Launched in 2015, Guru Pet Food has always placed an emphasis on improving dogs’ health and longevity, and their recent image campaign ‘Get Guru’ provided an opportunity for photographer Paul Cooper and Happy Finish retouch artist Sophie Morrison to get playful with the concept of healthy, clean-living dogs in this creative retouch project!
Lisa Clarke, co-founder of Guru explains: “We were keen to spread the word to Pet Parents throughout the UK about our unique Cold Pressed dog food. We wanted everyone to be aware of the fantastic nutritional benefits, so Andrew and I (the founders) began to think about the best way to shout about the Guru goodness.
After some thought, we came up with the ‘Get Guru…’ campaign. We wanted to photograph Geeksters (anyone who eats, breathes or speaks about Guru) who were loving their Guru, but in humorous and sporty poses to put a smile on everyone’s faces.
We were delighted to find Paul Cooper and even more delighted that he took a chance on us. We discussed the project over a coffee and a date was set to shoot the campaign; we were beyond excited. Paul has since become a great friend and thankfully introduced us to the extremely creative designer, Sophie Morrison and the team at Happy Finish. Once we’d explained the ‘Get Guru’ concept, we left it in their more than capable paws!”
Within the Get Guru concept, a distinct personality was planned for each dog to feature in the set – from the Ultra-Zen Yogi to the Active Skater. Once these were decided, the real challenge began. None of these images were created using CGI, and instead each element of the image was cut, comped together and then illustrated to create the final poses.
To create the assets for each image in this unique approach, the talented and cooperative (for the most part) models had to be photographed in numerous poses, with shots taken of their limbs, their face and body to be later brought together in the retouch process.
Speaking on the project, Sophie Morrison commented, “This project was an exciting challenge for me both creatively and technically. Character design is something we do a lot here, but usually we work with our team of CGI artists to develop characters which then go into retouch. So when Paul approached me with concept of shooting the dogs in a studio and bringing them to life through creative retouch I couldn’t wait to give it a go!
It was a time-consuming process to get the right assets from the photoshoots, and to then piece the models together limb by limb into a pose that worked with their body shape. But Guru’s playful concept let me inject a lot of humour into the images, and I’m delighted with the results.”
Lisa Clarke said, “We absolutely love the end results, which are a collection of photographs that immediately represent our brand and are totally unique like our cold pressed food. We’re thrilled with the response we’ve had via social media. Now that’s what we call GURUvy…!”