Client: Napier Precision Products
Project: Tough World Ad
One of the many things that I love about my job is having the opportunity to be genuinely inspired by the people I work with. Napier Precision Products is a small, Indiana-based business with an incredible story.
Napier provides hardy, after-market parts for Jeep owners. They now have a handful of different products, but it wasn’t always this way. In fact, the business was born almost accidentally.
Back before it all started, Doug, the company’s founder, had bought some expensive fender flares for his own Jeep. Unfortunately, the first time he took his Jeep off-road, the flares broke.
Disappointed, Doug started investigating what went into making fender flares. Surely, there ought to be a way to make them sturdier. It turned out to be a more complex process than it appeared at first, and Doug eventually developed his own method for crafting flares. Doug built himself some stronger flares, and after posting about them on an online forum, he discovered that there was actually a market for them.
The rest, as they say, is history.
After hearing Doug’s story, I immediately wanted to capitalize on his unique selling proposition. Doug’s flares are tougher, and in the off-road world, toughness is the name of the game.
Doug was kind enough let me try out a zany idea I pitched: what if we used dinosaurs? The concept was to wrap Napier’s “toughness” in a “Lost World” visual package. It would be direct enough — gritty, rugged, outdoorsy — to communicate its purpose, but also different enough to distinguish itself in the market.
For the main ad, I sourced a bunch of different images and put the elements together to create a custom composition. Photo composing is time-intensive work, but it appeals to my traditional art background. It allows me to play around with lighting and composition, things that I enjoy. It also gives the the opportunity to tell tiny visual stories through things like the connection between the T-rex in the ad image and the leather, “dinosaur skin” texture in the background of the ad footer content.
Customizing the Jeep itself probably took the most work of any single part of the process. We had to change the colors of the flares, bumper, and runners, and I worked to finesse the reflections in the windows and side panels so that it fit in the “Lost World” jungle rather than a parking lot.
Custom compositions are so much fun, and this one was definitely a highlight. However, the best part about the project wasn’t getting to do something artsy or edgy — it wasn’t even getting to use a T-rex (Although . . . that definitely was loads of fun!) —
The best part was getting to work with an awesome small business owner and have the honor of being just one little part of his inspiring story.