What is it about light trails that's so compelling in advertising?
The simple answer is that they look really good. You may not even want to go deeper than that, and you know what? That’s fine.
But, if like us, telling the story of your brand or product and connecting emotionally with your audience is the most important thing, then using light trails is a great creative way to do just that.
From giving the viewer the sense of speed, a sense of magic or a direction, light trails are a beautiful part of storytelling. In the following examples, you’ll see how we’ve used them in different ways but ultimately tell a great story.
In this campaign shot by Norman Wong and lead art director Jessica Fecteau, Via Rail celebrates the end of lockdown and tells the story of people getting back to their former way of life. Going to work or showing the joy of being out with friends is elegantly balanced with using light trails giving a feeling of being transported from A to B.
Talking of trains, the key art for Last Train To Christmas we did for The Posterhouse London uses light in a magical context, representing the portals from one timeline to another.
And what about sound, what could beautiful music look like? Intel wanted to explore that idea.
Perhaps your brand wants to tell a story of bringing people together like in this simple, but effective, fully CGI image we created for BT.
Here we see all the parts of the Union Jack coming together showing a collective togetherness.
For subjects that are highly dynamic, light trails work perfectly to show speed, strength and movement in the most effective way. Light trails as seen in these campaigns for NIKE and BT (Brown Lee Bros shot by Satoshi Minakawa) give us a tremendous feeling of motion and power.
Storytelling in imagery takes many forms and this is just a few examples of what can be achieved when there’s a great idea and a brilliant execution. Light as a metaphor, as we’ve seen, is supremely effective at making that emotional connection between brand and audience and it could be something that you can explore.