Clif Bar came to Colorado-based photographer Matt Trappe with the idea to create a campaign around The Great Trail. In celebration of Canada’s 150th birthday, 432 existing walking paths across all of Canada were connected, forming a 15,000-mile route called The Great Trail. Clif Bar sponsored the linkup of a 90+ mile section of the trail, and the brand was excited to share this story.
The goal of the campaign was to capture the diversity of the people, places, and cultures across Canada. Clif Bar wanted to show how this new trail unites Canada both physically and symbolically by creating four authentic photo stories. Matt’s production company, Nine Mind Asylum was hired to execute the shoot. The Clif Bar team had rough ideas about what they wanted but leaned on Matt and his team to pitch specific concepts, logistics, and budget for the story to meet their timeline. By promoting this incredible trail and telling stories about how it connects people across the country, it can strengthen Clif Bar’s brand in Canada and around the world.
Matt and his team pitched several ideas for different stories and locations they wanted to highlight. After many phones calls, the Clif Bar team was onboard, and they settled on four final places that were each diverse from one another. These locations included a farm in Regina, Saskatchewan, the town in St. Jerome, Montreal, Vancouver, Victoria, and in the Northwest territory of Tuktoyaktuk. There was a lot of travel and schedule coordination to sort out in order to complete this project within the deadline the client set.
The shoot itself took place over the course of two weeks. Matt and his assistant Garrett Creamer hit each location consecutively. Most of the time was spent traveling since Canada is such a vast country.
Considering all of the travel and moving parts, the production went very smoothly. Our bags were lost on the flight to Montreal, but we were able to locate them and have them delivered to us quickly. As a precaution, we always carried-on all of our essential camera gear, so lost bags couldn’t hold up the production.
There was unfavorable weather during a few days of the trip, but luckily those were travel days for Matt’s team. Throughout the project, Matt would send selects to the people at Clif Bar to keep them in the loop on how things were going and to make sure they were happy with the results. Matt originally had planned to bring a writer along for the ride to curate copy to go along with the images, but unfortunately, this plan fell through. Alternatively, Matt took thorough notes along the way to help spice up the text portion of the story once he returned from the trip.
The campaign recently launched on Clif Bar’s website, and its social media channels. The feedback so far has been fantastic. The client was very pleased with Matt’s photos, and there has been a lot of engagement via social media. Overall, Matt found this assignment to be the perfect combination of exciting and enjoyable.
Being able to shoot in such diverse locations back-to-back was incredibly fun for me as a photographer. Meeting the people involved in each story had to be the best part, though. They each had such different uses and perspectives on their segments of the trail that it hit home how diverse the country is both culturally and geographically.
See more of Matt at trappephoto.com!