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Editor's pick film

Six of the best animated ads this Christmas

Barbour's Christmas 2017 ad: The Snowman and the Snowdog
Barbour’s Christmas 2017 ad: The Snowman and the Snowdog

Over the past decade, UK department store John Lewis has established itself as a source of eagerly anticipated Christmas adverts. Intensely human in their application, it’s the emotion they engender that wins over the hearts of the nation time and time again.

What’s interesting however is that often they’re not really focused on the humans in them at all. Nearly all of them have equally included some level of CGI or animated work, from bears to foxes, snowmen to penguins. This year, it’s a monster living under the bed called Moz and the tale of his unlikely friendship with a young boy that’s generating millions of views.

Whether you like this particular iteration or not, there’s no denying John Lewis’s impact in the space. This year, there are more animated ads than ever; many of them likewise focused on some warm and fuzzy feelings.

Read on for a round-up of six other animated ads that have caught our eye…


Barbour


Barbour continues its partnership with The Snowman and The Snowdog for the second year, introducing a short campaign that follows young boy Billy into adulthood with his family. Included are his wife, his daughter and the now elderly dog, as well as the returning snowman himself. Original footage from the animated film, which was released in 2012 to mark the 30-year anniversary of The Snowman, is featured in the ad alongside 45 seconds of new content.


Tiffany & Co


This animated ad follows a wooden artist’s mannequin in a snowy landscape discovering various Tiffany & Co products in the snow; a diamond encrusted key, a ring adorning a tree and a bracelet around a rabbit’s neck. Throughout the tale, a big snowball is rolling around, eventually doing so over the mannequin until it breaks apart to reveal the best gift of all; the classic Tiffany blue box.


David Jones


This documentary style campaign from Australian department store David Jones, follows an animated gingerbread man as he leaves his home for a backpacking adventure, collecting gifts for his family along the way. He travels through London, Paris and New York, before being knocked over by a dog and falling into pieces. However, hope is not lost, as a confectioner finds and reassembles the traveller, and sends him home where he and his family embrace within the window of the storefront in Sydney. The David Jones Christmas windows are always eagerly awaited in Australia, and this advert cleverly revealed their theme.


Jigsaw


This fully animated ad from UK store Jigsaw follows the story of two neighbours who leave gifts anonymously for each other every Christmas under the tagline “Together through the years”. One year however, the boy, now fully grown, goes to leave a gift at his neighbour’s house and finds she no longer lives there. Fortunately she returns to deliver him his present and tell him where she has moved. Soon he is at her new door with another gift of his own. The closing line for this advert is “Be together this Christmas”.


Christian Louboutin


In this playful advert from Christian Louboutin, when a female homeowner leaves her house, all of the baubles on her tree magically come to life. They dance around the tree unwrapping gifts and playing with what is inside (including various Louboutin gifts). When they hear her getting home they then hastily fix up the decorations and jump back into place just as she enters to see all of her shoes unwrapped and adorning her tree.


Marks & Spencer


M&S presented a family-oriented campaign this year based on a story about Paddington Bear the night before Christmas. Tied into the launch of the Paddington 2 film, this exclusive tale sees the young bear accidentally discovering a burglar (and mistaking him for Father Christmas), then going from house to house redelivering the stolen gifts.

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Editor's pick film

Animated short from Dolce & Gabbana tells the tale of sourcing the perfect rose

Dolce Rosa Excelsa: A Fairytale
Dolce Rosa Excelsa: A Fairytale

Dolce & Gabbana is sharing the composition of its Dolce Rosa Excelsa fragrance through a short animated fairytale.

The 60-second clip sees the Queen of Sicily sending her two princess daughters off on a quest to source the perfect rose. One goes to South Africa where she discovers the African Dog Rose, the other to Turkey to find the Turkish Rose Absolute.

Both are then combined into the scent alongside top notes of lively neroli leaves and papaya flowers, dissipating into a floral bouquet of white water lily and white daffodil, and warm musky base notes of cashmeran and sandalwood.

The film closes on an image of the real Dolce Rosa Excelsa bottle.



This latest video follows a launch campaign for the fragrance earlier this year starring Academy Award winning actress Sophia Loren and two other Italian Oscar winners: director Giuseppe Tornatore and composer Ennio Morricone.

It tells the tale of a mother and her five sons returning to and restoring their ancient family home in Sicily. The town joins to celebrate its return to its former glory, whereupon a freshly picked rose symbolises the fragrance to follow.


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Editor's pick film

Triumph pushes bra-fitting services in animated musical film

Triumph_findtheone

Triumph has transformed model Hannah Ferguson into an animated character as part of a campaign designed to promote its bra fitting service.

The two-minute musical spot celebrates the magic of finding the perfectly fitting bra. It follows the tale of Hannah, her two friends, a fairy godmother in the shape of a dress form, and a companion called Fred the Frog on the quest for “the one”.

The aim in using animation, according to Triumph, was to provide women with a character that is relatable rather than aspirational, removing any pressure to look a certain way.

Eszter Szijarto, head of brand marketing at Triumph said: “It is really important for us to find new ways of bringing to life the bra finding journey so that we continue to inspire customers to go for a bra fitting. By transforming our model, Hannah, into a cartoon we are treading new ground and by doing so, we aim to create a compelling visual experience that captures the magical feeling of finding the right bra that transforms your life – ‘The One’.”

The campaign features a musical score composed by Tony award-winner Jason Robert Brown. The vocal was performed by three acclaimed Broadway singers, and the accompaniment by Prague’s Filmharmonic Orchestra.

It will air on television in the UK, Germany and Italy from today until mid-May, while edited versions will be viewable online.

Accompanying it is a contest called Animate Me, which calls for fans to answer questions related to “The One” via Facebook and Twitter as well as the Find the One Hub (where bra fitting appointments can also be made). Winners will receive an animated illustration of themselves in the same style as the film.

This post first appeared on WGSN.com/blogs

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film social media

All the interactive elements accompanying John Lewis’ #bearandhare Christmas ad

JohnLewis_bearharestory2

Hopefully by now you will have all seen, or at least heard about, John Lewis’ epic £7 million Christmas ad: The Bear and The Hare, created by adam&eve DDB.

The hand-animated tale has received an enormous 8.7 million views on YouTube since launch on November 8, and according to reports, helped drive sales of £101.45?million in the British department store in the week that followed, up 10.7% on 2012.

Despite the fact the spot premiered on TV in the UK during The X-Factor (played as an entire two-minute ad break), this campaign lives well beyond its traditional format. Here’s a breakdown of some of the more interactive ways how: 

  • An accompanying e-book called ‘The Bear who had never seen Christmas’ has been introduced for iPad, iPhone and Android. It features a series of touch-to-activate features, including a treasure hunt throughout the pages of the story in order to decorate a Christmas tree at the end, and a musical component for kids to tap their screens along to  
  • As with last year’s snowmen, the two main characters, Bear and Hare, each have their own Twitter profiles. Following them reveals all sorts of insights into their friendship: Hare planning to tickle Bear in his sleep, and Bear snoozing through the majority of it only waking briefly now and again to tweet out a line of Zzzzzzzzz’s
  • A Christmas card maker allows consumers to create their own personalised e-cards too. A selection of templates featuring the different woodland animals can be selected from first, then a personal picture uploaded or chosen by connecting with Facebook. Lastly, a message can be added before sharing it over social, downloading it to send via email or print out, and/or adding it to the online gallery
  • In the physical space meanwhile, 11 John Lewis stores around the UK have special ‘caves’ for children to visit and have their photo taken with the Bear and the Hare. The Oxford Street and Peter Jones London stores are particularly worth visiting for the windows too, where a total of 188 animal sculptures have been made from over 7,000 everyday products, like a reindeer from Dyson vacuums, a polar bear from Nintendo Wiis and a turkey from a series of rolled up towels. Creative consultancy Chameleon Visual and production company Setsquare Staging spent a year developing them, as the below making-of video demonstrates. 

JohnLewis_bearandhare2Screen Shot 2013-11-26 at 00.18.59JohnLewis_bearharestory3JohnLewis_bearharestory1JohnLewis_Hare

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Burberry holiday film gives Regent Street store an animated festive spin

 

Burberry is wishing its fans a”magical festive season” with the release of a short animated film set atop London’s snowy rooftops.

“A festive night at Burberry 121 Regent Street”, as it’s called, sees a silhouetted couple travel by umbrella to the doorstep of the new flagship store where a party awaits.

Accompanied by the soundtrack “Goodbye England (Covered In Snow)” by Laura Marling, it sees them dancing on the second floor while a fox and an owl, both central to Burberry’s autumn/winter 2012/13 collection, dart across the screen. Even the Burberry festive van pulls up, before the couple depart, catching a giftbag floating down on a balloon as they do that opens up to a coat for the woman to wear home.

Housed on holiday.burberry.com, the film ends with the closing of the greetings card, social icons to encourage fans to share and the festive message that it’s celebrating the season by donating to the Burberry Foundation, which helps young people realise their full potential through the power of their creativity.

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Cinemagram’s crowdsourced GIF content could prove viral win for fashion brands

Rodarte

There’s no denying the unfathomable appetite online for GIFs at present, or Graphics Interchange Format images to use their full name. Although the simple animated pictures (made up of multiple frames on loop) are about to celebrate their 25th anniversary, they’re being feted across the web now more than ever.

Within the fashion industry, what’s followed of course is bundles of beautifully creative work – pioneered by blogger Jamie Beck and Kevin Burg with their “Cinemagraphs”, as reported here, and since carried on by all manner of Tumblr stars, including the likes of Mr Gif and FashGif.

In fact, on Tumblr, GIFs are hands-down the most successful posts. As Rick Webb, Tumblr’s revenue consultant explained at an event in New York recently it’s these that result in the most engagement actions – likes, reblogs and follows.

Needless to say therefore, fashion brands have cashed in on them too; Burberry, Oscar de la Renta and Calvin Klein as just a couple of examples. Below meanwhile is a recent tribute to the late Lee (Alexander) McQueen created by Nick Knight, and above another created by Rodarte, both of whom are part of the selection committee for a forthcoming GIF exhibition at Art Basel Miami created by Tumblr and Paddle8 called Moving the Still.

Over the past few months, Cinemagram is a name that keeps popping up in relation to all this. One of a number of apps dedicated to the GIF, it essentially simplifies the whole process for individuals to do themselves by using film, while simultaneously tapping into a sense of community once more (think Instagram for GIFs – grainy filters and all). It launched on the iPhone in March 2012, and reportedly has over two million users already.

Referred to as “a fun and beautiful way to animate your photos”, it has caught the eye of a number in the fashion industry especially. It’s interesting to see who is, or has been, on there already – the usual (largely New York-based) digital crowd when it comes to individuals, as well as the industry’s most tech-savvy brands, including Nicola Formichetti, Bergdorf’s and Rebecca Minkoff.

What seems to be the most interesting part of it, however, is nothing to do with corporations having to manage yet another social media outlet, but being able to use it to crowdsource content from their followers.

Brands such as Red Bull and music stars like Pink and Linkin Park have partnered with the platform to offer users the ability to remix official videos and create their own interpretations of the work. The sharing features built into the app then help spread it.

An original post introducing the “Remix” feature, reads: “For the first time, users can engage, interact, and be creative with official video content in a way that has never existed before. Companies want more exposure for their video content… We view cines as tweets for videos and therefore potentially a unique opportunity for Cinemagram to achieve their goals.” Users were doing it already, now they can do so legitimately, and directly from the source.

While a number of fashion brands told me they don’t see uploading their own content on Cinemagram to have too much of a future for them, one e-commerce site in particular said they’re excited to look at how to make use of this new crowdsourcing opportunity. Sending snippets of content out to fans and using it is as a teaser for a then full campaign video is enormously appealing, they explained.

Watch this space…

Nick Knight’s GIF tribute to Alexander McQueen
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Calvin Klein partners with FashGif for fun Tumblr images

Calvin Klein has enlisted Tumblr blogger FashGif to create a series of animated images of its new spring/summer 2013 womenswear collection.

The initiative sees still catwalks shots from the recent NYFW show brought playfully to life through added interest and detail, thanks to the signature work of FashGif’s Greta Larkin. As her page reads, it’s all about “making fashion move”.

Each image is appearing on Calvin Klein’s own Tumblr page every day this week. Below are two more examples of those released so far.

The company is also continuing its relationship with blogger and model Hanneli Mustaparta, focused on behind-the-scenes images from fashion week.

FashGif also created this exclusive image for trend forecasting site WGSN’s Tumblr last week, inspired by the Proenza Schouler SS13 show:

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Nina Ricci handbag campaign turns artsy with GIFs

Nina Ricci is the latest fashion house to turn to animated GIFs in its advertising, launching a beautifully artistic campaign for its new La Rue bag.

There are a total of four images seen brought to life by the handiwork of British artist Jo Ratcliffe. Each is reworked into what the brand refers to as “a series of modern, poetic illustrations”.

Set in iconic places in Paris, the nature of each ad is said to illustrate the different characters of the bag.

“[Within] the Promenade Plantée – Paris’s answer to the High Line – it appears soft and romantic, while on the Rue de Verneuil on the Left Bank, it is bewitching and bold. Chic and charismatic on the Avenue Montaigne, it becomes mysterious and elusive at Pigalle,” reads the write-up.

The three other images are shown below…

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Calvin Klein to reveal interactive digital challenge for new fragrance

Calvin Klein is set to launch an interactive digital campaign to help celebrate the release of its new men’s fragrance, Encounter Calvin Klein, this September.

“Dare to Encounter” as the initiative is called, encompasses a virtual journey and a series of challenges for users to unlock and engage with on a dedicated website.

Fronted by True Blood actor Alexander Skarsgård, who was announced as the face of the scent in June, it follows a tale of desire with the brand’s other campaign star and supermodel muse, Lara Stone.

It uses animated GIFs (as shown) to “capture moments from the television advertising shoot and bring them to life in an unexpected way”.

All those who complete the challenge will be granted access to watch the Encounter Calvin Klein short film, and be entered into a prize draw.

The campaign was created by Fabien Baron of Baron + Baron, alongside Calvin Klein’s in-house advertising agency CRK, and interactive media and technology agency AKQA.

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CR Fashion Book teased with animated editorial shot

Carine Roitfeld has unveiled an animated GIF to promote her new magazine, CR Fashion Book, which is due to launch during New York Fashion Week on September 13.

The image is the first revealed from the actual publication. It features model Juliet Ingleby (photographed by Sebastian Faena and styled by Roitfeld) walking through a graveyard covered only by a floating sheer purple scarf. It is this that blows in the wind in the animated version of the shot.

There was previously a behind-the-scenes video that accompanied a preview issue released.