When we started working with Yorkshire Tea, we picked up on a brilliant little initiative that they'd been quietly undertaking for years. Tucked inside the box is a little token, and every time you clip it and send it to Harrogate (the home of YT), they donate a tree to be planted with Oxfam. Neat.
We produced this little website for them where tree donaters can see a virtual version of their tree and keep count of the number of trees donated since the start of the campaign.
It's great to see that nearly 30,000 trees have been donated in the few weeks since the campaign broke and the site was launched.
This is in addition to the 3 million trees that Yorkshire Tea have donated since 1990.
Science is very misunderstood. Many people think it's too geeky, or too hard, or that a career in science means being a badly paid lab technician in an ill-fitting white coat and with unruly hair. So we're helping The Science Council to build a new website so that young people can find out about all the interesting areas of life that need scientists. The first thing we're doing is giving the site a new name, so we've developed a shortlist of six alternatives with the help of some young designers. We're putting each to the public vote. Please can everyone vote at www.sciencevote.co.uk. Please also ask everyone else you know to vote too - young, old, schoolchildren, your children, scientists, designers - and if you can pass on this message to any helpful friends (especially schoolkids) that would be much appreciated. 10 Ipods are there to be won as an extra incentive to take part.
Monday night was the Design Week Awards in London. (Be nice now, Mr Vazquez)
Unfortunately I couldn’t go due to technical difficulties.
Which meant I missed out on:
Smoked Haddock and Crème Fraiche Tart, with a Leek Confit Followed by Fillet of Beef with a Stilton Crust and Balsamic Jus
Saffron Crushed Potatoes and Green Beans with radicchio and Panchetta Followed by Chocolate and Green Tea Fondant with a Mint Ice Cream
I’m told it tasted fantastic. It’s just the description of it that upsets me slightly.
Anyway, food aside, I also missed out on these:
One of which was for this:
And one of which was for this:
Fortunately Alistair, Phil, Alison, Frank and Frances were there to pick them up, and share with the 700 other guests that I was “at home with the shits”. Thanks Phil.
This one is for a project we're working on. We thought we'd throw the internal email out to blogworld to see if you've got any suggestions.
Anybody got any ideas on what kind of things should happen at an Anti-Valentine's Day event?
The night is not designed as a singles night; it's not for munters who can't find a partner. It's more just a night for people (couples?) who think that red roses, being serenaded by some 'Spanish' bloke from Urmston in a bad restaurant, chocolates, oysters and teddy bears are just downright crap. We want to have an alternative night, where Barry White is about as welcome as...[something that was too un-pc to re-produce publically on our blog].
So, try and pretend you're not romantic for a moment (that includes you, Rob) and get thinking please.
We've bought some new cameras after losing all of the old ones during the LOVE Xmas Magical Mystery tour. Here's the first picture - some LOVEsters looking at some proofs for a Playstation 3 job. (Yes, we occassionally do some work, you know).
It took 5 years to produce, but finally we've published the book of LOVE creative work. We've also put together a really nifty mail-pack that we're sending to loads of clients. As an extra sweetener they each receive some LOVE branded chocolate plus the big book plus a smaller book which explains the different ways that clients can hire us - small projects, branding projects, massive TV campaigns, consultancy, stunts, books, digital, t-shirts - hell, whatever we can create! I know some of you have already requested a book. They'll be on their way soon. If you're a client (hopefully with loads of projects to hand to us), then get in touch and we'll send you the full box for free. For everyone else, the cost of the book is £15 plus P+P excluding chocolate.
Isn’t it great when advertising works? It's now a few months since we launched our first TV campaign for Yorkshire Tea (the best tea in the universe, in case you didn't know). Our share of the UK teabag market has gone up, Yorkshire Tea Cakes & Biscuits sales are 15% up since the commercial aired and Yorkshire Tea Decaf sales have doubled. I think that warrants a cup of tea and a slice of tea loaf in celebration. Frank, put the kettle on.
5 minutes after arriving at the Nike Xmas shoot, I was in workmans gloves, and along with four other men, lifting the biggest piece of perspex you've ever seen onto a wooden frame.
You see this shoot was all about angles, and our photographer, Antony Crook did a superb job for us. The box was constructed so that Antony could lay in it and shoot up and through the perspex while the dancer danced on top of it .
Antony reassured us that it would never break, and even did a little ditty himself to prove the point. When Antony thought he'd got a couple of good shots (these normally happened shortly before a joyful clucking noise from within the box), I put them onto my laptop and spun them into snowflakes. That way I could go away from the shoot sure we had some great shapes.
Day 2 was runners, and I arrived to find a slightly panicked Antony. Antony had been let down. The idea was to build a big scaffolding tower and get some amazing shots from above whilst the athletes sprinted on a treadmill big enough for a horse to exercise on. The treadmill hadn't arrived.
Interestingly, it was when we did the 'dive for the line shot' that I observed a beautiful contrast in the studio. We have the fastest white man in the Commonwealth over steeplechase, and a fantastic up and coming 200 metre runner. All the steeplechase guy does each and every day is eat breakfast, 10-15 miles run, lunch, gym, and just before tea he trains on the track until he's nearly sick. As he runs between the scaffolding pretending to dive for the finish line, 25 feet above him is Antony, cigarette in one hand, camera in the other, taking a swig of full-fat coke between shots, occassionally clucking like a chicken. Antony climbs down to show me some shots. 'Look at your calves!' I say to the steeplechase guy.
They resemble two cornish pasties (another contrast - I think in pastry, he probably thinks in terms of isotonic sports drinks). 'It's the way I've lit it - mine would look like that,' jokes Antony.
In lieue of the treadmill Antony has an 'inspired solution'. A couple of crash mats up against a wall. You just run as fast as you can and to stop, just run into them. This is one of the most important shots, and at that moment in time I'm kind of shitting it. We keep going until 200m girl misses the mat and hurts her wrist("you should have looked where you were going", we didn't say). Miraculously we get a great shot.
Two long days was followed by 10 even longer days producing the graphics. The trouble was, we got too many great shots.I remember saying to Dave Simpson 'I've got it down to 60 now.' We needed 12!
(This blog doesn't really do the shots justice, but click on them and wait for a little while and you'll be able to see them a little bigger)
The HWC is an ingenious idea dreamt up by a lovely chap called Mel Young. His idea, to use a football tournament as a vehicle to influence a change in homeless people's fortunes is genius. Teamwork, friendship, fitness training and competition have been proven to affect a positive change in 77% of players lives. So LOVE were priviliged to get the opportunity to work on something so worthwhile.
We asked a photographer friend of ours Klaus Thymann if he was interested in shooting the film for 'charity'. Klaus normally works for mega bucks on top of skyscrapers with supermodels, so we were really pleased when he said 'yes, or course.' He's a good lad as is his tall, glamorous producer Nicolai.
So now we've got a really cool film that tells the story of Zuko, a member of the South African team. Zuko has never met his father and his mother tragically abandoned both him and his sister when he was only eleven. He's had hard times sleeping rough on the streets, getting sick and being wrongfully arrested, however he's now enjoying life thanks to the Arc, a local orphanage who put him forward for the tournament.
His involvement in The Homeless World Cup was a big deal for Zuko, he saved a penalty in his teams opening match which saw him mobbed by local supporters and team mates alike. He's made a whole new set of mates, met local football heroes The Kaiser Chiefs, got a load of Nike clobber and back at the orphanage, the younger kids think he's a superstar. Bingo.
Check out the Homeless World Cup and get behind what's a really beautiful idea. If you want to go to the next one, it's in Denmark.