Heather Elder Represents
Reps Journal

Kremer Johnson Breaks With Tradition to Create a Fresh Perspective for Wells Fargo

Working with financial and banking clients often means finding the balance between tradition and incorporating a fresh feel. Wells Fargo has a storied history, with a legacy of over 150 years, and therefore requires a talented artist to maintain their reputation while creating imagery that will stick with viewers. For a recent campaign, they wanted to change up the way they’ve created imagery and have talent looking straight into the camera. And knowing of Kremer/Johnson’s work, they called Neil and Cory up for the job.

Wells Fargo's decision to work with Kremer/Johnson speaks volumes about the duo's expertise in creating narratives through the lens of their camera. During a recent conversation with the photography duo, they shared insights into the story of the campaign and how their skills brought Wells Fargo’s ideas to life.

What was the initial creative call like with Wells Faro?

It was an intriguing call because Wells Fargo is known for its tradition, but wanted to break away from their own norms. They reached out to us because they were seeking a fresh perspective on their storytelling. The challenge was to capture individuals looking directly into the camera, a departure from the usual portrayals. They were going out of their comfort zone so it was a fun job because we knew we could bring their vision to life. 

What approach did you take to ensure that the narrative was played out with direct-to-camera portraiture?

Our strength lies in capturing the unique features of our subjects and weaving a narrative through facial expressions. In this case, we weren't just creating portraits; we were telling a story through the unspoken language of our subjects' faces. The shift from typical stoic portraits to more expressive visuals was a strategic move to connect with the audience on a deeper and more personal level. It allowed us to bring out the authenticity and engagement that Wells Fargo was looking for in this campaign.

We know that you like to be involved in the casting, location scouting and general art direction on a project. How involved were you in the pre-production work for this campaign?

Collaboration was key. We worked closely with Wells Fargo to understand their brand values and identity. The casting, locations, and art direction were all driven by a desire to seamlessly integrate our vision with theirs. We wanted to make sure the campaign not only spoke to the essence of the brand but also felt authentic and engaging, but we love to be a part of that with the client and agency.

How do you think this library of images contributes to the brand's legacy and how will they be used to do that?

Every frame in the library was carefully curated to encapsulate the essence and values of Wells Fargo. These images, whether used for in-store displays, branch visuals, or billboards, form a visual legacy—a testament to the evolving narrative Wells Fargo is keen on portraying. It's about creating a reservoir of visuals that can be drawn upon to reinforce the brand's identity, now and in the future.