For the viral ad “Love Has No Labels,” it’s the message that has viewers buzzing. But, the high-tech visuals play an important role, nonetheless.
The ad, released recently by the Ad Council, has quickly gained over 50 million views online in less than a week, blowing up Facebook and Twitter feeds all over the world (
The ad was created by production company Persuade Content and filmed live in Los Angeles this past Valentine’s Day. While the ad’s emotional effect has been undeniable, there’s another side of the story that has yet to be told: How was it crafted?
To create the compelling images of X-ray skeletons stepping out from behind a screen to reveal their diverse personal stories, Persuade Content’s team harnessed a custom-made motion-capture system, courtesy of the experiential director Mindride. Director Danielle Levitt and her crew then captured the resulting performances and the incredible effect it had on the audience that gathered around, turning that installation into the touching final video that is sweeping across the Web right now.
To create the “Love Has No Labels” X-ray machine, Mindride developed an entirely new pipeline that leveraged motion-capture techniques typically used in Hollywood movies and video games. More to the point, the crew used Xsens' inertial-based motion-capture systems, which streamed the talent’s body movements as live mocap data. These human movements were then streamed in real time to a rendering computer, which animated the custom-designed 3D skeleton avatars, which were then broadcast live on an LED screen.
In addition to the mocap, the Persaude Content team augmented the gestural nuances of the performers’ hands and jaws with special midi-controllers to dial in the human-ness of the skeleton avatars. The result was a totally live, real-time, magical, X-ray experience that highlighted the nuance and individuality of each performer.