Design: Undefined Creative completes NHL packages
Issue: July 1, 2017

Design: Undefined Creative completes NHL packages

NEW YORK CITY — Creative agency Undefined Creative ( recently created an extensive motion graphics packages for the live 2017 NHL Awards Show and NHL Expansion Draft. The studio created some 200 different deliverables for the event in Las Vegas, which honored last season’s top pro hockey players and helped launch the new Las Vegas Golden Knights player roster.

Undefined Creative was tapped by LA-based event company Dempsey Productions to conceive and produce two extensive motion graphics packages. The event was presented by T-Mobile and televised live in the United States on NBCSN and in Canada on Sportsnet.

The studio’s pitch was a departure from the glossy, super-polished 3D look typical of awards shows. Instead, UC went with a cleaner, more modern 2D look that would set the awards apart from those done in the past. The goal was to really do a 180 from the event’s 2016 approach and incorporate more of the contemporary design from the SAP campaign UC had developed for the NHL. The campaign's animations have been a part of the show since 2014, so the aesthetic was already a hit with the event.
The 2017 NHL Awards and NHL Expansion Draft project called for two distinct Awards looks, with all elements produced in multiple colors, and three distinct Expansion Draft looks. With a project of that scale, the biggest challenge was time, as UC had roughly one month from concept approval to final delivery. The list of deliverables was also entirely dependent on the design of the physical set, and – as with any show of this scale – there were many moving parts and layers of approvals. Most elements needed complex versioning to account for color variations and specs for on-stage screens, ribbon board and broadcast.

UC produced and delivered two motion graphics packages totaling more than 200 different broadcast and live deliverables. There were five unique house looks (three of which were created in five different color variations), with elements ranging from logo animations and award/winner intro slates to the Expansion Draft roster board and specialty loops (team logo scroll, trophy scroll). All elements were delivered in multiple formats for the following screens: main/center, arms, header, ground and ribbon boards.

Undefined Creative credits included creative director Maria Rapetskaya, executive producer Cathy Humphrey, lead animator Stephen McNally and animator Don Murphy. The studio used Adobe Creative Suite software with an emphasis on After Effects for the vast majority of deliverables, though Maxon’s Cinema 4D was used for some background elements.