A GRAIN OF RICE PRODUCTIONS 3 The Case of the Cover Up
Pou Auaha / Creative DirectorMichelle Ang
Pou Rautaki / Strategic LeadDeane O'Connor
Ringatoi Matua / Design DirectorsRobert Wallace, Leo Chida
Kaitautoko / ContributorsKat Kasajima, Amy Barber
Riddle Me This is a children's TV series featuring a group of kids tackling different riddles in each episode. Each episode was created by a different animator in collaboration with the Art Director and A Grain of Rice Production.
The voice-overs were kept raw and unedited to create immersion and a sense that the audience were solving the riddles with the kids. The visuals were meant to reflect the imaginative and quirky thought processes of children.
Leo Chida, one of the animators, was excited to join the project and was assigned episode 6. He aimed to incorporate a Motion Design style that would stand out from the organic, hand-drawn styles of the other animators. As a result, the design became a mixed style that used 2D, 3D, typographic and hand-drawn elements. The 3D environments were given a flat look to work seamlessly with the 2D elements. This also allowed for flexibility when dealing with the nonlinear nature of the kids’ voice-overs as it allowed for both 2D and 3D narrative solutions to work with. There was also an emphasis on strong geometric designs with crisp shapes and colours to add a different energy to the series.
Despite being a digital platform, the series aims to encourage kids to use their minds and play beyond the screen. The incorporation of film tapes, polaroid photos, and hand-written graphics in the animation adds a tangible feeling that complements this initiative.
In episode 6, the narrative revolves around a Samoan family. Being from an immigrant background, Leo was committed to designing characters and environments that celebrated diversity and inclusivity in a modern, respectful way. He took great care to ensure that the incorporation of diversity was not superficial, doing thorough research and planning to achieve this.
Overall, Riddle Me This is a charming and visually stunning series that celebrates the animation talent in New Zealand and encourages kids to think outside the box while having fun.