Responses by Nick Doring, Creative, and Paulina Embart, global business director, Wunderman Thompson Australia
Background: After many years of the brand being anchored in product-centric communications, the purpose of this campaign was to establish a strategic platform for the brand. It resulted in an emotive, purpose-led platform, enabling the brand to engage with the next generation of consumers.
Reasoning: The Penfolds brand is built on a dogged determinedness and unwavering self-belief. That spirit was akin to many who have achieved extraordinary feats, who push past the ordinary to achieve the extraordinary. We wanted to showcase this aspect of the brand because we felt this was a quality that set Penfolds apart from the rest of the fine wine category. It also enabled us to build an emotive connection to consumers, with a truth from the core of the brand itself.
Challenges: This is truly a COVID baby. Like with most projects this year, the pandemic has been a curveball. Luckily, we were able to recalibrate quickly to utilize the best talent from across the globe. Leading to the realization that we live in an extraordinary era of collaboration. Where we can seamlessly bring a project to life with a team scattered across the globe. The team came together from New Zealand, Europe, China, the United States and multiple locations in Australia to work together from their living rooms in a way that we didn’t think was possible eighteen months ago.
Favorite details: Getting to work with the director Patrick Clair is a not only a highlight of the project, but of our career. Nick has always been a massive fan of his work and felt that he is easily one of the greatest motion designers of our era. He’s often imitated but rarely matched. His versatile style shifts from project-to-project to create pieces that are always arresting and elevate title and motion design to an artform like none other.
Time constraints: Given the process is so much more involved in creating visuals and content from scratch, we needed to ensure we were open and collaborative with client, working together day in and day out, over the course of several months. They were brought into the tent, where in other traditional productions they may not have been. All of which has resulted in a co-created final solution.
Specific demands: The scope of the project was a challenge. A culturally relevant idea that works globally can be tricky. Ideas need to work in multiple languages and cultures. For instance, in China, it’s illegal to use profanities. So, a thirty-second film about the most offensive F word to the brand, the word fine, needed us to pivot for this region, to ensure it would not only land with but resonate with the audience.
Anything new: The way we chose to ultimately create this body of work was a journey that required a trusting client and one willing to go on an intricate creation journey. Lock step with us and the director. It is not as simple as shooting and editing—and re-editing if client isn’t happy. Every step from sketched boards, to animatics to 3-D visualizations to final grades and animation nips and tucks required client buy in. Overall, it’s a much more involved process, one that requires clients to take a creative leap of faith.