In 2012 I was invited to join the creative team at Belle & Wissell to help develop an animated storybook for the Microsoft Envisioning Center. The sequence was designed to help demonstrate the potential of Microsoft's vision for the future of interactive storytelling in the home. The concept sketches I did in the early brainstorms helped define the visual direction for the project and provided the basis for the finished artwork that was used by the animation team at Microsoft.
Over the course of numerous meetings we explored several story iterations that required rounds of pencil sketches. Quite a few good ideas ended up being scrapped in favor of the best and most workable script.
Some characters were abandoned...
... and some not.
Once we settled on the characters and the basic story, I began working on illustrated elements that the Microsoft animators would use to compile the final background environments.
I've been involved in a number of innovative Belle & Wissell projects, and it was great to be invited back to collaborate on this one. The nature of Microsoft's vision for interactive storytelling created a number of challenges that none of us had faced before, so as a team we really had to rely on each other to navigate through the process. There were several trips back to the drawing board, but even the unused work helped create a back story which in turn revealed the path forward.
The final experience at Microsoft's Envisioning Center is more than just a vision for the future, it's a reflection of what creative synergy can do.
For more pictures and details, visit the Belle & Wissell website.