Trollbäck + Company Uses CG to Redesign China’s Documentary Channel
March 25, 2013

Trollbäck + Company Uses CG to Redesign China’s Documentary Channel

NEW YORK — International creative studio Trollbäck + Company (T+Co) recently created a visually stunning branding package and logo redesign for China’s Documentary Channel CCTV-9, using computer graphics to generate the imagery.

To express the scope of programming, T+Co created six unique station IDs featuring logo animations deftly immersed into rich, photoreal CG environments. From the humid serenity of a bamboo forest just after the rain, to the brand new Rem Koolhaas-designed CCTV headquarters in Beijing, the spellbinding package offers CCTV-9 as a window into the universe.

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We enjoyed working together with Creative Director Elliott Chaffer, Head of Production Erica Hirshfeld, Producer Dina Chang and everyone who was involved in this project, says Zhou Jun, Head of Corporate Image Office for CCTV-9. "We benefitted from their moving imagination and rigorous thinking, and were really excited by the beautiful blueprint that Trollbäck + Company gave us."

The logo animations for "Bamboo," "Electronica," "Ice Cave," "Metropolis," "Porcelain," and "Space Station" are based on six broad themes that reflect the channel's coverage of natural history, human endeavors, illumination, arts, progress and infrastructure.

"Conceptually, the cube is a fantastical multifaceted mirror reflecting the various roles of the channel," says Chaffer. "In some ways, it reflects reality or illuminates subject, and in other expressions, it takes on the quality of imagery unique to the theme. This concept offered us a lot of flexibility in our designs and allowed the cube to manifest in a variety of compelling ways."

With the exception of the traffic shot in "Metropolis," the package is purely CG-driven. T+Co's award-winning animation team used Autodesk Maya, Maxon Cinema4D and Autodesk Mudbox to model, render and texture each frame with complex, high-end photorealism.

"We aspired to set a high standard for CCTV," concludes Chaffer. "It challenged us to push ourselves and create something that's cutting-edge and cinematic. It was inspiring to be able to clearly define our direction from the outset, and then execute it with the exceptional level of support and trust CCTV put behind us. We're truly pleased with the package's outcome and hope they use it for a long time."