News

Shooting Forward

Finally, sunshine! This change in the weather coincides with the completion of our first quarter, and a very busy time it has been. Signal entered 2024 at a gallop and have barely stopped since…

One of our first jobs of the year was filming for First Bus, to promote their role as Official Transport Partner to Aberdeen F.C. We spent two fun-filled days with eight actors (and club mascot Angus the Bull) filming around the city, as our characters Millie and Grandpa travelled to see their favourite team play, finally bumping into AFC’s star striker Leighton Clarkson. Read more here.

For the last five years, we have been filming construction activity at Port of Aberdeen’s South Harbour Expansion Project. Since then, we’ve produced many short work-in-progress videos, but earlier this year we finished producing ‘Building the Future’, a film that will act as a long-lasting document of the project. It premiered at a private cinema screening for Port staff, and now the documentary is available for the public to watch. But the completion of South Harbour doesn’t end our partnership; we have already moved into a new phase of work. Over 100 cruise ships are expected annually until 2027, and we’re looking forward to celebrating many more milestones, including the 2025 Tall Ships race. More on this below.

Continuing our relationship with Paisley-based culture change agency We Are Brass Tacks, we have just completed a second series of HSE drama films for waste management company Biffa. ‘Season 1’ was filmed entirely in Leicester. For ‘Season 2’ filming shifted to four of Biffa’s locations across Birmingham. The dramas were shot on ‘live’ sites meaning that Biffa machinery and vehicles would be operating at the same time as we filmed, creating a second layer of Health and Safety challenges. The films have, once again, been very well received. In the meantime, you can read more about Season 1 here.

Meanwhile, production continues on our series of films for drilling company Noble, in Houston. Last year we filmed their brand new Noble Operational Risk Management Support Centre (NORMS), which uses the latest remote technology to monitor their offshore installations around the world and share best practice and improve safety throughout the company. The first film was launched in March and over the coming weeks we will be creating several more films promoting NORMS to Noble’s staff, clients and partners around the world.

Almost as glamourous, is the trip we took to make a film for Eyemouth Harbour Trust. Eyemouth is a small harbour with big plans: they are in the early stages of a proposed expansion to accommodate the increased demand for port services to support offshore wind energy in the North Sea. They needed to raise awareness of their plans with the local community, potential partners and stakeholders, and commissioned us to make a film to do just that. The clouds parted for just long enough for us to get some stunning views of the harbour which we overlaid with animated visualisations of how the expanded harbour could look. You can watch the film here.

And talking of renewable energy, we’ve enjoyed a flurry of projects directly related to the growth of that sector in Northeast Scotland. We produced two marketing films for ORE Catapult’s Floating Offshore Wind Innovation Centre (FLOWIC) which will house test facilities and equipment for companies testing new technologies. FLOWIC was formally opened by then-First Minister Humza Yousaf in a ceremony attended by all the major movers and shakers of the energy sector.

Team Signal also completed two projects with similar aspirations; for NESA, the New Energy Skills Academy, we produced a bespoke website, targeted at people considering starting a career in the renewable energy sector. The site allows users to enter their educational and professional details and receive a list of courses they could undertake to achieve their dream job. To support the website, we produced a series of case study films spotlighting different jobs in the energy sector. And, for ETZ, the Energy Transition Zone, we filmed full- and part-time students, NESA Chair Paul de Leeuw, and Scotland’s Minister for Energy, Gillian Martin. The ETZ films were commissioned to attract more people to careers in renewables and explain the benefits of NESA funded courses. Read more about the project here.

It’s a pleasure to support businesses on our doorstep. We’ve just completed a project for VisitAberdeenshire, which we won following a competitive tender. VA promotes fantastic visitor experiences in Northeast Scotland to audiences in the UK and overseas. We made five new films to promote each of their core services, illustrating a ‘day in the life’ of members in each team, who also starred in and narrated them.

All our team’s hard work was recognised when we won the SME News’ Scottish Enterprise Award for “Best Animation & Digital Media Production Company of 2023”. This is the second consecutive year we have been recognised by SME News – in 2022 we were named “Best Video Production & Animation Company”. We were also awarded Corporate LiveWire’s Global Award: “Video Production Company of the Year 2024”. The judging panel was impressed with our ability to “take a central role in the creative development stage of a project”. We’re delighted to add this to our long list of international awards.

To top it all, 2023 was our best financial year since we started in 2011. But 2024 is already looking even better, with several exciting new projects which are just starting to gather momentum…

We have begun filming the demolition of an Aberdeen icon, the former Shell headquarters in Tullos.  The Tullos complex has been an iconic landmark on the Aberdeen skyline for decades, with its uncompromising 1970’s architecture featuring gold windows. However, it is one of several buildings on the Shell site, all of which are being removed, clearing the site for use as part of a regeneration project. The Signal crew have already installed several solar-powered timelapse cameras and will be making monthly trips to the site over the next year to film progress with our conventional cameras and drones.

In August, our team will be returning to film, the 2024 Staysure PGA Legends Tour, held at the stunning Trump International Golf Links, this is a major four-day event featuring a host of pro golfing stars and celebrities, and hundreds of golf fans, keen to see their heroes in action. Signal will be there with multiple camera crews, and our drones, to film the competition, working this year in partnership with the organisers, LegendsTour.com.

We also have some secret international projects lined up in 2024 which include shoots in Europe, Africa, Australia, and a multi-language animation project.

And looking even further ahead, we have begun work promoting Tall Ships Races 2025 which will return to Aberdeen after 28 years. Signal is the Official Media Partner for the event, and we have already started to release promotional content.

If you have read this far, firstly, thank you! Secondly, you will be able to tell we are trusted by our clients to deliver results. Whether they are a small local organisation or one of the biggest corporations in the world, we solve their problems with high quality creative work, built on meaningful relationships. Why not give us a call and start a conversation!