Illo mixes science with motion design to get viewers engaged in the climate crisis

The studio uses four distinct styles to illustrate climate crisis solutions for The Nature Conservancy.

Date
21 February 2022

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Illo, the Italian design studio, has partnered with environmental nonprofit The Nature Conservancy for a new video series on climate crisis solutions. Unpicking “the things we can do to preserve our planet”, the animated series addresses four crucial topics: Biodiversity, Natural Climate Solutions, Carbon Markets and Regenerative Food Systems, explains the Illo site. For the work, the studio ran into the issue faced by more and more creatives working in the environmental sphere: how do you get across the message of one of humanity’s most pressing issues and keep audiences visually engaged?

To convey scientific solutions and catch the attention of the audience, Illo developed four unique visual approaches for each topic so the videos would stand out when viewed alone. Equally, to keep the series cohesive, a “vibrant” colour palette is shared throughout the works, utilising The Nature Conservancy’s signature green as a starting point, Illo tells It’s Nice That.

It continues: “The two pillars at the base of the production of each episode were, on the one hand, research and interviews with experts on scientific topics, and on the other, free creative moodboards and art direction explorations.” The Nature Conservancy was “very specific on every scientific topic, while we had the chance to explore all the visual aspects very freely.”

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Illo: Biodiversity (Copyright © The Nature Conservancy, 2022)

So far, Illo has released three videos online; Biodiversity dives into the variety and links within our delicate natural balance, while Natural Climate Solutions is set in 2050, looking back at how we saved the world with one of the most advanced carbon capture technologies ever created: trees. For Biodiversity, Illo tuned into a lysergic, 70s mood, using dynamic movement to zoom into staggering natural detail, like the 28,000 lenses in a dragonfly’s eye.

Meanwhile, in Natural Climate Solutions, Illo drew from the sleek graphics of science books, establishing a style that taps into a “retro-scientific mood”, explains Illo in a release. “Clear outlines and animated schemes add to this time-travelling twist,” reminiscent of “biology lessons”.

Carbon Markets, inspired by minimal data-visualisation and gradients, launched on 16 February; Regenerative Food Systems will follow on 23 February.

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Illo: Natural Climate Solutions (Copyright © The Nature Conservancy, 2022)

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Illo: Natural Climate Solutions (Copyright © The Nature Conservancy, 2022)

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Illo: Biodiversity (Copyright © The Nature Conservancy, 2022)

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Illo: Natural Climate Solutions (Copyright © The Nature Conservancy, 2022)

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Illo: Biodiversity (Copyright © The Nature Conservancy, 2022)

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Illo: Biodiversity (Copyright © The Nature Conservancy, 2022)

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Illo: Natural Climate Solutions (Copyright © The Nature Conservancy, 2022)

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Illo: Regenerative Food (Copyright © The Nature Conservancy, 2022)

Illo: The Nature Conservancy (Copyright © The Nature Conservancy, 2022)

Illo: Biodiversity (Copyright © The Nature Conservancy, 2022)

Illo: Natural Climate Solutions (Copyright © The Nature Conservancy, 2022)

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Illo: Biodiversity (Copyright © The Nature Conservancy, 2021)

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About the Author

Liz Gorny

Liz (she/they) joined It’s Nice That as news writer in December 2021. After graduating in Film from The University of Bristol, she worked freelance, writing for independent publications such as Little White Lies, INDIE magazine and design studio Evermade.

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