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Aardman's stunning music video for ‘Winter Trees’

Bristol-based animation studio Aardman recently collaborated with Atlantic and folk trio The Staves to create this music promo for the band’s ‘Winter Trees’ single.

“The brief came directly from the band and Atlantic Records,” says co-director Saul Freedman. “It was quite loose and only had a few references, so we were free to come up with a visual concept.”

With an opportunity to create something completely different to Aardman’s trademark styles, the team got to work, creating everything from scripting to the final delivery.

Mixing up techniques, the video used 2D and 3D software to achieve the desired look. “The entire pipeline from Flash to Maya was very technical,” explains lead technical director Nathan Guttridge. “We were able to create custom Python tools to bring Illustrator paths into Maya, then create geometry on the fly from these. Having the ability to automate large chunks of the character-build process was essential to completing on time.

“We also used Flash to do most of the animation. A useful process was having the ability to take the Flash files straight into After Effects, where we could edit them into loops and assemble shots quickly.”

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