With a new year having just begun, a brand new studio space for the TAG team and plenty of exciting new projects on the horizon, to say that we are excited for 2022 is a gigantic understatement. We cannot wait to see what the new year will bring to the table, both for TAG as a company and the wider animation community.

But what will the new year bring for the world of animation? Exciting new styles? Unprecedented industry trends? Some crazy visual tech that hasn’t even been invented yet?

Jamien Middleton

CEO – Jamien Middleton

More importantly, who would know best in terms of what 2022 has in store for the Animation Guys team? Well, our Managing Director of course! We interviewed Jamien for an update on what’s happened, happening and will happen in the world of animation. Here are the words of wisdom that he shared with us:

Jay, what’s new with the Animation Guys?

Following an awesome 2021 where we were involved in a wide variety of new projects, we’ve started off 2022 by moving into our new animation studio.

Last year was incredible for us and we had the opportunity to work with the likes of COP26, BBC Sport and tech giant Asus. For 2022, our team has a real hunger to challenge ourselves and smash whatever projects come up next.

It’s great to have moved into a new animation studio that matches the visions that myself and Theo (TAG Creative Director) had when we started the company. It has also allowed us to expand the team, which lets us delve deeper into developing new areas of the business and providing a creative and innovative environment for us to prosper in. It’s also got a fantastic drinks cabinet and table tennis table that we’re currently training on, to challenge other offices within the Business Design Centre….

How will you look to expand the TAG team moving forward?

Well there’s room for growth in all areas, really. We could see new faces in all our departments going forward, from production and account management to consultation and customer service. The real thing for us is being a full-service animation agency. What that means is providing an end to end experience for our clients from the initial storyboarding to after production marketing support.

We really want to maximise the value of an animated video and by growing our team we can ensure each part of our process features specialists that add the value at every step of the project. That’s what really sets us apart as an animation studio vs freelancers. Also, what is really key for us is that the team grows organically and the TAG lifestyle stays intact at the core of our workspace culture.

What areas of the studio in particular are you looking to develop in 2022?

3D animation is a massive thing for us at the moment. We’ve recently been involved in a number of projects involving the development of 2D characterisation into 3D. I mean, check out these little guys we designed for CBeebies for example.

By growing our 3D team, we can take on more technical projects and incorporate new tech like MoCap (motion capture to those of you outside the animation sphere). The opportunity to integrate this sort of innovative new equipment is the sort of stuff that we get really excited about.

We are also involved in a few projects around the AR (Augmented Reality) and VR (Virtual Reality) worlds. Again this is a pretty cool, borderline futuristic area to be developing in. Plus, with the inevitable approach of the metaverse these sorts of things will no doubt become more of a normality as time rolls on. 

While the metaverse may seem a bit scary now – we’ve all seen/read Ready Player One, right? – its synergy with the world of animation opens up a whole new area for development. This is something that I think could become integral to the animation industry in the coming years.

Before we look too far into the future, we are also keen to build on the solid foundation of 2D experience that we have. In terms of what we will be doing, we will continue our core B2B angle but would like to simultaneously increase our B2C project production. This could be in the form of film, documentaries or even TV shows. Will there be some big platform releases this year? You’ll just have to wait and see.

What are some of the main challenges that you guys faced in 2021 and how can that inform how you move forward in 2022?

Well the obvious one was COVID. Aside from everyone having to work remotely most of the time disrupting team comms, we had to work hard on keeping our work up to the standards that we expect.

The culture of our office is key to the videos that we produce. We are constantly bouncing ideas off each other to help ensure that each project develops in the right direction. Doing this through Zoom or Teams isn’t quite as straightforward.

Moving into our new creative space has allowed our work to more easily retain the levels of passion that we pride ourselves on during the content creation process. The new space will help us to create the sort of atmosphere that encourages the creation of emotionally-charged projects.

Working from Home Cartoon

If you want to hear more about the projects that we have lined up, upcoming industry trends or simply want to work with us on a new animation project, get in touch with our friendly team of experts by calling +44 (0) 207 2886 319 or emailing wecanhelp@theanimationguys.com.