Generally, a brief is a set of instructions/guidelines given by a client to inform the recipient of various aspects demanded by the client or project in some form of detail. Depending on the type of brief, a brief can contain legal bindings, financial/technical limitations and any other information relevant to the project. Briefs can also change if it’s negotiated, informal or cooperative depending on how the process is handled between the companies. These briefs often change to suit certain requirements demanded by either party.
A brief is used to describe the clients parameters, as so both the client and the person receiving the brief can be on the same page as to what the project is. A good brief is concise, detailed, well structured, and includes any and all relevant information. Briefs can vary depending on the situation, for example;
A contractual brief is secure, and legally binding. It’s a documented and signed agreement that states various objectives and parameters that the two participating parties agree to. Were one of the party members to break any regulations of the brief, the contract holder is given the ability to press legal charges, should she/he choose to do so.
Contractual briefs can be very beneficial for media companies as they often outline very specifically the needs of the contract holder. Furthermore these parameters cannot be negotiated, so it provides a great deal of security. The main issue with a contractual brief however, is that if the client produces a product to their own standards, but isn’t acceptable to the standards set within the contract, the contract holder could choose to take legal action.
An example of a contractual brief would be between an actor and a film making company. The actor is legally obliged to do what is described within the brief. This could be a certain amount of films to appear in, what sort of acting is required, and more often than not some form of non-disclosure about the film.
This contract outlines all perameters and requirements clearly, and states what should happen should the client fail to complete the breif.
A formal brief is a type of contract detailing accurate descriptions of what is required to the client. It’s just clear and straightforward, so extra or unneeded information is normally left out of a formal brief to avoid confusion. A lack of extra information can however cause confusion in itself, so any issues regarding the content of the brief can be discussed during negotiations. Both the client and the contract holder will then formally agree on the project and the brief.
Having this type of brief means that the client and contract holder are open to suggestions or issues. This makes the brief ideal for a creative company since there is room for negotiation, it’s not just a one-sided argument. Formal briefs don’t tend to be legally binding, and is normally aimed at group of people, for example a studio or university.
An formal brief may be used with a company of workers/labourers, where the building parameters can be negotiated and planned.
A negotiated brief involves two or more companies/individuals. Negotated breifs are generated when all parties are involved in the creation of the breif perameters. This can either be for mutual benefition, or to settle conficting ideas. A huge advantage to using this type of brief is that it is widely open to interpretation and change, and isn’t completely one-sided. This can result in a better end product overall. However, time spent negotiating/changing and sometimes arguing over different aspects of the brief may delay the production time.
An example of where a negotiated brief could be used, is between two media companies. One company might produce the artwork/models, while another company would develop the programming. The two companies would have to find common ground and come to an agreement as to what/how things need to be done. It’s important to note that negotiated breifs aren’t exlusive to companies, and are often used just between two or more indivudual persons.
An informal brief doesn’t even have to be a written document. It’s generally a discussion between an employer and client regarding the general agreements of the contract.
An informal contract has many distinct advantages. Due to it having no written contract as such, there are no strings attached. This means that if either side of the table cannot uphold or meet certain a requirement, there can be no legal consequences, if so desired. An informal brief also means that the meetings tend to be quicker, resulting in more production time and less time agreeing on what to agree on. Such as a Negotiated brief, ideas can be changed mid-production which gives a certain amount of creative freedom.
Usually though, due to their nature informal briefs are seen as unprofessional, unreliable and almost dangerous in some cases.
This contract very breifley outlines the terms of a loan given from one person to another, without involving any enforcable laws. These contracts are usually created as a security measure, and proof of agreements/terms should you need evidence in a court.
Even though this contracts don’t have any legal bindings, it doesn’t mean they are not without consequences when the contract is breached. Cases of breached informal contracts are fairly common place in courts, due to their general ambiguity and lack of specifics.
A commission brief tends to be where a larger media company will temporarily employ another, smaller/independent company and or individual to produce the product for them. Commissions are common place and often the main source of income for freelance artists.
Having this type of brief means that the larger company doesn’t have to necessarily think/work on the project, as the contracted company/individual is hard at work, often thousands of miles away from the client. The contracted producer then receives payment for the work they have contributed.
Because however there are two different companies working on the same product, often situated on different continents, there tends to be some form of conflict.
An example of where commission breifs are used informally and reguarly is in the art industry. In many cases (and from personal experience) patrons will simply contact the artist, describe what they want, and pay the fee either before or after the artist has completed the work. Artists normally feel obliged to carry out the piece at the risk of loosing known reputation and reliability.
A Tender brief is where a client will advertise their brief, and another production company will bring forth their own proposal that they will then pitch to the client. There are often many different production companies pitching different ideas, so it’s very much a competition. The client then gets the chance to choose the proposal from the company that they think best suits their brief, and offer that job to the production company.
This puts the client as a huge advantage, as he/she has a range of different proposals to choose from. However, it puts the production company at a disadvantage as they can go through all the pre-production and preparation work regarding the brief, only to be turned down.
A Cooperative brief involves two or more companies/individuals that are hired by the client to work to the brief. After the participating companies have received the brief, they can then work cooperatively to produce the end result. If there is conflict, negotiation can be allowed in order to resolve these issues.
Adding more individuals to a project means that you can get more perspectives and ideas. However, adding more people increases the chance of disagreement and conflict with ideas.
A Competition brief is not so dissimilar to a Tender brief. A client would but the brief out, available for all the participating production companies. Each company will complete the brief and present it to the client, who can then judge which company has met the brief requirements the best, and be awarded/granted the ability to work on the project.
Like a Tender brief the contract holder has a huge advantage due to the selection of examples to choose from. Depending on the specifics of the brief, production companies may have already done a bulk of the work for the competition, leaving less to do if they are awarded the project. On the other hand, they can go through all the pre-production and preparation work regarding the brief, only to be turned down.
For this Brief, Yorkshire Forward is appealing to architects to put forward their ideas/designs within a budget is £650,000. It needs to be a demountable building that ‘provides a unique event space’, and is easily transportable as it will travel throughout the region. The building also needs to remain suitable/sustainable for other events after the festival has finished.
Designing and constructing this would be no easy feat, as the client expects some very specific characteristics. Successful completion of this project however would up the companies reputation significantly, and (depending on the specific outlines of the brief) create a reproducible product that can be sold to other clients.
However, should the company fail to deliver the product, or worse, it collapses onto the festival, the company reputation would be dashed completely. They would likely never get commissioned to design anything again.
(Link to existing SWOT analysis)
Zenna Games strikes me a small, yet capable company that has hit it big within the game industry. The company has released many successful titles and is growing steadily. To reach out to a wider audience, Zenna Games would like to progress into the mobile game market.
Due to the lack of information on Zenna Games, I’ll use Mojang as an example. Mojang started off as a little known independent company with just two employees who had released a few small titles. However, their big break came with a game called Minecraft. At first, Minecraft appeared to just be another small-known game from an obscure company in Sweden.
However Minecraft quickly grew in popularity and became one of the most popular games of recent years. To broaden their audience (which had just been restricted to PC/Mac players), Mojang decided to aim their sights on the mobile game market. Porting Minecraft over to a phone/tablet came with difficulties at first, but it quickly grew to become one of the most popular iOS and Android games of all time.
The brief requires that I come up with a story idea and basic gameplay concepts for this game, and that ideally- the game is suitable for a mobile market. Prepare any necessary pre-production documentation for this game, with ideas discussed. at least 6 assets need to be at least planned and modelled.
Within an environment, texture and animate at least 2 items and/or characters. Characters/objects in the scene need to appear natural and incorporated into the environment. Within your models, express a variety of modelling techniques.
Fortunately, 3D modelling is my forte. I’m steadily gaining experience with texturing, but I have yet to have any experience with animation within C4D. I do however have experience with animation in Adobe After Effects, in which the animation process is similar.
I’ve developed a certain style that revolves around simplicity through my 3D environments project, which I plan to utilise with my current project to ease production and rendering time. To successfully meet the requirements of the brief, I’ll need to considerably improve my time management and 3D animation skills to get the result I want.
Added examples for Contractual
Corrected some inaccuracies, expanded, and provided example for Negotiated
Re-checked and added another source for Formal
Added examples and descriptions for Informal
Added description of an example for Commission