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I hadn’t slept for two days so Rachel was driving us to deliver our next job in Birmingham. A blur of colour and light through the pouring rain and a familiar shade of green, burned deep into my retinas, suddenly caught my eye.

‘Look” she said, matter of fact “there it is”. The familiar image loomed out of the relentless gloom. And indeed, there it was. 


The ad that nearly squashed us.


Only 96 hours earlier we had been in the production meeting with long time collaborator Tom Clarkson and the team at Saatchi & Saatchi, figuring out how to make this happen. One of their regular suppliers had dropped out last minute so we were drafted in. Optimistically I asked “do we have at least a week to do the post? Most of my team are on a big job.” “Not really” I’m told. “It goes live on Monday.” It was already Thursday.


Cut to the next day and we’re on a still drying overnight set build in a south London studio. It’s unusual for me not to direct but when I’m not I’m always glad it’s Tom who is. He’s one of those rare creative minds who can not only see past all the green nothingness of a chroma shoot, but he trusts us implicitly to get the job done.

With drives still hot from the file transfer I’m on a train back to the studio when the countdown begins.

Without access to the Cinema 4D CGI elements we have to R&D a solution that matches the EE bubbles. It also needs to able to be tweaked “live”, without the need to re render endless passes of the bubbles. So, after much experimentation with various methods, we settle on Element 3D in After Effects.


Doing a deep tech develop at the same time as building the ad meant daylight hours spent dealing with the client and delivering cuts followed by rapid research and development at night. 

The constant battle to fit all the text into the frame compounded with efforts to achieve ‘natural’ looking movement equals a recipe for sleep depravation.

The final 36 hours saw iteration after iteration and somewhere in the fog we got the email; “Job approved.”

Everything just faded to black as the 48 hours without sleep caught up with us. 12 hours later we were on the way to deliver files for another job, having wisely brought in Richard at Hippo graphics to cover playback at the event.

And there it was. Shining out of the darkness, an animated 15 second advert that cut through the gloom and made it all seem worth while.


The ad that nearly squashed us.

Dream It Design specialises in film and moving image for corporate, live event and broadcast. We have successfully delivered over 200 films for a wide range of well known clients. Check out our showreel for a glimpse of what we have done and please do get in touch if there’s anything we can do to help - even if your deadline seems impossible!



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