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Title Design: Concept, Pitch, Boards, Design

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Working through The Lab Sydbey, Substance director Scott was invited to pitch for (and subsequently won) a title sequence design and show package for Channel Nine’s latest Australian cop drama, Cops L.A.C. That’s “Local Area Command”, kids. Making use of the unique, black gloss police car featured in the show, he based concepts and a director’s treatment around shots of the actors and local area reflected in the panels of the car as it hurtles through Sydney streets, passing from dusk into night. Knowing that there was a tight turn-around if the job went ahead, Scott presented 2 concepts and 2 methods of production, for a combined total of 4 alternative scales of economy. Selected stills from both concepts are shown here. While the two titles concepts were similar and overlapped to a degree, one focused on the fast paced work of an inner-city Sydney cop, with the other concept giving more attention to the locality in “Local Area” Command. Hero shots show key actors reflected in lustrous, jet black black panels, amidst a sea of streaming streetlights and siren flashes. Lights are used both realistically and abstractly, reflected and warped in the curved panels of the car. The interplay of light and exposure plays a large part in the graphical look of this sequence, with lens flares, depth of field, and light-bleed adding a level of stylisation to the titles. Our sense of motion in this inner-city odyssey is constant, as wave after wave of streetlights wash over us. The “SV” in the boards stands for “Sea View”, which is emblazoned on the LAC car bonnet. Other titles concept frames were presented that showed map-based representations of the local areas featured in each episode. Characters’ names or credits are featured within these maps, either dominating a particular area with large bold type, or hidden within the map, disguised as actual location labels. These maps were given a gritty, cinematic feel, almost as if they were shot on a tabletop using a tilt-shift lens. An urban colour palette of red/orange and black/grey completed the look, complementing the colour scheme of the Cops LAC headquarters. Finally, several logo concepts and end-frame mockups were designed, some of which are shown here. To see the finished title sequence, click here.


Substance / Scott Geersen
Substance / Scott Geersen
Additional Design:
Jessica Morgan
Additional Typography:
Ben Crick
Lab Producer:
Jayne Herrmann
Head of Production,
The Lab Sydney:
Prue Fletcher

Featured In:

Cops L.A.C. on Motion Served


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