Creative film company Farm League has today released the first in a series of documentary-style shorts for Hawaiian-inspired shoe brand OluKai. Entitled 'Ocean Mother', this film follows the release of the anthem film 'Together. We Go.' earlier in April, and tells the story of US national spearfishing champion Kimi Werner.
To help OluKai show appreciation and deep respect for Hawaii and its people, Farm League was tasked with creating a series of films which explore real-life stories of relatable characters, whilst delving into the beauty of Hawaii and the Hawaiian/Aloha Spirit. The films aim to highlight OluKai’s ties to Hawaiian culture, the island lifestyle and authentic and aspirational Hawaiian moments.
'Ocean Mother' follows Kimi Werner - a champion spear fisherwoman and a free diver who shows us a glimpse of her life, whilst contemplating the ocean and motherhood. The five-minute film was scripted, directed, and shot by Miko Lim, an award-winning commercial director and photographer. Miko’s bold, but natural style allows him to successfully translate the serene nature of the ocean, using subtle and smooth sounds and toned down colours.
Opening on a close up shot of Kimi’s spear, the film jumps to her interview recording as she discusses her personal views and understanding of the ocean. The viewer is immediately immersed in the character’s story and transferred from the surface of the ocean and its crashing waves to its peaceful depths and tranquility.
Shot in Hawaii in February, the film took 10 days to complete. To show the authenticity and strength of the story and achieve the sensory nature of the film, Miko Lim played with frame rates and reversed sequences.
Miko Lim, director at Farm League adds: “Hawaii has given me so much, and this campaign felt like an opportunity to give something back. When I heard OluKai wanted to tell stories about the underrepresented voices of native Hawaiians, there was a huge opportunity to dig deeper than what people normally see. This campaign is not meant to be the tourist version of Hawaii with rainbows in every shot. In fact, there were so many rainbows there every day that we were purposely trying to avoid filming more of them! Hawaii really is that picturesque and beautiful. But the most interesting part to me is the blending of cultures and the rich history of the islands. It’s not quite Polynesia, not quite America, there’s a lot of influence from Japanese and Chinese cultures… it’s this completely unique melting pot.
I love underwater shooting and the otherworldly beauty of it. The ocean can feel disorienting and wild, then a moment later feel serene and soothing. It was important that the film be aware of that. And I used so much sound design! Even sounds that don’t match in reality but they do in feeling, like using the rumbling of train tracks for crashing waves.”
Tim Lynch, founder and EP at Farm League comments: “OluKai’s Art Director Ryan Baca, who was familiar with our work, reached out to us to help with the visual storytelling for the films. This brief immediately struck a chord with us and how we tell stories as a company. We have filmed in Hawaii many times and we have a deep respect for the people, the environment, and the culture there. Collaborating with these incredible ambassadors who were willing to open up their world to us, and then us telling those stories authentically and honestly, were both absolutely crucial. Our director Miko Lim has strong ties to Hawaii and a storytelling approach that was perfectly suited for tapping into these stories in an exciting and deeply moving way.”
Matt Lindauer, VP of creative at OluKai comments: “We hope that it shows that we, as a brand, believe in the powerful spirit of Hawai’i and the amazing people who live there. Kimi Werner and all of the people that we’re profiling in this campaign are incredibly aspirational in how they carry themselves and live their lives. They are all strong, decisive, and well-prepared individuals. When the moment calls for action, no matter the field in which they excel, they are able to Go without hesitation. At the same time they are shining examples of humility and always giving back. Nothing is done for the individual, but rather everything is done with community or ’ohana (family) as the primary motivation. In the end we hope that OluKai, and the “Together. We Go.” campaign serve as a megaphone to share the stories of the lives of these divers, lifeguards, athletes, and artists and connect people, no matter where they call home, with the spirit of Aloha.”
Farm League also produced 15” and 30” spots for OluKai, in addition to the four short films and the anthem. Each of the films in the series explores a different character and they will all be released in the following months. The next one to be delivered is the story of lifeguard Kamu Davis, followed by self-titled “Big Waves Huntress” Emily Erickson and traditional tattoo artist Kamaliʻi Hanohano.
The campaign will be released online at OluKai.com
and digital platforms including @olukai on Instagram.