Jonathan Knowles was commissioned by ITV to shoot the promotional campaign for their new medical thriller, “Malpractice.” The concept behind the campaign was to convey the idea that ‘Everyone has a breaking point,’ showcasing the extreme stress experienced by hospital staff in the NHS. To visually represent this, medical items were captured smashing and shattering under pressure.
The campaign encompassed film and still assets for TV teaser commercials, out-of-home (OOH) advertising, press advertising, and social channels. Jonathan’s approach aimed to capture bold, stylized, and dramatic imagery in-camera, without relying on CGI or extensive post-production and retouching. By utilizing a custom-made pneumatic press and filming with the Phantom Flex 4K, he was able to capture these disintegrations in super slow motion. For the stills, the focus was on capturing the moment immediately after impact, where the object retained its original form but displayed obvious signs of explosive failure.
Regarding the brief, Jonathan Knowles provided his expertise on achieving the project’s goals from both technical and dramatic perspectives. The objective was to create visually spectacular content. Inspired by the trend of watching objects being crushed by hydraulic presses on social media (@hydraulicpresschannel), Jonathan knew that more energy had to be infused into the process. He opted for the faster action of a pneumatic press, which still appeared slow when filmed at 2000 frames per second. The intention was to capture glass and liquid flying in super slow motion, conveying the impression of explosive failure and reflecting the pressures faced by healthcare workers in an overwhelmed healthcare system.
Minimal retouching was required for the stills. Jonathan shot the items with a gun and captured them a few milliseconds after impact, aiming to showcase easily recognizable objects shattering.
The campaign ran as OOH posters, including special 3-D builds, and in national newspaper advertising. The shoot took place over two days, with one day dedicated to capturing moving images and the other day for stills in Jonathan Knowles’ London Studio.