Daily Archives: June 19th, 2009

Wanna Meet the President?

One of the greatest honors we’ve had in the nearly ten years JibJab has been in business was being invited to the 2007 Radio & Television Correspondents Dinner to premier a new JibJab video with President Bush in attendance. Regardless of your politics, my brother and I are of the mindset that when you get […]

WTF Are We Going to Write?

The writing process is normally difficult but coming out of the inauguration of Barack Obama, it seemed damn near impossible.  His approval ratings were sky high and comedians everywhere were lamenting that there was no “angle” on the guy.  He was too smooth!  Our problem was compounded because of the long production cycles involved in […]

Scratch Tracks

After we have a first pass of a script that we feel pretty good about, we need to “hear it” in order to work out the timing and make sure the lyrics flow.  Gregg and Evan go off to a quiet place with a laptop and a crappy microphone and screech out the lyrics to […]

Visual Development

After we’ve got a solid first pass of the script in place our artists take it and begin to play around with the characters and concepts.  In some instances they’ll illustrate ideas straight out of the script (like Obama wrestling a bear) and in other cases they’ll just begin to flesh out the world.  The […]

The Costume

Once we knew we were going the superhero route, our Production Designer, Ian, went to town!  In addition to just making something that looks super cool, we had the challenge of designing a costume that would enable us to make the President emote.  Not only did the balaclava mask let us slap ridiculously large ears on the […]


After the script has been worked on for a while we’ll pass a copy of it to our artists and they will begin the process of translating the written ideas to visuals.  We like to keep the process of writing and storyboarding somewhat iterative as there are times a storyboard artist will come up with […]


Bringing together the music, words and pictures into one file is what we call making an animatic.  These tend to be SUPER ghetto files that just let us test our ideas and make sure things are flowing along the way they should.  An animatic lets us test out our ideas without investing a lot of […]

The Recording Session

If my brother and I agree on one thing (and we agree on most, thankfully) it’s that the recording session is hands down the most fun part of any production.  Why?  Animation production is a very long and tedious process.  It takes months to see a concept emerge in final form.  When we record our […]

Characters and Stuff

Every time we make a new video we wind up having to cast dozens of secondary characters so we almost always turn to our friends and family members first.  There are a handful of familiar cameos in this video along with a few new faces.  For our Jew and Arab we called on Mike and […]


A big part of what makes producing these exciting for us is getting to try out new ideas and new techniques.  That said, not everything we attempt makes it into the final piece.  One of the sequences that got clipped before the final cut was our attempt to animate the tidal wave of money in […]

Anatomy of a Scene

So one of the things we thought might be interesting to post is how a scene evolves from a concept to a finished segment.  As an example we’ll use Obama’s big dance number.  We’ll admit, when this idea was first pitched to us we were not immediately sold on it.  We strive to either get […]

The Grand Finale!

We always aim for a big ending but we knew coming out of this piece it would have to be epic!  Given the storyline it didn’t necessarily lend itself to a “gag” ending and there had been so much amazing art, animation and design created that to do anything less than a monumental shot would […]

Sound Effects

As the project draws to a close one of the most fun stages of production is sound design. Because we typically produce musical videos, you could watch our videos with no sound design at all and still get the entire story… but as soon as we add the thumps, chops, explosions and screams it REALLY […]

The Design Team

Another one of those somewhat “unnoticed” arts that really helps push the quality bar over the top is design. Our design team puts out so much unbelievable work that is either never seen or is taken for granted so we thought we’d show ’em a bit of love! One of the last minute requests that […]

The Store

As the video started to shape up we were seeing so much incredible art we thought, heck, why not create a store?  Every couple of days we’d see something and say, “Man, that’d be awesome on a T-shirt” so the logical conclusion was to put it on a t-shirt.  And a mug.  And a mousepad.  […]