3D backgrounds blend with 2D trees on Ecosia’s first ever animated campaign
Start Growing Your Forest Today uses the search engine’s updated design language, launched by Koto in August 2022, as a visual “stepping stone”.
- 31 October 2022
- Liz Gorny
When Animade was bought on board to produce an animated social campaign for Ecosia – the search engine’s first – a rebrand was already underway at the Berlin company. The design overhaul, produced by Koto and rolled out this August, focused on the regenerative power of Ecosia. Thus, “the Ecosia team were keen to see how [Animade] could push the design further, into something totally unique,” Frida Ek, Animade creative director, tells us. On 25 October, Ecosia launched the result, Start Growing Your Forest Today, a campaign that shows the daily impact of Ecosia, focusing on the link between tree planting and low-effort online searches.
Animade shows a selection of short scenarios of people searching online via Ecosia, only for trees to spring up unexpectedly in response. “The core objective of the campaign is to show just how easy it is to make a difference simply by using Ecosia, and we wanted to echo this message in the simplicity of the design,” says Frida. The minimal and “wonky” look Koto established for trees and other forms on the Ecosia rebrand is maintained by Animade, though with some stylistic additions.
“We wanted to use [Koto’s] playful, silhouette-based system as a stepping stone to expand into a rich and expressive world where our characters could thrive,” says Frida. Flatter, hand-drawn 2D silhouettes are used for characters and trees; elsewhere Animade introduces 3D backgrounds to “highlight the link between Ecosia users and the trees”. Frida adds: “This blended form approach also allowed us to playfully explore how the different media could interact and enhance one another.”
Despite the introduction of 3D, Animade were still keen to “avoid feeling too digital, and instead embraced a more hand-crafted feel through looser brushes and a soft grain”, says Frida. Texturally, Animade subtly departs from Koto’s clean linework too. 2D assets take on what the animation studio calls an “earthy quality” to create “an exciting contrast against the 3D”.
Ed Barrett, Animade executive creative director, explains that Ecosia turned to the medium of animation for multiple reasons; to communicate its narrative “clearly and concisely” and “entice a younger audience to the platform”. Ed concludes: “[...] I feel the collaboration has arrived at an outcome that bridges age gaps – that is enticing and entertaining whoever or wherever you are.”
GalleryAnimade: Ecosia, Start Growing Your Forest Today (Copyright © Animade, 2022)
Animade: Ecosia, Start Growing Your Forest Today (Copyright © Animade, 2022)
About the Author
Liz (she/they) joined It’s Nice That as news writer in December 2021. After graduating in Film from The University of Bristol, they worked freelance, writing for independent publications such as Little White Lies, INDIE magazine and design studio Evermade.