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Kraft: Help Yourself Campaign

Rezonate collaborates with Johannes Leonardo to develop captivating this award winning animation for Kraft Mac & Cheese's "Help Yourself" campaign, blending reality and imagination to create the comforting world of "Noodledom."

Expertise

Creative Direction, Animation, Motion Design, Direction, Character design and illustration

Partners

Johannes Leonardo
Kraft

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Credits

Creative Directors: Nico & Katwo Puertollano

Producers: Dan McIntosh \ Encar Lopez \ Hannah Sy

Lead Artists: E.G. Albor \ Bianca Cosca

Illustrators: E.G. Albor \ Bianca Cosca \ Christina Cawad \ Sofia Abellera

Animators: Bianca Cosca  \ Christina Cawad \ Sofia Abellera \ John Basnillo \ Keb Makasiar \ Gwen Guevarra \ Karla Consolacion \ Erika Marquez

Post (Editors / Compositors): E.G. Albor \ Angel Casaul \ Klei Remo \ Gabriele Dominique Principe

Agency: Johannes Leonardo

The Kraft campaign aims to showcase the power of comfort food in providing mental, physical, and spiritual well-being by tapping into the essence of "noodly-ness." The challenge lies in demonstrating that indulging in a bowl of Kraft Mac & Cheese (KMC) not only satisfies cravings but also offers a form of self-care and nourishment for the soul. By promoting comfort as the ultimate aspirational state and embracing the noodly qualities of KMC, the campaign seeks to reveal the benefits of enjoying our favorite comfort foods in a world that could use a little more warmth and coziness.

WELCOME TO NOODLEDOM

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As we embarked on the creative journey for the Kraft Mac & Cheese campaign, we sought to amplify the essence of "noodly-ness" by envisioning a unique world called "Noodledom." This enchanting realm existed between everyday reality and the imaginative world of our illustrated characters. Throughout the process, we constantly asked ourselves, "How can we connect the feeling of noodles to these endearing characters?"

In Noodledom, we joined forces with these "noodly" characters to discover moments of comfort and pure joy, where the characters helped us "help ourselves." Our creative process involved two main aspects: designing the characters and animating them. We blended real-life elements, like a Mac & Cheese bowl, with the fantastical aspects of our characters and their environment, such as exaggerated movements, delightful proportions, and bursts of color.

CHARACTER DESIGNS

Designing the characters, we aimed for a bright, cheeky, and inviting appearance that would resonate with our audience. We anchored our creative process in a core image – the noodle – which served as the foundation for every aspect of our work, including illustration and character design. Throughout several iterations and versions, we refined the characters to capture the essence of "noodly-ness" while maintaining a strong visual connection to Kraft Mac & Cheese. This iterative process allowed us to perfect the characters' design, ensuring they were engaging and relatable while embodying the comforting qualities we sought to convey. Additionally, we recognized the importance of proper representation in our characters, incorporating diverse sizes, shapes, and abilities to create an inclusive and welcoming world that reflects the wide range of individuals who enjoy Kraft Mac & Cheese.

ANIMATION

Animating the characters, we focused on making the movement a profound experience, reflecting imaginative dance-inspired movements and embodying active poses that express confidence, delight, and comfort. This stage of the process amplified the campaign's tone and brought the characters to life. During the animation process, we faced the challenge of choosing between frame-by-frame animation and keyframe animation.

Frame-by-frame animation offers a high level of control and detail, allowing for more fluid and organic movements. However, it can be time-consuming and labor-intensive, as each frame must be drawn individually. On the other hand, keyframe animation involves creating key poses and allowing the software to interpolate the in-between frames, resulting in a more efficient workflow. The trade-off is that keyframe animation can sometimes lack the nuance and expressiveness of frame-by-frame animation.

We carefully weighed the benefits and challenges of each animation technique, ultimately selecting the method that best aligned with our creative vision and the campaign's goals. By striking the right balance between the two animation styles, we were able to bring our characters to life in a way that captured the essence of "noodly-ness" and the enchanting world of Noodledom.

We approached the visuals as a cohesive whole, enabling our audience to believe in the harmonious coexistence of these two realities. To achieve this, we infused the set and props with subtle hints of the character designs and animation, including background colors, simple details, and discreet visual invitations into the world of Noodledom.

Noodledom was more than just a temporary escape through feeds and screens; it was a feeling of joy, comfort, and the understanding that with Kraft Mac & Cheese, we could create these moments at will. Our ultimate goal was to define and amplify the "noodly" feeling, not just in the visual design of the characters but also in the emotional resonance of the world we created. The noodly essence evoked images of movement, flexibility, freedom, and vibrancy, allowing us to craft an ownable feeling for Kraft Mac & Cheese that transcended the campaign.

In Noodledom, we and our noodly characters come together to discover moments of comfort and unadulterated joy. This world serves as a reminder of the simple pleasures in life, like a delicious bowl of Kraft Mac & Cheese, that can bring us the comfort, joy, and fun we may have forgotten we needed. It also illustrates the importance of practicing kindness and nourishment for ourselves and those around us, helping us become the "defiantly joyful" people we aspire to be.