How do we use radar? Where was it discovered and why should we care about it in relation to the Battle of Britain?
In 1935, two scientists proved that radio waves could be used to detect the presence, speed and height of aircraft. Five years later that discovery, now developed into a full radar detection system, was to play a vital role in the successful outcome of the Battle of Britain.
Bawdsey Manor and its surrounding estate in Suffolk was the
birthplace of radar technology in the early 1900s. In 2016, the Bawdsey Radar Trust were awarded £1.8m to conserve the main Transmitter Block building.
As well as showing the conserved fabric of the building, the Trust wanted to develop both physical and virtual ways for the visitors understand how the early work at Bawdsey laid the foundation for a fascinating social and scientific history, it’s use in WW2 and current technologies.
We were enlisted by exhibition designers PLB, to help bring this vision to life across graphic panels, interactive’s and engaging films. From bold animations telling the science of radar, to a giant physical interactive timeline and aerial filming of the entire estate, the zoned exhibition takes you through over 100 years of fascinating history.
While Radar itself is a key factor in why Bawdsey is an important location, the people and their story needs to be placed up front.
For us, creating pieces of AV which used first-hand oral histories of those who worked at the radar station was essential.
10 fields, 8 swords, 5 Ducks, 2 night camps
and 1 BIG WALL!
The brief had two requirements:
1. To help people visiting the wall to understand why the Roman Calvary were in the North of England.
2. To celebrate the horsemen of Hadrian’s Cavalry and educate visitors on the life of a cavalryman and his journey.
Hadrian’s Wall is part of Roman and British History that has intrigued people for thousands of years.
Our brief was to make a short film about the life of a cavalryman who had been assigned to the furthest northern reaches of the Roman Empire.
We decided to make a film that told the emotive journey of a hardened cavalryman, who was preparing for the Hyppica Gymnasia – a military showcase held in the presence of the Caesars themselves.
“We’re going to cause massive disruption to your lives, building this pipeline.
That’s a tough sell but it’s crucial work, it will help, and we really want you to come on this journey with us.”
The Ducks were asked to develop an interactive visitor centre in Keswick to explain the United Utilities programme to link West Cumbria via a major new pipeline from Thirlmere Waters.
This PR Centre will outline the benefits and explain the impacts that the seven year project will have on the community and the environment.
The National Justice Museum’s aim is to inspire people of all ages to become active citizens. They do this through fun and engaging activities, exhibitions and educational programmes relating to law and justice.
The Museum underwent a full refurbishment and we were asked
to produce the all new AV content.
We needed to cover all aspects of justice around the world through an introductory animation, four touchscreen interactives, a number of films and two projected characters within a courtroom. Using humour, hard-hitting graphics as well as child-friendly interactive games to inspire all visitors to an understanding of the law and justice system, and to use their rights and responsibilities to play an active role in society.
Going back to uni with the benefit of hindsight and making the most of every last second.
Given the chance to produce a suite of films for the wonderful University of Sussex, we were able to showcase the amazing facilities and opportunities the University provides, but also go further and tell the real story and benefit of University life – growing-up, friendships, fun and memories.
In 2015 Warrington were bottom of the RSA’s culture list so attempting to make it the UK’s City of Culture was bold to say the least. With Fuzzy Duck’s roots being in Warrington and a few Ducks living there we felt that we could offer some support.
There were lots of nay-sayers: “Warrington for City of Culture?
It’s not a City and there’s no Culture!”
But seeing as our brief was to produce some media aimed at the people of Warrington we were given free reign to use as many in-jokes and parochialisms as we wished. And so we began building key places from around the town from The Golden Gates to Mr Smiths, referencing everything from Greenalls Bitter to Walking Day.
Living with the Ravens
Legend has it that should the ravens ever leave the White Tower it would crumble and a great disaster would befall England…
Now, if you don’t already know, there are seven ravens that currently live at the Tower of London (the required six, plus one spare). The reason we say ‘required’ is because legend states that the Kingdom and the Tower will fall if the six resident ravens ever leave the fortress. To help people learn about the Ravens, Historic Royal Palaces asked the Ducks to tell the Ravens’ story and the accompanying legends for the Tower of London.
When at the Tower, visitors will see the new Ravens enclosure and view interpretation panels created by our friends at Headland Design. You will be invited to download the app; which tells the story of the Tower’s infamous ravens. It has been fantastic to be involved in a project for somewhere steeped in such gory, gruesome history.
Discovering the Museum of Science & Industry
Building an insight into the museum where Manchester’s Industrial and technological routes are brought to life; across a super-wide 3 screen within the mesmerising entrance hall to ensure eager anticipation of the journey to come.
Using pre-existing unused footage of the museum we were asked to create a film that welcomed visitors to the museum, giving them a hint of what to expect on their visit. We then designed and produced a beautiful motion graphic, depicting the science and steam that is Manchester’s Museum of Science & Industry.
Screened on the huge video wall in the Revolution Manchester entrance hall we combined the footage with animation, kinetic typography and atmospheric soundscapes to deliver a film that showcases MOSI’s unique visitor experience.
“In south-west Lancashire, babes don’t toddle, they side-step. Rugby League is a physical manifestation of our rules of life, comradeship, honest endeavour and a staunch allegiance to fair-play” Colin Welland
A heritage project close to our heart and roots in Warrington, Fuzzy Duck and the Wolves Foundation spent 12 months working together on the huge project of documenting the rich history of Warrington Wolves Rugby League Club and the town they represent.
After securing Heritage Lottery funding, we produced a 100 metre long timeline, supported by augmented reality, motion graphics, poetry and two, 12 minute documentaries.
Warrington is a town with a rising population and we were determined to have these newcomers understand and learn to love the sport, the team, the town.
The project was awarded bronze in the 2013 Fresh Creative Awards, Best Breakthrough category.
It’s a morning that trembles with anticipation of the signal, the whistle, the thrill, of the number you thought you’d never get, after days of frustration and weeks of regret.
As part of their Trainspotting season, the National Railway Museum asked us to produce a short film recording the performance of Ian McMillan reading his poem, Love Me Tender.
The film reflects the content and tone of Love Me Tender and provokes a creative response and a new way of visually representing the poem through a marauding walk through the station of York.
Ambitious About Autism is the national charity for children and young people with autism. They provide services at their schools and colleges; and raise awareness and understanding about autism.
We created an animation and documentary for a fundraising event at TalkTalk, to help explain autism itself and the work that the charity does. For the animation by using characters to tell the story, we were able to convey emotion and explain the problems that children and young people with autism can come across in their every day life. With voiceover and on-screen text, we highlighted the key messages that the charity wanted to convey, in how the funding they receive can help make the ordinary possible. For the documentary we spent a day following an Ambitious College student, Conor, in his daily activities at home and at the college.
The Ducks jumped at the chance to go back to Summer School when the University of Sussex wanted to promote their Summer School across the globe. When we pitched our idea, this is where we were coming from, you can decide whether we were able to achieve this:
“The University is set in one of the best locations in the UK, with amazing beaches, countryside, cities, culture, people and experiences within reach of the campus. We want to embrace what is British, and then immediately show how, when together everyone completes a multi-cultural environment.”
Fuzzy Duck were asked to produce a series of films that help to promote the benefits of physical activity to people with a range of disabilities and impairments. Speaking to the participants and exploring how they were able to become active, these films were used to encourage others to take up an active lifestyle.
Each film became a portrait of the person with interview clips to bring to life what their achievements are and what they gain from being active. We spent a day with each participant, speaking with them and documenting their active lives.
Using documentary filming and rich slow-motion footage these films became stand-alone pieces as well as working within a suite of films.
Dictation, anywhere, anytime
You talk and the BigHand App records and even transcribes your voice to text. After talking to law firms in Manchester, Hull and London about their appreciation of this technology to make this film for these leaders in voice recognition, the ducks then got the chance to go stateside and create a visually engaging film about BigHand’s operations in North America.
The film followed users around North America as they went about their day to day tasks utilising the BigHand dictation software. It shows the various different scenarios that the dictation software could help lawyers go about their everyday tasks.
“You had me at sludge treatment”
The treatment works at Davyhulme in Manchester have been at the forefront of wastewater treatment for over 100 years. As part of the celebration of this milestone, wastewater experts from around the world were invited to the Davyhulme Works to look back at the evolution and learn of the pioneering technology employed there today.
This formed part of a wider conference on water treatment held in Manchester. Working closely with the communications team and engineers at Davyhulme to design and produce a series of information boards at 6 points around the site. The boards also used augmented reality to deliver videos of the treatment processes involved.
Training the next generation of engineers
The technical training interactives produced for Untied Utilities were part of their £1.5 million apprenticeship programme to source the next generation of engineers at the newly developed Bolton training centre.
The touchscreen interactive contained videos, schematical animations and scenarios that detailed the complexities of the water treatment processes, giving the trainees first hand experience of problem solving situations that would otherwise require them to be on-site, up and down the country.
A slimmed down, simplified version of the interactive was also developed for intranet, mobile and tablet devices.
Heathrow runway expansion
How do you go about resurfacing a runway without delaying planes and upsetting passengers? Morgan Sindall undertook the huge process of refurbishing the northern and southern runways at Heathrow with just 7 hours each night to complete the job.
Fuzzy Duck followed the Morgan Sindall team documenting the operation from lifting the old tarmac to replacing the runway lights and cutting grooves in the new asphalt. Filming on one of the most high risk construction sites in the UK we captured the scope of such a huge project from the planning process to the installation and finally returning the runway to working order the following morning.
When your target audience are the fans of a particular sport, it gives you the freedom to have a certain shorthand and license to speak in their language and even use in-jokes. The title we came up with for this campaign is just that. The phrase ‘One in – All in’ refers to a fight on the pitch. Rugby League is built from families and close friendships, where each of the players are willing to put their bodies on-the-line for each other.
If one of the players is caught in a scuffle this phrase means ‘we’ve got your back – we’re all in it together.’ This charity aims to use this same mentality throughout the fans and players alike, caring for the grass-roots and heritage of the sport, looking after players once they’ve hung up their boots and also players who get injured playing.
Ever wondered who you call when your drain is blocked, or worse your sewer is overflowing and flooding? That’s right it’s this lovely lot from Lanes for drains.
We were asked to make a film by Lanes for Drains showing the variety of services and locations they operated in as one of the largest private wastewater drainage companies in the UK. The film itself was to be used on both their main website as part of a brand overview and to inspire existing and new employees.
We responded by filming the length and breath of the UK. From London to North Wales, down Victorian era service drains to domestic bathrooms to High Speed railway lines, we followed the Lanes team around as far as we could, and then some. They weren’t afraid to get a bit dirty, and neither were we.
The film itself uses a mix of live action with motion graphic elements to help emphasise the full service offering that Lanes for Drains has.
British Canoeing’s Paddle Ability campaign is all about getting people with disabilities and illness, in a kayak or canoe and onto the water. One of the people we filmed was Maya Ray, a teenager whose disability prevented her from taking part in most activities. However, kayaking has allowed her not only to stay healthy, but to surprise doctors and defy the odds by kayaking in some of the most challenging conditions.
Her message is simple; ‘Absolutely anyone can come and kayak!’ Maya Ray was just one of the inspiring individuals we met when filming this series of short documentaries for British Canoeing’s Paddle Ability campaign. By the end of the shoot we were in a canoe and paddling ourselves.
The house at Lyme Park was transformed for Christmas into a rich, sensory Edwardian Christmas.
This Christmas experience was inspired by the book ‘Treasure on Earth’; an evocative & nostalgic text written by Phyllis Legh & first published in 1952. This text tells the story of Phyllis’s experiences of ‘Vyne’ (Lyme) at Christmas in 1906. The text glows with love & warmth, and gives wonderful descriptions of how the house looked and felt at Christmas and New Year, “The door of the saloon opened on a scene of almost unreal loveliness”
We wanted to challenge ourselves with a cost effective approach, that would allow people to be surprised with the magic of Christmas while giving the AV a light touch feel to the overall experience.
So I snapped back, fighting for recovery, It’s never too late for a new trajectory, To a new way of living, a new lease of life; I know it isn’t easy, but I have to try.
Trafford Housing Trust’s ‘CleanStart’ programme’ aims to give ex-convicts, and ex-military a clean start by giving them a job in house removal, landscaping and cleaning within the housing association and beyond. This helps create a sense purpose and hope for these individuals where they might otherwise struggle or worse, re-offend. We made a series of films to celebrate and demonstrate the work that Cleanstart has done since their inception to present day.
The poetic short film ‘Another Chance’ follows the journey of one individual who has hit rock bottom and can’t seem to find a way out. With the help and support of Cleanstart, he is given that final chance, which he is more than ready to fight for.
‘CleanStart Why Not’ brings to life to achievements that Cleanstart has had, in not only helping ex-offenders and military, but how it also has helped and impacted local business who have used the service.
As part of United Utilities’ programme to link West Cumbria via a major new pipeline from Thirlmere Waters, Fuzzy Duck developed a website and film campaign to engage with stakeholders and the local public; outlining the benefits and explaining the impacts the seven year project has on the community and the environment.
The film campaign focuses on the work United Utilities has throughout its history in Cumbria. From the groundbreaking achievement of reservoir and aqueduct construction in the Victorian era to the future aqueduct being built from Thirlmere Reservoir to West Cumbria, the campaign aims to show customers how tirelessly United Utilities works to keep water supply, clean and constant.
The site was designed and built in an editable format, so the team could adapt and evolve the content as the programme developed.
Getting you active…
Get Yourself Active is a partnership led by Disability Rights UK, funded by Sport England and delivered by Leicester Centre for Integrated Living and Cheshire Centre for Independent Living. They aim to work with the health & social care and sports sectors, to develop better opportunities for disabled people to get active.
We created an interactive website and video campaign for the launch of ‘Get Yourself Active’. To cater for the different key audiences that will use the site, the website utilises sign-posting to guide the user to the information they require. By prompting the user to click on designated links, they can access content across a single non-linear webpage, rather than having to navigate a series of webpages; confusing and potentially dis-orientating the user.
As part of our dedication to make the website work for all users the website went through 3 rigorous rounds of user tests, over a two-month period before going live.