Advertising Archive

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    It’s not surprising really that this campaign for children’s charity Fundacion Anar has received so much attention over the past couple of days – its brilliance lies paradoxically in its simplicity. The organisation runs an anonymous helpline for at-risk children and Grey Spain was charged with raising awareness of the service to mark International Day of Child Abuse. Using lenticular printing the poster campaign shows a different message to adults and children based on the height of the person viewing it, therefore reaching out even to victims accompanied by their aggressors. Very, very impressive stuff.

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    Aha! I know you thought when you clicked on this post we had succumbed to really crass advertising. Do you think we would do that to you? Really? We will put our hurt feelings aside (because we love you), and reveal that these adverts are actually a French literacy campaign, created by ad agency DDB Paris. Clever eh?

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    For some time now it’s been Evian’s prerogative to advertise solely through the medium of CGI babies engaging in strange physical pursuits (rollerblading and synchronised swimming in particular). While you can’t deny that the brand has been extremely successful in flooding the bottled water market with advertising that doesn’t just bang on about volcanic springs and the health benefits of keeping hydrated, those computer generated infants still have a habit of freaking me out – something about their automaton-like movements is wholly unnerving.

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    Not many videos warrant the reaction of “somebody had to do it” much more than this life-like remake of one of the most famous title sequences in history —the intro to The Simpsons. Devilfish, a London-based creative agency, and director Chris Palmer at Gorgeous made this video as a teaser for Sky One a few years back, but just like the program it’s promoting, it’s just not getting old.

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    Now and again we come across work that our name doesn’t quite do justice to; calling it nice doesn’t cut it, and now and again is perhaps even a little misleading. In this particular instance that’s definitely the case – there’s nothing nice about this advert from Grey NYC. Nevertheless you can’t fault the execution of this 30 second piece of film that manages to be provocative, shocking and flawlessly communicative with little more than a simple message, clear direction and well-considered copy. Whichever side of the gun control discussion you’re on (and it’s a more nuanced debate than most comments sections on the web would have you believe) it’s impossible to deny the directorial skill at play here.

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    For London’s many tourists, their experiences of the city hinge on famous and historic landmarks like Tower Bridge or Buckingham Palace. But for us Londoners, iconography works in a different way and I know I’m not the only person for whom the hulking, brooding presence of Battersea Power Station exerts a strong emotional pull. This neat little film for Palladium Boots shows singer Eliza Doolittle and her friend enjoying a private tour round the extraordinary building, discussing its powerful presence, its place in the aesthetic of dereliction and the musician’s own creative process. It’s beautifully shot, with long lingering shots of the power station taking precedence over smack-you-in-the-face branding, and is well worth five minutes of your time.

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    We’ve long sung the praises of ceaselessly inventive duo Lernert & Sander and so we were rather embarrassed that we missed the boat (lolz) on this excellent advert when it was released late last year. Commissioned by Dutch bank Knab to create a short spot that encapsulated the organisation’s mission to do things differently, the lads took the centuries-old tradition of christening a boat by smashing a champagne bottle against its bow, and flip-reversed it. The result is simple, smart and memorable, thereby ticking pretty much all the requisite boxes.

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    I love this kind of advert. Remember that Carling Belong ad with the birds that made you feel all team-player and united as one? Well, times that by a million and you get the latest ad by Romain Gavras (of controversial Bad Girls and Born Free fame). In this new video for Samsung, Gavras leads almost every type of team – from New York City cops, to gladiators, to cheerleaders, to dinosaurs, to ancient aristocracy careering wildly down a Herculean beach for their new Charge campaign. This advert, a simple idea executed with gunpowder, completely blows other current adverts out the water. Romain, again, well done sir.

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    So imagine you’re naughty boy Tyler the Creator and your pseudonyms include Wolf Haley, Ace Creator, Thurnis Haley, Tyler, The Creature, Ty Dollaz, T-Dollaz, Creator Ace, Dr. T.C., Tyler Haley and Tron Cat. You get approached by one of the biggest soft drink companies on the planet and offered the chance to create an advert, however you like — what do you do? Well, no-one cares what you would do, becaus you’re not Tyler the Creator, and you would never make anything as good as this, ever. How funny are those goat’s arms?!

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    They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and there’s an increasingly burgeoning genre of adverts that spoof Apple’s very particular way of doing things. While Wieden + Kennedy have in the past poked gentle fun at Apple’s own advertising, London agency Fold7 have taken a different tack with this ace new spot for Carlsberg’s Somersby Cider. Spoofing the cult of new releases at the tech giant’s stores, it is an unerringly accurate take-off of both the staff’s demeanour and the customers’ apoplectic excitement. To be honest I could do without the slightly cheesy ending, but all in all this is very, very well done.

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    Looks like Christmas has come early! Well-dressed filmmakers and genii Wes Anderson and Roman Coppola have got their brains together and come up with an idea for a short film for Prada entitled Candy in celebration of the brand’s new perfume. Let’s just forget about the perfume for a minute and concentrate on what’s really important here: the creation of a Jules et Jim-inspired, Jacques Dutronc-soundtracked three-minute masterpiece.

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    If someone asked me to create an advert that shows off the fact that a new phone is water-proof, I’d film myself throwing it in the sea/a canal and take a long, well-deserved lunch. That’s why nobody asks me these kind of things. But when Sony Xperia and O2 wanted to show off their new product, they went to some people who knew exactly what they were doing, and created three ace, fun and great-looking promo films. They are directed by Thomas Brown – of whose still-life work we are long time fans – with art directors Jason and Joris at VCCP and director of photography Mattias Nyberg (who previously worked on the brilliantly phallic PETA spot and this beautiful gymnast film).

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    As it’s Friday, thoughts are turning to how to make the most of these two glorious days of freedom about to be unleashed on us – but wouldn’t it be great if you were just given a bonus day off on the condition you use it to do something you love? That’s the charming premise behind Camper’s new campaign which has kicked off with a series of videos featuring the brand’s employees – from store staff to accountants – kicking back and doing something they’re passionate about.

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    I have 104 friends but I am not sure that any of them like me enough to come out in the middle of the night to bail me out of a shady poker game. Lucky really then I wasn’t part of this excellent stunt ad for Carlsberg by Duval Guilllaume. It’s the latest in a series of spots for the Danish beer that put ordinary people in extraordinary situations and films the results, and as ever it’s the level of commitment to the prank that really makes this stand out. I love all the weird and wonderful things they do to the participants when they turn up – from the boxers to the chickens and the really weird guy in the lift and there’s a nice uplifting message about loyalty when all’s said and done.

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    In 1902 Henry Sturmey, James Archer and Frank Bowden (founder of Raleigh bicycles) revolutionised cycling with the invention of the 3-speed gear hub. Billed as “The Gear That Makes Cycling Easy” it seemed to make any mountain surmountable. Sturmey-Archer produced gear hubs throughout the next century and garnered a loyal following of cycling connoisseurs in the process.

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    There’s been a lot of chatter around Diesel’s new hook-up with Edun, which goes well beyond a new denim range made in Uganda. To promote the project they’ve approached a host of exciting up-and-coming creative talents who represent the cream of the new generation of African practitioners, from photographers and fashion designers to artists and bloggers. Bringing them together as Studio Africa, the hope is to create “a virtual loudspeaker and platform for a new generation of creative talents from across the continent.” This teaser video released this week has a really nice energy about it as well as some gorgeous shots and there’s a host of live events, broadcasts and more video content on the way.

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    In the same way that many Americans are baffled by our obsession with football (yes football, not soccer!) baseball is something I struggle to get my head around. But that was no barrier to enjoying this advert for Dick’s Sporting Goods, which I’ve never heard of but which I assume is some kind of shop that sells sporting goods, owned by an avuncular figure called Dick. Anyway Anomaly commissioned director Derek Cianfrance and cinematographer Peter Deming have produced a gorgeous spot which was shot in one continuous take and captures some of the tension and drama of America’s national sport. In lesser hands this could easily have ended up feeling a bit gimmicky but thanks to such talented treatment it’s pitch perfect (see what I did there?).

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    The commission to create the opening video for the TED 2013 conference must have been a daunting one, but illustrators Oliver Jeffers and Mac Premo have smashed it out of the proverbial park. It starts gently with some lingering close-ups of a strange TED branded piece of furniture which then reveals itself to be a flipboard. As the music builds to a crescendo we are bombarded with names and visuals and ideas in a way that leaves you slightly breathless. It’s not just a really beautiful execution either – it also feels very on-brand, capturing what people love about TED in terms of its almost overwhelming weight of interesting and inspiring content.

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    It’s very, very depressing here in England as we crawl on our hands and knees to the end of February, which is why we look to our Californian friends to help us through it. Luckily we’ve just seen that illustrators Andy Rementer and Honet have released two fun, quick animations for LacosteLIVE. Andy’s focuses around a shade-wearing, graffiti-spraying alligator created using what can only be described as a palette more often seen in an ice cream parlour. The second animation, by Honet, The Story Behind The Mask features an array of cleverly-illustrated tribal scenes to celebrate the famed Lacoste alligator logo. Nice!

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    The new Guy Ritchie-directed short film (come on guys, it’s an advert!) for H&M has just been released and it’s a nice little piece of viral fodder. The premise sees David Beckham chasing down his family car after being locked out of his house, and as he runs the rest of his clothes come off in a variety of ways. The gratuitous shots of Becks’ body are knowingly down and there’s some neat touches along the way, plus an ending I didn’t really see coming. All in all not a massively original idea, but beautifully shot (the swimming pool scene filmed from inside the house is gorgeous) and a good example of a big mainstream brand playing the populist card neatly.

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    Some things around the Superbowl are predictable annual occurrences. The same joke about superb owls being made all over Twitter, Brits who have no idea about American football casually dropping phrases like “Hail Mary Pass” into conversation, and of course the eagerly anticipated advertising bonanza. With a 30-second spot apparently costing up to $4 million but an estimated audience of more than 90 million people the pressure is on for all the brands lining up for the evening’s bug creative showdown.

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    About a year ago we featured a surreal and magnificent short film about a communist werewolf submariner. The direction and script were hilarious, but the set and prop design stole the show; all constructed by LA-based creative Adi Goodrich. The hugely talented Californian has a list of clients longer than my arm that include international names like Wieden + Kennedy, Michel Gondry, Pizza Hut and Universal Records, and she’s renowned for her punchy, colourful sets for fashion shoots.

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    This year to celebrate Heineken’s 140th anniversary, the beer brand has thrown open its archives as part of the Remix our Future campaign. People are challenged to take one of the beer’s old adverts and create a new version ripe for the 21st Century, and while some of the efforts so far are pretty impressive, the real joy from a design point of view comes from the old visuals themselves. From weird illustrations to slightly sexist 1960s affairs, muted arty efforts to brash ads for the 1980s US market, it’s a tremendous collection of images and an interesting study in how a brand’s visual languages evolves over time.

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    Red Stripe has good prior form when it comes to embracing creative advertising campaigns but even by their own high standards their latest effort is really something. By rigging up an east London mini-mart with all manner of musical tricks, they created an interactive installation whereby the shop burst into song (The Specials’ A Message To You Rudy) whenever a customer took a Red Stripe from the shelf. It’s really cleverly done and the reactions of the customers are a joy to behold, plus it’s been documented in a way that means you didn’t have to be there (a common problem with these kind of installations).

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    Some products are very difficult to market, no how many clever ad types you gather together for some blue-sky thinking, and the iron is probably near the top of that list. Representing the nadir of all household chores, it’s just not very sexy – it essentially just has to blast hot air onto clothes, nothing more, nothing less. Huge kudos then to the folk at Philips in Russia who produced this short, snazzy video showing some kind of ironing maverick pressing faces from famous paintings into a sheet. Gasp at this skill, guess what the artwork is as they take shape and respect the rarity of an interesting, absorbing ironing ad.

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    Goodbye festive season, hello relentless January and the steady rhythm of the daily grind. I don’t know about you but right now I could use a little luxury weekend break, a round of spa treatments or maybe even just a week on the beach.

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    How much YouTube do you think you watched this year? A lot probably — over four billion hours of video are watched each month according to these alarming YouTube stats which we have no reason to doubt. About time then for a bit of fun to be made out of the format we now know probably better than our loved ones’ faces, so join Publicis Groupe in this utterly genius hack of one of the most well-known sites on the internet (big shout) by altering the volume, quality, screen size and play button to your heart’s content — you won’t be disappointed, just don’t make Maurice angry. Get going here.

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    This kind of goes without saying, but it should be noted that no animals were harmed in the making of this campaign… or eaten. It was in fact designed to raise awareness surrounding food hygiene, provoking us to think about where and what we’ve been caressing with our little mitts. Nobody is going to argue the cuteness of Cupcake the hamster, or Mr. Loaf the pesky Pug, but do we really want to lick jam off our fingers after stroking Mr. Loaf? Probably not because Mr. Loaf has most probably been rolling in something quite pungent. This campaign is fabulously creative and just as thought provoking as those hard-hitting, fear mongering doomsday ads we’re bombarded with. Great stuff Jeremy!

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    We love to show people where we are and who we’re with, and this process requires some “cam-whoring” technical wizardry that always includes a steadfast arm reaching out from the photograph itself. Glance through photos on Facebook or glide the swarms uploaded to Instagram and there is something you are always SURE to see – the precariously taken, arm-length self-portrait captured on a hand-held camera.

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    Although we’re fans of the leftfield and unexpected, sometimes it’s about being more straightforward when it comes to communication. So when Moleskine wanted to advertise its online store ahead of Christmas they decided to show it off in this neat stop motion effort that gets across the breadth of its collection in a fun and effective way. It’s good to see that such a creatively-minded brand maintains its principles when it comes to showcasing its wares.

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    It’s no mean feat condensing ten years into just two minutes, particularly if what you’re trying to capture is a decade of verve and swagger. But when no-nonsense Sailor Jerry rum wanted to reflect on its recent past, they raided their archive to piece together an adrenalin-fuelled, high intensity romp through ten years of tattoos, music and mayhem. Set to the 1979 punk anthem Where Eagles Dare by The Misfits – the first time the band have ever licensed their work for commercial use – it’s a high octane tribute to the man behind the rum, Norman ’Sailor Jerry’ Collins, a legendary, pioneering tattooist best known for inking his designs on Second World War sailors on Hawaii. His spirit (pun intended) is captured though fantastic Second World War footage of Honolulu taken from a documentary about his life and times, and runs through the more contemporary scenes as well.

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    Now if you’re a Christmas traditionalist, best to look away now, but if you’re not precious about such things then you might be in for a treat. For their seasonal campaign, Adidas have launched The Cautionary Tale of Ebenezer Snoop, which retells Charles Dickens’ Christmas Carol with Mr Lion in the main role. And with cameos from David Beckham, Stan Smith and Rita Ora among many others, JJ Sedelmaier clearly had a great deal of fun with it. Yes it’s bonkers, yes it’s mindboggling at times but it doesn’t take itself too seriously and it’s refreshing to see a leftfield Christmas ad which isn’t desperately trying to pull on the heart strings. Although like most Christmas stories, there’s a moral in there if you’re willing to look for it…

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    On the list of things I know nothing about, horse racing falls between haberdashery and horticulture (yeah, it’s an oddly anachronistic alphabetical list ok?) but that didn’t stop me loving Just So’s new film for Dunhill. It tells the story of Sam Waley-Cohen, who in 2011 became the first amateur jockey to win the prestigious Cheltenham Gold Cup and the subsequent quest to defend his title. But For The Love is actually about much more than that, touching on themes of loss, passion and pressure and it’s shot with mesmerising cinematic flair, packed full of gorgeous shots.

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    There’s something of an updated Edward Hopper feel about the new Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG advert featuring melifluous Scottish actor Dougray Scott. The spot begins with The Doug leaving a late-night diner before embarking on a minute-long meditation on the nature of desire, seemingly with reference to his past, his career and the transient nature of fame. Of course in the end the car wrongfoots what he thinks he knows, but it’s really beautifully shot and well-scripted.

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    It’s fair to say that most of the time public safety information tends to be hectoring, patronising or just plain dull, so it’s great to see a different, and much more interesting approach. Melbourne Metro wanted to point out that mindboggling acts of stupidity on and around their network could have fatal consequences and so McCann turned to musician Ollie McGill and animator Julian Frost for this maddeningly memorable little ditty called Dumb Ways To Die.

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    I don’t work in advertising but if I did, I’d be the guy shouting outlandishly unrealistic ideas during creative meetings much to the chagrin of my colleagues. I like to imagine that’s how the new Saatchi & Saatchi spots for the 4G mobile network EE came about – that from the idea of connectivity came a reference to popular dinner party/drinking game Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon, and from there someone shouted insolently: “Why don’t we get Kevin Bacon to play his own game?”

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    Master of sexy, macabre illustration McBess and his long-time Mill collaborator Simon have just finished work on a piece of animation that fuses literature, erotica and mail-order delivery to wonderfully entertaining effect. Not sure what books and a voluptuous bosom have in common? Neither did we, but watch on and everything will be illuminated. Not strictly a Monday Morning Music Video, but sometimes we like to throw caution to the wind and say “To hell with the rules!”

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    To mark the release of their latest Mixed Tape, Mercedes commissioned LA-based painter Sage Vaughn to create an exclusive artwork and went off to interview him at home about the piece. So far so good, but the video takes an unexpected turn when we are introduced to Sage’s grandma who gives us some insights into the artist’s work and inspirations. It’s a charming twist on the making-of type video with which we’re familiar and well worth a few minutes. More granny-based arts videos please creative types!

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    Sometimes decisions about what to post is based on in-depth reading around a project, at other times we’re pretty much hooked right away. So an orchestra of re-programmed modems, copiers and printers playing The Times They Are A-Changing (on this of all days as America goes to the polls)? Yes please. Chris Cairns’ spot for Brother is fun, technologically impressive and tight enough to pull of an ambitious idea. It’s what Dylan would have wanted…

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    How do you convince the public to buy an expensive watch? The standard method seems to be associating that watch with masculine pursuits and notoriously macho films stars. Travolta’s a pilot in his spare time and also owns a Breitling? I best get me one of those. Actually you know what, I’m more of a weekend motorbiking with George Clooney type, so make mine an Omega.