Coke On is a motion graphics project for Coca-Cola Japan done at the Brazilian production house Lobo-Vetorzero. This film is the result of a partnership that united two extreme opposite parts of the globe: Brazil and Japan. I had the pleasure to be part of the team as the lead graphic designer of Brazilian’s team working alongside a very talented and experient team such as the directors Mateus de Paula Santos, and animation directors Thiago Martins and Diogo Kalil.
Agency Dentsu created a campaign to launch Coca-Cola’s new Japanese “smart vending machines”, which connect with a smart device and a dedicated app called Coke ON. By turning on the app and placing the phone near the machine’s price display while making a purchase, the user receives a “stamp”. After collecting 15 stamps he or she can claim a free drink, which can be selected directly from the phone while standing in front of the vendor.
Japanese director Genki Ito took care of the live action part of the spot, while Lobo contributed animated graphics done in a bright, colorful 2D hand-drawn style, explaining the mechanics of the promotion and creating a beautiful, optimistic world for the human characters to inhabit.
The studio won the project pitch – the client loved the styleframes I designed with subtle Japanese cultural elements. I’ve lived in Japan for a while when I was a kid, and thank for this experience I knew about Japanese culture and taste.
Since the beginning, I tried to plan the project to be more minimalist, without extensive backgrounds and with continuous transitions. The illustrations would be very bright with primary colors to represent the freshness of the drinks.
The project was divided into two teams, the Brazilian team responsible for the graphics and animation and the Japanese team responsible for the live action part. I was the art director of the Brazilian team. There was already a simple live action-driven storyboard, and what I did was to make a more detailed storyboard for animation part, planning the transitions following the original script, in a way the transition would be more interesting in animation/motion graphics. After approving the sketches and the idea with the director and animation director, I designed the entire art of the project most of it on the Photoshop. The fact I spoke Japanese helped a lot to avoid mistranslations, understanding the original briefing and the comments precisely, and I could contribute to translate some files sent by the Japan team.
Although we had a very tight deadline, the project was a success. The finished pieces of the project were broadly distributed in Japan on tv (15s) and internet platform (30s). The campaign gained attention for its strong internet marketing, and in just one month increased the app download number from 3 million to 4 million.
I believe that any project is about communication, and to achieve a great connection, we need to know about the other part you are communicating. I think that a considerable part of the success of this commercial was thank you for the effort we made to understand the Japanese culture and subtly showing this on the designs, without being cliche. That effort helped to create the trust of the client that we realized what they wanted, even with the difficulties of being in the opposite side of the planet.
If you have the interest to see the final piece, please check it on my website: https://brunaimai.com 🙂