The outbreak of the COVID-19 disease has hit the entertainment and film industry hard and will have far-reaching consequences beyond the spread of the disease. In the midst of the crisis, animation studios and production companies have had to develop creative and innovative responses on both a technical and organizational level, some of which have come to reconsider their business models and services. The Kabum animation studio belongs to the latter category.
We are able to offer a service to better communicate certain medical aspects.
Based in Bari, Puglia, Kabum is an independent studio co-founded by the artists and designers Marco Testini and Teresa Romano. Together, they work to create innovative films and special effects, mixing 2D and 3D, Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality. In the face of the crisis, they have grown and developed science animation services for the medicine and biotechnology industry. In just a few weeks, using their expertise, cutting-edge 3D animation technologies, and input from medical experts, they were able to translate complex science into compelling and scientifically accurate medical means. We spoke with Marco Testini.
In the context of a global health crisis and the many associated anxieties, the decision to launch this new service was mainly dictated by the desire to be “able to offer a service to better communicate certain medical aspects”, says Marco. Scientific animation “allows everyone to see what a doctor sees under a microscope” through computer-generated images (“CGI”).
Obviously, innovation is in the nature of Kabum. In their own words, adapting their services during the pandemic “wasn’t that complicated.” They already knew the necessary 3D graphics and animation software and benefited from the assistance of medical experts. They also used their regular media channels and the internet for marketing. Working from home? “Easy! […] We have opened a virtual studio on our server on Discord, accessible by anyone from our site […]”.
It would be premature to assess how innovation in Kabum will change their business model. The studio’s traditional film and video operations slowed due to lower customer demand with some orders canceled, but the studio did not experience a significant decrease in COVID-19-related productivity. Technically, he is ready to return to a pre-crisis level of activity. As for Kabum’s foray into 3D science animation, it is also too early to determine how much it can grow, although it is likely to be “relevant in many fields such as education, science communication, and efforts to raise awareness. “.
In any case, this is a field that Kabum intends to explore further. There is a market to represent complex medical concepts and for Marco “doing it creatively is the winning way”. Emphasizing his long-standing passion for the medical field, he recalls that he and his business partner were first hired as CGI artists to create an orthopedic descriptive video for which they were to film a knee replacement operation. The Kabum partners certainly see this experience as “an element that will contribute to the evolutionary process of Kabum.
Entering a new market takes time. So far, the study initiative has been supported by community and word of mouth recommendations, but they hope authorities recognize the potential for growth and technological advancement of science animation. At ALICE, we strongly support the initiative and believe that, if anything, this experience will help build Kabum’s resilience and sustainability.
Source: Interreg Europe Alice