Igor Bastidas creates a trio of animations for Hermès China

Since we featured animator and illustrator Igor Bastidas’ charming short about life in New York last year, he has continued to create a plethora of editorial illustrations, gifs and shorts for the likes of the New Yorker, New York Times, Guardian and Apple. His style is usually happy and vibrant in tone, and Bastidas’ latest project also sees him embrace a wholesome aesthetic.

As part of Hermès China’s SS21 Cuteness campaign, Bastidas has created three short videos inspired by the youthful spirit of the brand’s latest collection. “They were looking for a charming way to give visibility to the new products online using its little horse Rodéo Pegase, to rouse adults’ childlike playfulness and naïvety. Luckily I got selected,” says the animator. 

All images and videos: Igor Bastidas

In the ten-second animations, Bastidas has created a brightly-coloured drawer-like space where the little horse trots about among different items. “The horse triggers the action in these short videos, resembling the curiosity of a child,” explains Bastidas. “The animations are full of quick and morphing movements, and slick transitions. It’s funny, and a little surreal.” 

Bastidas adopted a similar process to most projects in that he initially took a day or so to understand the brief. “I did some sketches, drawings, writings or whatever helped to develop the idea. Then I worked on the style frames and animatics, and finally the animations,” says the creative. “For these spots I wanted to create morphing animations through silly gestures and quick movements so that was always in my mind when I was figuring out the sequences. I worked on one animatic as a starting point, then it was my reference for the whole project.” 

Creating work for a big brand like Hermès China meant a quick timeline. “I made the animatics in two weeks and then spent two more weeks for the finals,” he says. “A true challenge considering that the animation was all made frame-by-frame. It was a lot of late nights and weekends with gallons of coffee close to me.” 

This was heightened by the fact Bastidas has used illustrated versions of the products rather than product shots in order to retain a cohesive aesthetic. “I pushed that idea from the beginning and worked on the details to make these illustrations as realistic as possible within my style,” he notes. 

As Bastidas mainly works with editorial clients for his day-to-day, or on his own personal animations, a big commercial client like Hermès could have been intimidating but he found it to be a positive experience.

“Regarding commercial clients vs editorial work, I don’t have any preference as long as the project brings something new and positive to my day,” says Bastidas. “There are, of course, differences in the process of working with the New York Times than doing something for a French luxury goods brand, but the connection I make between these two worlds has to do with what I love, which is design, animation and how to tell a story in an unexpected way.”