Early morning mist, the smell of wet earth wafting in the winds after the first rains, beautiful flowers lining the sidewalks, colorful ripe fruits neatly decking the fruit seller’s display, the distant sounds of a child giggling… there are so many things that pull at our heartstrings…things that make us stop on our tracks, pause and go…”Ah!” …Things that make us warm all over and feel happy to be born and alive.
For many of us here at Mypromovideos, dogs have the same effect. So recently when we had the chance to work for Barks ‘n Licks, it completely filled us with the same sweet “Ah” feeling. Sundar introduced us to Ganesh and Shilpa, the cofounders of Barks ‘n Licks, who sat down with us for the initial chat. Here they narrated to us the story of Cherry, a furry wonder ball of joy- their Golden Retriever. They explained to us how Cherry had been instrumental in bringing their family together and how because of Cherry they had started looking for healthy dog food options. This had led them to start Barks ‘n Licks. We immediately identified Barks ‘n Licks as a product of love and wanted to do something special for it.
We thought a lot about how to create this explainer. Barks ‘n Licks gave you the assurance that you would know what exactly went into your dog food. But what kind of pet owner would care about this? Well, a person who truly cared about his dog. We decided to go for a story-based approach to connect to this person. It would be a story of a dog the pet-owner had raised and cared for. Again we brainstormed a lot as to how to best present this story. I suggested telling the story from the point of view of the dog. It clicked! And thus the script took shape.
The Bark ‘n Licks video was one on which we improvised daily. We were working from our hearts. In the beginning we’d thought we’d make a cute little animated video. But somehow we felt images of real dogs and pups would connect better. And then we thought, you know what would connect better? Videos of lovely pooches! If we were going to go with images, why not go the whole haul and get videos of a dog?
And then we modified again, why use one dog? It was a common story of many dogs…why not use multiple dog footage. We, as dog lovers, LOVED the idea. We were sure others would too. Then another brainwave hit us- if we were using many dogs and puppies….why not use multiple voiceovers too?
We had a very fresh and very original idea in our hands. Now began the talent hunt. We auditioned many puppies and many dogs for the video. Udhay (Creative Director) even went looking at street dogs and puppies, searching for a fit. Udhay and Sara(Animator) had the good fortune to go about shortlisting the canine artists!
We already had our two, “sure”, in-house luminaries- Link and Aero. Jayaraj, a friend and a dog trainer with almost 15 dogs, provided us with two of the lady stars in the video- Yogi, the pretty Lhasa Apso and Sally, the smart beagle. He also helped us immensely during the shoot. Did you see a dapper canine in the video- whom the narrator called Snoopy? Well, Snoopy is actually his name and he came to us thanks to our friends, Shankar and Sujitha.
Now that the cast was ready, we had the challenge of the shoot.The very talented Srikanth was behind the camera, so we knew the video would come out good. Udhay and Sara were out early in the morning for the shoots. It was like a dog’s day out and they were having oodles of fun. They’d return each day full of interesting anecdotes about things that happened during the shoot. One thing was sure -Aero was the undisputed Superstar of the lot!
Shareef, meanwhile, was hunting for voice talents apart from shuttling between us and the clients. Then we came up with another first….we used in-house talents! Again, a lot of us auditioned. A lot of variety and some very interesting takes later we had a HUGE voice footage, apart from the voice over from Andy- our one “real” professional voiceover artist. Shareef came through once more by editing all the voices to make a seamless presentation.
If editing the voice was tough, imagine Sara! He had to sort through reels of footage to find “just” the one that fit and then he had to process it to look beautiful. Throughout the process our clients were trusting, patient and encouraging and this pushed us to give more.
The final video? We are rather proud of it. I think whenever I am down I can simply look at it and feel cheered. Just click the play button below to discover how you feel about it …