The West Virginia Housing Development Fund came to iA for a better way to educate potential homebuyers about the process of shopping for, choosing, and financing their own home.
iA responded by writing and producing a 4 part video series utilizing the trending technique known as “whiteboard animation”. To create the effect, iA turned to Videoscribe to create the foundation of the clips, but chose to enhance the effect using Apple Motion for a smoother result. The final video series now resides on YouTube and is embedded on the WVHDF web site. The videos have also been shown at realtor luncheons across the state to better familiarize the real estate community with the home buying process.
What do an adorable little girl, two disgruntled moving men, four square dancers, a frazzled family and an eighties rocker have in common? They are all part of two TV spots created by iA to promote the West Virginia Housing Development Fund’s new “Movin Up” home loan program. The program was designed for existing homeowners who want to move up to a larger home or are just ready for a change.
The first of the two comedy spots titled Get Movin’ depicts a family who must wait in line as a teen daughter monopolizes their home’s only bathroom. “Nothing could be more to the point or funnier.” said iA’s Carl Varney, the spot’s creator. “These folks really need a larger home.”
In the second spot called Change male and female characters who “change with the times, change their minds and finally change places” thanks to a “Movin’ Up” home loan.
“We’re grateful that the Fund let us run with our ideas for these spots. It’s not every day an institutional client has the vision and the courage to use comedy to promote a financial product,” said director Bill Hogan.
The spots premiered on TV stations across the state in February and met with immediate, positive feedback. George Gannon, the Fund’s Communications Manager reported unprecedented traffic on the Fund’s Facebook page and web site within twenty-four hours of posting the “Movin’ Up” spots. Patti Shamblin, a loan origination manager with the Fund, reports increased phone traffic since the spots began airing.
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A new thirty-second Frontier Communications spot produced by iAproductions for West Virginia markets has been picked up for use by multiple Frontier regional business units. The spot titled Best Gift Ever employs kinetic typography and animation to herald Frontier’s holiday customer promotion. The spot offers customers a $450 Apple gift card as an incentive to sign up for Frontier’s “Triple Play” package for phone, TV and internet service.
This is the second spot produced by iAproductions for Frontier that utilizes an animation technique known as kinetic typography. Kinetic typography involves the creation of blocks of text, animated in sync with speech and music, that convey a particular idea or emotion. It’s first recognized use was during the opening credits of Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest in 1959. iAproductions previously employed this technique on a grander scale to promote Frontier Communications’ “Custom Value Pricing” promotion.
Response to the spot in West Virginia broke sales records and Frontier’s home office immediately took notice and requested the spot be adapted for use throughout the Frontier system of twenty-eight states. According to iA’s Creative Director Bill Hogan, “The spot was so successful that Frontier requested the spot be retooled for extended use following the promotion.” Hogan went on to say, “It’s been a pleasure to work with Frontier’s Southeastern region marketing team and we are grateful to them for providing us with the opportunity to ‘go national’ with the gift card spot. For us it’s the Best Gift Ever!”
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A new sixty and thirty-second TV concept created by the Fahlgren Mortine agency for the West Virginia Lottery provided “just the type of creative challenge we relish,” said Bill Hogan, the spot’s director. The spots are the first in a series intended to profile the contributions Lottery funds make to the state’s education system, tourism industry and senior services. The spots dramatize the impact lottery funds have on the lives of everyday West Virginians.
“In the past the lottery has used documentary-style spots to let folks know where the Lottery proceeds are going. This time they tried something different…drama,” said Hogan. The new Education spots follow a girl and her family as she progresses from her first day of school, through elementary and high school to college graduation.
The spots presented various creative challenges from casting and make up to art direction. “We had four different period looks that spanned two decades,” remarked Sharon Harms art director. “The subtle changes in costumes, props and sets from year to year had to be carefully researched and painstakingly created.”
Casting was equally complicated. The Lottery requested that the cast be made up entirely of West Virginia talent. iA was charged with finding three different girls to depict the graduate at age four, twelve and eighteen. All the girls had to share common physical traits and two parents had to be cast to match the girl’s look.
The parents presented a make up challenge as they had to age twenty years in sixty seconds. iA called upon the talents of local make up artist R.J. Haddy who had been brought to iA’s attention through his aging make up created for the TV program Face Off. “R.J. was the right guy for the job,” said Hogan. “The make up was believable at each stage of aging.”
The shoot entailed weeks of preproduction, three long shooting days and a cast and crew of over forty talented individuals. Bill Hogan sums up the experience like this, “It was a challenge to depict twenty years of personal history in thirty and sixty seconds, but we had a great time shooting these spots and the results are really gratifying. We appreciate the chance to bring Fahlgren Mortine’s creative concept to video and look forward to completing the ‘Proceeds’ series.”
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The Steven Spielberg/J.J. Abrams blockbuster “Super 8” roared into theatres this June and with it months of secrecy concerning the role of Charleston’s iA Productions finally came to an end. When iA first began talks with Paramount Pictures in August 2010, the company was sworn to secrecy. In fact, the producers were so concerned with secrecy that the production had two working titles before adopting the “Super 8” moniker.
Now iA can tell all. iA served as the film’s production services company, providing almost everything the production used while shooting in West Virginia – from filmstock to flamethrowers, from hair extensions to explosives and everything in between. From August 2010 through January 2011, iA staff interacted daily with the Paramount crew, both in-state and back in Los Angeles. Long hours were spent making purchases, overseeing expenditures and making certain every last item would arrive on time for each day’s shooting in Weirton, WV.
What can we do for your next production? Anybody need a slightly used freight train?
The winners of the 32nd Annual Telly Awards have been announced and Image Associates’ iA Productions received two Telly Awards for its television commercials for the West Virginia Center for End-of-Life Care and Ghareeb Dental Group. “With nearly 11,000 entries from all 50 states and numerous countries, it’s quite an honor to be selected,” said iA Productions Creative Director Bill Hogan. “It is especially gratifying that the concepts for these award-winners were crafted by our advertising division – Image Associates, LLC.”
One thirty-second spot for the West Virginia Center for End-of-Life Care brings home its message, urging West Virginians to declare their end-of-life wishes, with an electrifying conclusion in which a medical device called a defibrillator is seen from a patient’s point of view as it discharges, complete with jarring sound effect.
In direct contrast, the imagery found in the Ghareeb Dental spots features actual patients simply smiling at the camera in extended close ups, is upbeat and fun and supported by a light and airy Indy-style music track.
The new awards bring iA’s Telly total to twenty-one since 1996. “No other West Virginia production company even comes close,” said Hogan. “Our dedication to quality and creativity have always distinguished us from our competitors. Being recognized by the Telly’s is simply the icing on the cake.”
International Coal Group, Inc., has signed on with iAproductions to produce an employee benefits video for the company. iAproductions competed against one in-state and one out-of-state company to win the business.
The West Virginia Lottery won a Batchy Award in the Best Use of Humor – TV category at the 2009 North American Association of State and Provincial Lotteries (NASPL). Named after lottery pioneer Ralph Batch, the award honors excellence in advertising. iAproductions was pleased to be a partner on this project.
The concept, “The Nanny”, was developed by West Virginia Lottery agency Charles Ryan Associates. Directed by iAproductions Bill Hogan, the spot features a weary housewife, whose daydream of winning the lottery transports her to a place of tranquility, complete with an English nanny, only to be brought back to reality by her misbehaving children.
Since Charles Ryan Associates became the agency of record for the West Virginia Lottery, iAproductions has produced the majority of the TV work that CRA has created for the Lottery.
Just last week the West Virginia Lottery and Charles Ryan Associates took top honors for the Lottery’s “What’s Your Dream” campaign and for a 30-second TV spot that, along with the five other spots, was produced by iAproductions and directed by IA’s creative director Bill Hogan. Both the campaign and the spot garnered top awards, the Silver Addy.
iAproductions, a subsidiary of Image Associates, LLC, recently provided comprehensive high-definition production services to Charles Ryan Associates for a new series of “What’s Your Dream?” commercials for the West Virginia Lottery. The concept was created by Charles Ryan Associates and the production bid received by iAproductions on September 22nd. The job entailed producing six commercials. An unusually short deadline was presented to our staff, and the brainstorming began immediately. The pre-production process for a shoot of this magnitude generally takes at least one month, but within 13 days the production was in full swing.
I.A Productions utilized two Sony Cinealta HD cameras during the shoot. These state-of-the-art cameras are the industry standard for high-definition images and they were exactly what Charles Ryan Associates requested. One of the most dynamic visuals was created when our camera was mounted to a red Chevrolet Corvette. The scene called for fluid movements while the car was being driven at high speeds around sharp curves. Our professional crew was able to secure this shot and move on to the next scene without breaking pace.
Our talented art department envisioned multiple locations and sets for the production. For one spot, our crew constructed a haute-couture dressing room that was designed and furnished with items chosen by Image Associates’ award-winning Art Director Sharon Harms and approved by Steve Grey, Charles Ryan Associates’ vice president/creative director. The dressing room scene required the cameras to be mounted on our jib to create a surreal effect. Lighting effects combined with unique camera angles and movements created just the look that the concept team at Charles Ryan Associates had envisioned.
During the middle of the shooting week, the weather did not cooperate, and producer Dianna Ballard had to make last-minute changes and preparations to overcome an intense rain storm. A jib was required in an outdoor setting, but ultimately Ballard was left with no choice but to reschedule the crew and make special arrangements for the jib operator to return to Charleston the following day to secure the specialized shot. The crew relocated to the Clay Center for the Arts and Sciences and began work on a separate spot as a result of the rain. Ballard arranged together all the missing components such as talent and location details, and without delay the production continued. This allowed all parties involved to stay on schedule.
The five-day shoot included stops in eight locations around the Charleston metro area. The shoot was comprised of 26 mainly local professionals. A total of 25 regional actors were hired and costumed in clothing and props all purchased within the local Charleston area. Space Junk Media was contracted to assist Director Bill Hogan in all areas of special effects, and Hogan was involved with the post-production editing and special effects throughout the process.
In the end, Charles Ryan Associates was quite pleased with the creative process and the final product. The West Virginia Lottery commented on how smooth the production process went in addition to the professionalism and timeliness of the I.A. staff and crew. According to Director Bill Hogan, what should have taken at least one month of pre-production planning only took the iAproductions’ team two weeks to complete. By the end of the following week, the product was out the door!