Nervo for Zune

God bless Microsoft. They just won’t give up on promoting the Zune, and as long as they keep funding work like this latest series of animations from Portland-based Nervo, that’s cause for praise.

The series can be broken into two parts: the first four animations on the Nervo site are themed around the Zune cage logo, while the last two are built around a liquid motif. While the latter set sports some silky smooth animation, the first set snared my heart with its quirky textures and macrophotographic feel. I want to reach out and cuddle the little cages as they tumble around the screen. (I’m pretty sure I’ve never felt that way about Microsoft before.)

I’m also digging the decision to reduce the frame rate. Nervo’s not trying to fool us into thinking these are stop-action, but they do channel a little bit of stop-action’s charm in the process. No harm there.

Darrin Wiener’s music fits nicely as well. His rounded tones and music-box jingles imbue the animations with a child-like playfulness that’s spot-on for the subject matter.

Don’t miss the companion Flickr set. Credits can be found on Nervo’s project page.

About the author

Justin Cone

Together with Carlos El Asmar, Justin co-founded Motionographer, F5 and The Motion Awards. He currently lives in Austin, Texas with is wife, son and fluffball of a dog. Before taking on Motionographer full-time, Justin worked in various capacities at Psyop, NBC-Universal, Apple, Adobe and SCAD.



microsoft would be wise to stop making whatever a ‘zune’ is and just promote its own animation fest.


haha! too true! I mean lets be honest, if you’re building a powerhouse animation box on a budget, ur probably building a 64 bit pc… (although the progressing stability of darwin booting leopard is accelerating xp’s obsolesense)

yeah zune is a sad story, i mean its no easy task to trump apple marketing, but they really have here. the brand has such an aura, especially around mographer circles, and yet i dont think they’ve sold more than a baker’s dozen of these paperweights…


I know I’m echoing Justin here, but whatever opinion anyone has about Microsoft (or this product) it’s a good thing for us mogs when their marketing budget allows for work this good to be produced.

Another polished, fantastic set from Nando & crew.


I hope their budgets are actually as good as the work they are getting out of everyone.


Good point. Though, as all of these Zune spots are produced by experienced pros, I’m sure their negotiations/contracts are just as professional (= fair).


I wouldn’t be surprised if these were not large budget jobs. Especially since a lot of these are not on air, but just living on a zune website (i have no idea how much traffic that site even gets). There could be a lot of love poured out in exchange for some creative freedom and a killer portfolio project.




speaking from experience on a different zune spot…its all about the love.


I love these. Nice work.


the cake won it for me.


Boxes is my favorite. I love the caustics from the colored plastic plates when the last box settles.

Liquid 01 is a very close second, but it would be nice if it was seamless.


technically there is no caustics in there, just some light love :)


Those are THE Best Zune ads!


Love these. From the sound design to all the subtleties in the animations. Really well done.


Delicious and awesome cake!


remember when lobo did the same thing for viva network, about 4 years ago?


yeah, but these are much better.


3D = great… concept = bad.


These are brilliant, and why so mean towards Microsoft? All they did was crush the crap out of Mac. Great animation can come out of Unix and Linux boxes too:)


amazing work.. Do they have a in-house agency at zune?

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