Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Star Wars Weather

Here's a cool idea for displaying the weather. Here's today's outlook in Star Wars weather:














Looking forward to seeing the next updates, so summer should be like Tattoine. Here's the link. Hope my train home to Cornwall doesn't freeze tonight...I haven't packed my tauntaun.

Speaking of Tauntauns, check out this AWESOME sleeping bag. I want it. Badly.

It must be Christmas...

There's a dog in the office! Hurrah! Hurrah for Ralph!

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What's not to like about dogs running on polished wooden floors?!

Tuesday, 22 December 2009

The Mother of all Christmases













So, for me this is the best agency Xmas idea this year and it's a cracker from Mother. A really amusing idea this...



Great stuff. What a decent chap Theo is too...he could've kept half and given away half, but hey!

Also, I'm really interested in the beards the creative pair who conceived the idea have cultivated. My beard is getting bushier by the day. I'm giving it 'til summer 2010.

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

FWA website awards

Check out the best websites of the year according to the FWA.

Here's the link.
























Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Super-Slick New MTV Idents

Idents are a great brief to get. They usually serve to sponsor a certain programme - so the USP is all there for you...for example Nintendogs sponsor 'It's Me or the Dog'. It's just a case of bringing it to life in a cool way. Also, clients don't tend to be as strict with them as they are for regular full length tv ads, so as a creative you tend to be able to get away with more stuff.

Case in point - for Nintendo a couple of years back, we were able to get some really fun stuff through, but when it came to the main TV ads the client became well anal. This obviously led to Nintendo being resigned by the agency...but that's another story.

Anyway, I got side-tracked. Here are some great new idents for MTV created by the super-slick Universal Everything. These sort of channel idents, for the likes of MTV and E4, are even better as the only product they're advertising is themselves, so there are fewer creative restrictions. Hence these ones are brilliantly random...and as I mentioned, they're super-slick, colourful and clean as a whistle. The first one is my favourite.

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School of Saatchi













I have to say I was a bit worried when I heard about the concept of this series - a kind of X-Factor for art. But actually I was pleasantly surprised by how good it was.

If you haven't seen it, I won't spoil it by saying who won. All I will say is that the winner has a very strong name.

Watch all 4 episodes of the series here.

Friday, 4 December 2009

Give it a ponder

This is a brilliant campaign. Great idea, beautifully observed. No I didn't do it. Gutted.







Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Avatar surely below par

Is it just me or does James Cameron's 'amazing' new movie Avatar look like a big pile of steaming crap??? Am I the only one who thinks this? The whole world seems to be going crazy for it.



















I hate CGi anyway so maybe I'm biased, but it kind of looks like a new Star Wars Phantom Menace...on acid.



And 'avatars'?! Please. So 2004. What's next Second Life the Movie??? The Sims 3D??? It's definitely one of those ones where when James Cameron first thought of it, funnily enough in 2004-ish, it was the big new thing...of course now the whole avatar concept is so dated.

Don't even get me started on the font...like a crap new-age rainforest cafe logo or something. And to make matters worse a huge new advertising campaign across 5 billboards is being put up outside my office window. It's got 3D rocks and crazy flying metal birds coming out of it.

I weep for the future.

Thursday, 26 November 2009

Monday, 23 November 2009

Vampire Weekend 'Cousins' vid

I rather like Vampire Weekend...probably a bit cliched now, but you know when you do that thing in your itunes and see which tracks you've played the most, I did that recently and Vamp Wkend were most played by some considerable margain. Here's their new music vid...not entirely sure what's going on, but it's in a back alley in New York on a motion control rig and there's colourful drawings on the wall and stuff, so it has to be cool.

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Their website's pretty sweet too, nicely put together. It's here.

Thursday, 19 November 2009

Pic-tastic

I hadn't checked into my Flickr account for a while, so when I did so a few days ago I was well surprised to find a message from a lady in America. She wanted to use one of the photos I took when in California on my honeymoon earlier this year.

It's this one of a boy surfing at Carmel beach.














I was pretty chuffed to find out that it'll soon be used in the Schmap Guide to Monterey & Carmel! An online and printed guidebook to that area. Crazy eh?

Here's the link to my Flickr Photostream.

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Dig it up















We've also been doing the latest batch of concepts for the interactive McDonald's digital Piccadilly sign, which will be out soon...in fact a couple came out on Halloween, although sadly we didn't get a photo with human interaction as we were abroad, but you get the idea...bit of fun innit.

Monday, 16 November 2009

Something to report

It's all been a bit crazy recently, hence the lack of posts. Been making loads of stuff plus had time off for family reasons. Anyway, here are some pics from a government print shoot we did recently, for Apprenticeships. It was a real quick turn around job, in fact I had to go straight to the shoot from the airport after getting back from film shoot in Hong Kong (will post soon hopefully, if Chinese lady client can make some decisions). Pretty gnarly.

The entire set was half size...quite an odd experience. Check out the tiny little plugs! Anyway, it turned out ok in the end, for a government newspaper ad anyway...and yes, that is cocaine spilling out from one of the boxes.















































Thursday, 22 October 2009

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Blade Runner 2













In Hong Kong on a shoot at the moment, pretty awesome...more to follow.

Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Fear of Production?












So we're making quite a few bits and bobs at the moment. It's always the way - months of sitting in your office, then suddenly loads of jobs seem to go into production at the same time.

We're currently editing one tv spot, doing a stills shoot and then off east at the weekend to shoot another film. Busy busy which is great, but we often joke about 'fear of production'...that is will the idea that's in your head/on the page be as good once you've made it? Will you get the director you want? Will the acting, animation or sets be any good? Will the stars align properly? I must say that I find the whole production process quite stressful and drawn out...probably because I'm quite impatient, and possibly a bit of a control freak. It all takes quite a long time to get anywhere, plus I guess I'm still learning about how much input/power it's best to put into the production stage - it differs from job to job I suppose.

My favourite part of being a creative is without doubt the 'aha!' moment of finally getting a great idea on your pad. Sure the excitement of a big shoots can be great, but I still just love coming up with ideas. Of course I understand that to be good at this job you not only have to be good at coming up with ideas, but also selling them, wrangling clients and guiding the production process to fit your vision.

Anyway maybe my opinion will change one day when I'm completely satisfied by something I've put out there...but that sadly seems to rarely happen as too many people want to stick their oars in along the way. Anyway, I'll chuck some of our new stuff up here in the not so distant future and we can all decide whether my fear of production is rationale or not. Actually, what I may do is post up the original idea as it was on the bit of paper it was first presented on alongside the finished piece to see if it lives upto any kind of potential it had, if anyone's interested?

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

Cadbury 'Zingolo'

I'm sure this, as usual will split opinion. I happen to really like it - it's happy and unusual and I wish I'd done it.

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Questionable special effects though, not the sparks, which I think are cool, more the giant head doesn't always seem to have the correct shadows. But I'm being picky. It's great.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Ferris is back, tell a friend...


















Apologies to anyone who actually reads this crap I spout.

Been super busy recently, juggling an array of jobs.

Shocking weather in the village today, just want to be curled up in the shelter of my home with a Blu-Ray. Bloody bleak and freezing it is.

One exciting thing to look forward to this week: Radio Awards on Thursday night where the one and only Peter Andre is performing. Can't wait.

Friday, 28 August 2009

Head Scratch

Check out this amazing new short film by Mr Chris Cairns of Partizan.

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It's titled 'Neurosonics Audiomedical Labs'. Some amazing little touches in here, aswell as some sicker than sick scratching.

Well w-well well done done done.

Saturday, 22 August 2009

Fox O'Clock

Wes Anderson's amazing new film Fantastic Mr Fox is on the horizon and I'm super excited after watching the trailer here.































It looks epic and as always with Wes Anderson's films the art direction and attention to detail looks stunning. He does like his varying shades of yellow doesn't he? Also, I'm sure I've seen Wes Anderson himself wearing a suit exactly the same as Mr Fox...tweed and such. Brilliant.











I wonder what Mr Dahl would think of it...I'm sure he'd be well happy.

Another animated film out soon is the new Pixar movie Up.


















I saw it when I was in California a few months back and it's rather special, mainly thanks to it being one of the first new 3D flicks. As you'd expect from a Pixar film, the quality of animation is brilliant, but it's the 3D-ness that will blow your mind. Worth going to see it for the experience alone.

The storyline - well, that's where it lacks a bit...the premise is simple, but it soon spirals into a contrived and random tale, a bit of a poor man's Howl's Moving Castle if you ask me. But it is definitely worth a watch, even just for the excellent short film that precedes the main feature. Out in October over here I think.

Friday, 21 August 2009

Chinchilla Thriller

Looking directors at the moment, and I'm loving this spot to advertise Las Vegas (!) It goes off on such a randomly brilliantly tangent, and you know they had an awesome time on set!

It's shot by Roderick Fenske at Hungry Man.

Sadly this time it's not quite what I'm looking for. Another time Roderick, another time...





















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Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Spiffing Screensavers














This site has some great screensavers to download. The Lego brick one is extra special.

http://www.9031.com/downloads/screensavers.html

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Lonely Lodger













I'm on my own for 2 weeks at the moment.

Mr D has left me to fend for myself.

God help us all.

Friday, 7 August 2009

Desktop Sexiness

So, I'm back from my holiday in baking hot Majorca. Back to work, and back to exciting computer desktops. Like this one.












PS. Don't you dare look in my folders or tell anyone about utorrent...
I don't use it, honest.

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Projection Power

This is mind-blowing. A stunning facade projection project by Urbanscreen that transforms a two-dimensional surface into a multi-dimensional space by adding depth, time and sound.

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The likes of this, combined with the ever-evolving Augmented Reality technology, means we're in for a pretty exciting future media-wise.

Monday, 27 July 2009

Copycunts

Well, this is going to ruffle a few feathers that's for sure. One of my mates just sent me the link to this blog: Copycunts.





Now I have no idea who writes this blog, and to be honest it is perhaps a little harsh, but the subject of plagiarism is always one that really gets the old juices flowing. It's a sad yet true fact that whenever I see a great ad out there nowadays, the first thing I think is 'where did they nick that from?'

Of course, direct obvious thievery is most definitely to be scorned upon. But in actual fact it isn't as simple as that. The big problem is that agencies support and indeed culture such behaviour. It's not always purely down to the creative team. Hear me out.

It has become extremely difficult to sell in an original idea. Everything has to be like something else in order for agency people to 1) understand it 2) feel confident enough to sell it. If there are two ideas up against each other, the one with visual references will 99% of the time be the route that gets made.

So, after learning that this is sadly how things work in most agencies, teams are pretty much forced to succumb to this endless 'referencing' (let's just call it that for now).

I must admit that it took me completely by surprise, naive as I was. Having done courses like the student D&AD and Creative Circle prior to getting hired - where teams are forced to sit in a room with just a layout pad, marker pen and their bare wit - I was used to 'best idea wins.' Best original idea. It's a sign of the times, but put most teams in a room with so few materials now and they wouldn't know what to do with themselves (myself included perhaps). What the hell do you do with Google, YouTube etc?

The amount of times I've seen teams presenting an idea with a 'reference' saying 'and we found this, which fits the idea perfectly!' No, you found that first then crowbarred your idea into the reference. But Creative Directors don't say anything because they can see a superficially good ad and awards, suits just wanna sell, clients lap it up because it's familiar, same with research groups. Going with an original idea means taking a risk. And who can afford to take risks in this climate?

So what happens? The cycle continues. After all, it's easier and your Creative Director is happy. Plus, the work you're getting out is great. Of course it is, because it's already been tried and tested before.

It's usually easy to spot an ad that's been nicked, even if you initially don't recognize the original source, because the actual idea is wafer thin. It's usually an awesome execution with a line/idea that's short and pithy.

So the moral of all this? Get back to basics. Write a fucking good idea. It takes longer but it's more satisfying and your conscious will be clear. Tell me something true about the product in an imaginative, interesting way I've never previously thought about. Once you've got an awesome strategy, then you can find a reference.

Of course, some people couldn't give a fuck. They'll keep on 'referencing'. Because it's easy. And hey, us creatives need to be down with 'popular culture'. And at the end of the day, being an advertising creative isn't just about having good ideas, it's about being canny, political and knowing how to play the sodding game.

Friday, 24 July 2009

Thursday, 23 July 2009

Pushing Stuff Through the Sand

Some photos from the McD 'Blooming Beach' shoot. One of those ideas that is simple when written on a script, but is a whole different ball game in reality. Fun though.