Kyle Bean's Delicious TV Spot for Land O'Lakes
Do you ever wonder what it takes for food to get to your table? Even something as seemingly humdrum as butter has an entire industry behind it before its a part of your dinner. Land O’Lakes invited Kyle Bean, through Hornet, to help them bring that process to life, so Kyle created an animated TV spot that explores the relationship between the farm and pat of butter on your plate using his unique aesthetic and brand of animation. “My approach to animation, as in a lot of my work, is there’s always a physicality to it and I like to keep things as tactile and in camera and as real as possible,” says Kyle. “That’s my slightly stubborn approach to things. Where possible: keep it real and make it physically, that’s my mantra. And luckily for me, it was an approach which the client was really into.”
Even though Kyle and his team started with a slightly different path in mind, they were provided enough time from Land O’Lakes that he was able to develop and optimize the concept and create a beautiful stop-frame animation made entirely in camera. “We were able to really meticulously plan it and get a really great team,” Kyle explains. “It evolved naturally through conversation with the agency and with the client to become something a little bit more immersive, more detailed, and more textural. Initially, we were thinking it would just be a simple paper craft kind of scene and then it ended up evolving to something where this entire real table top in a set that becomes a very textural miniature farmland.” That’s right: everything you see in the spot was created in real life, the trickery is everything that happened in the moments between the frames.
Stop-frame animation can get complicated. There are hundreds of elements to prepare and balance, but the challenges are never quite what you’d expect. “In some ways, the animation shots that seem quite complex were the easiest ones,” Kyle explains. “Obviously, I look at it differently from everyone else because I can see the shots that were really tricky to get right versus the shots that weren’t. And generally speaking, if I were looking at it purely as an outsider, I can tell that the shots that work best are the ones that were the easiest ones.” When all is said and done, everything flows flawlessly and Kyle’s magic is that it all looks easy because it’s all seamless.
If you're interested in understanding the process better, don't miss the Making Of video at the bottom of this post!