French interactive production company makemepulse just added two senior art directors to its technologically savvy team in a move to cement the relationship between design aesthetic and the high-end emerging tech projects their team creates. Louis Ansa and Sean Hobman join the Paris studio to assist in its projects, using emerging technologies to connect consumers to brands.
Explaining the rationale behind the new hires, Antoine Ughetto, head of innovation at makemepulse says: “As a tech company, we have always focused investment on our development team and on the latest technology, which has, and will always be, the very core of our projects. Going forward we want to create the same quality of work in both technology and design combined, which is why we have invested in new talent so we can better tell our stories and improve the quality of our projects.”
Antoine is aware of the tensions between technology and design. “It has always been a difficult relationship in our industry. Which one should serve the other one?” he says. “For us, it’s quite different, they work together, in harmony. In some cases, technology will help to resolve a design problem and in other cases it will be the opposite. It’s what we have learned from companies like Apple or Tesla, you can’t have a great product without a step forward in technology and design.”
Louis is invigorated by the prospect of working with such a technologically-focused team. “An approach that we all share within the team is that we should always work horizontally, where everyone is involved from the stages of early concept, to production, while knowing each other’s strengths,” he says. “Being a designer and working with a tech person with a totally different approach on creation enriches the product in an innovative way that wouldn’t be possible otherwise.”
Of course technology is a key component to design. Louis and Sean are naturally literate in the latest tools. “WebGL and Interactive 3D are the most exciting for us because it allows us to do what we love to do,” says Louis. “Although, WebVR and AI are two technologies where we see demand increasing, and could be awesome given the correct project and use of design.”
“Over the past few years we have seen how design can influence technologies, as there have been some great examples which combine design with WebGL, Interactive 3D, AR, VR... Surely, it can only get better. Although the design approach is very different from more traditional screen experiences, design thinking overall can be translated to anything. It just makes it all the more exciting to experiment, and to apply design rules and practices across other mediums.”
On his dream techy-design project, Sean says ‘Find Your Way to Oz
’ for Disney was the project that made him first realise just how incredible WebGL and 3D could be. “You could just feel the whole magical Disney vibe,” he says. “But then over time came the realisation that WebGL and design could be more unified through simplicity. ‘Swiss Army Man
’ for A24 was a prime example of combining WebGL with simple type interactions that triggered visual changes, whilst maintaining a very minimalist, considered, typographic aesthetic that made it fun, clean and cool. It’s this kind of experience that I personally feel really engaging and fun to interact with, as well as awesome to work on.”
Lately, what really excites Louis is to mix his motion graphics skills with real-time 3D experiences and experiment design principles on new mediums. “A dream project is to work on an interactive installation where I team up with a developer to design and experiment, to challenge each other and produce something we are really proud of, while learning in the process,” he says.
Image (left to right): Sean Hobman, Louis Ansa, Antoine Ughetto