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Taylor James & Kristian Schuller Team Up for Vertu

Creative Production Studio
New York, USA
Production studio deliver multi-platform production for luxury mobile phone brand

Integrated creative production studio, Taylor James, teamed up with fashion photographer, Kristian Schuller, on the cross-media campaign to launch the latest smartphone from Vertu, the world’s leading luxury mobile phone brand. With a seamless combination of photography, CGI and VFX, the vibrant global campaign, playing on Vertu’s English heritage, is now running across digital and print media.

The ‘Vertu Extraordinary’ campaign is the brainchild of CHI & Partners, appointed by Vertu as its lead creative agency in July 2013. With magazine spreads in the luxury and lifestyle press ahead of Christmas, Vertu’s lead digital agency, AKQA, created a microsite and social media content. Taylor James worked closely with Vertu and both agencies to guarantee a truly integrated campaign.

Planning the print and digital executions in harmony, the CGI elements including the product and butterflies were mapped out in advance to enable to renowned photographer Kristian Schuller to be creative on set, in full knowledge of the technical requirements. Taylor James Technical Director, David Wortley, provided VFX supervision on the three majestic sets; handling the pre-visualisation, tracking and advising on set assembly. Once the environments were shot, the award-winning studio was then able to integrate the phones, add the effects and control the post-production in-house.

Each Constellation smartphone is built from fine materials, handmade in England by a single craftsman. The luxurious calf leather selected for its feel and natural grain, the polarizing sapphire crystal screen and titanium case were all reproduced in CGI by Taylor James to exacting details.

“Supplied with CAD data, we created a 3D model that includes the subtleties of manufacturing and handcrafting that make a product look authentic.” David Wortley, Taylor James’ Technical Director, explains. “Creating the hand stitched calf leather, grade 5 titanium and sapphire crystal, this 3D model is indistinguishable from the real thing. It is used across all media so we had to develop the virtual materials at extremely high levels of detail and to large resolutions to ensure the quality is maintained close up.” The smartphone looks immaculate within the three larger than life fantasy tales across the campaign, from print, digital, interactive and in-store and across the microsite.

Taylor James, renowned for excellence, has worked with luxury brands like Rolex, Graff Diamonds and Mercedes. Their reputation in the advertising industry is founded on matching high quality image creation with intelligent production solutions. The studio stands apart by offering all services under one roof, enabling them to deliver quality and consistency across all media platforms.

The subtleties of the motion elements bring the print layouts to life on screen, a strong example of premium integrated campaign design, without the need for gimmicks. ‘Extraordinary Craftsmanship’ is set in a couture factory. A lady inspired by the couture house is sitting on the sewing machine, with butterflies flying from the machine onto the larger than life dress worn by a cat. Wortley continues, “We built CGI butterflies to flutter around the dress and added animation to create movement, depth and realism. Repurposing the core 3D phone asset we built for the stills also enabled us to easily animate these elements for the digital executions of the campaign.”

Another of Schuller’s visions is a masculine, powerful rhino sitting on his motorbike. He is an eccentric character, sitting in the stately home. VFX such as the smoke were added to the motion version of this image, maximising the use of assets to support Vertu’s brand identity and key messaging.

The campaign is a striking example of how CGI and traditional photography can work hand-in-hand to deliver highly creative multi-platform campaigns and how one studio can help agencies and brands come together on this exemplary cross-platform campaign.

The Vertu Extraordinary campaign is running across a dedicated microsite (, online, and in the press this winter. The work and further details on the production can be seen at


CGI, VFX & Post-production: Taylor James, 2013

Client: Vertu

Agency: CHI

Digital Agency: AKQA

Photographer: Kristian Schuller

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