“Galychyna is a well-known Ukrainian producer of yogurt and kefir. One of their flagship products is the super thick kefir “Go_Karpaty.” It is so thick that you can eat it with a spoon.
We were approached by Bickerstaff.999 agency with an idea for a video and a request to create animation and illustrations for the super thick kefir “Go_Karpaty” from “Galychyna.” In the story, Spoonful Kefir travels through cartoon worlds to find his Little Spoon, with whom he is deeply in love.
To work on this romantic fairy tale, eight cartoons were chosen in the style in which the plots were drawn. Among them: “Adventure Time,” “Super Mario,” “Sailor Moon,” “Peppa Pig,” a Ukrainian hit of the 80s – “Cossacks,” and others.
To create this video, we engaged six illustrators and three animators. Each team worked on a different story. All the characters and details were made by hand by the illustrators and animators, but we created the backgrounds for each story using artificial intelligence (AI).
Our entire video is in dynamic motion [well, because Kefir is constantly looking for a spoon]. That's why it has a lot of backgrounds, which need to be more routine and more interesting to create. =(. This is where Midjourney came to our aid.
Working with AI also proved challenging. It is easier to create images for a cartoon with many Internet references. For example, Midjourney could generate the necessary background in the style of Sailor Moon quickly. But there is an episode in the video that refers to our Ukrainian cartoon about Cossacks, and it took more work for AI to generate an image based on it.
This is how creative lead Ivan Ishchenko describes this work:
At this point, the passing game started. I took a frame from a cartoon about Cossacks, but it was too small, so I added a bit of color to it in Photoshop and sent this new image as a reference to Midjourney. But when it produced its version according to the parameters I set, the image turned out to be too modern and did not fit into the style of the twentieth-century cartoon. Then, I threw the image into Stable Diffusion and took the closest iterations it created. That's how we managed not to go into the Disney style and keep the Cossacks recognizable. The hardest part of working with artificial intelligence is finding an approach where it gives you what you want.”
We drew almost all the animation ourselves. However, AI drew one of the last scenes – in the Renaissance style – entirely. First, we generated Spoon, Kefir, backgrounds, and a frame using Midjourney. Then, we animated the already-drawn frames using Stable Diffusion.
And so, we made a 1-minute video that has been viewed more than 4 million times on the official Go_Karpaty YouTube channel alone.