New Holland Creative is located 3 km east of the Sydney CBD on the first floor of the heritage Old Manse on Paddington’s Oxford Street. The building was almost destroyed by fire in 1845. Sparks are still flying but today they’re the creative kind.
crossingtheline.co sat down with founder Brendan Savage and Producer Morgan MacCuish to talk about what it’s like to want to create an entirely new entity, different to anything that’s gone before, whilst at the same time attracting high end work from traditional sources. Something must be working because the design company already counts some of the country’s best directors, film studios, consumer brands, production companies and advertising agencies as clients.
BRENDAN: “The idea was to create a place where really talented people could work together across a broad spectrum of projects. It means New Holland is a little difficult to define absolutely or put into a box. One thing we are definitely not is a traditional post-production visual FX company, though we have the skillset and experience to do traditional post-production visual FX. We offer so much more than that.”
MORGAN: “Clients come to us for visual solutions. Where and how they appear is, up to a point, immaterial. We’ve recently created station idents for FOXTEL, titles and graphics packages for feature film, design & identity for international creative entities, plus high end FX for a Hyundai campaign including commercial, print, web and outdoor advertising. We were over the moon when Hyundai sent us a brief with a huge range of media in which the work we had done for them would appear. It wasn’t just for a one off commercial video”
BRENDAN: “There is a real passion for concept and design here at New Holland that I think goes way beyond what people might expect from us. When we first set up, I had the hopes that clients would not categorize us to doing just one type of work. Happily, that has not been the case and we’re broadening our horizons every new day beyond traditional media. One thing I would also really like to do is work with people who would not normally think of us as collaborators. Experiential installations, architects, interior designers, light art companies, VR developers, anyone who is looking for a designed visual solution and wants to create new things”
MORGAN: “Advances in technology have made almost anything possible, but there are still considerations which we can guide in the process. It can be helpful to know what’s involved technically, creatively and time-wise early in the project development or pitch stage to achieve the best result. For example, creating something that doesn’t actually exist in reality can be more conceptually challenging and fun to develop due to the range of possibilities. Whereas a classic photo real object like a CG car is fairly straightforward – with the talent and time!
The more clients can get involved in the very early stages of a project’s development – the easier it is to achieve the desired outcome. And collaboration means just that. We take people, our clients, on the journey and keep them informed in the process for the best result.”
CROSSINGTHELINE: “CG Design Director Clinton Downs has been with you since the start?”
BRENDAN: “We’re creative partners and I think we make a pretty formidable team. Clinton was at Iloura and has supervised the CG on huge projects like The Great Gatsby and Mad Max Fury Road. He recently won a VES Award for his work on Mad Max, which is a globally recognised achievement. We know each other really well having worked together on many occasions over the years.
CROSSINGTHELINE: “It seems New Holland got off to a pretty amazing start. You mentioned, that you haven’t had to man the phones to get work. So where to from here?
MORGAN: “We have been happily busy on a variety of projects, and haven’t had too much time to be making calls! But we love to sit down with existing or new clients and talk about their potential projects and best way to meet or exceed their expectations. Whether it’s broadcast, branding, features, design, …. it’s the challenge of getting the mix of design, direction, technology and technical ability right that keeps us on our toes and looking forward to every day.”
BRENDAN: “The creative process will never be obsolete or out of fashion so I think New Holland can look forward to a very exciting, fulfilling and rewarding future.”