In Campaign's Private View this week, Trevor Beattie from BMB and Andy Jex from Saatchi & Saatchi gave our Honda Civic 'Feeling' ad two rather nice reviews. Thanks!
Honda 'The Other Side' was also included in Campaign's 'President's Picks' feature, where D&AD president Mark Bonner dissected the best and most innovative work from this year's awards.
Have a read:
Neil Christie, Managing Director at Wieden + Kennedy London, talks to Creativepool about management, advertising, pitching to new clients and how to apply for jobs.
(For the purposes of the format - interview in a black cab - we pretended that we were on our way to some high-powered meeting. But in fact, I had a morning in the office that day, so the cab just picked me up from W+K, drove around Shoreditch for a bit, and then dropped me off back at W+K.)
Our Arla Skyr ad focuses on a boy, fuelled by Skyr yogurt, delivering messages all over all his Icelandic town. This week's issue of Campaign delivered us some rather nice messages in the form of Private View comments on the ad from Russell Ramsey, ECD at J Walter Thompson and Sean Chambers, ECD at Jam.
Last Thursday saw the beginning of the next semester in our agency education programme, W+KED.
From now until the end of July, we will be using the W+KED programme to explore the question: will technology save us?
As we are all aware, we live in an age of extraordinary change, in which the futures opening up before us are uncertain and potentially volatile. We hope to explore how creativity coupled with new technologies could help us to engage in the transformation of society for the better, and explore what might happen if the opposite happens.
The world and everything in it is constantly being radically remodelled by technology. There are those who are threatened by this apparent sub-summation of humanity by technology. Globally, we are running out of resources, which raises questions as to the role design plays in our future, and we are closer together – yet further apart – than we have ever been as a global community.
We are inviting important thinkers to W+K to help us understand what is happening and hopefully to push the debate further.
To kick start this, we had the amazing Ben Hammersley come and speak to us last week to try and tackle the question of ‘will technology save us?’. Ben is an Applied Futurist, who broadcasts, writes and lectures internationally to explain the effects of the post-digital post-internet age on people, corporations, governments and international organisations, and is the author of many books and articles on modern technology.
The talk was exciting and terrifying in equal measure, and at one point we were all questioning when a bee actually stops being a bee… if its brain has been cloned and is being used to fly a drone, it thinks it’s a bee after all, right? Amazing (and scary) stuff.
We were all devastated to learn of the recent earthquakes in Nepal, but we're pleased to hear that a few members of our Portland family have come up with a fantastic way to put their creativity to use and help people donate to relief efforts.
You can do your part to support by purchasing some beautifully designed posters from a dedicated site. All proceeds will go to Mercy Corps (although the posters were developed independently of the organisation).
Take a look at the beautiful posters designed by nick Ostini and Raina Jungat at W+K Goodness and support the relief fund if you can. It's a really lovely way of donating and receiving a token of appreciation, and the great news for all of us abroad is that the posters can be shipped internationally.
A few months ago, W+K creatives and animal lovers Jason and Joris had an idea for using social media to help save endangered species. So we put together a crack team of W+Kers and picked up the phone for a chat with WWF, an organisation we've always admired for its incredible conservation work.
Thankfully, WWF loved it and even agreed to change the organisation's iconic panda logo to a panda emoji. Fast forward to today and we're proud to announce the launch of our global social campaign with WWF and Twitter, created with technical partner Cohaesus.
Launching just ahead of Endangered Species Day this Friday, #EndangeredEmoji is an emoji-based Twitter fundraising campaign designed help support WWF’s work to protect precious species and their habitats.
The idea was sparked by the discovery that 17 characters in the emoji alphabet we use each and every day represent endangered species. Emoji have been used over 202 million times since they were integrated into Twitter in April 2014, and the number is increasing daily; we wanted to translate their ever-growing popularity into vital funds for WWF.
Want to get involved and help support the campaign? Retweet this image from @WWF to sign up, then Tweet away using these 17 emoji:
Each year, Fast Company magazine puts together its list of 100 Most Creative People in Business. This year, we were absolutely delighted to hear that W+K creative director and all-round exemplary Aussie bloke Scott Dungate made the cut, for "steering advertising in a new interactive direction" with our Honda 'The Other Side' campaign. Not only that, but he seems to be the only creative individual from an ad agency on the list.
Scott was interviewed by Fast Co about what inspires him, his morning routine and what he does to shake himself out of a creative rut. Check it out here, and then dive in to the full list on Fast Company here.
Shot in a movie trailer inspired visual style, the mustachioed milk drinker’s tale is told through a montage of scenarios that show his unfailing dedication to his trusty, ice-cold glass of Cravendale.
Tell us milk drinkers... can you manage to look this cool whilst drinking a glass of milk? We're still practicing...
Whether they're Extra Strong Mint people or Softmint people, according to Campaign, the British public seems to like our latest Trebor ad.
Our 'Choose Your Trebor' ad received two rather nice reviews in Campaigns Private View this week from FCB Inferno CCO Owen Lee and Mcgarrybowen ECD Paul Jordan. Thanks!
Have a read:
In case you haven't heard, today is the day the UK takes to the polls for our general election. Not only that, but Al Murray, The Pub Landlord, is running in this year's election, and UKTV's Dave channel has documented the whole campaign for our viewing pleasure.
Airing tonight at 10pm, as the polls close, Dave's Election Night Special follows The Pub Landlord as he seeks election to parliament in the hotly contested Kent constituency of South Thanet, which is also the target of UKIP leader Nigel Farage.
To promote the show, we commissioned a political cartoonist, Bob Moran, to illustrate a set of posters for outdoor sites, showing the rather recognisable pair facing off at the bar.
Make sure to tune in to Dave at 10pm for an alternative perspective on the general election as the first results start to roll in. It has everything: run-ins with voters and rival candidates, behind-closed-doors meetings with The Guv's most trusted political advisors, and all the inevitable personal highs and lows of a rollercoaster campaign. Must-watch TV, we reckon.
Spring is in the air, and Honda is welcoming a whole new Civic family into dealerships across Europe. The new range is a perfect example of Honda's philosophy that the driving experience is the most important factor.
The new campaign we created to support the new range, which includes the adventurous Tourer, the stylish Sport and the powerful Civic Type R, launches today with a 60" TV spot.
We were inspired by interviews with Honda’s project leader about the philosophy behind the new Civic. He captured Honda’s dedication to its customers’ enjoyment by saying, “Customers should not think this is a good car, but rather feel, 'I can enjoy this car'.”
With director Johnny Hardstaff at the helm, we brought Honda’s philosophy to life in a hyper-realistic world, suspending the cars and their surroundings in a state of near-arrested motion and setting the stage for Honda engineers to put their expertise to work. Revolving around three thrilling driving experiences, the engineers carefully manipulate the environment to create a maximum feeling of joy. From positioning individual beads of water with precision behind the car, to gently adjusting a bird’s flight, no detail of the perfect moment is overlooked.
The launch film is accompanied by three 20” spots, each concentrating on one of three of the new Civic models, and an accompanying print campaign.
We'll be doing a 12km walk again in a couple of weeks and we're once again raising money to help St Joseph's Hospice continue doing the fantastic work they do.
If you wish to chip in, you can do so here:
The dedication and care St Joseph's provides costs. A fan, to keep a patient comfortable in hot weather costs £1.84 a day, a box of syringes costs £15.29, a physio to help a patient manage their breathing and pain is £31.57 a session. Which means each day, it costs £41,000 to keep St Joseph’s going. Which means a whopping £15 million a year, half of which needs to be funded through donations. An awful lot of money for a charity to raise to keep such vital work going. All donations are welcome and no amount is too small!
This week, W+K designer Michael Bow popped down to Pick Me Up at Somerset House. He reported back with his thoughts on the event and the visual trends emerging from the industry in 2015.
Now in its sixth year, Pick Me Up, billed as a “Graphics Arts Festival” houses a range of work from new and established illustrators, designers, illustrative designers, and everything in between. It’s a pretty good way to gauge what’s trendy in the market that year.
Working at any agency like W+K, it’s important to keep an ear to the ground and know what’s going on; sometimes emerging styles influence our practice, and sometimes we actively go against what’s expected in current visual communications.
Despite the fact that the event is meant to support and showcase up-and-coming creatives, there has been a lot of criticism aimed at Pick Me Up over the past few years. The entry fee still seems hefty considering that you are bombarded with price tags and pay points (and a pop-up café?) from the minute you walk in, but the work is now increasingly presented in a more refined and digestible manner.
Previous years had resembled some sort of doodle-filled TK Maxx, but this year, the show has a nice pace to it, and each individual station is distinctive and well constructed. I would also highly recommend arriving early if possible, to avoid throngs of disapproving designers.
The show this year has a heavy focus on print specialists. Peckham Print Studio, Sope Studio, and Hato Press are all operating live printing stations for people to not only learn about, but create and buy their own specialist prints on site. We caught up with graphic artist, and my fellow Glasgow School of Art graduate, Gabriella Marcella, who was amongst other things showcasing her Glasgow-based riso print studio Risotto.
Alongside the talent showcase, Pick Me Up is now also home to an impressive programme of events in a new presentation area billed as Pick Me Up Platform, all available with free entry. So if there is someone you are particularly interested in, you may be able to see them speak in the flesh too. The impressive headline slot on Thursday is occupied by The Designers Republic’s Ian Anderson, Secret 7”‘s Kevin King, and some DJ sets(?!).
Gabriella Marcella’s Display.
Rightly or wrongly, it feels as though there is less focus on concept and communication when designers and illustrators are left to play. Coming from a position and industry where design and Illustration is very much a commercial venture, and should be used as a tool for clear communication, I feel that a lot of the efforts in the work supported at the event are sometimes a little misplaced, along with the emerging area between graphic design and art.
However, this is a celebration of personal creative freedom, and I was personally drawn to the pieces which display a consistent, interesting and fun use of style. The show’s highlight, aptly titled ‘Pick Me Up Selects’, showcases 12 emerging artists selected by a panel of industry experts. I particularly loved the fantasy comic book/8-bit world seen in Peter Judson’s display. Other highpoints are Jack Cunningham’s Jurassic models, Gaurab Thakali’s jazzy prints and Hattie Newman’s amazing paper-cut micro-sets.
There are lots of amusing things to glance at and flick through as you wander through the different rooms. Other parts of the show I especially enjoyed were the prints by Italian studio La Tigre, and the displays set up by London’s animation collective Moth. Lazy Oaf also have a striking room featuring the results from their FUN project, in which they collaborated with a range of illustrious including Alexander Medel Calderón.
My favorite cat print from Hato Press
David Mendez Alonso’s cap collection
Work from La Tigre,
and Kyle Platts.
Pick Me Up runs until Monday 4th May at Somerset House. Check it out.
We recently ran the second of our Forever Curious 'My Creative Story' workshops at Chats Palace in Clapton with a brilliant bunch of kids from Millfields Community School. The W+K adults (or rather, big kids) in the group had just as much fun as the kids did. It was an absolutely wonderful day, and we loved getting stuck into some hands-on storytelling; we came away totally awe-struck and inspired by the kids and we can't wait to do it again.
One of the Millfields children we had the pleasure of spending the day with wrote us an account of her experience. Take it away, Ivy...
I came to a big room with a big circle of about thirty or forty adults. We were told to write three words to explain what we felt like. Some people wrote things like brave, curious, excited and scared. Then we had to walk around and pretend to be strange things like giants and witches. Then we found a buddy, who was an adult. Me and my partner had to choose between painting inside out characters, acting our stories out, making dens and puppets. We chose to build dens. We made a lovely den out of two pink pieces of material and told stories in our dens. I then made some puppets from the story I made up earlier, and me and my buddy put on a show.
I worked with a lady called Amy and she was very nice. We did everything together and she let me choose what to do. I felt very happy that we worked well in a team. It was a great experience and I'd love to do it again.
It made me feel a mixture of different things like curious, excited and brave. I liked it because it's like when you're reading a book and anything can happen. I also liked it because I felt like I was in a story.
Last Thursday was that time of the year again...Wieden+Kennedy's Founders' Day, the day when we all get together to celebrate the founding of the agency and to get even more creative.
Like every year, the day's itinerary was shrouded in mystery and this year was no different, apart from the strong hint that there would be a 1920s movie glamour theme, which we deciphered from the posters around the office, an invitation entitled 'Wieden+Kennedy Makes the Movies' and the 1920's short film we were shown featuring certain famous faces from around the agency!
We all gathered at the office first thing, and after a hearty breakfast, discovered that our day would be spent in teams, filming our very own 1920s silent movie. Props and all.
The result was 15 short, rather peculiar and hilarious silent movies that, dare we say it, were pretty impressive! We even had a silent rap video/horror movie mashup titled "Jack the Rapper". Turns out we're not too shabby at this thing.
We ended the day with a glitzy, Great Gatsby-esque dinner and party (minus the prohibition act) in Bloomsbury, dressed in our vintage finery. Just imagine lots of flappers and dapper gents, and an awful lot of feather boas. The fantastic entertainment included a live band, a burlesque dancer and a giant Martini glass. The highlight of the evening was of course a mass screening of our hard day's work and a few awards.
We had a great day all in all, and the best part was getting the chance to step outside of our usual roles and get creative whilst spending time with other W+Kers we don't always have the chance to work with.
We were rather spoilt at the beginning of the week with some fantastic award wins from Creative Review and D&AD. We were lucky enough to be given two awards by each, not bad for a Tuesday!
Creative Review have awarded us Best in Book for Lurpak 'Cook's Range' and also for Honda 'The Other Side.'
Here's a chap enjoying (we think?) our Lurpak and Honda work at the Creative Review Annual party last night.
(Photo courtesy of Creative Review)
Closer to home, our Spitalfields neighbours at D&AD awarded Chambord 'Because No Reason' two pencils (rather fittingly) for 'Writing for Brands' and 'Writing for Design.' Nice.
Softmints or Extra Strong Mints?
It’s a deeply personal question, and one we tackle with our brand new work for Trebor.
In a TV spot, directed by New Zealand funnyman Taika Waititi, we tell the story of a teenage Softmint fan standing up to his Extra Strong Mint-loving father. It’s a classic tale of rebellion given a surreal twist, as the father also happens to have...
The campaign is our first for the brand, and Trebor's first campaign in a decade, so we're very happy to see it come to life.
The TV spot is also supported through the magic of radio, with two additional minty tales.
Visitors have been wondering why the fridges at W+K have been full to the brim with yogurt recently. All became clear this weekend: this spring, Britain learned that Iceland’s traditional and nutritious yogurt, skyr, is set to conquer our shores.
Arla Skyr is carefully made from skimmed cows milk following traditional Icelandic methods, which results in a delicious, silky texture that is low in fat, reduced in sugar and naturally high in protein.
We helped Arla introduce the product by creating a multichannel campaign, which launched in the UK this weekend with a 90” film, and will roll out in additional markets including Germany and the Netherlands.
Directed by Dougal Wilson through Blink, the TV spot is set in the 1960s and tells a story laced with Icelandic pluck and, of course, plenty of skyr. A young telephone exchange messenger goes to extraordinary lengths to keep his community connected to the world, and each other, via the only telephone in their remote village. Naturally, bowl after bowl of skyr keeps him going; whether the message he’s delivering is difficult to swallow or a little more mundane, no obstacle is too big and no news too small for the young hero.
Outdoor executions photographed by celebrated photographer Andy Sewell will begin popping up around the country starting in June, heralding the arrival of Iceland’s super yogurt.
Campaign activity will continue online and on social channels, with a series of three short documentary films launching later in April, featuring modern day Icelanders.
Grab yourself a bowl of skyr, and stay tuned for much more yogurty goodness from us.
We encouraged Britain to go 'freestyle' this weekend, with the launch of our new campaign promoting Lurpak's soft straight-from-the-fridge butter, Lurpak Spreadable. It's the perfect product for freestyling in the kitchen.
We wanted to inspire cooks to loosen up, get creative and embrace the more spontaneous side of food. Casual kitchen dabblers and adventurous cooks alike know that sometimes, the most wonderful creations happen in the kitchen when inspiration strikes and instinct takes over. Whipping up a spot of lunch can turn into a delicious experiment when there’s no recipe, no plan, no carefully measured ingredients. Just a little bit of this, a pinch of that and a drizzle of the other.
We kicked things off with a 30” TV spot (watch the glorious 60" version here) on Saturday during Britain’s Got Talent. Directed by the ever so talented Juan Cabral, the film captures the beautiful, rhythmic chaos of freestyling in the kitchen and takes viewers on a journey of flavour experimentation and explosive taste sensations.
We see cooks throw unusual and enticing dishes together to a rip-roaring jazz soundtrack, whilst the voice of Lurpak, Rutger Hauer, steers the show like the leader of the band. We were lucky enough to work with New York dancer, Storyboard P, on the choreography, which brings a dynamic feel to the film, echoing the beautiful frenzy that freestyle cooking creates.
Gustav Almestål captured delicious and inspiring bread creations for print and outdoor executions. Coupled with bold statements, the ads invite cooks to re-evaluate their sandwich endeavours and embrace the art of going freestyle.
Hungry? Go freestyle.
Every year in March, the CdeC (Spain's version of D&AD) celebrates the 'Dia C,' the main event for the Spanish advertising industry. It hosts creativity awards as well as lectures from local and international speakers. W+K CDs – and bonafide Spaniards – Carlos and Laura, were invited to speak. They write:
We had been invited to talk about our experience working overseas, so we thought that it would be a great opportunity to share with our colleagues a little of W+K philosophy and the way we do things here. We called it “Deconstructing W+K”.
We didn´t show any case studies or discuss any particular piece of work. Instead, we made quite an educational analysis on most of the wiedenisms (the sayings and philosophies W+K has adopted over the years), the idiosyncrasy of our creative process and the challenges and rewards of a ruthless commitment to creative excellence.
The take-out we wanted to leave behind was that the values that have made W+K one of the greatest agencies can really travel and be inspirational for those young and independent agencies starting up everywhere. As we said, “The best work of our lives” is not just a punchy line from a well-established and successful business, but a principle of work ethic that a small, independent agency chose 33 years ago and that any creative business in any small town of Spain can choose too.
This edition of the 'Dia C' took place in Pamplona, Ernest Hemingway´s favourite Spanish town. And we dare to say that it's much tougher to stand in front of 500 creatives with a hangover than being chased by a herd of wild bulls. But thankfully, everything turned out pretty well and the audience praised how inspired they felt to embrace failure more often and to happily walk in a little bit more stupid every morning.
As has recently been much reported (not that it was new news) the Nike strapline 'Just Do it' was inspired by the last words of American murderer Gary Gilmore before he was executed by firing squad in 1977.
The line 'Just Do it' first appeared on this 1988 ad:
I recently noticed that Gilmore's last words also apparently inspired the opening of the Human League's classic first single Being Boiled. Phil Oakey intones, "Okay, ready, let's do it" before that awesomely awkward electro-riff kicks in.
So there you have it. Gary Gilmore: the connection between Sheffield synth-punk and Nike. (As yet, no mention of voice of Buddha or sericulture detected in Nike comms.)
Lots of people at W+K were wondering why a woman was taking lots of photos of them last week. Check out today's Time Out and you'll understand why. W+K has been included in an article based on London offices that serve up 'a healthy dose of fun.'
Yep. This is always how we work in the green Padded Cell, Instanapzzz glasses and all.
On Thursday 26th March, W+K designers Michael Bow and Kelly Satchell headed down to the coast to speak to Brighton University’s final year Design and Illustration students about life outside of education and life inside of W+K London.
Their background stories, design developments, processes and successes were shared, along with ‘embracing failure’ tales and agency anecdotes. All in the hope of giving the group a clear insight into how design remains at the very heart of many projects here at W+K London. Which is what makes it a pretty special place to work.
Michael and Kelly came away feeling hopeful that they managed to abolish some of the myths of working as a designer in advertising. As well as feeling pleased to spread word of what working life is like at W+K, as a designer, to a selection of young creative minds that might be considering a career in the industry.
The talk is one of many that the guys are hoping to make to students in the coming months, which coincides with the re-launch of our design placement scheme here. For more information please head here http://wklondon.com/careers/design-placements
Every year Wieden and Kennedy send someone to work for a charity in a developing country. The month-long placement is part of The International Exchange scheme and the idea is that we are able to help out small, non-profit organizations by bringing some of what we know into their world. This year, I was lucky enough to be picked and I’ve spent my time in Malawi at a charity called Kusamala, working to improve agricultural practices amongst rural farmers.
In my short stay, I’ve looked at the way the charity approaches funding, education and communications. I think that being able to view their work from a creative and more business orientated perspective has helped open up new ways of thinking, resulting in new course offerings, a new visual identity and templates for promotional material moving forward.
I’ve learnt a whole lot about Africa, Farming and the way that aid organizations work. It’ been a pretty eye opening experience. Have I single handedly saved Africa? Nope. But I’ve got a much better sense of Malawi as a whole and the way that aid organizations currently work.
I’ve come to realize that help from the West is useful, but we shouldn’t assume that we’ve got all the answers.
Developed nations coming to ‘fix things’ is not necessarily the way forward and often we’re just confusing people with so many different opinions and initiatives. For most people that live here, there’s always been people coming and going with some new ‘life changing’ initiative. Lots of broken promises have left people skeptical, and I don’t blame them. More often than not, when an initiative ends and the organization leaves everybody goes back to their old ways. They only changed because there was an incentive at the time, not because they fully believed in the cause.
With an average life expectancy now at around 50 years (it’s on the up), the concept of making the world a better place for our children is not top of the list. A bad crop, Aids, Malaria, flooding or disease are real threats that are more of a concern than thinking 20 years ahead. It’s hard for people coming in from developed countries to see this way of thinking (myself included) and it’s hard to get villagers to see the bigger picture. This unfortunately leads to a lot of instances where people are out for short-term rewards, shooting themselves in the foot in the long run.
Having met a lot of interesting people over here working for different organizations, you hear a lot of horror stories about initiatives going wrong. (Everyone seems to have a few tales to tell so I can’t vouch for the complete accuracy of them!)
I’ve heard stories of NGO’s offering monetary incentives for afforestation, only to find out the village chief ordered a forest to be chopped down so that they could make more money from planting trees! In the recent floods aid was given to 1000 villagers in a camp for those displaced by the water. That evening the charity realized that only 60 people actually stayed there at night, the rest had come from the surrounding area for the free hand outs. Mosquito nets were provided to new mothers to reduce the rate of infant mortality due to Malaria. These were used to make fishing nets. The list goes on and I’m sure for every horror story there are a dozen successes. However, this is what has puzzled me the most. Are we just getting it completely wrong? Is what the West perceives as pressing issues given the same weight over here?
W+Ker Ellie has been getting properly stuck in to our Forever Curious project, helping out with this year's brilliantly hands-on workshop. She wrote us a story about our latest FC day which, fittingly, was all about telling stories:
Magical morning mayhem. That's the title I gave the morning I spent being ‘Forever Curious.' Let me explain….
I’m still a bit of a newbie to W+K, but one thing I have heard mentioned since day one is ‘Forever Curious.’ Being a curious soul, I was intrigued to learn more. I found out it involved helping children and being creative, so I took the leap into the unknown and signed up.
On Friday 27th March, I found myself at Chats Palace in Clapton at 9am. The workshop was called ‘My Creative Story’ and we were joined by 16 children from Newport school in Leyton, aged 8-10. I didn’t know what to expect, slightly fearful of having to stand up in front of everyone and make a fool of myself.
We were paired off, one adult working with one child, although I was fortunate enough to be paired with two boys. They were brilliant.
The idea behind ‘My Creative Story’ is for children and adults to use our imaginations and create our own stories. We were each given a sheet of paper prompting us to describe a character, what happens, what prevents them from achieving what they want, etc. This became the outline of our story.
From our story outlines, we could develop the story in more detail. There were four activities on offer, with each adult/child combo completing two activities. The activities were Puppet Corner, My Story Den, Act it Out and Inside Out. My team completed My Story Den and Inside out.