Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Stop smoking because we're funny

Advertisers have tried everything to try to convince people to stop smoking. Sadly, it doesn't seem it's as easy to convince the public to stop as to have sold it to them in the first place. Since the tactics of cancer sprouting cigarettes and other shock tactics have been done to death it's refreshing to see a humorous approach. Check out these cute little animations with a very serious message. Smoking equals death. (Thanks to Camille for this post)

Monday, 23 February 2015

From Moonage Daydreams to the streets of Paris: Fashion show staging

London Fashion week is here and the town is filled with willowy models, demanding Fashionistas, photographers with sore feet and OTT bloggers. I will be reporting from London Fashion Weekend myself since Dior sent my invite to the wrong address, and someone obviously stole my Matthew Williamson invite and Stella, poor sweetheart, was too jealous of my personal glamour to invite me.

In the meantime I thought I'd look at one of the things I find most interesting about LFW - the staging of the collections.

My favourite staging recently has been done by Dior who has used poles to create dramatic modern settings that cross the line between builder's scaffolding and Tron for their Esprit Tokyo show in December.

See what I mean?

Then for their Spring Summer 2015 Haute Couture Show they referenced a David Bowie lyric (points Dior, points) "Moonage daydream" - interpreting it as an "alien journey through the past’s ideas of the future to reach the point of today".  The collection displayed was one that mixed time periods and uses decorative elements in a structural way:  

"Intricate, tour-de-force appliqued pleating heightens this sense of the decorative becoming the architecturally structured in the collection... The typical Dior ‘femme fleur’ is subverted and liberated in the collection. Made unfamiliar, futuristic, graphic and decisive in her encrusted and dripping lace florals, tattoo body suits and hyper-real plastic blossom prints, she is at once exquisitely decorated and disruptive in her mirrored, octagonal terrain of the show venue. I wanted that feeling of a sensory overload both in the collection and in the venue for the show,” explains Raf Simons. “Something encrusted and bejewelled alongside the shock of bright colour and sensuality in the clothing with an architectural structure and interior that has a similarly disorientating feeling; somewhere you cannot quite place where you are, or which period of time you are in.”

Chanel, another of my favourites for staging, went for a glasshouse effect where tropical flowers bloomed matching the shades the models wore for their Spring/Summer 2015 show. 

Here's the legend himself talking about the staging and the collection.

And here's a more fun and less delicate version in stark contrast - making a political statement for women's empowerment in a staging that looked like the beautiful streets of Paris.

In each example the staging helps to tell the story of the collection just as much as the designs the models wear - whether it's a surreal moorage daydream of time and place, a tropical garden or the revolutionary streets of Paris. 

Let's see how LFW does it this week. I can't wait :)

Thursday, 19 February 2015

3D gaming, holographs, facial mapping and projection fun

Last week my friends in the digital department brought in an Oculus Rift for us to play with. If you haven't had the pleasure of trying one then believe me it is an amazing experience. Once you put on the headset it's like you actually have stepped into a new world - a bit like the film Avatar. You can go on roller coasters and swings and your body reacts by turning your stomach upside down just as it would if you were really there. You can even peer right around yourself and look down at your own virtual reality body. In one game, after being thrown for a swing I realised that my head had been decapitated and I was staring at my own body on the floor in front of me. Freaky.

But there are many other ways in which technology is helping to immerse us in new realities and world. Another company are developing systems which project the game outwards from your TV into your room, mapping your furniture to allow elements to interact with them - snowflakes that seem to settle on your floor and bounce off your bookcases - in order to immerse you into the game.

Here's the system in action.

There seems to be a lot of interesting uses of 3D projections and mapping at the moment.
Here are two beautiful artistic pieces that really show off the possibilities of using facial mapping.

In a world where advertising is often seen as an intrusion and most things have been done already such new technology provides a real way of standing out and doing something new that really impresses the public. Fashion and luxury brands have been amongst the first to experiment with 3D mapping

Here's a 3D fashion show performed in Hamburg in 2011.

Jaguar used 3d mapping to make a static car look as if it's driving through Vegas and other cities, and then appear to become transparent to show off the power of the engine.

Ralph Lauren used 3d mapping to show off their new collection on the front of their Bond Street Store in London.

Porsche Macan used 3d mapping for the reveal of their new models

And of course there's the really famous example - the hugely successful HBO storytelling projection.

I think there might be opportunities for everyday brands to use this technology too. Perhaps Cadbury's could allow us to feel as if we were in a world full of joy, or Comfort could allow us to see everything around us made into soft knitted versions of themselves. You could revisit Sony Bravia's bouncy balls making them appear to fill the street or map clothes from top shop onto passers by. The possibilities are exciting.