Maanantai, 6.8.2018

Case Marimekko: illustrations for a company that has a strong visual image

So what to do when people from Marimekko call and ask if I could make them an animated video? I was in a situation like this thanks to a colleague that had recommended me for them.

The phone rings

My first reaction was: “Eek, wonderful, Marimekko!”

And another reaction from me: “Argh, I cannot, I cannot, I cannot!”

But we decided to try it out anyway.

My second reaction was of course due to  the strong visual image and brand of Marimekko: how could I ever create content that is cool enough when the client is Marimekko, THE Marimekko?

The trouble was not the animated videos: I’ve created plenty of those during the past few years  and even last year alone I created almost 40 animated videos for different companies! I do the illustrations and scripts myself, and the editing, animations and voiceovers are done by other professionals.

In the Marimekko case the task was to make an internal strategy video. They wanted a global video so that their teams located in different corners of the world would get the same strategy message than the ones working in the headquarters. The video needed also to reflect the Marimekko spirit.

Following the style guidelines

I knew I needed to try out something completely different because my own drawing style is so caricaturistic. Luckily I got help and support from the client’s own team and their graphic designer. They gave me clear style guidelines already in the first meeting. First, I drew a main character that we used throughout the video. Then I did the rest of the illustrations based on the script I had written.

When there’s a video project, I wait until my client has approved the storyboard. Only then do I do videos out of my illustrations. It’s easier and more flexible to make changes into still images and text compared to video and audio files. This was also the case here: first we went through the storyboard in cooperation so that I could then continue to video work. When the client has approved the biggest elements of the video such as script and the illustration first, it’s usually a smooth ride until the video is finished.

Such a good video

So we made a video. And according to the feedback I got from Marimekko, it was a good video and it looked like Marimekko. It wasn’t just the visual imagery that was special in this video case but it was also the Marimekko people and their spirit: the company CEO, Tiina Alahuhta-Kasko, did the voiceover for the video herself and she was really good in that job, too!

The end result seemed to have met the client’s needs. My contact person Riika Wikberg, Head of Business Development, said: ”It was a pleasure to work with you and we were very happy both with the visual and verbal work that you did for us. The video reached the goals it had and with the help of it we could communicate the corner stones of our strategy in a clear and innovative way. Our organisation really liked this new approach to strategy.” A special thanks to Riika for positive cheer-up spirit!

Case Marimekko was in the end a very interesting video process that taught me a few new tricks along the way. Thanks!


Linda Saukko-Rauta

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