The World of Play-Doh is whatever a child imagines. That makes it one of the most valuable worlds. Especially to mums and dads, who after all, are the part of the target market for DDB Paris’ hand-made Play-Doh print and poster campaign for Hasbro.
In a world of apps and digital entertainment, DDB Paris wanted to show that Play-Doh is still a wonderful way for kids to express themselves and develop their imagination.
The ads aim to remind parents of the joy of playing with the modelling clay to make fantastic worlds and creatures, as most grown-ups did when they were children.
“So, the creative team started with a very simple, yet universal idea: when kids play – and especially when they play with something like modelling clay – they build their own stories. Their own world, where anything is possible, even if it totally contradicts the laws of universe,” DDB explained.
The production of the ad started with dozens, then hundreds, then thousands of drawings, to shape every character, every animal and every detail. Then followed detailed work on the colours, to be sure of every piece’s tone. The illustrations when then recreated in model clay which, DDB Paris noted, made a few grown-ups change back to children.
The task involved months of extremely precise work for each visual, tagline and logo. Finally, every world was shot by French photographer, Marc Da Cunha Lopes.
The craft was as important as the idea, DDB noted. Every square centimetre of each ad had to be 100% Play-Doh’s DNA. The image, the typo and even the logo are all hand made. Every square centimetre also had to amaze both parents and kids.
It was important, too, to remind parents that sometimes the most ‘low tech’ toys are the best for their children.
The style was intentionally childish and colourful, like an animated feature film made by Pixar or Dreamworks, both as a clear reference to the children’s universe and to appeal to children as well as adults. The headlines were written to have several layers of meaning for kids and parents.
The implied message to parents is “let your children play,” and the campaign stands on the new communication platform that the brand launched worldwide for its 60th anniversary last year – imagination.
Agency: DDB Paris
Executive Creative Director: Alexander Kalchev
Art Directors: Emmanuel Courteau, Natacha Olive de Cherisey & Rémi Picard
Copywriter: Jean-François Bouchet
Account Supervisors: Marie-Laure Dangeon & Camille Passot
Client Team: Hélène Kurz, Karine Martinez & Sylvaine Gomez
Clay Modellers : Natacha Olive de Cherisey, Emmanuel Courteau, Rémi Picard & Marion Dervaux
Photographer: Marc Da Cunha Lopes