TEDI London is a newly formed engineering university in the heart of the capital. It’s their aim to shake up the world of engineering education by taking a bold approach that favors design and attracts demographics not typically represented in engineering.
When TEDI approached us for photo and video assets for their website & beyond we knew it was going to be an exciting project. It was clear from the initial brief that if TEDI wanted to stand out from the crowd then their marketing would have to do the same. We agreed it was vital that we steer clear of the tropes of typical engineering and higher education marketing images to produce something that felt modern and dynamic while reflecting TEDI’s innovative approach.
For the Learning Environments part of the Brief while the learning environment side served to portray students working in some of TEDI’s key areas of study - robotics, artificial intelligence, smart cities, bio-engineering, software engineering, and big data.
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When it came down to the concepts behind the learning environments there were two key challenges: how do you show students studying at a university that isn’t running yet and how do you portray engineering without making it look industrial?
For the first, it was clear we’d have to approach this project more akin to a narrative film shoot than our usual work with the education sector as we essentially had to ‘create’ a university. This meant hiring actors and working diligently on set design and props. We knew this approach would work in our favor as it gave us complete control and went in the face of the typical documentary-style marketing images captured by universities.
For the second problem, we pitched five scenes that focused on areas of technology we thought were cutting edge as well as visually dramatic. It was very much out with the hard hats and in with the VR.
As TEDI is currently based in Printworks it was the client's request that we used a few of their rooms for the project. We jumped at this opportunity as we knew what a distinct and unique space Printworks has to offer. However, it is also fair to say that Printworks is an incredibly industrial space.
We knew if we were going to shoot in Printworks while avoiding industrial imagery then we’d have to go in a highly stylized visual direction. This is where we enlisted the help of a common collaborator and talented cinematographer Francis Lane.
With Francis on board, we pitched a style that would turn Printworks from an industrial print press into something more moody and abstract (two words it’s safe to say have never been used in regards to university branding). The plan was to fill the foreground with interesting scenes of students working with cutting edge technology and to use shadows and TEDI’s distinct yellow to transform the backdrop into something reminiscent of sci-fi imagery. Once we embraced this futuristic approach we pushed the style even further with 3D models, projectors and even a homemade rain machine.
TEDI London was thrilled with this pitch and gave us the heads up to move into production. What resulted was a long day of shooting but ultimately images that we’re incredibly happy with and will help the new University to stand out for years to come.
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