Dutch independent design and film company Studio Airport collaborated with Emergence Magazine to create this visually stunning and impactful, interactive documentary: The Pollinators of Slovenia. To raise awareness about regenerative agriculture - nurturing and restoring soil health, and protecting the climate, water resources and biodiversity- in Slovenia. Telling a story less known. Emergence Magazine is a quarterly online magazine sharing stories about the connections between ecology, culture and spirituality.
Did you know that 90% of flowering plants and 25% of all human-grown crops rely on pollinators to reproduce? And that humans are responsible for the decline in all species of pollinators?
Exactly why Studio Airport decided to dedicate this documentary about regenerative agriculture to pollinators, and more specifically, to the pollinators of Slovenia. As Slovenia has an ancient tradition of beekeeping, and has recently been granted the UNESCO World heritage status because of their relationship with, and knowledge and expertise about bees. Making them acutely aware of all changes in nature and the environment. For example, Slovenian beekeepers were the first to notice that neonicotinoid pesticides were killing their bees. Result: Slovenia was the first country in the European Union to ban these pesticides.
Also, due to global warming and the increase of industrial agriculture, homes of pollinators across the globe are being destroyed, and their food source diminished.
Time for immediate action. Time to raise awareness wherever and whenever possible. To a broad audience - from scientists and journalists to each and everyone of us.
The interactive documentary
Studio Airport created five interactive chapters where visitors travel through Slovenia - from countryside to city. Inviting them on a journey with all pollinators of Slovenia: bees, butterflies, wasps, beetles, etc. A beautiful sequence of photography, moving images, music and spoken word. Each chapter divided into different parts - sharing different sides of each particular storyline.
Behind the scenes - photography & moving images
Studio Airport's original idea was to create an interactive written story accompanied by still photography and film material. This is how they usually approached featured stories in Emergence Magazine in the past.
They knew creating a normal documentary would never have worked as the material they shot was too static. Therefore, they come up with the idea to of a film/photo essay where a visitor could scroll whilst listening to the soundscape, interviews and music at the same time.
Behind the scenes - UX & UI
Creating a user-friendly interface seemed to be quite the challenge - wanting to create the perfect balance between visual and spoken narratives. Making sure that visitors would not lose their way or interest. The user had to be in control - able to navigate at their own pace.
After several design iterations, a progress bar was introduced - showing exactly where you are in the story. The progress bar acts as an audio bar and scroll progress indicator in one.
Also, reducing loading time for such high resolution visual content was essential and required some attention.
Together with their digital partner September Digital, Studio Airport managed all of this, and created a seamless, interactive experience. A truly collaborative effort - between a core in-house design team, their digital development partner September Digital and a selection of talented, dedicated creatives in the fields of film, music and copywriting.
The Pollinators of Slovenia will be part of a physical pop-up exhibition in London called Shifting Landscapes: a truly immersive experience. From 1st December until 10th December 2023.
Awards & mentions
Awwwards honorable mention
An original and fresh way to present content that matters - with audio as a leading element. To figure out myself what image I want to see along with the audio that I'm hearing makes it interesting to me. Jeroen Thissen - Dutch Digital Design curator & creative director code d'azur