Octopus Group - Fred & Eric - Animated Company Values Series

Octopus Group

Octopus commissioned this cast of (two legged) characters to share the company's core values. Through a series of light-hearted animations which combine character and kinetic typography.

When agency SouthPaw first contacted us to create these animations for Octopus Group, our minds instantly gravitated towards tentacles... Until we read the brief stating NO eight-legged creatures would be cast in the making of these films.

Creative aspirations re-set, our team went back to the brief in question. Commissioning three short animations to highlight Octopus Group's 'Values & Behaviours' for an internal communications campaign.

Our Process

Although Octopus didn't want an octopus... they did feel it was important to personify their three core values using 'Brand Characters'. Octopus's brand ethos states "everything we do has a sense of humanity to it, so it is important that our communication adds warmth and appeal to people’s hearts…as well as their minds". With this, we got to work!

Character Design

We were interested in the idea of a bold and expressive shape when designing these characters. Below you can see how our first set of designs explored this, by combining shapes with human-like limbs and features.

Octopus Group: Our initial character design options

After experimenting with a few iterations, we worked with our clients to develop this polygonal body shape with flexible limbs. These characters allowed us to achieve realistic expression, and poses with dynamic motion.

Our final character designs, posed and ready for animation!

Storyboarding & Animatic

On to storyboarding where we illustrated each moment of action, alongside each line of the scripts. Storyboard frames are also useful to convert into an animatic, which is a simplified version of the final animation. Here we used a guide VO to set the pace and timings, ready for client feedback.

Animatic for "Be Straightforward"


All of the pre-production stages mentioned previously meant that once it was time to animate, there were absolutely no surprises. The storyboards and animatics created a blueprint for each film and our skilled animation team got to work. In total, we produced three films for each of Octopus Group's core values. Mixing up character animation with animating typography to bring each concept to life, in a fun and memorable way.

Octopus Group: Core Values - Be Bold

Octopus Group: Core Values - Be Straightforward