Bringing Lush’s iconic products to life as Real-Time Characters
Bringing 2D characters to life in 3D for the first time. Using innovations in motion capture and the power of Unreal Engine (tech normally used in games). The characters were broadcasted and rendered live from London for a unique interactive experience at SXSW.
This innovation allows the Lush characters to live across multiple platforms and live events.
It all started with a sketch in 2021 as Lush released its first ever Christmas animation of The Snow Fairy, bringing the magic to life in a celebration of kindness, courage and confidence.
In collaboration The Mayda Creative Co. collective members FeralChild, the London based direction duo of Rogan van den Berg and Nella Addy, lovingly crafted the animation with a team of talented artists to create the story of Aki and The Snow Fairy. “Utilising traditional cel animation techniques and beautifully lush environment paintings, we were able to achieve that really lovely handcrafted charm you only get from frame by frame animation.”
Now, The Mayda Creative Co. in close partnership with LUSH are using technology never before used by a beauty and cosmetics brand to bring the characters to life! Through advance techniques in Motion Capture and real-time technologies, The Mayda Creative Co. translated real-life actors’ movements into CGI Snow Fairy and Lord of Misrule. Premiered at SXSW 2023, attendees at LUSH HOUSE interacted in real time with the infamous duo, conversing with the characters as they would other attendees.
“Snow Fairy and Lord of Misrule live in the Lush House at SXSW represents a bigger broader innovation. We are experimenting with character and audience with live animated interactions. It’s a deeper foray into future applications of story and a more dimensional identity of characters.” – Mayda ECD, Carl Addy
In 2022 it is estimated there were 400 million monthly active users across the various leading metaverse platforms, and the global metaverse market size is expected to be over $600 billion by 2030. Lush wants to meet their audience where they are, be that in the metaverse or IRL in their stores. This sort of technology does not only exist in the virtual world, it will also enable Lush to create a Phygital retail experience too.
“Lush is pioneering digital optimism by listening to their community to develop their next characters that are derived from popular products. Jack Constantine, CDO Lush, continues:
“Post coming off certain social platforms we still have our amazing audience of people who are engaged, and they know we care about them as we share the same ideological aspirations which motivates something like this. With the energy Lush brings, to do some sort of performance to get people excited about our products is naturally the next step. We’re heading into a future where these multidimensional platforms are an important part of people’s lives so we can meet our audience in their world to still have those important interactions and conversations”.
Carl Addy, executive creative director at Mayda, comments: “Lush is a brand that has an audience that’s so engaged and who are very particular about their favourite products, which Lush is leaning into. Listening to the community, rather than a brand trying to leap across into the entertaining space.”
Lush announced at SXSW that it will be partnering with The Mayda Creative Co, to expand these Lush product characters into longer form entertainment properties across a range of platforms, developing episodic content to complement and deepen the storyverse surrounding the characters. Could we see Intergalactic as the next character, or could Twilight bring some midnight magic to Lush’s storyverse? To be continued!
Listen to learn all about Lush Storyverse here
Notes to Editor:
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Since establishing in 1995, Lush has been driven by innovation and its ethics. Creators of pioneering beauty products, one of Lush’s most well known creations is the bath bomb.
A beauty company with a campaigning heart, Lush is on a mission to create a product for every need and a cosmetic revolution to save the planet. The ultimate goal is to leave the world Lusher than we found it. Lush operates a strict policy against animal testing and lead the cosmetics industry in combating over-packaging by developing products that can be sold ‘naked’ to the consumer. Today Lush operates in 49 countries with over 900 shops, 38 websites shipping worldwide and a global network of native apps, broadcasting channels and digital communities in over 30 languages.
About The Mayda Creative Co.
A creative collective formed from the worlds of advertising, technology, film and gaming. Partnering with visionary brands and agencies to devise, develop and deliver breakthrough creative content, products and experiences that make an impact on culture.