Three Post Helps Lenovo ‘Do Something Amazing’

It all started on a Thursday afternoon with a sliiiiiightly frenetic call from our friends over at cleandesign:

Three Post: “You want us to produce a video for Lenovo? Awesome! When do we get started”
cleandesign: “Yeah. It’s a fun project, but with a tight turnaround. We need it done by next Thursday. As in a week from today. Are you guys up for it?”
Three Post: (Slight pause) “Let’s do this!”

After a quick debrief meeting with the Lenovo team, we learned our challenge was to produce an intro video for Lenovo America’s Sales & Support Kickoff & Global Site Kickoff. In the past, videos featured Lenovo’s Vice President and General Manager, Dilip Bhatia, performing over-the-top stunts.

This year, Dilip’s wild idea was to jump from a plane and parachute down through downtown Raleigh – all the way to the front door of the Raleigh Convention Center. While this seems completely crazy, the theme for this year’s conference was “Be Amazing,” so this stunt couldn’t be perceived as average. Not even close. Although Dilip had was no stranger to skydiving – his last jump had been over 15 years ago, requiring him to do a tandem jump. This meant Three Post’s challenge was to make it look as if Dilip was leaping out of the plane alone and landing on a strategically placed bullseye outside the convention center. Piece of cake, right? Not exactly. This obviously involved some serious creative problem solving. Luckily, Three Post was up to the challenge (per usual).

Although Dilip was replaced by a stuntman for the actual introduction video, he was inspired to take his own advice and “do something amazing” while at Triangle Skydiving Center. Since Dilip was already suited-up, he figured he’d go ahead and jump. Dilip, a NC State University alum can be seen flashing the wolfpack hand gestures as he falls through the sky.

The folks over at Triangle Skydiving Center really helped us out in capturing the skydiving footage. After we filmed the footage of Dilip suiting up, Don and Greg took over with the aerial shots. Don shot footage of Greg, who was our skydiving stand-in for Dilip. With our first production obstacle solved, we now faced hurdle number two – figuring out how to make it look as if Dilip was landing at the Raleigh Convention Center.

To do this, we reached out to POV Productions for their expertise with quad-copter GoPro video. Utilizing a quad-copter allowed us to capture aerial footage above downtown Raleigh that would mimic Dilip’s POV view as he descends. Hurdle number two? Check.

With the production now under our belts, it was time to move into post-production. Luckily, once we got behind the computer, the only challenge we faced was time. And really, that was nothing a cup o’joe couldn’t solve. We hunkered down and worked our post-production magic to deliver the finished product – on time and on budget. And with an epic Three Post team high-five.

Sure – projects with tight schedules can be stressful. But despite the obvious difficulties in taking on these types of projects, we actually kinda love them. There’s a huge sense of satisfaction in testing ourselves by taking on and overcoming seemingly impossible circumstances. These type of projects force us to think and act nimbly and find creative ways to produce high-quality work despite challenging conditions.

One thing we didn’t completely master? Using the quad-copter. Check out our behind the scenes video to see how this project came together. And why we’ll never be allowed near a quad-copter again.

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Three Post Scores Big at 2014 Addy Awards

2014 Addy Awards – A Big Night for a Small Agency

2014-addy-awards-three-post-video

Three Post established what would prove to be a strong presence at the 2014 Addy Awards by opening the event with a brand new video commissioned by the AAF-RDU.

AAF-RDU // 2014 Addy Awards // Re:Mix from Three Post on Vimeo.

The night only got better from there, as we went on to win nine awards — one of which was the Judges Choice Award. We couldn’t be more flattered by these awards, and hope that it is only a preview of what’s in store for the future of Three Post.

2014 Silver Addy Awards for Digital Advertising:

Video Internet Commercials – American Cancer Society

Mary Catherine Green-Teaser-Final from Three Post on Vimeo.

Video Branded Content, 60 sec or less – Ethic Engine

XS Inc: Ethics Engine from Three Post on Vimeo.

Websites – Consumer – Services – MA Allen Interiors

web-design-three-post-Raleigh-nc

Copywriting for the MA Allen Interiors website was provided by Betsy Kennihan.

2014 Silver Addy Awards for Elements of Advertising:

Visual – Cinematography – Epic Games Recruitment : Epic Games

2013 Epic Games Recruit from Three Post on Vimeo.

This video was a joint venture with our friends over at Mottis, and also won a Bronze Addy in the Over 60 Second Branded Content category.

2014 Gold Addy Awards for Elements of Advertising

Visual – Animation or Special Effects : ” Meet Medlio”

Medlio : Overview from Three Post on Vimeo.

Visual – Cinematogrpahy : “RTP Video”

The Research Triangle Park – Experience Discovery from Three Post on Vimeo.

Visual – Animation or Special Effects: “Power to Grow”

Electricities – Prime Power Parks from Three Post on Vimeo.

Judges Choice: RTP Video

 “I wasn’t expecting to see cinematography of this caliber in a market this size. This is the best of really good work” – Tony Sharpe

The Research Triangle Park – Experience Discovery from Three Post on Vimeo.

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The Making Of: Doritos Crash The Super Bowl Commercial

doritos-set-dad-three-post-videos

The Making Of: Doritos Crash The Super Bowl Commercial

As you may or may not know, for the last few years Doritos has hosted an open contest where anyone can submit a 30 second ad for a chance for the ad to be featured during the Super Bowl.

Well this year we at Three Post decided to throw our hat into the ring. We saw it as a “hey – why not” sort of thing that with a low-risk/high-reward outcome.

Although our ad didn’t win – we thought we’d walk you through our process of producing the commercial.

The Idea

Trying to find time to produce our Doritos commercial was one of the most difficult aspects of the entire process. We had to work to carve out a few late nights in the office to just spitball and brainstorm ideas.

We came up with some pretty wild and off-the-wall concepts — a few of which we’ll probably keep in our back pocket for other projects down the road. These ideas ranged in scope for very simple and cheap to expensive and time-consuming. Of course we wanted to do something HUGE, but at the end of the day we also had to be practical.

Holding-Court-Doritos-Three-Post-Video

We felt that the concept we decided to run with stood as a great homage to one of our favorite movies — and one of the reasons why we got into storytelling in the first place.

The premise would mirror the classic scene in ‘Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark” where Dr. Jones swapped the golden fertility idol of a small bag of sand.

The Production

After settling on a premise, we had to figure out how we were going to turn a 2-3 minute scene into a 30 second commercial.

We made a shot-for-shot storyboard with screenshots from the actual film. We then took blocking photographs in the house we planned to use for the shoot. Finally we matched those images to each other so that we would have a clear shot list prepared for the shoot. storyboard-doritos-three-post

Another critical aspect of this Doritos ad was the talent. Considering that our commercial didn’t have dialogue, it was imperative that we find actors that had the right look. We had decided to do our version of this classic scene with kids, so we needed two kids that could capture the energy. After watching a few test shots, we cast William as our bold adventurer and Ethan as his trusty sidekick.

doritos-kid-three-post

The full-day shoot was captured by a Canon 5D Mark iii with both  24mm and 70-200mm lenses. We were shooting day-for-night — which means we filmed during the day, but had to make it look like nighttime — so we had to blackout any natural light and rely only on strategically placed lights. At any given time we had around 5-10 lights directed throughout the scene to capture just the right look.

canon-camera-three-post-video-doritos And In The End…

Yeah, so we didn’t win. Kind of a bummer. But we sort of knew going into it that it was a long shot.

So what was the point? Why go through all the trouble to produce a commercial that you didn’t think would win?

Well we mainly did it as a way to practice our craft and exercise our storytelling muscle. It was a way for us to break free of the day-in-day-out of client work and produce something just for ourselves.

It was also a great excuse to eat bags and bags of Doritos.

So will we do it again next year? You bet!

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Crafting An Emotional Story For Video: 2013 Raleigh Roundup

red-sword-three-post-cancer-video-story

Storytelling is our way as humans to understand life’s dramatic positive and negative changes. It all begins when something throws life out of balance, and the stories heart comes from the discovery of life’s truth we find in the efforts to restore that balance.

Three Post was approached by the Red Sword Guild to produce a video for their Raleigh Roundup fundraiser. The video would tell the story of how a cancer diagnosis changes more than just the patient, but affects whole families — and that change can last forever.

The Raleigh Roundup is a volunteer-driven event supported by some of the area’s largest corporate and medical organizations. The Raleigh Roundup is a special fundraising event hosted by the Red Sword Guild to benefit the American Cancer Society’s Raleigh Community Office.

The first step was to actually sit down with everyone and get them to discuss how cancer had impacted their families. This early in the process we didn’t quite have our story crafted yet — so we just sat down, spoke with people and let the cameras roll. We were confident that if we could get people to open up the story would present itself. This resulted in about eight hours of interview footage.

After digging through footage and transcripts we started to see the story take shape. It was all about plans change. How life can seem predetermined and predictable — and how a cancer diagnosis can throw those plans out the window.

But it wasn’t just about how plans had changed for those diagnosed, it was how cancer had caused a “ripple effect” through their families too. The concept of the “ripple effect” helped to establish empathy. It was hard not to see yourself or your family being affected in a similar way.

Once we had found our story, the challenge then came when trimming down the video’s content down to under five minutes. It meant cutting a lot of video footage — a lot of good footage. One of the toughest aspects of editing is having to make the decision of what stays and what goes — even when what you’re taking out is still solid content.

Eventually we were able to develop three separate teaser videos which brought the story down to its most elemental level.



The final edit of the story allowed us to build off of what we had done with the teasers, but also allowed us more time to establish the connection between these interviews — and unveil the bigger, overarching story.


We were honored to have been given the opportunity to take part in this project that helps to raise money and awareness for such a good cause.

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Animation Production: The Making of “Meet Medlio”

Have you ever wondered how animation is made?

Rough concepts written onto scraps of paper, images doodled on a crowded whiteboard and sketches crudely scribbled into tiny notebooks — this is where the ideas for our animation production all begin. But that’s only the beginning.

What follows is the rigorous process of refinement, filtering and repetition that goes into animation production. Animation production is a delicate balance of creativity and technology.

Once we’ve settled on an idea, the first step is to write a script. The script will typically go through a number of rewrites to ensure that it has both a good story and the necessary information the client needs the video to convey.

After the scripts are finalized the next step in animation production is storyboarding. Think of storyboards like rough comic strips. These storyboards give a rough visual of the sequential story we’re trying to tell.

The storyboard phase pretty much runs parallel to the concept phase for character designs. This is when we really start to flesh-out the look and feel of the video. There’s a lot of “world building” in this phase.

After the character designs begin to take shape we turn our rough sketches and drawings into vector artwork that can be manipulated with our animation software. Adding color and texture to the characters and environments, this phase of animation production really brings your world to life.

The next step is arguably the most difficult and time consuming — actual animation. Now it’s time to take all of your designs and put them into motion. This requires drawing and redrawing your elements to give them movement. If the last phase was where things come to life – this phase is where you actually have to force the progression of that life — AKA — make them DO things.

meet-medlio-animation-production

Obviously animation production isn’t easy, but it is a ton of fun — and seeing your original creation move is incredibly satisfying. We at Three Post look forward to producing many more videos like this in the future.

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