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  • Posts Tagged ‘creativity’

    • Supplying Monsters, Telling Stories

      15th December 11

      Posted by Mel Exon

      Posted in business models, storytelling

      Hoxton Street Monster Supply Store interior (photo: www.monstersupplies.org)

      At Labs we like nothing more that creativity put to good use (reference our love for ichainsawsglovesdesign-led activism and fightwear with a social mission). Chuck in some Mortal Terror and we’re yours.

      With the recent launch of their online shop, www.monstersupplies.org, our friends at Hoxton Street Monster Supplies have extended what is essentially an imaginative, immaculately designed fund-raising platform. It’s all in aid of Ministry of Stories, a creative writing non-profit which is supported by all proceeds from the shop.

      If you need to stock up on Zombie Fresh Mints or my personal favourite, a tin of “A Vague Sense of Unease”, Hoxton Street Monster Supplies is the site for you.

      A Vague Sense Of Unease, available at http://www.ministryofstories.org/

      And, hey, the holidays are upon us, so satisfy the buying-spree beast within with a little monster-based goodness – just make sure you get your order in by this Friday 1pm (GMT), if you want to make last orders before Christmas.

      Behind the shop at 159 Hoxton Street, through a hidden door, the Ministry of Stories exists to help young people in East London learn how to be storytellers. Which, as @jeremyet always likes to say, is where the magic happens.

      Ministry of Stories Writer (photo: http://www.ministryofstories.org/)

      You can shop online here or volunteer to help at the Ministry of Stories here.

      Credits:

      The website was created “by a small group of unpaid humans in their spare time”: design by Gavin and Jason Fox, build by Simon Pearson, project management by Chris Meachin, user experience by Mike Towber; and art direction by We Made This.

      monstersupplies.org

    • A perfect storm: the social web, storytellers and brands

      13th July 10

      Posted by Mel Exon

      Posted in Brands, storytelling

      Entertainment brands.. showing us how transmedia is done

      Last week was Pixel Lab, Power to the Pixel‘s (@powertothepixel) cross-media workshop.

      I joined a group of tutors and producers, half with film/transmedia projects in development, half not, from around the world for the latter half of their week away in Wales.

      By way of introduction, Power to the Pixel are an organisation dedicated to supporting film and the wider media in its transition to a digital age. Ben and I are both lucky to be on their Advisory board.

      My brief was to shed some light on brands and cross-platform/transmedia storytelling, which, if I am honest, initially felt a little awkward. Brands and agencies may be embracing cross-platform creativity and integration per se, but true transmedia… not so much. The likes of Campfire with their Frenzied Waters work for the Discovery Channel’s Shark Week last year, Audi Art of the Heist and – back in the day – Beta 7 for Sega; as well as Ivan Askwith at Big Spaceship (who was generous and interested enough to chew the fat with me late one evening) are two, honourable exceptions.

      With this in mind, my presentation focused primarily on what brands and their agencies are learning about integration, interaction and new partnerships in the hypersocial environment we find ourselves in. I also attempted to explain why brands may be reticent about taking a step further into building deep, immersive, narrative worlds.  Along the way, telling the story of a (failed) BBH Labs joint venture and what we took from it… and finally, ending with a proposal.

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    • From Art to Apps: Data Visualisation finds a purpose

      27th August 09

      Posted by Patricia McDonald

      Posted in creativity, data, design, guest

      Author: Jim Carroll, Chairman, BBH London

      I recently attended an excellent Made by Many event hosted at BBH which featured a re-presentation by Manuel Lima of his 2009 TED talk on data visualisation. Manuel is the curator of visualcomplexity.com and is an eloquent, modest, charming pioneer in this fascinating field.

      As a novice myself, I could not help wondering why we are all so immediately and instinctively attracted to the best of data visualisation.To start with, I’m sure there is some fundamental truth that for most of us data become meaningful only when we can see scale, change, patterns and relationships. Seeing is understanding.

      It’s also very reassuring to discover that complex, seemingly chaotic data sets and networks can be expressed as elegant, colourful, ordered maps and models. Perhaps there’s something akin to what the Enlightenment scientists felt as every new discovery revealed the endless beauty of nature.

      Indeed the best examples of data visualisation have their own aesthetic beauty. (I felt a nostalgic pang as I recalled time spent with spirograph in my bedroom as a child.)

      Like spirograph, but better: Email map by Christopher Baker

      Like spirograph, but better: Email map by Christopher Baker

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    • The Storyteller’s Story

      21st April 09

      Posted by Mel Exon

      Posted in creativity, interactive

      If the past couple of weeks have seen some of the industry’s finest minds crystallise why there isn’t more great work in the interactive space, then from here on in – inevitably, I guess – this debate is going to need to shift on its axis slightly and focus on the trickier task of finding tangible solutions.

      The good news is that there already appear to be some answers emerging, all with the potential to lead somewhere interesting and worth recording. I’m going to approach this pretty organically and see where it goes. Please feel free to jump in, disagree, debate, add your own suggestions etc.

      First up, a theme that may seem controversial to some: the wholesale reinvention of a (sometimes much maligned) skill, the art of storytelling.

      Ben’s second post caught my attention with the observation that “there’s currently much less of a culture of developing narrative or storytelling on the web” and this got me thinking.

      Part of the issue behind this, I would hazard a guess, is the fact story telling as a skill has come to be associated with the old school mores of broadcast advertising. By way of illustration, in his NMA column last week Mark Cridge talked about the need for a creative director to be comfortable with the idea of curation, rather than control. A thought that made complete sense – no question. His piece then went on to conclude “If these are the skills that are going to be important from now on, which type of creative director would you rather work with: a big budget brand storyteller obsessed with control, or one more comfortable with the ebb and flow of the interactive world?”

      Reading this, you’d be forgiven for thinking storytelling no longer has a place or is badly in need of rehab. In truth, and I am going to nail my colours to the mast here, it’s never had the potential to be more relevant or exciting.

      (For full post click below)

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    • 10 Reasons Why There’s Not More Great Work in the Interactive Space

      8th April 09

      Posted by Ben Malbon

      Posted in creativity, interactive

      (NOTE: This post is an attempt to capture some of the emerging themes resulting from an earlier and original post on the subject – see http://bit.ly/iZf7 for original post . . . probably worth going there first if you’ve landed here and want to contribute)

      Some great, insightful and provocative replies to the earlier question around the perceived paucity of great work in interactive.

      First off, I found it fascinating that – to date at least – no one’s responded with a great list of knockout creative, or, in fact, with any knockout creative. This would suggest that there is indeed a problem and that it’s not just perception. Please correct me if I’m wrong here. I’m reassured that various folks who ‘know their shit’ have commented here, and I’m certain they would have picked out the gems had I missed them in my haste to make the point.

      Second, what we have emerging is a really very useful list of factors that, together, explain why we’re not yet seeing consistently great work, and in particular strong enduring campaigns, in the interactive space. Factors cited by contributors will be familiar to many, and include the following, which are reported not as fact but as supposition, at least at this stage:

      1. SPEED – Our lack of speed in responding to the changing landscape, a blight suffered by agencies of both old & new skools, digital & analogue, hampers creative innovation.

      2. ENDURANCE – We suffer a particular weakness at creating . . . (more)

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    • Why isn’t there more great work in the interactive space?

      6th April 09

      Posted by Ben Malbon

      Posted in creativity, interactive

      There’s a debate that, if not quite raging, is certainly simmering about the perceived lack of breakthrough creativity in digital brand advertising (for example: http://bit.ly/14HeCe). I think everyone would agree that great work does exist. But maybe just not enough of it. So why the paucity?

      Well let’s get one thing out of the way right away. It’s almost certainly the case (please argue with me if you think this is not true) that the percentage of “great work” in interactive is no less than that on any other canvas. Great work is rarer than a Texan in a Smart Car. Full-stop. But there seem some quite specific reasons why there’s not a whole load of stunningly great creative in interactive.

      So, a few linked observations about why this might be the case.

      One, as an industry, it seems as if marketing is mesmerized by the (very welcome) potential efficiencies & measurability of digital and that this can lead to blindness when it comes to the creative opportunities. The talk is frequently of driving costs down through zero wastage, or improving efficiency (all good of course), and less often about increasing engagement, forging deeper links with consumers over time, storytelling across screens, and so on. How far away are we from work of the quality and ambition of Aaron Koblin or Jonathan Harris in what we produce for clients? To some extent, even average digital work can be more accountable than much of the work produced for the offline world, and sometimes that accountability can veil what is actually remarkably humdrum work. Here one’s reminded of the John Banham quote: In business we tend to value most highly that which we can measure most precisely. Traditional agencies are, in particular, often in the position of knowing they need to produce both more effective and more emotive interactive work, but not knowing remotely how to develop it.

      Two, we probably need to stop looking at digital creativity as somehow different . . . (more) Read full post