetic Facebook scrollers.

PROPS

One of the more fun elements of the overall creative direction are the props. I thought that bobbleheads would be a nice, physical touch that would serve as a bridge between shot footage and graphics produced in post. They also add a bit of levity to the very serious subjects that Quartz will be tackling. My colleague Michael Tabb modeled them in Cinema 4D, then 3D-printed, sanded and painted them.

PILOT

This is the original concept, and while it could use some fine tuning, it captures the spirit of the show that Quartz will create. A more refined version is launching on July 19th.

Quartz Template

File Size:

My main goal in redesigning the Quartz Video template was to make it easier for video editors to use custom graphics. My first task was to shrink the file size. It was almost impossible to transfer the template to remote workers due to the gargantuan 60 gig size and the many, many duplicate files. Plus, updates were built on top of the old template making file paths for graphic elements very confusing.

 Notice the whopping file size of the old template

Notice the whopping file size of the old template


So I remade the whole thing from scratch.


LEARNING TO USE MOGRTS:

 The text animation is built in, but editors are empowered to change the text size. color, content and position in the essential graphics panel to your left.

The text animation is built in, but editors are empowered to change the text size. color, content and position in the essential graphics panel to your left.

I used Adobe's new file type that is specifically designed for motion graphics in Premiere. I created them in After Effects (AE) and use expressions (code within AE that's slightly modified JavaScript) to automate things like color and animation and then create a special file to import that animation in Premiere.

moving-and-scaling-text.gif

 

All of our text on screen and graphic elements have to be easy enough to use for someone who is completely unfamiliar with After Effects. Quartz values highly produced content and (for the most part) every team member completes his or her own videos from start to finish. There is no post-production editor, so our template has to be simple, but also flexible enough to work with a variety of editing styles. In order to create such a robust template I did a crash course in using AE expressions and began to learn how to use JavaScript.

 You can check the box to create a 3rd line and the blue bars automatically resize to fit the text editors type in.

You can check the box to create a 3rd line and the blue bars automatically resize to fit the text editors type in.


I was able to automate all of our text-on-bar graphics to grow and shrink automatically depending on what the editor types (example below) and improve our credits so no matter how many categories you type in, the spacing is automated. I also significantly reduced the template size to 50 MB by cutting out/condensing several .movs and .pngs, making it easier to transfer to remote workers and use on laptops.

resizing-text.gif