By Tobias van Schneider Published November 19, 2020
I'm still not quite over the awe of the internet. To think you can decide to create a new business or pursue a new career and establish a presence for it online the next day? It's magic.
When we first saw the Shy Studio website launched with Semplice, we were immediately fans. Come to find out, it's the new venture of our longtime Semplice family member, Misha Shyukin.
Shy Studio is an independent motion graphics studio focused on artistic exploration, 3D motion and still life videos. The studio already has clients like Jimmy Choo, Nike and Adidas in its portfolio, along with dozens of detailed, otherworldly self-initiated projects.
Once we realized Shyukin was behind Shy, we had to know about the vision of the studio, the philosophy behind its experimental approach and what it was like opening a new business in the middle of a pandemic.
"I still spent around a month at home with a 2-year-old typing on my keyboard and breaking Wacom pens."
Congratulations on the opening of Shy Studio! Can you tell us what inspired the studio and how it came to be? How many people are on your team and what is the vision for Shy Studio?
Thank you! I've been thinking about the transition from freelance artist to studio for quite a while. While it's exciting, it was equally terrifying for me to be honest. I started by hiring a 3D artist part-time to help me out with ongoing projects, to see how it will work, who then became the first employee in early 2020. It's just the two of us at the moment, and we expand a little bit with other freelancers if there's a project that we can't handle by ourselves.
The vision is to have a place where I would enjoy working myself as an employee, and having a nice balance between commercial projects and self-initiated experimental work, where we can try out new techniques without the pressure of a commercial project.
How was it launching a new studio in the midst of a pandemic? Based on projects like “Quarantine,” it seems like Shy came to life during this time.
We're very fortunate that not much changed for us during Covid-19. Our workflow is 100% digital and we don't have many local clients, so we're very familiar with Zoom and Slack. And since we're just two people, we didn't even have to close down the studio.
However, I still spent around a month at home with a 2-year-old typing on my keyboard and breaking Wacom pens. We used "Quarantine" as one of those self-initiated experimental projects that I was mentioning earlier and at the same time, it was an opportunity to define our visual look a bit clearer for ourselves.
What is your philosophy behind the experimental work? How do you find clients like Jimmy Choo that trust you and support experimentation?
The experimental aspect of our work is certainly something I actively am trying to push into every project. Over the years I spent freelancing, it turned out to be the approach that works best for me personally, and gives me and my clients the best results. Of course, we do work with briefs and guidelines as well, which you cannot avoid with larger, more established clients.
Can you tell us about any projects you’re working on right now? Any sneak peeks for the DESK audience?
We recently published a project called “Artificial Bloom," a collection of various digital flowers and plants we made over the duration of two months, whenever we had a little bit of downtime in between projects.
I quite enjoy the workflow, where we slowly work through a specific topic and publish little bits of the project as we go along. I can see us doing a new variation of that soon.
What made you choose Semplice for your website and personal portfolio?
It was a quick decision to also use it for the studio website. The main thing for me was that Semplice just lets you design and layout your site, move things around, drag and drop images, without having to dive into the more technical aspects of web design. As well as the animation elements which can be triggered with various scroll and mouse movements, very cool stuff! The customer support is also super friendly and helpful.
Hi, I'm Tobias, a German designer living in New York. I'm the founder of DESK, nice to meet you!