BITE | How a cross-industry collaborative team created a powerful campaign under lockdown

ENGINE Creative’s latest campaign for Women’s Aid illustrates the realities of life under lockdown for victims of domestic abuse in a film created by a collaboration of industry experts, who never once met.
Press April 16, 2020

Being asked to stay at home is an inconvenience for many; an irritation for some; but for victims of domestic abuse around the country it’s a terrifyingly dangerous prospect. Between the 26th March and the 1st April 2020, the national domestic abuse charity Women’s Aid experienced a 41% increase in users visiting their Live Chat site, compared to the previous week, with a significant increase in visitors across all digital support services; the charity’s COVID-19/Coronavirus advice page for survivors has had 27,000 page views since its launch.

Women’s Aid have worked with the creative agency ENGINE for many years, having demonstrated the terror of coercive control in a graphic press ad in an earlier campaign. In this frightening time for many, the agency decided to work pro bono to produce a new campaign that demonstrates the reality of life under lockdown when you’re the victim of domestic abuse.

The latest campaign, ‘The Lockdown’, created by ENGINE Creative and production company Knucklehead captures empty streets throughout the UK, the camera panning through vacant playgrounds and deserted public spaces. The copy on screen then points out the reality that, while the nation is on lockdown to prevent the spread of coronavirus, domestic abusers and their partners are self-isolating at home, together, heightening the possibility for abusive situations to arise.


The power of collaborative creativity

‘The Lockdown’ work was created by a team of collaborators all working within current government guidelines. Film footage was taken on phones as part of daily exercise excursions and shared between the team remotely while editing, grading and reviews were all done from home working spaces. Thanks to the wonder of online conference calls, and the speed at which each individual worked, the resulting campaign was created by a team who never once met.

Christopher Ringsell, Creative Director at ENGINE who worked on the campaign revealed that it was in fact, made in a week. From the presentation and go ahead from the client on the Thursday, to conversations with the director on the Friday and shooting over the weekend, the campaign was finished and signed off by the following Friday.

Ringsell feels that, “It’s incredibly galvanising when a group of creatives and makers come together, all behind the same idea with a passion to get such an important message out there.” Ringsell says that many of the team had worked together in the past and he believed in the passion and talents of each individual to add something to the team.

‘The Lockdown’ is an amazing example of the power of creative collaboration to traverse distance and unite creatives. From Tim Katz, Managing Partner at Knucklehead, to The Mill’s colourist and senior sound designer James Bamford and Ben Leeves, to Rebecca Luff, editor at Cut+Run – the project shows the sort of boundless achievement made possible when everyone throws their weight behind a cause.

Read the full article on Bite here.