Chip Rich came up with the concept of a fantasy world of characters and Ben, with a little help from his kids Sadie (6) and Sonny (4) and some of their small friends, created the perfect way, via the imagination of this clever and creative brood, to bring this charming vision to life.
Ben wanted to show that toys by themselves are nothing without a child to bring the inanimate object to life. Feeding a child’s imagination and spontaneity allows kids to use their own ideas and playful resourcefulness to create toys and worlds beyond any one object - kids actually create endless possibilities.
Country Crock ‘Imagination’ is set inside a child’s mind, with all their amazing innocence, joy and ability to explore and create even with the most ordinary and everyday things.
In the wild world of a young boy’s imagination, we encounter various characters that spring to life at the dining table as a toy farmer on a three-wheeled hot rod (of course!) whizzes past the magical monsters prowling the tabletop. He evades the menacing bite of a paper shark only to be met by a six-legged, multicolored, Play-Doh™ Cyclops wielding a trident (or what boring adult minds refer to as a fork). As the bright lights of a descending spaceship interrupt the showdown, imagination becomes reality, and mom safely brings the Country Crock in for landing.
The creative credit for the concept of the six-legged star of the spot goes to Ben’s daughter Sadie. He explains, “During Easter celebrations at home, we gave the kids Play-Doh™ and goggle-eyes and let their imaginations take over. And in true childlike creativity, instead of limiting it to one colour, Sadie decided to craft a multi-colored monster with six legs, a truly perfect monster.”
To create the remainder of the toys, the team of Mill illustrators put pencil to paper and hand drew each concept. The Mill’s 3D team then sprinkled in a little of their own childlike magic to the designs, making sure to tap into a child’s pure playfulness and unrestrained inventiveness: a tractor as a three-wheeler, a fork becomes a trident, and a two-dimensional crayon drawing of a shark splashing to life.
The 3D elements were comped into the live action, merging the imagined with the real world. Finally, Mill colourist Mickey Rossiter kept the fun of the spot by adding in warm and colorful tones, making each of the animated characters really pop with life.