The Video

Yowza Spot from Shannon Penner on Vimeo.

This is a little spot I did as a promo for Yowza Animation, the animation studio that I work for. I am quite proud of how it turned out so I thought I’d do a quick little write-up about the tools that I used to make it.

The Animation

I have always loved doing FX animation and love the work of Michel Gagne. Last week when this was just a vague notion that popped into my head while riding my bike into work, all I knew was that I wanted to make it look kind of like the opening of Osmosis Jones(which I had the privilege of working on). Sort of a macro view of the Yowza logo on the molecular level.

I animated and composited it all in ToonBoom Harmony. I have been working in this software(among others) for many years back when it was called The Animation Module(or something like that). I didn’t really have a detailed plan of how the close-ups of the letters would look. The camera move was locked first and then I filled in the details as I went along.

I really enjoyed doing the electricity FX. It’s something I’ve never really had a chance to do yet. Turned out quite nicely in my opinion.

The Music

Now of course, one of the main reasons I did this piece was to write some more music!

The original ‘sound’ in my mind when I was thinking about this was electronica mixed with some old school and strings. As is usually the case, when you start laying it all down it tends to head in a different direction. It ended up being a lot more electronic than I thought, but that’s ok. I like electronic!

Typically for the things that I write, I like to throw in an odd or peculiar instrument that you wouldn’t necessarily think of. In this piece it’s a Chinese GuZheng, a plucked zither-like stringed instrument. It takes the melody for the 2nd half of the track.

As I was wrapping it all up, I felt that it needed a bit of an ‘edge’ to it. That’s when I threw in the heavy metal guitar. That was a blast!

For those who care here are some of the instruments I used:

  • Vintage Organs (Native Instruments)
  • an Urban Beats kit in Kontakt (Native Instruments)
  • Technosphere (Puremagnetik)
  • Battery (Native Instruments)
  • Reaktor & Reaktor Spark (Native Instruments)
  • FM8 (Native Instruments)
  • GuZheng (SonicCouture)
  • Amplitube 3 (I.K. Multimedia)


Here are some of the plugins I used when mixing it down to give it some warmth and sparkle:

That’s all for now!



©2011 Shannon Penner