How’d They Do That? OPI ‘Instinct of Color’ Video

Like West Side Story but with a horse, four dancers and a whole bunch of nail polish. We pull back the curtain on its production.

Here’s the commercial, er “brand film” as they call it in the ad world:

[OPI Products]

“Instinct of Color” was released in the fall to showcase four bestselling colors by OPI:


It was created by ad agency DAN Paris using music, “Down the Road,” by French DJs C2C.

“I always say that nail lacquer can change your look – and your outlook,” explains Suzi Weiss-Fischmann, OPI Executive VP and Artistic Director. “Today, nail color can convey feelings and emotions, expressing on the outside what the wearer is feeling on the inside. In this short film, four women communicate through dance and color. With a trained Thoroughbred who could replicate the dancers’ moves with very little digital enhancement, we were able to capture the unique, energetic and creative culture that epitomizes the OPI brand.”

Yeah, yeah, yeah… but what about the horse?

Its name is — wait for it — Lady in Black, after OPI’s classic black nail lacquer (Black Onyx in North America). Described as a thoroughbred, the horse was trained by French equestrian stunt trainer Mario Luraschi. While some of dressage movements were authentic, if with the assistance of photoshopped-out long lines…


A behind-the-scenes photo showing that, indeed, there were “strings attached.”

…others were technologically enhanced by Mathematic, a Paris-based VFX, animation and motion design studio.

According to the website: “We animated, rendered and tracked 3D legs into many of the shots showing the horse making a series of complicated dance moves. The goal was to have a seamless photorealistic look to both animation and render. The 3D model was painstakingly matched to that of the real horse, which was then followed by our talented team of animators that worked to replicate realistic movements based on the footage of the original horse.”

The more you know, the more you know. Many thanks to Ruby Kauffman for the tip.

Go Riding!


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