Snoopy, the immortal Beagle who has been with us since 1950, has witnessed the technological revolution that has changed our lives. At the time that Apple is just a fruit and smart watches are not even a distant dream there he was, good old Snoopy, who by doing everything, managed to make anyone smile.
The years have passed, and now “smartwatch” and “Apple” evoke different emotions in us, but the essence of Snoopy remains intact, reminding us that some things never go out of style. Times have changed, but Snoopy hasn’t. His immortality and timelessness demand that the times change with him, and not the other way around. It features the latest and most complex face ever seen on an Apple Watch, and that’s how it was designed.
An idea that took years to implement
Paige Braddock is the creative director of “Charles M. Schulz Creative Associates”, the studio where Apple is working to launch the Snoopy sphere in watchOS 10. Today she spoke to GQ and He explains how the whole process works.. The drawings, the ideas, the nervousness…
“When you design an analog watch with Snoopy, it’s a static character. So the only thing you focus on is the hands and arms. The first meeting with Apple I was like, ‘I don’t even know if I smart enough to wear this watch.'”
The first of those meetings, at the end of the pandemic, left him and his team with plans to work on 148 unique animations that adapt to different daily situations. For example, when night falls, Snoopy will howl at the moon, he will dress as a diver when you go to the pool, etc. In total there were over 12 minutes of animations that came out of there, and that was just the beginning.
On Apple’s part, the brain behind all this is Gary Butcher, an interface designer who once ended up at AirBnB but who He soon returned to Cupertino. He says that he is a very organized person, although it was of little use on this occasion:
“So I thought, ‘We’re only going to be together for a short time and there might be some flaws, so I’m going to print 148 blank sheets of paper and we have to leave the room with every one of those sheets filled. .’ At the end of the day, we didn’t play alone, but we had tons of sketches all over the table.
Make Snoopy act like Snoopy
Before starting what to do with Snoopy, we need to decide what Snoopy himself is. Over the years it has changed, therefore It is not an easy task to choose the most representative version of it. They need something that will bring back good memories to those who lived their childhood with it, and which at the same time will be recognized by those who have recently become aware of its existence, as in the case of young people.
In the end they opted for a version of Snoopy inspired by his drawings from the 80s. His nose is a bit flatter than normal, he can walk on two legs – during the 50s he walks like he is a normal dog – and he has a certain. fear of him. of his owner. That’s Snoopy living on our Apple Watch. Now that that was clear, I had to decide how I was going to act.
“Inside it brainstorming At first, the team started with some kind of generic sketches of Snoopy walking in the rain with an umbrella or whatever, but there were certain things about Snoopy that no other comic book character did, like raising his ears and blocking his face. Woodstock.”
This is how this sphere was born. It is complex, sophisticated and has a lot of work behind it. It’s impossible to get two identical animations that can be repeated over the course of a day, and they adapt to what we’re doing and at what time. Snoopy plays with the needles depending on the position they are in, and it shows that they care about even the smallest detail. A character like that—so iconic—deserves no less.
“Snoopy builds bridges between generations. What’s really interesting about the strip is that the scenarios in which Snoopy ends up are still familiar to viewers who grew up with him and to new viewers who know to him.”
Perhaps most remarkable of all is the anecdote Braddock tells. He worked with Charles Schulz, the creator of Snoopy, until he retired in 1999. Since then he has remained in his studio, but he explains that on his first day, the illustrator approached him in the gift shop to take whatever he had. . want “Everything is free now,” he told her. Among the thousands of numbers, notebooks, glasses and pens out there, Braddock chose a watch. How wonderful life is.