Case Study: Okeanos Explorer Watch

Okeanos Explorer from Black Horse Videography on Vimeo.



We were contacted by the Heitis Watch Company to make a new ad video for their newest and best watch yet. The ad is to be featured on their Kick Starter page in order to raise funds to put the watch into production. We were given the themes and qualities of the watch and what sort of tone was expected of the video. It’s GOAL is to be quick modern and exciting to drive a lot of sensory information in a 30 second spot.



The watch itself, called Okeanos Explorer, is filled with very clear and strong themes. Okeanos is the Greek  god of fresh water. Explorer gave it the feel as being adventurous and certainly something that is rough and tumble yet elegant. These two qualities is where we started and kept most of our focus. The other theme that the creator wanted to keep is the feeling of truly being made and born in Buffalo. Locally made products are something that the people of this community hold very dear to them. Luckily Buffalo sits on Lake Erie, so this meant tying all of these elements together would not only be possible but fairly easy to achieve, which means we had no limits to what we could create.



With the themes in mind we started to brain storm ideas for the final video. Obviously working with water was a must on the list. The choice was then to decide how. Do we go out on location to Lake Erie or do we mock something up in the studio? As much as I love shooting on location for product shoots. The weather hadn’t quite agreed and dropped a foot of snow the week we wanted to shoot. Rendering the site we wanted to use buried under snow with no access to the beautiful rock walls underneath. So to the studio we went. I was able to gather some rocks together, ones that would be designed for a large fish tank. With a mock up of a “lake setting” in my head the next task of indoor water was ahead of us. So I bought a big tarp. It actually came together quite nicely. A 9′ x 12′ tarp with the table in the middle and out mini set on top gave us plenty of room to splash away. And this is what we did. Song choice was also important to maintain the right feel for the production. I went with a slow tempo electronic song with powerful bass to represent crashing waves and contrast with moving water.



I set up the tarp around the studio, designed the set and placed my watches. I decided to shoot the wettest parts first. We used Panasonic’s GH5 for the shoot because of it’s really good slow motion ability and cinematic look. This allowed us to capture the large water splashes as slow as possible. We took turns throwing buckets of water at the watch and were very pleased with the results. After the special shots we shot the “usual” product shots focusing on the close ups of all the features of the watch and building the supporting footage all while still incorporating water into each of the shots.

In the editing room I decided to support the themes even more with found footage of Lake Erie to really hammer home what the watch represents and where it is from. Everything cam together quite easily and all parties were very satisfied with the results.



The Kick Starter campaign has surpassed its original goal and the watch will be going into production as planned and delivered on time to the backers.

Okeanos Explorer from Black Horse Videography on Vimeo.