When you sit back to watch the Academy Awards this Sunday take special notice of the graphics and logos on your screen – they were created with the help of Digital Arts & Design graduate Ian Kemp. Ian is a designer/motion graphics artist at ABC Digital, part of the network’s creative team, and caught up with us before this year’s ceremony to talk about his part in Hollywood’s biggest night.
For this year’s telecast Ian produced a collection of motion graphics spots, transitions, intros, and lower third graphics that will be displayed during the live show and online. As quick as these images fly across your screen, he explained that each 5-10 second clip can take up to 40 hours of work to create.
“The Oscars can definitely be a bit of a challenge, but it’s a great experience,” he says. “Their branding guidelines are very strict, but I definitely try to put my own flair on there when I can. Just recently I created a transition and they expressed that it would be used everywhere throughout the night, so I was pretty stoked about that. Just to know that so many people will see it during the show is a great feeling.”
Ian has been with ABC since August of 2010, and the majority of his time is spent creating television and web content for their lineup of shows, from Modern Family to The Bachelor. This year will mark his second Oscar broadcast, and follows the success of their 2011 efforts, which saw the ABC Digital team win an Emmy for Outstanding Creative Achievement in Interactive Media.
“Last year we built the Oscar website in-house and had really cutting edge features like the ‘Red Carpet Experience,’” he says. “We constructed a map of the red carpet, and people could click on each video camera stationed on it at the actual event and view the footage in real time. I didn’t even expect to win anything, but it was definitely a treat.”
As a viewer it’s easy to get wrapped up in the spectacle of the presenters, fashions, and nominees on Oscar night, but speaking with Ian about his work is a reminder of the number of talented artists working behind the scenes to help bring cohesion to the look and feel of the presentation.
“It’s a surreal feeling to be here and to work on something so big, especially coming from a small town in Georgia where your dreams are simply just that, a dream.” he says. “I used to look on Full Sail’s website and see what all these graduates were up to, and it always seemed so far out of reach. Now I feel so blessed to be able to be here, and share these experiences with my family and friends.”