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:60 Action B&W Campy Celebrities Crime Family Females Humor Males Samples Storyboarding Synergy Vehicles VFX

A Million Ways to Die in the West / Lizard Lick Towing

Here’s a quick fun one- my clients needed shoot boards for a promo synergistically tying in the Tru TV series “Iguana Lick Towing” with Universal Pictures release “A Million Ways to Die in the West.”  It’s like two commercials in one- hey, at least it’s efficient!

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Nothing particularly remarkable about this job, other than the timeline- I had to cram in 22 frames in 6 hours, which is pretty tight!  But they look pretty decent- the trick is to keep it simple and listen carefully to what they need!  I was lucky in this case to have a shot list.  That reminds me: Hey people, shot lists save time and money, and you get the shots you are looking for.  Most directors skip this extremely important step, and there ends up being a lot of unnecessary back and forth revising.  So, young directors out there, think about the shots you want, write them down, and you’ll get things done sooner and cheaper.

The plot of the story is pretty simple- we flash back with out Towing heroes to the old west, when their ancestors were repossessing horses.  Its a violent place, and they risk peril to accomplish their goal- much like the characters in A Million Ways to Die in the West- coming soon to theaters.

I’m happy that the boards on this project very closely matched the frames I drew- means I did a good job!  The final video is below.

:30 Animation B&W Campy Females Kids Medicine Products Samples Storyboarding

Airborne “Everyday”

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Everybody needs to take Airborne Everyday vitamins everyday, everybody knows that.  Why, no, I’m not a doctor.  I just draw them in commercials.

Medical advice aside, this was a pretty simple and fun spot to work on.  Brought a little bit of color to the project with the vitamin “snow” effect, which seemed to work pretty well.  Smiley, happy people in a park, everyone staying healthy, exercising, eating right, and enjoying the sunshine.  Clearly, the Airborne Everyday is working.

Here’s the boards:

And here’s the final commercial:

:30 Animation Apparel B&W Campy Females Pitch Boards Products Samples Uncategorized VFX

“Bleach This” Storyboards

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Just a quick one this week.  These boards were done over at BNS (they keep me pretty busy!) as part of a competitive pitch… and they were awarded the job!  Always nice to hear.  And since the boards were very tight and concise, no further revisions were needed, and the went straight into production.  BNS has great designers and they really shined in their design frames on this project.

The commercial is promoting Clorox’s new special bleach that works on articles of clothing that are mostly white but with colorful patterns.  It keeps the whites white and the colors vibrant.  Cool!

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Our heroine enters frame in a very stylized home laundry room.  The stark white walls quickly become animated and patternized with bright colored dots, stripes, and shapes.  She uses the new Clorox Smart Seek Bleach and we follow the pattern logic to the inevitable conclusion- Clorox Smart Seek Bleach rules!

Generally, patterns are REALLY hard to draw because the massive amounts of time it takes to draw them accurately.  Luckily, the BNS designers had all that locked up before I got there and I permitted myself the great luxury of tracing them in order to make sure the boards were ready on time.

Here’s the boards:

And here’s the final spot.

See ya next week!

:30 Animation Campy Family Food Hip Humor Kids Uncategorized VFX

Reeses Puffs Breakfast Cereal Storyboards

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We see our young hero approach his ultramodern kitchen and select his breakfast of choice- Reeses, of course.  It’s the only cereal replete with musical talent.  Each little particle of puffed wheat is a symphony in the crunching.  That’s clear.  But what you may not realize is no force on earth can contain said symphony once it has been summoned- it MUST come forth and fill the void with sound waves of chocolately goodness. Only after it’s song has finished will it subside to it’s cardboard container, and rest until a new day dawns.

Here’s the boards:

Here’s the vid:

Originally I drew this hero kid as black- We all just assumed he would be, since the previous spot for Reeses Puffs Breakfast employed a young black kid as well.  But, I guess somebody switched it up in casting because they went with a cool asian kid instead.  I like that because small decisions like that mark a major shift in asian demographics- both targeting and buying habits.  Speaking very generally here, but things that happen in commercials have to be relatable to a vast audience because duh.  So when you see a cereal commercial starring an asian kid, it’s because somebody up the chain decided the world was ready for cool asian kids to star in a cereal commercial.  It means Asian kids in America have crossed into a new threshold of cool…. by buying sugary cereals in mass quantities.






:30 Campy Color Family Females Humor Males Money Samples Storyboarding

Visa “Nuts-ish”


It’s what happens when you get a new Visa card.  You go a little “nuts-ish”.  You’ve got all this newfound spending power, and your imagination goes kinda nuts, to the point that your living room is transformed into a playden of impulse purchases.  You’re camping in the woods with your buddy, backpacking in the Himalayas on an alpaca, taking rock climbing classes from Hans, eating a million hamburgers, and canoeing the colorado river… poof!  Your wife shatters  your dreams, as usual- to make room for Hans the lifeguard.   The Visa spending meter (on the right side of the screen) allowed your wife to monitor your insane purchases and nix them before they got out of control.  Too bad… those scuba diving classes looked promising.  Here’s the full sequence:

So was is a day’s work.  The loose color was by request of the director- it helped play up the comedy and perhaps the drawings read better for it.  But in order to make time for that, I had to compromise the drawing detail.  Overall I think it works very well.

You’ll notice I used a few arrows in this spot.  Generally I use as few arrows as possible- they are often used as a crutch by artists who are unable to convey a sense of natural movement in their drawings.  In this case, the movements are wholly unnatural- as the canoe and waves slide in from the sides in a campy fashion.  So, they are warranted here.

Wish I had a link to the final video. Sadly, I suspect the project was killed shortly after these boards were completed.

Merry Xmas, and Happy New Year.

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