BMW. Visa. Samsung. Timberland. These are some of the biggest brands in the world, whose stylish, high-production commercials we’ve seen on TV and across digital media. Curious to know what these brands have in common? The freelancers who created their ads are all on Storyhunter. What does this mean for you? You can connect with and hire top creative talent anytime and anywhere. Check out some of these ads to galvanize your next successful campaign.
David Barker, a Taipei-based DP fluent in English and Mandarin, has produced, filmed, and directed nine commercials for BMW Taiwan. For this project, BMW needed an eye-catching 30-second video for TV and online use and a 15-second vertical cut for social media. They wanted to promote the updated features on the BMW X3 in an “attractive and unusual way.”
David and his team initially thought of filming outdoors but decided against it because of the unpredictable spring weather. No fear: They conjured a “nutty” alternative of creating a lake and pier set in the studio. “With some clever lighting and post-production work, it would give us the nature vibe we wanted, but also allow us to shoot at a consistent light all day long, allowing us to get all of the little details that BMW requested,” David explains here.
The style of the shoot turned out to be “a surreal combination of the serenity of a natural environment and the technical precision of a well-lit studio production.”
David says working with BMW Taiwan is always a “smooth and fun experience.”
Visa, one of the globe’s most valuable companies, was looking to promote its engagement with emerging markets in Africa. “My role was to film several case studies in the region for them and also deliver this: a more social-first asset that could promote the stories and showcase Visa’s work in the region,” Storyhunter SELECT producer Michael Sugrue told us.
Visa did not provide a brief or a script for the video. But Michael, who has worked on 15 case studies for the company over the past four years, closely understands the brand’s needs.
Michael scripted, directed, filmed, and edited the piece. He also worked on sound design. For this social-first asset published on LinkedIn, Visa wanted an “authentic” and “elevated” look, which is what Michael accomplished.
But to achieve this high-end style, brands need to hire freelancers who are collaborative problem solvers. Michael added that working on big brand shoots comes down to the people. “In the case of Visa, I was fortunate to have a very trusting client who empowered me to do my best work.”
Samsung needed an ad to promote its Galaxy Tab A8. Storyhunter freelancer Sudin Bajracharya, who runs Kathacharya Productions in Nepal, teamed up with Samsung Nepal’s marketing team and creative agency Pixel to conceptualize and film the minute-long commercial.
Samsung looked to promote the larger screen on the Tab A8 to older consumers. At the same time, they sought to target younger consumers, for example, students who could use the video call and online classes features.
Sudin cast the lead actor based on the client’s needs: “We decided to have a younger actor to lead the ad who would go around and solve the problems in all three demographics in a family.”
In the ad, the tech-savvy kid helps his grandmother, mother, father, and, at the end — himself — solve various issues using a Tab A8. “The grandma with poor eyesight who could see her son abroad on a video call could now speak to him with a bigger screen on Tab A8. His dad could attend a video conference at home without having to open a laptop to do so, and the kid could screen record his online classes and watch them at his own time,” Sudin explained.
How was the look and feel of the ad executed? “We wanted to have a colorful high-key commercial look to emphasize the brand colors of Samsung,” Sudin said. And to achieve this, the design team incorporated the decided-upon color palette into the costumes and props.
Timberland, an American outdoor footwear company, didn’t want the “cliche of models wearing their brand in lifestyle vignettes.” They preferred a product-oriented approach to promoting their line as perfect for the outdoors. Leif Husted Jensen, who directed, filmed, and oversaw the post-production process, had the idea to create a “cinematic motion catalog.”
But just what is a cinematic motion catalog? Leif explains it’s a “platform where the consumer can see the products on display as well as glimpses of the outside world that inspired their designs.”
Leif and his team stylistically brought the idea to life by filming the product in a loft setting and intercutting live-action footage from a city environment.
“We combined movement and product details to add energy to the video,” he said. “We also paid tribute to the brand’s tonal palette by utilizing warm color temperature settings in the camera and with the color grade.”
Even though Timberland was heavily involved in the production process, Leif says he had ample creative liberty, especially with the overall design and execution of the shots. “It was a rewarding experience collaborating with a brand that had a distinct vision yet was open to new ideas for their video.”
By Shivan Sarna, Head of Stories