The making of the “You Can, in Portland” stop-motion videos

See what it took to create a miniature, stop-motion Portland.

Go behind the scenes to learn about the Portland artisans responsible for creating Travel Portland’s “You Can, in Portland” stop-motion videos.

Travel Portland’s new You Can, in Portland campaign celebrates everything you can eat, enjoy, experience and be in Portland. The central whimsical stop-motion videos highlighting all the things “You Can, in Portland” were conceptualized by Travel Portland’s advertising agency, Wieden+Kennedy; directed by Mark Gustafson, who served as animation director on Wes Anderson’s The Fantastic Mr. Fox; and crafted by Portland-based animation studio House Special. The 30-, 15- and 6-second spots showcase enchanting miniature renditions of iconic Portland places, local products and memorable characters.

Here’s what it took to make it all happen.

By the numbers

Crew

  • 28 makers/painters
  • 1 art director
  • 1 director
  • 3 animators
  • 12 stage crew
  • 45 total, not including editorial and production support

Time

  • 7,865 total work hours
  • 14 weeks for the entire production

Frames

  • 8,500 frames were shot, including foregrounds and backgrounds of sets plus transitions and handles
  • 720 frames in the average 30-second spot
  • 24 frames per second in all spots

Puppets

  • 14 supporting characters, including:
    • 1 dog
    • 1 Sasquatch
  • 6 sets of the main (human) characters
  • 3 chickens (all named Mavis)

Costumes

  • 4 full costume changes for the main characters
  • 12 men’s shirts – from tees (with local logos) to button-downs
  • 1 tuxedo
  • 7 sweaters
  • 4 dresses
  • 2 hats
  • 2 bike helmets
  • 1 welding mask
  • 1 pair of ear protection headphones (for Mavis)
  • 5 bags, including 2 backpacks
  • 1 skateboard
  • 13 pairs of glasses/sunglasses
  • 3 Timbers scarves (1 hen-sized)
  • 1 umbrella
  • 3 shopping bags
  • 1 pair of binoculars

Props

338 props were created, including:

  • 2 mini coffee cups
  • 3 wine glasses
  • 6 pint glasses
  • 2 beer bottles
  • 1 dream catcher
  • 1 pair of cowboy boots
  • 5 bouquets
  • 7 sprigs of lavender
  • 9 pumpkins
  • 47 pieces of cheese
  • 1 decorative wall hanging with faux deer antlers
  • 9 sunflowers
  • 14 felt carrots
  • 60 eggs
  • 18 bars of lavender soap
  • 4 baguettes
  • 1 grand piano
  • 2 tacos/arepas
  • 3 empanadas
  • 5 pieces of salmon – various cuts
  • 1 pliers
  • 1 handsaw
  • 9 croissants
  • 1 tiny pickle
  • 1 hummus plate
  • 1 salad
  • 2 kabobs
  • 1 sake bottle
  • 3 noodle bowls
  • 10 sets of silverware
  • 10 earthenware plates
  • 24 liquor bottles
  • 17 plant starts in pots

Sets

Sixteen sets were created, all representing real Portland locations:

Behind the scenes

Behind the scenes – making of You Can, in Portland (15 seconds)

Behind the scenes – Pint Sized Pedals (7 seconds)

Behind the scenes – City of Rosebuds (7 seconds)

Behind the scenes – Teeny Tiny Hen (7 seconds)

Behind the scenes – Itty Bitty Bites (7 seconds)


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