UnitedHealth Group: Built for Better Health is the second project I had the pleasure of art directing at Gentleman Scholar. This time, it was a full-on advertising campaign, complete with 3 animated commercials and billboards pasted across D.C., print ads inside the Washington Metro and tv screens inside Reagan National Airport.
UnitedHealth Group wanted to deliver an emotional story, rife with tactility and humanity, infused with characters that would connect with viewers. The combination of cel animation and practical stop motion was the perfect potion to cure their needs.
Starting out, I had never combined stop motion footage with 2d animation so it was a new challenge. For each animated ad, I led an offsite stop motion shoot for multiple days (we worked with the amazing team at Open the Portal) and then continued to lead throughout. I also took on the majority of the design and worked with the full conform/edit.
Throughout each animated ad, we refined the process of combining stop motion footage with animation. It was pretty confusing at first (we had no compositor the first time around!), but over time, we found our footing. Fortunately, the team was absolutely amazing and worked together so smoothly!
There was definitely a learning curve here, but we pushed through and I'm extremely happy with the result. Above, the "Veterans" spot is available for viewing. You can see the the rest of the spots and process work below.
UnitedHealth Group: Omnibus
UnitedHealth Group: Maternal Child
Additional Design & Process
Original Pitch Design
My original frames from the pitch - fortunately, a bunch of these ended up carrying over into the final spot.
Art Director: Sarah Beth Hulver
Additional Art Direction (for Veterans): Michael Tavarez
Designers: Stephanie Davidson, John Patrick Rooney, Gunnar Peterson
Cel Animators: Matt Everton, Harry Teitelman, Taik Lee
2D Animators: Matt Andrews, Henry Pak, Andrew Tan, Ryan Kaplan, Jonathon Moore
Stop Motion: Open the Portal
Agency: The Glover Park Group/Zebra
Production Company: Gentleman Scholar
Creative Directors: William Campbell & Will Johnson
Executive Producer: Jo Arghiris
Head of Production: Rachel Kaminek
Producer: Tyler Locke & Nikki Maniolas