Nice Shoes Design Creates Starkly Stylish 404 Festival Opener

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Inspired by the phrase "Error Is Creation," by festival curator Gina Valenti, Nice Shoes has created a glimmering, retro-futuristic opening identity for touring global electronic arts event 404 Festival that incorporates information systems, vector video games and sustainable architecture. "We incorporated a list of previous locations for the festival with the idea this history culminated in this year's event in Taipei," says creative director Brian Bowman.

Bowman and a team of four artists spent five weeks designing the opener in Maya and After Effects. The film, which screened before each program at the festival, opens with a tiny spark in space spurting into an electrified navigation system that grows and courses through a stark, glowing cityscape pulsating with abstract data streams. A heady mix of glowing light blues and greens, the color scheme and graphical look of the animation recalls the Walrus navigation system and 1980s vector video games such as The Tempest.

The film's sound design also nods to the evolution of technology. Bowman incorporated NASA recordings of an Apollo countdown and then audio of the festival's artists saying 'error is creation' in their mother tongue.

"Finally we end on an ethereal chorus as the manifestation of 'error is creation' completes itself," he says. "The challenge was finding the right tenor for each shot, not derivative and not necessarily what we first thought of when we started designing."

"I'm so happy with the spot," says Valenti. "I want to thank the Nice Shoes team so much for this effort and having the talent to do such beautiful things."


404 Identity Film


Case Study

404 Festival
404 Festival
404 Festival

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Client: 404 Festival


404 Identity Film

Air Date: November 2010

Prod/Post Company: Nice Shoes

Creative Director: Brian Bowman

Art Director: Joe Lawrence

3D Animation: Andy Mai, James Collins

2D Animation: Kit Lam

Sound Design: Brian Bowman

Producer: Christos Mountzouros

About Nice Shoes

NYC-based Nice Shoes is a full service, artist-driven design, animation, visual effects and color grading studio specializing in high-end commercials, web content, film, TV and music videos. Since its inception in 1996, the studio has prided itself on consistently reinvesting in its talent, technical backbone, and client experience to set the standard of excellence both creatively and technically. Key company principals include: CEO/Partner Dominic Pandolfino, Head of Production Mike Donovan, CDs Brian Bowman and Aron Baxter, Colorists/Partners Chris Ryan and Lez Rudge, Senior Producers Pat Portela and Christos Mountzouros, VFX Artist/Partner Rich Schreck, CFO/COO Julia Kisla, CIO Bob Keske, and VP of Sales & Marketing Travis Taylor.

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More info: TRUST 646 452 3388 (NY) 310 451 5153 (LA)



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