By The Chicago Egotist / /
A new campaign for the meal kit brand Home Chef, created by Chicago agency O’Keefe Reinhard & Paul, (OKRP) and directed by Brett Froomer of the Chicago and L.A.-based French Butter, shows everyday people tackling the task of making delicious, great-looking meals at home in a way that’s simple, authentic and ultimately pleasing.
The campaign includes spots like “Hand in Hand,” in which a young woman is seen unboxing her Home Chef meal and easily going through the steps to prepare what the on-screen graphic calls “looks-like-it-took-a-long-time-salmon” in about 30 minutes. The commercial bounces back and forth between shots of the woman prepping and cooking with lush photography of the food itself, resulting in a visual taste treat coupled with a quick tutorial.
“It’s Almost Like,” which functions as more of an anthem, the spot’s voiceover addresses head on the frustration and intimidation some consumers feel about diving into a meal kit preparation at home, but points out that, regardless whether it’s a quick meal, a full dinner or a 5-minute lunch, “Home Chef makes delicious food simple.” As the spot plays out we see triumphant Home Chef users showing off the sumptuous dinners they made themselves – before digging in, of course.
The spots can be seen here:https://vimeo.com/showcase/6374159
To produce this campaign, Froomer – who shot both the people and the tabletop elements of the ads – used an approach that gave the food prep scenes and the food itself the look of having been made at home by real people, not seasoned (pardon the pun) pros.
“We set out to emphasis both the appeal of Home Chef, thanks to their incredibly ‘craveable’ dishes that heighten the dining experience we call dinner, and to illustrate the fact that anyone can embrace, prepare, enjoy, and share these offerings, regardless of what level of kitchen expertise they have,” the director explains.
His work on set reflected a more fluid style than your typical food and beverage shoot, which often includes tightly-choreographed scenes photographed using robotic camera rigs. Rather, Froomer got in close, often shooting handheld to add subtle movement that makes the cinematography feel vibrant and immersed in the moment. “We were okay with things going in and out of here and there, as this heightened the sense of immediacy and involvement,” he notes. “This gave us wide range of dynamic angles over the dishes we features, and instilled that essential appeal of homey ambience and modest, attainable culinary means.”
Care was taken to create a setting that suggested when people were actually in the kitchen making meals, such as late afternoon or early evening. “We did this by using a natural-feeling light that added a lot in terms of making things feel relatable,” Froomer adds. “We were aiming to generate what felt like shareable imagery, like that absolutely wonderful meal you cooked at home and couldn’t resist posting on Instagram. It’s got the feel of something you made yourself, but it looks fantastic. Keeping that sense of realism made a huge difference.”
The agency was impressed with the approach French Butter brought to the assignment. “Brett is a true food lover and brings that passion to his work,” says OKRP Group CD Marian Williams. “He knows what good food is, and challenges himself to make it look as delicious as it tastes. His approach was very food forward, which was important to us, and he presented the homes and dishes with a level of truth and imperfection that we really appreciated.”
Home Chef Credits:
Client: Home Chef
Agency: O’Keefe Reinhard & Paul
CEO: Tom O’Keefe, CEO
Chief Creative Officer: Matt Reinhard
President: Nick Paul
Group Creative Directors: Marian Williams, Jen Bills
Sr. Art Director: Andrea Knowles
Head of Production: Scott Mitchell
Senior Producer: Austen Williams
Business Manager: Kelly Ventrelli, Katie Johnson
Account Supervisor: Layne Steele Paddon
Client Management Director: Betsy Ross
Production Company: French Butter
Director/DP: Brett Froomer
Executive Producer: Ivo Knezevic
Line Producer: Irec Kriske
Production Supervisor: Maddi Burton
Post Production Company: Whiskey & Bananas
Editor: Jill Dugan