Pantone Color of the Year

Most of us would be hard-pressed to find someone in our industry who isn’t influenced by Pantone one way or another. And perhaps the most obvious way is through their annual choice for Color of the Year, which is what we were tasked to help them create.


Client Pantone
Creative Director Diego Nicolau
Project Manager Dani Whitlock
Design Felipe Minella, Keith Locke, Danielle Torres, Carolina Rodriguez Diaz
Animation & Modelling Sergio Ribero

The Ask

Pantone wanted us to create a visual and motion asset to announce their choice for Color of the Year 2022, but they wanted to go way beyond what had been done before.

We kicked off the process by iterating between 2D styleframes we would then use as reference to create 3D scenes for the client. We explored several ideas before settling down on the abstract style of the final image.

3D styleframe showcasing an abstract periwinkle flower and the Pantone lockup overlaid on top.
Styleframe of abstract, 3D hair simulation 3D styleframe of an abstract hair simulation, with metal orbs floating around it
Architecture render of a glass sphere against a bright background

As we continued to develop the visual look of the piece, we also tried different tests for the animations. We explored blooming animations for the petals and ran the first tests for the hair simulations. Slowly, putting together an animatic to test the flow of the piece.

Viewport render of a 3D flower opening its petals 3D test render of hair simulation
Viewport render of exploding hair simulation Close up test of hair simulation

Finally, we brought a final polish to the piece, compositing the final details to really make the unique visual nature of the piece stand out. One of the things I really tried to get right was the subtle shimmer on the strands of hair.

Close up of the final render, showing a landscape of violet fur with small spheres floating inbetween A close up of the final render, with a large sphere out of focus in the foreground and smaller spheres floating in the distance Final hero image, showing the Pantone Color of the Year lockup overlaid on the 3D render of a periwinkle hair simulation and floating spheres