Aug 26, 2010 0
Sometimes the most simple solutions are also the most plausible.
Thank you again for giving me perspective.
Aug 26, 2010 0
Sometimes the most simple solutions are also the most plausible.
Thank you again for giving me perspective.
Mar 21, 2010 1
I am sure many of you can relate. That sinking feeling when you are confronted by a (seemingly expansive) white page and literally limitless creative parameter, and are left with absolutely nothing.
There is no shortage of excuses. Too busy, too tired, too drunk. But what I should really be doing is writing an open letter of apology to you, blog, and getting on with getting on.
But sometimes, I just feel exactly like this:
And so begins my quest to find the ultimate cure to writer’s block. Or painter’s. Or musician’s. Or tax accountant’s. Or whomever, really. I have this strange suspicion that this quest may be more successful than the time I tried to eat only sushi for an entire week as a social experiment (for the good of the people, we had to know). Or the time I tried to ride a friends bike up the trunk of a tree to test the suspension. Both good and noble quests, but possibly less pragmatic than this.
And so I have called this ailment ‘creative constipation’, and the quest ‘the search for a literary laxative’. Has a nice ring to it, don’t you think? In a discussion the other day I mused that the way I confronted writer’s block was just to get writing. Do, don’t think. Write and write until a scrap of something useful comes out. But perhaps this is less strategic than I thought. After all, surely first you need to think of something to write about before you can deal with the inability to write about it? (:sigh: I should have been a philosopher).
And so I begin my epic quest as always, seeking inspiration, answers and guidance online. This week we’ll start with items that have inspired others to write, and in the next episode we’ll move on to actual tactics. As you can see, excitement doesn’t necessarily equal motivation.
Some new art on my wall by Josh Keyes.
Visuals that make for misty eyes from Don’t touch my moleskin (and a lovely new blog design, also. Check it out.)
Less misty eyed, but certainly entertaining, is the new Tim and Eric short film, Father and Son.
So much good stuff, it’s hard to not be inspired. And I feel a renewed lust for creativity now that I have discovered my new purpose. To work out how to be creative. Or something like that. It’s going to be my most rewarding quest yet. I can just feel it.
Tune in for the next episode, Actually embarking on a quest one has decided to embark on. And in the meantime, I’ll leave you with this to ponder.
It’s kinda like the red and blue pill from the Matrix movies, but with doors. And kittens.
Jan 17, 2010 3
Yes, that’s right. Another year, another uncompromising fountain of inspiration to be spewed forth from this blog, which I promise to dedicate my full attention too. You’ll be pleased to know I have been thinking long and hard about all manner of thrilling, captivating content that might just…could maybe….perhaps would save….oh wait, what was I saying?
Oh yes, welcome back, dear media consumer, confederate spy or simply bored punter. And my sincere apologies to all two of you, my avid readers, for the lack of updates. You know how December is. It starts off with an innocuous drink and before you know it you find yourself waking up from a drunken haze to the dulcet yelps of children in the local park, discovering you are securely wedged under the see-saw wearing rabbit ears and no shoes and smelling mysteriously like talcum powder. Or is that just me?
But we’re getting back into the swing of it. Enjoyed a lovely xmas break before some idiot decided we all had to go back to work (I mean really, who does that?) And here we are. Second week into the second decade of the new century with all of our hopes, dreams and potential alcoholism stretching as far into the future as one can see. General consensus is that 2010 will be a good year, but I have concluded that this is simply the reason we all get so hammered again and again at each and every new years – so we can trick ourselves into believing this completely ludicrious notion.
For me it will be a busy year, and so I have only set resolutions I can keep – try to drink more, diminish my work life balance and spend more money on useless consumerist crap. As you can probably imagine, I feel quite positive about these resolutions, and so thought I would start the year on a peppy (but gentle) list of current favourite things. I hope you like them too.
Favourite artist of the month (and very possibly the year) is Moki, discovered in the fabulous The Upset
Favourite example of ridiculously apt timing and misfortune (you don’t want to laugh, but you do, don’t you?)
Favourite January sound (old now, but still achingly good)
Favourite new toys, the Doppelgangers (Yes, they stack. Yes, that’s all they do.)
And one of many favourite items found on one of my new favourite blogs, found magazine.
A nice collection of dreams, beauty and ridiculousness with which to start the year. So many good things do I have to share. And on that note, I hope to be writing here much more, spreading joy and jubilation to readers near and far. You better accept that as your apology, cause it’s the best you’re going to get.
Nov 15, 2009 0
There’s a lot of clever advertising out there. Snappy punchlines, cool camera angles and sexy people (c’mon, you know that is damned clever). But there’s clever and then there is clever. The latter is that type of advertising that sneaks up on you, usually so well camouflaged that you don’t realise it’s an ad at all. By the time you’ve clicked and recovered from your embarrassment (especially you, adland people), you then spend the next week nonchalantly mentioning it to friends as if you’d pretty much come up with the idea yourself, but couldn’t nail it because conservative clients had legal teams that had put a stop to it.
Think something like coca cola’s recent campaign for their new grip bottle that used velcro posters, a concept that literally stuck with consumers (although, as some pointed out, one that had potential to end in disaster). Using the same concept, Unicef spread a message about landmines, and then there is my personal favourite, a guerilla campaign for television series Dexter in Portugal, which literally scared the shit out of people to build awareness about the show. Each campaign worked hard to use a conventional space creatively and unconventionally, and although ROI is harder to measure, I have a pretty good idea how much attention I would be paying if the toilet I was using suddenly gushed with blood.
Ambient and experiential advertising seems to push these boundaries the hardest. Perhaps it’s because they have the tools to do it – we now have bus shelters that can emit smells, outdoor signage that can dispense samples and even advertisements that can recognise your response and react accordingly. But it doesn’t take crazy technology to make the smartest ads. It’s just a matter of thinking a little more imaginatively.
But how can digital advertising achieve this? How can we create something that is tactile, that elicits an uncontrollable reaction, that excites and inspires, that makes people want to reach out to the screen and touch it…(is it something like this, perhaps?) Digital suffers many of the same limitations of TV and video – we can show moving picture and sound, but we cannot create smell, taste or feel – but we have one huge advantage. We can interact with audiences.
There are limited examples of online advertising that really interact with the viewer. Somewhat surprisingly (considering the capabilities of the medium), the majority of concepts choose to go with the same stock standard banner ads, pop up displays and adwords. As the internet becomes more cluttered, however, there is going to have to be a shift in thinking. We’ll have to think outside the screen, so to speak. Beautiful websites just ain’t gonna cut it anymore, unless they are capable of something really cool. People will want to be surprised, delighted and intrigued; they will want tools and tricks that allow for this. Here’s our chance to make an online experience that is more than just beautiful and user-friendly. It can be memorable.
Alternatively, we’re just going to have to be really, really f*@cking funny. Either will require innovation.
Let’s get to it. And apologies for the use of italics, I was feeling overtly emphatic today.
Oct 18, 2009 0
When you think about it, a day in the life of the internet really equates to an eon in real life. This means that I am figuratively years behind in bringing your attention to mystery google, but what the hell. I like it so much I am going to talk about it. And then probably go and play with it some more.
Mystery google is a search engine that mysteriously takes you to the search results of the person who searched before you. Now, I enjoy this concept for a number of reasons. Not only do you not really have to think about what you are searching for, but you also rescind pretty much all responsibility for what your search results turn up. Yes, admitedly it could get rather frustrating were you actually trying to search for something specific, but for a mindless jaunt around the internet you can’t really go wrong. Also not a bad place to look for creative inspiration – who knows the gems you might uncover.
A little more risky is the concept behind Ogori Cafe, a Japanese eatery where you are served whatever was ordered by the person before you. Only adventurous eaters need apply (and probably best avoided by anyone with allergies) but the same kind of enchanting disengagement from control can be expected. This got me thinking about where else this abandon might be enjoyed – what if you were sold an item of clothing the person before you chose, or your latest book purchase was dictated by the last customer. A train ticket that takes you where someone else wanted to go… even a job that someone else applied for. Impractical? Yes. Somewhat exhilarating?? Undoubtedly. Of course, not everyone is as decisively challenged as me, so I guess the novelty might wear thin. After all, how often are you really ‘feeling lucky’? (Thanks to mashable for the heads up.)
In other unassociated news (probably deserving of a witty segue, but it’s too early for that shit) recent reports have placed Australia at number three in the world’s top twenty countries, with the USA coming in at eighth and the glorious motherland holding a miserable 17th place. Norway and Iceland top the list, and with my new found interest in Scandanavia (thank you, Steig Larrson) I have decided to acquaint myself with all traditional Norwegian dishes and dances in the hope of relocating there in the future.
Crispy weather, clean streets, perfect healthcare system and… lots of cabbage. A match made in heaven, really.
Aug 2, 2009 1
I may or may not have a touch of the SADs. Winter has been comparatively mild this year, but oh how I wish it would end. It’s not that I have anything personal against you, August, but the grey, wind and rain can fuck right off. It’s hard, I find, in the muted colours of winter to find perspective, hope, humour and light. And so it was fortunate that this came to my rescue.
The passive-aggressive (and just plain aggressive) notes website is run by Kerry Miller, with examples contributed by readers worldwide. Many are simply enchanting, especially at a time when my own relationship with work places (and the outside world in general) feels a little strained :cough:
To top off this brighter day, via her website I also discovered some fine apostrophe abuse, the thoughtful Ironic Sans and the outstanding cake wrecks (which I had forgotten the wonders of). Thank you Kerry, and the lovely We made this, for the fix.
May 4, 2009 2
In an earlier life when I still believed in the magic of words, I wanted to be Carol Ann Duffy, I just didn’t know who she was yet. Years later I was introduced to her via her poem Valentine, and I am yet to find anyone else who quite compares to her. Well known in the UK, she is something of a celebrity over there, and I despair of not having the opportunity to savour her work in school when I was far more innocent and thus receptive to the power of lyricism. Still, her poetry brought back dizzying memories of why writing and words mean so much to me.
This week Duffy has been confirmed as the next poet laureate, the first ever woman to hold this position. But I like to think if it as less a celebration of women than a celebration of her incredible talents. Let’s hope such stardom doesn’t go to her head and aleviate any inspirational agony.
Nowhere near as exciting, but I too wrote something more than an sms this week. Australia’s highest circulating marketing and advertising magazine B&T (pfft) recruited my services as AFA graduate and rookie reporter to contribute an analysis on current ads.
The objective was to apply my own ‘critical opinion’ to different ads, stating why I liked or disliked different campaigns, backed up with ‘sound reasoning’. And this is where it started to fall down. See, opinion sounds a bit like onion and reasoning sounds like seasoning, and before I knew it I was completely distracted by the thought of food and couldn’t concentrate at all on the ads. Needless to say, I submitted my article this morning and eagerly await their feedback (aka brutal editing or complete failure to include). We’ll see. Perhaps they will be forgiving. I am just a novice after all. I shall post scans here when published, but don’t get too excited.
And now for something nicer. This is new math. Much better than old math.
Created by Craig Damrauer. This one is dedicated to nicholas.
Apr 20, 2009 1
This is where I work now.
Unfortunately I imagine that this is poignantly relevant to all creative organisations. All aboard the train to the CCO. Via Fubiz. Thank you for brightening my day despite speaking french.
Jan 15, 2009 0
How I wish I could say I had been frantically busy, thus excusing myself from the lack of posts, but to be perfectly honest I have been whiling away the hours before I begin my new job/career at GPYR with a mixture of boredom, excitement and pure terror.
This has, however, allowed me plenty of time to catch up on cleaning, reading and web browsing. Today’s treats are brought to you by the letter C. Keeping me entertained has been:
The beautiful creations of Heidi Kenney, as found on her My Paper Crane blog, have given me endless hours of giddiness. Discovered after I purchased some new kidrobot toys (a dire addiction, with no known cure).
Jewellery that looks like tasty tasty food (yes, it is an ongoing theme. Food + cute = smitten)
Thank you to Science and Progress for bringing this track (released free of charge and hosted by etiket) to my attention. I have thoroughly rinsed and can also recommend this fine mix by Electrosoul System.
(Interesting also to me that all of these artists are using Myspace as their main websites. I thought myspace was so yesterday. I should really pay more attention.)
And finally, just for lols, the official ranking of offensive words. As the friend who directed me to it said, it’s science. So it must be real.
Nov 28, 2008 0
Most of you would have heard about the mandatory clean feed that will filter all Australian’s internet for them. How thoughtful of them. We can all now breathe a sigh of relief.
Aside from all indications pointing to the censorship creep having an authoritarian stranglehold on our ‘free media’, this shit will slow my internet down! That pox is slow enough!! (thanks so much, Telstradevilspawn). So, as I know everyone’s greatest concern is the speed of my internet, PLEASE sign the petition here.
As most internet users would be, I am completely incensed by this. If you’re interested, I wrote an extensive essay on why this concept would not work and would cause logistical disasters and benefit no-one. Check it here. I am off to go find some kittens.