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Find Your Inner Tetra
The concept was simple, but the challenge lied in the execution.

Brian Cummings by Brian Cummings on Oct. 9, 2020

The assignment was for Tetra®’s 30-30-30 program and its approved products, illustrating the simplicity of the product line. Borrowing inspiration from meditation apps, the agency wrote each script in the voice of a meditation instructor. The spots were meant to create the illusion of being underwater, and then as the camera pulls back, it's revealed that the POV is from inside a Tetra aquarium.

The concept was simple, but the challenge lied in the execution. We had one (1) day to shoot three (3) separate :30 sec spots, plus one (1) :90sec spot. Each spot required two separate tanks to be filmed - for the wide reveal shots - one (1) large tank full of fish was used and for each macro shot - one (1) 1.5g, smaller isolation tank was employed. In the end, six (6) separate tanks were utilized. To create the water effect on the back wall, we built a 9'x18' shallow pond (holding 300g of water) with broken pieces of mirror placed on a pond liner against a blue painted cyc wall. Lights were positioned at angles to create a practical projection effect onto the cyc wall. In order to not see the pond set up in the wide shots, each aquarium was placed on a 4' high pedestal (built on casters). After each shot was completed, the art department would roll out the tank and roll in the next one.

In the end, all fish were given a happy new home with crew, in a brand new Tetra aquarium.

Behind the Scenes


Director - Brian Cummings
DP - Brant Hadfield
Producer - Amanda Björnson

Agency - Rodgers Townsend
Creative Director - Jon Hansen
Copywriter - Erin Holcomb
Agency Producer - Tracy Long & Patty Ivey

Post Production - @antidotestudio
Editor - Ryan Bury
Sound - Mike Radnetz
Colorist - Brian Singler

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More About Brian Cummings

Brian CummingsBrian Cummings is an award winning commercial director/photographer, known for unique conceptual images and ideas. His interest in satire and narrative influences his work behind the camera. A former advertising creative director with with a BFA in graphic design, his love of film & photography led him to start working behind the camera. Brian draws on his background to be a story teller and problem solver. His experience and sensibilities help him compose striking images that tell stories ranging from humorous to dramatic to surreal.

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