Last Updated: August 1, 2007 4:11 pm GMT
(August 1, 2007) Berlin-based design firm METAphrenie recently showcased their talents in an award-winning broadcast branding package for Middle Eastern network Al Jazeera's sports telecasts.

Winning a pitch that included design studios from the U.S., Germany, and the U.K., the project included concept, design, directorial, animation, and editorial for a comprehensive network package promoting upcoming broadcast events.

Led by a design and directorial team that includes founders and industry veterans, Andrea Dionisio and Mike Helmle, METAphrenie cemented its position and global reach in the design community, showcasing their ability to handle a project from concept to completion.The entire series included a combination of live action, photography and 2D and 3D design that were seamlessly combined to create an exciting and informative branding experience. The multi-tiered package included promos, stings, closers, lower thirds, and menu pages for the channel's entire sports series as well as for their coverage of the Asian Games, the world's second largest sporting event, only behind the Summer Olympic Games.

One of the elements, recently awarded BDA Gold, is a promotional package for the network's soccer telecasts. The promos showcase the three major global soccer leagues that air on the network–Italy, Spain and Portugal. Called Leagues, the series creates an epic duel between player and country by integrating intricate sport-specific live action elements with a stylistic design environment, as athletes battle out against huge national monuments, including Italy's Coliseum and Spain's Guggenheim Museum.

Commenting on the creative process, Dionisio notes, "Our strategy was to take sports and the athletes that play them, and isolate these two elements, stripping things down to the bare essentials. The sports take place in a highly stylized setting, with athletes all in white and their surroundings incorporating a branded palette of white, orange and blue throughout. We did this to help enhance the action of the sports. We also created a unique design environment to support each athlete as they performed their sport, including the CG monuments as well as a series of dynamic light-trails that echo the live action motion of the athletes."

The entire project involved an integration of actual atheletes, each in a really unique design landscape. Discussing the intricate motion of the athlete, Helmle muses, "The biggest challenge for us was shooting the various sports and incorporating this into our design environments. We shot on a digital Weisscam that can capture up to 1000 frames-per-second at 720p. This allowed us to capture the various subtleties of each sport--especially the archer, as you can see the arrow flexing as it's released." The end result is that there is no mistaking when one is watching Al Jazeera Sports.

The campaign was recently rewarded at the 2007 BDA World Gold Awards, with METAphrenie recieving recognition for its work on the following:

Gold : Al Jazeera Leagues
Silver : adidas +F50 Tunit
Bronze : adidas Predator vs. F50
Bronze : Al Jazeera Asian Games

In addition to the work for Al Jazeera Sports, the design team at METAphrenie recently worked on campaigns for brands such as Adidas, Audi, and the Discovery Channel.

Client : Al Jazeera Sport Channel (Doha, Qatar)
Title : Asian Games/Al Jazeera Spots Promos and Broadcast Branding
Air Date : June 2007
Design/Production : METAphrenie (Berlin, Germany)
CD(s) : Andrea Dionisio, Mike Helmle
Designer(s)/2D Animator(s) : Andrea Dionisio, Mike Helmle, Kevin Stein, Francisco Estevez-Breton Riveros
3D Artists : Radoslaw Jamrog, Paul Janssen, Pietro Salerno, Bastian Konradt, Francis Schmitt, Jan Meckes
CG Supervisor : Robert Wegemund
Line Producer : Michael Hajduk
EP : Heiko Mehrens
Original Music/Sound Design : Supersoul Productions (Berlin, Germany)
Composer/Sound Designer : Xaver Naudascher
Additional Music/Sound Design – Asian Games : Wicked Music (New York, USA)
Creative Director : Vico Sharabani
Composer/Sound Designer : Daniel Freedman
Film Production : Cineplus Media Services
Director(s) : Andrea Dionisio, Mike Helmle
DP : Stefan Ciupek
1st AD : Michael Hajduk
Producer : Jörg Schulze
Production Manager : Georg Ilse
Location and Studio : Havelstudios, Trabrennbahn Mariendorf Race Track (Berlin, Germany)

About METAphrenie
Based in Berlin, METAphrenie creates award-winning visual solutions for advertising, marketing, and the broadcast industry. Founded in November 2004 by creative partners Andrea Dionisio and Mike Helmle, the full-service design and production studio specializes in developing memorable design solutions that bring innovative concepts to life. Working across a variety of media, METAphrenie partners with the world's leading agencies, advertisers, and broadcasters to set brands in motion.

Dionisio and Helmle originally met at Parsons School of Design in Paris and each developed an impressive body of work prior to joining forces to launch METAphrenie in 2004. Andrea continued his studies at Parsons' New York campus and worked across the NY-design community at firms such as Manhatten Transfer (now RIOT design), Meccanica, and EyeballNYC. Mike also moved to New York to finish his studies in Communication Design and went to work for MTV, as well as contributing his art on independent projects for Showtime, FDG, and Kraftworks.


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