NFTS Motion Graphics and Titles for Film and Television Diploma students Xanthe Bodington and Ibukunoluwa Taiwo desiged and developed the motion graphics for NFTS Directing and Producing Television Entertainment graduation project, Control –directed and produced by recent NFTS graduates, Webster Mugavazi and Robin Pagnanelli respectively. We caught up with recent Graphics & Titles graduate, Xanthe Bodington to find out more.

The urban-adventure game show, Control, is set in the heart of London and has been selected for the New York Television Festival’s (NYTVF) Independent Pilot Competition in the 'Unscripted & Formats' category.

Control, is described as ‘The Crystal Maze meets Hunted’ Each episode takes place in a new city and contestants complete in a series of challenges in order to gain clues about a secret location where a cash price awaits them. At the centre of the game is a villain type character called ‘Control’ who takes over a new city in each episode. From his high-tech headquarters he sees and hears everything, manipulating the gameplay as he sees fit. ‘Control's’ sole purpose is to see if any team can beat his game.

Xanthe Bodington, one of the two NFTS title designers for the game show, said: “A lot of the main storytelling elements and environment set up in Control needed to be conveyed through graphics which made it an ambitious and graphic heavy project. Because of this, right from the start we worked closely with Webster (Director) and Robin (Producer) and kept an open dialogue with them along the way.

Xanthe continued: “We proposed that the audience would be seeing the events unfold through the character Control’s eyes and his monitors and we approached this by asking the question: "If Control had his own graphics what would they look like?" I was particularly fond of playing with the two "o"s in "Control" symbolising the always watching eyes of Control himself, which lent to the idea of putting Control in the driving seat.”

Xanthe: “The graphics became an extension of Control himself and helped give the show a strong visual identity. You might not always see it, but you can certainly feel it. We used the octagon shape from the logo as a device to show his branding and inform the audience that this is Control's show; he is in charge, by using it within the title sequence, lower thirds, graphics and monitors throughout the show. It creates an atmospheric style. It’s exciting!”

Xanthe continues: “This project reached many different areas of motion graphics which pushed our skills to new lengths. We used motion tracking, compositing, integrating 2D graphics into a 3d space by using Adobe AfterEffects - all of which were first experiences for me so I learned a lot from being thrown into the deep end. Ibukunoluwa designed and recorded the amazing satellite images and video you see throughout using google earth, to pinpoint key locations in the show which really brought the quality and style of the work up from just having static satellite images. The most challenging part but also most rewarding was creating the screen graphics displayed in Control’s command area. This required to set up three monitors, each with 12 different scenes and shots which needed particular care and attention to detail.”

Applications are open are for NFTS Motion Graphics and Titles for Film & Television Diploma course until 27th September and starts in January 2019 – Please visit nfts.co.uk/graphics for further information  

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