The North Face has released its new spot, ‘Never Stop Exploring’ starring musician, conservationist, and explorer, KAM-BU.
Directed by Great Guns’ Calum Macdiarmid through agency Marits Roberts, the campaign promotes the brand’s NSE Collection.
Introducing himself, KAM-BU narrates a self-written poem reflecting on a life spent between serene pockets of nature and the hustle and bustle of London. The viewer is whisked between these two diametrically opposed worlds, as dynamic shots of city roads and energetic performances juxtapose moments of solace amongst the expanses of nature.
London artist KAM-BU – with his love for both high-octane performances and nature – was selected as the perfect fit for The North Face’s NSE Collection, given that its first drop was inspired by ‘90s rave music, and the second by nature within cities. For the initial campaign, Marits Roberts created the brand’s first ever sponsored music video for his rave track ‘Live-O’, while the second iteration focuses on his softer side as a green-fingered ambassador for the Youth Wildlife Trust, encompassing both sides of the product’s design ethos.
To create the second film, Marits Roberts brought on director Calum Macdiarmid to explore KAM-BU’s close relationship with nature. Calum worked closely with the agency, brainstorming different ideas for the execution. Wanting to represent this side of KAM-BU in the most emotive way possible, he opted for an expressive approach to the filmmaking style that would uncover the depth in the situation.
Maximising the contrast between KAM-BU’s urban and earthly side, Calum chose opposing camera techniques for each. When he’s amongst the greenery, ponderous shots with long, slow zooms encourage the viewer to be philosophical about the scene. The city clips, meanwhile, feature jump cuts, shaky crash zooms, whip pans, and sound effects. The battle between either side grants a heightened sense of calm to the end of the film, when it finally settles amongst natural surroundings.
Embedded with authenticity, the film features a poem written by KAM-BU himself, as well as genuine locations meaningful to him, from the place where he grew up to his allotment. To match this organic energy, Calum shot the campaign on 16mm film, lending a raw, vintage feel to the visuals.
Director, Calum Macdiarmid, commented: “KAM-BU is a born performer, and with people like that you don’t need to give too much direction – it’s more a case of just making sure the camera is ready when they’re doing their thing. I loved capturing the two sides of him, and had so much fun trying to take both film styles to the extreme. Between DP Ali King and grader Jax Harney, I think we’ve found something quite raw but beautiful.”