B&Q, the U.K. home improvement retailer, may guilt you into doing all those DIY projects you've put off with its latest ad.
The spot, from Uncommon Creative Studio, centers on a single dad who's fallen into a slump; it starts out pretty dark in tone, with him sitting in an armchair covered with dust and rubble. His daughter and dog are also caked in dust, and the only color in the room is in photographs of former, happier times. Water then drips onto him, waking him up, and the plaster on the walls starts to crack around him as the house itself encourages him to start working on it. At one point he falls back again into the darkness and mess, but with the encouragement of his kid and pooch, he transforms his house back into a happy home.
The poignant stop-motion animation work is by Blinkink director Sam Gainsborough, who used traditional silicone puppets brought to life by animators. The living room itself was modeled on B&Q's interiors range.
“I loved the original script, it was grippingly unusual and knew it could make a delightful and peculiar film," said Gainsborough in a statement. "I’m inspired by traditional animation techniques that let the materials and textures show off their natural beauty. Stop-motion felt like the perfect way to bring this story to life, as we could really feel the cracking plaster, the dripping paint and unraveling wallpaper. DIY is all about getting your hands dirty, and hand-crafted stop motion has an innate roughness to it that is in keeping with this ethos.”
The spot continues B&Q's "Build a Life" campaign from Uncommon, which launched last September and has adopted a more emotional approach to home improvement. The somber theme is evocative of the pandemic and the depressed state that many have fallen into over the past year, but the suggestion is there that renovation could make a difference.
“The past 18 months have been a period of change like no other—turbulent and often out of our control. We believe now is the time to inspire our customers to take charge of the positive changes they can make to their homes," said B&Q Marketing Director Chris Graham.