Behind the giraffe

What is stock footage, anyway?

Drew and I have worked in the stock-image world for a long time, so we tend to look at things as insiders. For this video the brief was to explain the concept of stock footage to a complete stranger. Something you could show your cousin Louise, or a random dude in the elevator.

First, I wrote a script, touching on the reasons people use stock: to save time, expense, and hassle. The script originally mentioned the difficulty of casting models and actors – dealing with tantrums, egos, and personalities. Though very real challenges, in the end we felt the giraffe-themed clips could do most of the heavy lifting. They’re exotic, beautiful, and expensive to capture. So we kept it simple and put the giraffes in a variety of simple contexts, followed by some other high-value clips.

Drew, the designer, made a storyboard (download the PDF), which exposed some things to simplify and shorten. Next: music. Luckily, we quickly found this perfectly uplifting track by Funny Death, licensable under Creative Commons. TIP: Finding your soundtrack first makes timing the edits much easier! The wireframe animations were created in Illustrator, then imported to After Effects, where type was added. Final sync and edit were done in Premiere.

– Jon (@ccmxl)