Cardiff University

RAPID

Animation, Explainer Videos

A short, approachable animation to explain the results of the recent RAPID Study.

A project that shows off our animation skills AND helps a whole bunch of people? How could we say no? Our pals over at The Centre of Trials Research got in touch to help them spread the message about their latest project, RAPID.

Essentially, RAPID looks into whether or not self-guided therapy for PTSD is just as effective as more traditional treatments with a therapist. If so, then that could mean that waiting times could be massively reduced, lots more people would be able to get treatment and just make it a lot more accessible. Spoiler, it is.

Having loved what we did with Braintrain, we were tasked to create a short explainer animation about RAPID, what it is, why it was created and what the results were. We’d have to keep things flexible though as they wanted to be able to adapt it easily for future audiences which may or may not be fluent in technical psycho-speak.

We’ve done quite a few projects like this with Cardiff Uni, and by now we know for this kind of thing a minimalistic approach works best. Pairing more simple design elements with playful motion, a vibrant colour palette and intricate sound design helps the information come to life in a way that doesn’t feel overwhelming and can be understood easily.

RAPID wouldn’t have been possible without the hard work and dedication from the people who were deeply involved, so we wanted to make sure they had their voices heard. Going for a part-scripted/part-interview approach meant that we could hit all the necessary talking points in the video whilst opening the floor to more authentic and conversational moments to really elevate the script and keep things informative, but authentic.

By combining simplistic shapes, line-work and block colours matched with a vibrant and warm colour palette we created a set of design rules that could distil complicated topics into digestible motifs and lay the foundations for future adaptations in the RAPID series as more trials are conducted.

When it came to putting the characters in motion, we used more traditional animation techniques and a lower frame rate to give the video a more tactile vibe and help keep the scene alive where moving elements were few and far between, without distracting the audience. 

Once the main films were created, we also went in and snipped out the best 15-second clips that could be used on the centre’s social channels to encourage people to watch the full film and find out more. 

We love a project that gives us creative freedom. Even more so when it’s for a good cause.

It was a pleasure to work with the Storm and Shelter team on animations for the RAPID trial. Thank you for understanding what we were after and for working so collaboratively with us to deliver this.

Professor Jonathan Bisson, Division of Psychological Medicine and Clinical Neurosciences, Cardiff University

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