Interested to see how Blender is used professionally to produce ads? Here are 10 best commercials created with Blender this year.
The ads below are not in any particular order, we humbly suggest that you pick your own favorites among them or tell us about ones we didn’t see (or disregarded).
Let’s start with a 100% made with Blender commercial for Cif international brand:
Flamboyant Paradise spent 3 months on this project. Not only the shots were rendered with Cycles, they also used Afanasy-powered render farm, so it’s actually 100% free software based pipeline.
Cif isn’t the only large brand the studio worked with. This year they also did character design, 3D modeling, and animation of the potato chip for PepsiCo’s Ruffles brand in this commercial:
And yet another footnote: Eugenio Pignataro who typically speaks for the studio online also releases source code of the team’s in-house Blender add-ons, such as Oscurart Tools (various modeling, rendering & rigging features) and Action Offset.
Pitchi Poy, an Israeli studio, used Blender for animation and compositing in this commercial for Hachevra Hamerkazit, the Israeli distributor of Coca-Cola.
ARt DDs keeps kicking out great commercials aired on federal TV channels. This time it’s a commercial for a sparkling water brand “Rosinka”.
The team used Blender for 3D modeling, animation, particle and fluid simulations. However AE was used for color grading, atmospherics, small fluid particles, lighting effects, and Octane Render was used for rendering with DoF.
The commercial was produced by Loica, a design and direction studio from Chile. All 3D was made with Blender (and rendered with Cycles), however compositing was done in AE.
Character Mill, an Australian studio, made this commercial with surprisingly old Blender 2.56 and rendered it on RebusFarm.
Enough liquids already? Alessandro Dalla Fontana created this ad for Compass Bank:
Tools in use:
- Blender (3D and 2D tracking/Cycles rendering/still compositing);
- GIMP (finish and retouch image);
- Lightworks (compositing/editing);
- RawTherapee (RAW processing);
- Inkscape (all vector files).
His reasons to not go for VSE are:
VSE is far to be a usable NLE, some characteristics are interesting, but without project manager, real time rendering FX, quick file render export, standard trimming and so on….. hummm, I tried, but for now is good only for something, but not for all. The compositing in Lightworks is possible, I have found my way, but don’t expect Nuke or the Blender node compositing.
There’s also a short breakdown clip.
This motion graphics ad was created by Latvian studio Hypnosis.
In this commercial, the team used a combination of Blender and MakeHuman. All 3D except characters was done in Blender, then they imported characters from MakeHuman with their ready to animate rigs. To get the visual result they needed, they tweaked both clothing and shading in Blender.
Again, compositing was done in After Effects.
They use this workflow in more videos, e.g. in the Pro Sieben Action Friday clip, where you can also spot a massive Bullet physics use. In another commercial, for a Norwegian theme park Kongeparken, the 3D character (bear) was modeled, rigged and animated in Blender from scratch, and all environment was done in Blender too except for fluid simulation.
Italian company FAB design is one of the more open studios in terms of showing their work. In their Vimeo channel you can find other interesting works, but this one below was featured in 3D World magazine.
All 3D made with Blender, all compositing done with After Effects.
Hjalti Hjálmarsson keeps delivering the best of little fat birds in 3D. One of his projects this year was a series of commercials for Íslensk Getspá (sports lotto).
Again, Blender was used for all of 3D, and After Effects was used for compositing. Hjalti says: “because of tight deadlines we’ve never found the time to consider anything else”.
Update. Just when we thought we are done with commercials this year, Hjalti released another one, and it absolutely rocks:
L’avenue Digital Média produced this ad for a Swiss BMW dealer.
The visuals are a combination of photorealistic (car model) and non-photorealistic (Freestyle for sets) rendering. The ad is also 100% made with Blender, no AE this time.
There are some project shots here.
We didn’t pick liquids related ads for any particular reason. It’s just that Blender was more frequently used in production of this kind of commercials. Go figure.
Another interesting observation is that last year only one international brand commissioned the work to a studio that happens to use Blender: Hugo Boss. This year (at least, as far as we know) it’s Cif, Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, and BMW. Granted, in 2 out of 4 cases we aren’t talking about projects commissioned directly by brands, but a proxy company that represents a brand locally is, frankly, a progress.
Finally, while not every studio provided information about tools in use, it’s quite easy to spot that a lot of commercials that rely on Blender for 3D, texturing, and rigging, are composited with Adobe After Effects. The typical reason to go for a workflow that involves AE appears to be “It’s what we already know, and we had a tough deadline to meet, so no experiments”.
Does it feel like “Best commercials composited with AE while accidentally featuring Blender in the pipeline” instead? In that case let us give you a sense of direction: small studios seem to be going from “3D in Maya and ZBrush, compositing in AE” to “All 3D in Blender, compositing with AE” and even all the way to “All made with Blender”.
What do you think could help to make more 100% Blender-powered commercials? In fact, do you think that it’s actually a problem per se?