An interactive food documentary
Peter Gilmore app for iPad
There has to be a better way
That's the initial inspiration that drove us to find a way to create a richer 'cook book' experience.
As avid food types, we love beautiful high-end cookbooks too, but as digital natives, we just felt these stories could be brought to life in a far richer and ultimately more informative, engaging way.
So we discussed these thoughts with our friend and 'go to' Art Director for Australia's elite chefs, Reuben. Handy then that he was about to start work on Peter Gilmore's (of Quay Restaurant fame) next book.
A good place to start
So we began playing with what this 'better way' could look like, by developing sketched concepts and then a HTML prototype built from the fledgling assets for the new Gilmore book. Although fairly rudimentary in hindsight, we presented these ideas firstly to Peter and then to the publisher, Allen and Unwin.
Thankfully they loved them
So we set about planning the app proper. After much consideration and experimentation we arrived at what would be the final user journey to tell the story of Peter's amazing food - with the finished dish being the entry point.
Explore the dishes being plated via interactive time-lapse builds
Although this proved very difficult to photograph, it has become one of the most unique and loved aspects of the app.
We then break down the ingredients further to their natural unprepared state so the user can explore in detail the provenance of the ingredients. Via way of custom developed photography, location video footage and Peter's personal voiceovers we are guided through a rich and detailed journey of the places and people that co-create this world famous cuisine.
The app is crafted by our 100% local team using the native iOS AppKit SDK (System Development KIT) and written in Swift, Apple's most modern programming language. Particular effort was made optimising transitions and animations using the Core Animation technologies to achieve to premium feel.
After a preliminary review by Apple we received quite a lot of interest in the design and uniqueness of the application. We then worked further with the local Apple App Store and international dev teams to make some final refinements. This culminated in the app receiving the coveted App Store Feature for the month of launch.
Since its release the Peter Gilmore app has received glowing reviews, firstly from Peter's peers (always nice) and from the high priests of AU food media in addition to picking up international design awards such as FWA Mobile of the Day.
We are proud to have broken new ground with this app (that was the original intention) and believe this 'interactive documentary' style/format has a tonne of mileage for all sorts of branded storytelling in the future.
It's unlike any other digital cookbook extension we've seen before.
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