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.

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


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.

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Ice Cube - Pimpin' da Nikes

This probably isn't the best ad in the world, but it features that classic 90s Ice Cube track 'Today was a good day'...and skateboarding. Both of which I quite like. So there you go.

The skater's name is P-Rod, although I think he looks like the cheesy actor who plays Vince in Entourage. P-Rod gets his skateboard run over by Ice Cube!!! Ha Ha Ha!!! Silly P-Rod.

Monday, 20 July 2009

Short films

I've got a few short films in the pipeline, hopefully they'll be ready in the next month or so.

In the meantime, one I did a year ago has just got over 100,000 hits on YouTube, which is kinda cool...even if all the viewers are weird American manicurists saying 'ewwwwwww!!!'

Watch the Nail Project again here if you can bear it.

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Cheese Zone Extravaganza

I wish I could say this was mine too, but sadly it's not. This appears to be one advert.

My favourite bit is when the fridge door opens and there's two of the 'chaps' clinging onto to each other inside...for no apparent reason. Sexy.

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

'Blooming Beach'

Here's a new ad we've just finished for the McDonald's Summer Menu.

Directed by Jeff Thomas at Sonny London.

(Sorry I couldn't be bothered to chop off the MPC countdowny bit at the beginning).

Food Surprises Vol.1

I ate a Kit Kat the other day and was lucky enough to find one of the fingers made purely of chocolate. Don't you just love that? It made me think of other unexpected food surprises...

When I was a kid, free toys in cereal boxes were just about the coolest things ever. One morning I opened a box of Corn Flakes, where inside was supposed to be an exciting figure from the movie Willow...that film with dwarves and shit running round a forest. Imagine my complete surprise when inside the box was not one exciting Willow figure but eighteen! Half the box was full of them. What a morning that was.

On the other hand, a crap food surprise is when you eat a Feast ice cream, and really look forward to the big solid chocolate bit in the middle...bit then finding out you've been dealt a duff one, so the chocolate in the middle's all tiny and decrepid. Rubbish that.

Friday, 10 July 2009


This is a lovely advert. Such a strong execution of a great thought.

See how the idea rolled out as an interactive campaign, culminating in the film above here.

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Tuesday Cheer Up!

Baby Wombats. They are da bomb!

Courtesy of Thad over at Limited Fun.


This is a great new campaign for the ethical underpants company Pants to Poverty. It was all written and created by my good friends Ollie & Christen, entitled 'Panteater', a real labour of love!

Alongside the main film, there's all sorts of supporting media and websites. I'll stick a few up as it all unravels.

Skittles 'Hourglass'

Here we go again, a new Skittles ad. The difficult part of any successful campaign is to keep the new executions feeling as fresh and brilliant as the first. This, in my opinion, does that.

Monday, 6 July 2009

Smoke. It's fine.

And here's my rationale:

They say when you smoke a cigarette it takes 5 minutes off your life, but if you smoke a cigarette you get a 5 minute fag actually it all evens itself out.

So the morale of this story: it's alright to smoke.