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Alex Yorchak
by Alex Yorchak
Jul 26, 2016
All Posts by Alex Yorchak

What Gordie Howe Can Teach Us About Making an Impact

If you knew me personally, you would know that my obsession with hockey is borderline unhealthy. I’ve been fascinated by the game since I can remember, and I truly believe that it helped shape me into the person I am today. 

In fact, the very first time that I ever used editing software was to put together a “highlight” video for my hockey team. I didn’t know it at the time, but in that moment, I had found my passion. 

Because of this, hockey will always have a special place in my heart. Which is why I wanted to reflect on the recent passing of Gordie Howe and hopefully offer some insight into how his legacy can make us better at what we do.

Change the game

Howe played the game his way. His mixture of grit and skill became the archetype for future generations of hockey players. In the same light, the best videos are the ones that have their own voice. They can stand on their own without supporting marketing materials, and have a clearly defined style. If it stands alone, it stands out.

Finding Purpose

“You’ve got to love what you’re doing. If you love it, you can overcome any handicap or the soreness or all the aches and pains, and continue to play for a long, long time.” - Gordie Howe

If you’re as passionate about your next video project as Gordie Howe was about the game of hockey, it’s going to lead to good results. Its why I chose to work at One Floor Up. Everyone here is passionate and loves what they do. Generally speaking, working with passionate people makes things more enjoyable and creates better products.

Give It Everything You Got

“You find that you have peace of mind when you know that it was 100% effort that you gave, win or lose” - Gordie Howe

According to ReelSeo.com, 71% of companies with successful video marketing strategies are planning to increase their budget in 2016. Cutting corners is never a good idea when producing content. Video production is an industry where you get what you pay for, and in 2016, not having a solid video budget could be detrimental to your marketing efforts. Check out these statistics about how important investing in video will be in the coming years.

Alex Yorchak
by Alex Yorchak
Jul 13, 2016
All Posts by Alex Yorchak

Virtual Reality versus 360 Video

What a time to be alive...

This blog post isn’t a plug for Drake and Future’s new mixtape, nor is it an easter egg for those of you who watched the Simpsons religiously. (Although both would undoubtedly guarantee that we’d be good friends.)

This blog is about the future… And the future is now!

It’s an observation that I’m making more and more this year. Just the other day, SpaceX successfully landed first stage on a drone ship in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean after launching a satellite into orbit.

The “first stage” refers to a part of the rocket that carries fuel. In the past, this piece had to be discarded after launching the rocket into orbit. So why is that such a big deal? Well, just imagine how expensive it would be to fly if 80% of an airplane had to be thrown away after each flight. 

Besides the fact that successfully landing first stage back on earth has the possibility to cut the cost of space exploration by 10x, it reminded me that in the distant future, I may be able to look down on earth from space. Pretty incredible.

For now though, I’ll have to settle for virtual reality and 360 video, which is pretty amazing in its own right.

You can go skydiving, be inside a music video, or float down the colorado river inside the Grand Canyon in these virtual adventures. 

While virtual reality and 360 video seem pretty similar, there are some important distinctions between the two.

Setting
As the name would indicate, virtual reality takes place in a digital environment, while 360 video is generated based off the recording of live action video. 

Mobility
360 video limits mobility to only the filmmaker’s camera movements, while VR offers an unconstrained and immersive world that you can walk around in and explore, creating your own storyline. 

Platform
To experience the full virtual reality experience, you’ll need a VR headset like the popular Oculus Rift. 360 video however, is available to you right now on your phone or desktop computer through 360 compatible players like Youtube.

Application
360 videos are now relatively easy to create with the right equipment. Like I said earlier, the future is now. 

In my opinion, it won’t be long before 360 video becomes more common in video marketing campaigns. At One Floor Up, we love finding new ways to tell stories and would jump at the chance to give 360 video a try before the novelty wears off. Hopefully you’re as excited for the future as I am.

Alex Yorchak
by Alex Yorchak
Jun 13, 2016
All Posts by Alex Yorchak

Why subtitles are key to your next Facebook video campaign

Are subtitles the key to your next facebook video campaign?

If you’re trying to leverage facebook video in your next marketing campaign, user engagement and video completion should be two of your top goals. Today, let’s start with the former.

AUTOPLAY

While the video starts automatically, audio features are muted when the video starts. This makes a lot of sense, as facebook understands that people just scrolling through their news feed silently don’t want to have audio suddenly blaring through their speakers. This is apparent by the fact that both Mic and LittleThings, facebook pages with 150 million monthly video views, say 85% of their 30-second videos are watched with the sound off.

ADAPT

With this in mind, Hotels.com recently lauched a very successful ad campaign (5 million views in the first 3 weeks) that pokes fun at the fact the majority of facebook videos are viewed without sound.

Therefore, brands should be treating Facebook video as if it doesn’t have any sound at all, making subtitles less of a feature and more of an absolute necessity. Inc.com said not including subtitles for a video may be “one of the biggest mistakes” marketers make on Facebook. 

ATTENTION

Besides being able to convey contextual information that would otherwise be lost when a video is muted, subtitles add an element of visual interest that can grab a user’s attention. Facebook's CMO Gary Briggs suggests companies start putting subtitles on the first few frames to capitalize on silent autoplay and to catch a viewer's attention.

Take this video for example. Now, despite the fact that the kitten is ridiculously adorable and absolutely everything, the video leverages subtitles to peak users interest in the first 3 seconds. Additionally, notice that the subtitles in this video aren’t just sitting at the bottom of the screen in a small, white font. The subtle motion graphic treatment makes them impossible to ignore.

When a user starts reading subtitles, it is more likely that they’ll watch the entirety of your video. Refinery29 also found that subtitles improved user engagement, increasing the number of likes the video got by 10% and increasing the rate of comments on the video by 29%.

So the next time you're creating a video that is intended for facebook, think about how the message would come across if it were a silent film. 

But if thinking about facebook video audience metrics doesn’t exactly get you excited, talk to the local experts at One Floor Up. We will spare you the technical details and get straight to doing what we do best.

Alex Yorchak
by Alex Yorchak
Feb 9, 2016
All Posts by Alex Yorchak

6 Free Typefaces To Use In Your Next Motion Graphic Video

If your brand doesn’t have rigid brand guidelines, it may seem overwhelming when looking through the millions of typefaces at your disposal. In my first attempt to rid the world of the monstrosities that are Comic Sans and Papyrus, I thought it might be useful to share some free-to-use typefaces that integrate well with motion graphics.

Bulleto Typeface

Bulleto
Bulleto Killa shares a lot of traits with the very overused Lobster. In addition to being a great replacement for lobster, it comes with free swishes and ligatures that are super easy to integrate. This typeface is free, but the rest of the font has to be purchased.

Futura Typeface

Futura
Futura bold has been my absolute favorite typeface since college, and I still find myself using it regularly today. A condensed font with clear lettering, futura is the perfect choice for lower third graphics and infographic data.

Noodle Typeface

Big Noodle*
A fantastic font for titling and short form text. It’s a condensed font with bold forms and a slightly futuristic edge. The sharp corners give this one a little attitude.  So what’s the asterisk for, you ask? Its free for personal use, but a commercial license costs $15. 

HNBEO Typeface

Helvetica Neue Black Extended Oblique

You have to hand it to Linotype on this one. They knocked it out of the park with Helvetica Neue. With tons of font choices, Helvetica Neue Black Extended Oblique is just one the many styles in this flexible font family. Its also a terrific action font, and one that holds up well when converted to 3D for things like movie trailers.

Bebas Typeface

Bebas Neue
There is perhaps no typeface better suited for short-form text than Bebas Neue. The letter forms are clean and bold, making them easy to read and understand quickly.  However, it does have limitations. As a caps-only typeface, it is not ideal for use in lengthy text blocks.

Simplifica Typeface

Simplifica
Aptly named, Simplifica doesn’t mess around with serifs or unnecessary design. A slightly condensed sans-serif typeface featuring thin line width and high positioned caps-height, favoring legibility. A simple and clear typeface.

Alex Yorchak
by Alex Yorchak
Jan 28, 2016
All Posts by Alex Yorchak

2016 Motion Design Trends

If you’ve spent anytime on facebook recently, you’ve probably been subjected to Kylie Jenner’s goals for 2016. Spoiler alert: It is as terrible as you’d imagine. If you don’t have time or just don’t care to watch the video, simply hit your head against the nearest wall until there is a sharp pain in your ears.

At One Floor Up, we feel like 2016 is going to be a bit less about “realizing stuff” and a bit more about getting better at what we do best - producing great work. To do this, we thought it would be helpful to identify some of the hottest motion graphic trends for 2016.  So let’s get to it!

1. Stroke-based iconography

Simplified, stroke-based designs have been popular among the design community for the past few years, and we think the trend will continue in 2016. The minimalistic style is modern, cost-effective and visually appealing, making it a good solution for clients on a limited budget. 

Buck, Blend, DEmark

2. The Retro / 80’s look

From vinyl records to mid-century modern interior design, retro is making a comeback. Motion graphics are not immune to the resurgence and are typically embodied by things like neon pastel colors, VHS tape distortion, and 8 bit music. This motion design trend relies heavily on nostalgia to leave a unique and lasting impression on the viewer. 

Interstellar, Chrome

3. Escheresqe Transitions

Anyone familiar with MC Escher’s work can probably guess why these type of transitions are gaining popularity with motion designers.  The smooth and constant motion paired with sudden changing of perspective drives viewer engagement by making the viewer more eager to fully embrace the next, visually-correct scene. These transitions have an immediate “payoff” for the audience in the same way that optical illusions tend to fascinate us and force us to look back at them again. The only drawback however, is that creating this look takes a lot more time and effort than “traditional” motion design, and as such, can require a much larger budget to pull off. 

Escheresqe Transitions

4. Mixing 3D and 2D

Up until the last few years, it was very rare to see motion graphics work that featured 3D objects within a 2D environment.  Recently though, mixing 2D and 3D has become a lot more common. 

5. Simple character design

As motion designers, we absolutely love this look. It’s clean and simple in terms of the design, which in turn helps to cut down on animation time. Win-win. 

6. Looping gifs

While there isn’t a consistent or defining style to looping gifs, they are poised to be one of the most used techniques for 2016. Looping gifs can take 15 seconds of content and turn it into endless engagement. These gifs are extremely shareable, great for embedding within websites, and the looping aspect makes it easy to watch again and again. 

Looping Gif

Talk to a motion designer at One Floor Up about your next project!