May 31, 2023

3 Broad Types of Videos that Can Boost Your Brand

If you're reading this, you too have come to recognize the importance of employing different types of videos in branding and marketing. If you're looking to enhance your brand, here are the three types we believe are crucial.

Brand videos can also be product centric.

Type 1: Brand Videos

At the core of any successful brand lies a compelling story that resonates with its audience. A well-crafted brand video can effectively communicate that story and create an emotional connection with your audience.

As a team, we work hard to create brand videos that ask the question "what does your brand stand for?". We strive to tell a story that is engaging, authentic, and memorable. By doing so, we aim to create a lasting impression on our client's target audience, which can help increase brand recognition and loyalty.

Type 2: Product Videos

Product videos are an excellent way to showcase your products and services and communicate their features and benefits to your audience. This type of video can also help you establish your brand as a thought leader in your industry.

As a video production team, we understand the importance of creating product videos that are engaging, informative, and visually appealing. Our goal is to create product videos that inspire action. Whether it's a purchase, a request for more information, or a sign-up for a free trial. We aim to communicate a tactile quality even though you're watching a two dimensional representation of the product (if its a tangible product, that is)

Type 3: Testimonial Videos

A favourite of our hero, David Ogilvy, testimonial videos are an effective way to build trust and credibility with your audience. They allow your satisfied customers to speak on your behalf, sharing their experiences with your products or services and providing social proof of their effectiveness.

As a team, we believe that testimonial videos can be a powerful marketing tool. We work closely with our clients to identify satisfied customers who are willing to share their experiences on camera. We then craft what is an effective type of video that helps build trust and credibility with the audience.

Yixin Chen for L'Oreal Kiehl's

Bonus Video Type: Social Media Videos

In today's digital age, social media has become a crucial part of any successful marketing strategy. Social media videos can help you reach a wider audience and engage with your followers in a more personal and meaningful way.

As a video production team, we recognize the importance of social media videos in today's marketing landscape. We work closely with our clients to develop videos that are optimized for different social media platforms, such as Instagram, Tik Tok, Facebook, and YouTube. We also strive to create videos that are engaging, informative, and shareable. Ultimately helping our clients increase their social media following and drive more traffic to their websites.

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, video is a powerful tool that can help you enhance your brand and grow your business. As a video production team, we understand the importance of creating high-quality videos that effectively communicate your message and engage your audience.

Whether you're looking to create brand videos, product videos, testimonial videos, or social media videos, we can help. We have the experience, expertise, and creativity needed to produce videos that resonate with your audience and help you achieve your marketing goals.

In the words of JD Salinger, "What really knocks me out is a book that, when you're all done reading it, you wish the author that wrote it was a terrific friend of yours and you could call him up on the phone whenever you felt like it. That doesn't happen much, though." We hope that our videos leave a similar impression on our clients and their audiences, inspiring a sense of connection, authenticity, and trust.

April 26, 2023

The 5 essentials stages of Creative Video Production

The frenzied dance of creative video production
A typical creative video dance

Every video project is an adventure, and every adventure must be approached with a plan. That’s why, in this article, we’ll guide you through the five essential stages a creative video production company like ours follows, so that you can join us in the wild ride of visual storytelling.

  1. Pre-Production: The Art of Preparation

Preparation is key to any successful video production. During the pre-production stage, we gather our team and brainstorm ideas, research the target audience (what they watch, where they are watching, and how they watch it), create a script and storyboard, scout locations, and plan out the logistics.

It’s during this stage that we lay the groundwork for the entire project and put the "creative" in a creative video production company, making sure that we have everything we need to make the shoot a success. From cameras and lighting equipment to art/props, every detail is considered and planned for.

  1. Production: The Magic of Filmmaking

With pre-production complete, we enter the production stage – the magic of filmmaking. This is where the story comes to life through the lens of the camera.

We set up our equipment and get to work, following the script and storyboard to create the shots and scenes that will eventually be edited into the final product.

At this stage, we’re constantly problem-solving, adapting to unforeseen challenges, and making on-the-spot creative decisions that enhance the story. Or sometimes we are simply finding ways to complete the project within the allocated time- a useful metric we use is the Hourly Shoot Cost: the total spend divided by the durations allocated. Decisions begin to make themselves when framed in HSC. (“Do we really want that safety shot for $650?” or "Shall we explore moving to that other shoot location that's $2330 away?" ) Here's an article on the topic but it’s not that common to use HSC on set - it should be! Even though as a creative video production company we place the idea first, the more complicated your shoot is, the more you should keep an eye on it.

  1. Post-Production: The Alchemy of Editing

After we wrap up production, we enter the post-production stage – the alchemy of editing. This is where the footage we’ve captured is transformed into a cohesive story that engages and captivates the audience.

We start by organizing the footage, logging it, and selecting the best takes. Then, we begin to assemble the story, crafting the pacing and rhythm through careful cuts, color grading, and sound design.

It’s during this stage that we bring the story to life, adding music and sound effects that heighten the emotional impact of the piece.

  1. Distribution: The Art of Reaching Your Audience

Once the video is complete, we enter the distribution stage – the art of reaching your audience. While this is typically the realm of the client media team and less that of a creative video production company, decisions like aspect ratio, duration etc all come into play here.

  1. Evaluation: The Art of Learning from Experience

The final stage of video production is evaluation – the art of learning from experience. After the video has been distributed, we analyze the metrics (provided our clients share them with us), feedback, and results, to determine what worked and what didn’t.

We take this feedback and apply it to future projects, constantly refining our approach and techniques to better serve our clients and create content that resonates with their audience.

Join the Dance of Cinematic Creativity

At the end of the day, creative video production is a complex and multi-faceted process that requires creativity, planning, and a willingness to adapt and evolve.

If you’re interested in joining the dance of cinematic creativity, we invite you to reach out and learn more about our video production services. From corporate videos to documentaries and everything in between, we’re here to help you tell your story and bring it to life on the screen.

April 13, 2023

The Future Has Arrived — It’s Just Not Evenly Distributed Yet

That's not my quote, but I sound smarter attributing it down here instead of somewhere more prominent. I want to tell you about virtual video production and how it is changing the world - but just not today. And that's why we are quoting William Gibson above.

Take Off Studios asked us to create a pirate ship set for a video game launch video. This wasn't going to be your costume shop har-har-matey pirate setup. Rather an intricate 17th-century Malacca Strait pirate ship deck with geography and period-specific treasures that were more valuable than gold at the time- like spices. And some antique Chinaware because you needed something fancy to put your stolen spices in.

After a few discussions, we narrowed our production options to these three:

  • A Virtual Production with the Unreal Engine
  • A Green Screen with motion tracking using the Zero Density Engine
  • Kicking it old school with a built-up set in a green screen studio

We chose the last option because the future had not arrived evenly.

We will get into more about why we chose this method and more importantly, why we didn't go with the game-changing technology that was used on The Mandalorian. But first, let's take a look at this amazing shoot we put together!

Our senior editor, Jon looks out at the beautiful sunset at sea that only his beautiful mind could see.

We worked with the veteran (and very senior) Art Director, Junior, whose team fabricated a wooden mast, wooden deck, and a ship's wall using the right amount of "distress" to make it look like a ship that had seen many a plunder.

This Shein haul was a secret mix of silks and spices

Junior and his team then dressed the deck up with barrels, silks, and other props that were to be expected in the gameplay. (and also a 17th-century Shein haul)

We started with a blank slate. Ok, it was not blank. It was green. Junior (Art Director), Jaye (Producer), and Lok (DOP) contemplate life.

The drawback of this approach is that you can't fully visualize the set, lighting, and camera placement until everything gets set up. (And calling it visualizing then is silly- it's just seeing at that point. )

So measurements and mock-ups help. But it's mainly down to experience. We'd done enough green screen work to know (such as this recent project for Epson) where the pitfalls were and getting an even exposure across the green was key. (IYKYK). But knowing if we'd have enough room for the set, lighting, and cameras was the challenge.

But shiver me timbers, (translated from Bahasa Indonesia) the shoot went off smoothly with crew and clients from all over the world sitting in; both in-person and virtually. We used OBS to give everyone a live look at the set with a rough key-out of the sky and sea with motion included - in real-time.

Now let's get to the decision made- and explain each approach and its pros and cons.

  1. Virtual Production with the Unreal Engine
Image courtesy & ILM

The Unreal Engine comes to us from video games where it is used for its amazing ability to render a 3D world in real time. Add in a camera that is motion tracked and you have magic - you can put any background behind the actor on an LED screen. The 3D background "world" moves with respect to the camera's shake/movement. And this is at the heart of Virtual Video Production.

Image courtesy & ILM


  • The scene can be lit as if on location, not worrying about affecting the green screen lighting
  • You can "build" any set, no matter how big since its all a 3D world
  • Easy to "change locations" since you just have to change what's on the LED screen.
  • Reflective surfaces are not an issue. In fact, reflections from the 3D world can be cast onto shiny surfaces adding realism. ( a strict no-go in green screens)


  • Expensive studio costs - a massive LED wall (or three) and the roof are multi-million dollar investments.
  • You have to build a 3D world which can be tedious.
  • As of the time of filming, Singapore only had one studio equipped for a shoot like this. And surprise, surprise, it was/is expensive. There are more being built as we speak so this will likely sort itself out.

2. Zero Density Engine

This is an in-between solution where you still shoot on a green screen, but get a comped-in real-time result on a monitor on set. The camera tracking is excellent and you can place objects in 3D space in front of and behind the actor making for a believable set. This is an excellent solution for live events and launches.

Image courtesy


  • Cheaper studio costs. No LED walls or ceilings are needed. Just a pre-lit green screen studio optimized for a good key.
  • Flexibility in post - you can "change the world" after the shoot since it was not captured on camera and is simply a 3D project.


  • Lighting limitations - you have to prioritize the green screen lighting so only safer lighting setups are preferred. While your camera movements will look seamless, the lighting on the talent might not match the scene well.
  • Studios tend to have setups with cameras, crew etc that are optimized (rightly so) for live broadcasts. Not so much for cinematic shots.

3. Classic Green Screen or Chroma Keying

It's time tested and it's been around longer than I have - which is saying a lot. You do have to spend a bit more of your resources on lighting the background to make sure it's well exposed (a nice bright green but not so bright that it bounces back onto your actors). The rest of your lighting is independent of the green screen stuff. Which can be quite a bit of light on set. But it can be worth it. As it was for this project.

The monitor is your friend. We shot with 3x Red Komodo cameras with each camera's waveform scope being used as the final check.


  • Fewer moving parts compared to the Unreal Engine virtual video production. No lens calibration or camera motion tracking is needed. Hence you have more control over your shoot.
  • A very versatile method that is cost-effective. Just trust in your scope for exposure matters.
  • Limitations make for more efficient shooting - you have to avoid some colors, watch for every reflective corner of the set, and ensure your lighting is perfect (according to your scopes) so you end up paying a lot more attention to your set.


  • A "bad key" can multiply editing resources. You go straight to the naughty corner where you have to"rotoscope" your scene frame by frame - where possible.
  • Colors in your frame that can come close to green (or blue) are risky. The light temperature can also push some elements in your set in that direction.
  • Finer things, like hair, are tricky business too. But with the right lenses and resolution, you can plan for them.
  • Motion blur can make moving objects get cut off during the keying. A higher shutter speed is useful here.


I can imagine the day when we pull up at a virtual video production studio and pick pre-loaded background worlds from a database and the lighting guides that come with them. We will simply show up in a studio and film multiple "locations" a day, without the hassle of shifting equipment and crew, "art-ing" the background, or worrying about the weather/time of day. Our imagination will truly be set free. As will our budgets.

Arrr, until we have these solutions made more accessible, we will have to stick with what we know well -even if it's the harder option to master.

April 5, 2023

Weekly Show and Tell

Every week, one of our team members breaks down an interesting ad to analyze and reverse-engineer it. We started this off to improve our collective filmmaking vocabulary but we've since gone upstream to imagine the pitching process and why this idea seemed to check all boxes for the final video. That being said, it was great when Designrush wanted to feature one of our ads for others in the industry to critique. Our ad for Epson was an interesting video themed around parlor tricks to show off the serious technology packed into these devices. It's easy to get into your own mind's blind spot when thinking about something you've created so we'd love to get some feedback around our approach just as we do with our weekly video analyses on other videos. This is an internal exercise that's been ongoing for a while and we hope to share our opinions with you in an easy-to-consume format. Stay tuned!

March 23, 2023

5 Tips to Execute Remote Video Filming for an Overseas Client

the camera outputs were being live broadcasted to our clients

Our brief from Foodpanda was to create a brand video and a set of images (or key visuals). The catch? The shoot was to be conducted locally (in Singapore) and the client team would be based in Bangkok. But we needed to show them all camera outputs - both from our Red Komodo as well as the CaptureOne photography session. Remote video filming challenge accepted.

One of the many KV's that were shown all across Singapore's OOH spots.

Here are the 5 things we did that made it a smooth shoot:

  1. Hardware - the list was pretty simple:-
    • A capture card device. We used the Blackmagic Design - Ultrastudio Recorder. This carried the signal from the camera’s SDI output to the laptop.
    • A laptop running a Google Meet session. Google is free for what seems like an unlimited duration!
    • A power supply for the laptop. We used a portable battery system - it was bulky, but it lasted us the whole day.
    • An internet dongle. The Google “meeting” lasted all day so we probably used a fair bit of data.
  2. Software - Running OBS is very useful. It might look complicated but it's pretty easy to figure out with so many uses in production alone. It's also a great way to overcome the frame drop that comes from sharing a screen during a zoom/google meet. This way, your client sees the video in a smooth and non-laggy way.
  3. Process - We set up a google web meeting and had one dedicated person (a 2nd CA) managing the call - which included the connections from the camera, internet dongle, etc. The client had their project managers, art directors, marketing officers etc on the call. This was key to having a successful remote video filming session. We had our key team members join the call (with their mics muted) via their phones. We used regular earphones (without noise canceling) to listen in for client comments on the fly via the Google Meeting. This allowed us to carry out the shoot as if the client was present on set. We could call playbacks on monitors as we normally would and feedback was received pretty easily. One of our scenes involved the camera crew and director in a chase van filming a car. Our system worked exceptionally well considering the van was moving through the city and we were “broadcasting” our camera output to Thailand.
  4. Maximizing the system - During the photography portion, we put the system to the test. We decided that the client should both see the live view from the camera as well as the finished photos as a gallery- and we wanted to use one laptop for it all. By tethered-shooting (using CaptureOne) we pushed one “live” view of the scene via an iPad connected using Airplay/screen mirroring. We were able to see the talent in real-time together with the client. On the google call, we shared our laptop screen (showing the output folder). The MacBook Pro M1 took all of this pretty well. A PC could do something similar just with a wired second monitor. This setup was clearly not just for remote video filming!
The looking-at-monitors-life chose us.
in the remote video filming van, a portable hotspot router transmitted the camera signal to Thailand
You'd do the same if you wanted to know where your food was.


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