Food for Thought
This animation was created by Meghana Sarvepalli and Darius Safani. Together, we designed, animated and composited this PSA to help raise awareness of how child hunger affects education across America.
Our concept was developed to communicate this key fact:
Hunger Inhibits a Child's ability to process information.
Using a broken robot as a metaphor for a hungry child, we show that the robot has trouble performing compared to other students who are not hungry.
When given nourishment, his processing abilities are significantly improved.
1. Ideation and Research
One of the first things we did was familiarize ourselves with the work All Faiths does by volunteering for one of their food drives. It was a great chance for us to learn more about All Faiths and why the work they do is so important, as well as get to meet some of the people we could help by providing more exposure to the issues All Faiths tackles.
Step one after that was coming up with lots of ideas so we could narrow it down to our favorites. We then created style frames for our 4 favorite ideas.
As you can see, our little robot friend wasn't always so cute and cuddly. This was one of the main issues with the initial frames for this concept -- the idea was there, but the style and emotion wasn't.
After creating the initial style frames, we decided on two ideas we would move forward with. The two ideas were the "Mechanical Mind" concept we had come up with, and a "Nutrition Pinball" concept.
Nutrition Pinball Style Frames and Storyboard
At this point in the project we really loved the "Nutrition Pinball" idea and focused most of our efforts into that, and our "Mechanical Mind" idea wasn't quite where we wanted it to be. We began to focus on really increasing the character elements of the Mechanical Mind idea to make it more emotional as well as more visually interesting.
Mechanical Mind Style Frames and Storyboard
Full robot evolution
After presenting to the client, our "Mechanical Mind" idea was chosen to move forward with. With the majority of assets built, we began animating the piece and creating our first pass animation.
4. Polish and Compositing
After several more critiques and tweaks, we continued polishing and completing our work, as well as working on compositing required for both the main piece as well as a live action component at the end.
Overall, we're really happy with what we turned out with. We were fortunate enough to win a Silver Addy award as well as have our piece selected to run across the country for All Faiths and other organizations. It was an incredible experience and extremely rewarding as well.