Date: 21.06.2017
Category: Making Of, Video

By Roma Yagnik, Composer

Back in December 2015 we got the opportunity to be part of a fun, nostalgic project creating a tv ad campaign for Plasticine commissioned by Pressure Drop Pictures for Flair, the owners of the brand. The ad has been running for over a year on a variety of children’s channels and has also been shown in competition at the world renowned Annecy Animation Festival last week.

The Team working on the project for Wired Video were Animator Tine Kluth, who co-wrote and co-directed with Raj Yagnik (my brother), Animators Nina Pfeiffenberger and Tim Drage, Sound Designer Ruth Rainey (We Are Audio) and me, Composer Roma Yagnik.

Tine, Raj and Roma had worked together before on a little festive project.

A Vegetable Nativity – 2013 from Wired Video on Vimeo.

and since on one of PLAN’s Day of the Girl animations

Princess Kong – Girls Takeover from Wired Video on Vimeo.

The music brief:
Something simple, positive, not too busy (room for a lot of sound effects), which changes subtly for each different scene. The following animatic (with the script read by Raj in Voice over mode!) was provided:

Plasticine – Animatic from Wired Video on Vimeo.

Based on the script, animatic and brief, I wrote a first draft of the music.

I chose a tempo and instruments which was quick enough to allow for the music to be upbeat and cheeky but not so fast we would end up with it sounding too cluttered. Next, I watched loads of old adverts to get ideas for how to write the initial section which is a flashback to the 1980s. From the animatic and script, I knew that the ad went from flashback kitchen to space to the sea to the sky to the jungle, espionage and then a modern kitchen and that it was important to include elements of all of the different things going on without the music sounding like it makes too dramatic a change and losing the flow – melody is key! At this stage I also put in some quick sound effects to help properly connect the sonic world of the ad with the visuals and the voiceover that would soon be recorded. Here is the first draft:

version 1.1 music and sfx from Wired Video on Vimeo.

As Raj worked hard with the client to finesse the script the feedback resulted in some developments, monkeys moved and football disappeared, a spy became a popstar and mermaids, hot air balloons and colourful birds were added to the plan! The live action sections for the start and end of the ads were also cast and filmed, production being handled by the very able Colette McWilliams from Pressure Drop. The score was updated to reflect the new script changes and Geordie draft voice overs were recorded (Thanks Stan Woodward and Jez Stephenson):

Plasticine version 1.2 music sfx and northern vo from Wired Video on Vimeo.

Sadly, the client decided to go with a more ‘neutral’ accent and that in terms of score they also wanted something much more orchestral and polished sounding. Rather than emulating the style of the ads that were around in the 1980s we decided to try out an “old Disney” kind of style for the very start of the advert. The full score was orchestrated and produced to sound more orchestral and polished, vocals were added to the pop-star section, the jungle drums were ramped up for our tiger and the score was done:

Plasticine TV Ad from Wired Video on Vimeo.

You can listen to more of my work at: