oh, I don’t know, some sort of football or photography pun

This post started life differently.  It was another one of those ‘Johnathan Glazer, of making all the best ads and Sexy Beast fame, is at it again’ style posts.  But the more I watched ad below, Gladiator Football for Canon, I started getting nostalgic for his older work.

Don’t get me wrong, the ad’s great.  I mean, just look at it.  The cutting between ‘modern’* Florence and the Renaissance sculptures.  The contrast between the jovial, almost farcical, score and the violence of the game. The subject alone is incredible.  There’s no denying it’s a pretty ad, and I’m sure that’s what Canon wanted.  It just doesn’t have that epic, cinematic feel I’ve come to expect from Glazer ads.

It feels almost unfair to compare it to some of Glazer’s other works.  Ads like Surfer and Odyssey (especially Surfer) are standouts not just as ads but as pretty much perfect pieces of film/cinematography/editing/atmosphere/everything.  With that said, I’ll just leave these here for you to compare yourself.

*kind of funny how the modern Florence we’re shown is re-enacting a Renaissance past time, calcio storico.  If there’s anywhere that can’t, or doesn’t want to escape its past, it’s Tuscany.  And that’s coming from an NIrish person.

PS if you can come up with a pun worthy of a title then I may use that pun


In case you missed it (thought I tweeted about it enough) a certain ‘mystery creative’ made it into the archives of Luerzer’s Archive with some Kermit based magazine covers.  Talented fella that mystery creative.  Someone should give him a job.

Just goes to show, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery will get you everywhere.

Screen Shot 2014-09-14 at 19.52.17If you don’t understand the title of this post, your knowledge of memes is bad, and you should feel bad.


pop music (it’s a pun, it’ll make sense later)

I don’t want to brag or anything but I’m pretty good at Singstar (remember when that was still a thing?). In fact, I’m pretty amazing at a slection of certain songs.  99 Red Balloons is one of those songs.  I don’t even need to look at the lyrics on screen freeing me up to make an even bigger fool of myself.  Anyway, I thought my version of Neunundneunzig Luftballoons was good until I saw this.  NINETY NINE RED BALLOONS PLAYED ON RED BALLOONS! Only four unfortunately, and not the whole song, but it’s still great.

fun fact : the original German makes no reference to colour.  The more you know

film four(play)

If there’s one thing the Channel 4 family/4Creative do well, it’s idents.  They do more (well) than that but they’re really good at identity stuff, ok, so hear me out (NB the 4Racing logo, little horse ears et al).  The current floating block idents (I have such a way with words) on Channel 4 are not only amazing but pretty much the most interesting thing you’ll see on TV during the day.  The council estate one is a particular favourite of mine and has aged incredibly.  It’s now ten years old so happy birthday computer generated floating blocks.

In their latest step in being amazing at brand identity 4Creative have teamed up with ManVsMachine to revamp the FilmFour idents and they really are very, very pretty, and clever, and I am jealous and give me a job/internship please.  ProdCo ManVsMachine have even posted some behind the scenes footage so they’re pretty much winning at making me like them right now.

The  clips themselves are loaded with film references, so many, that even I, a film luddite, can spot and, more importantly, appreciate them.  This creates scenarios that feel oddly familiar allowing you to focus on mood and atmosphere rather than the scene itself.  A very cool feature is the strobing/strolling effect that creates the feel of an old film reel spinning out of control  It gives more of a jarring and sinister, horror vibe than I think they were probably going for but I love it.  Then again, I love anything heavily edited/stylised.

Anyway, watch them.  Ooh, aah, go wild.

PS itsnicethat have an interview with the MvsM Creative Director.  Definitely worth a glance.

four & sons – a magazine review

f&scoverTitle : Four & Sons

Tagline : dogs and culture collide

Issue : one

Price : €20 + €7.50 p+p (=£16)

Cover : a film noir take on dog portraiture full of black, smoke and attitude.  Film poster feel continues with formatting of contributors’ names in block along bottom.  Not sure if it’s intentional but it’s there.

Shelf appeal : Not great but like most of my recent magazine purchases I don’t know if this is even on sale in store.  Cover is in chiaroscuro style (read : dark) and with all text on bottom third of cover it would be covered by other magazines.

Layout and Design : image heavy with good use of white space.  Pretty standard high end magazine design really.  Even the envelope is well designed.

Contentdogs, dogs, dogs.  As the tagline suggests it’s about the intersection where dogs meet art, the stories of the dogs in and behind art.  When I first heard about it I thought it was just the theme for issue one (the name doesn’t strike me as being particularly ‘doggy’) but it looks like it’s going to be all dogs all the time (well, twice a year).  In practical terms it’s interviews and (photo) features on work relating to dogs.  There’s even some fiction in there.  It’s a sort of Lucky Peach, about dogs.

Best Feature :   It’s a tough call between any of the picture features for me.  They are all really just incredible and I hope they can maintain the quality as the magazine progresses.  From the uncannily human expressions on the dog faces in Rinse, Lather, Repeat to the moody atmosphere of Everything Is Illuminated, where I think our cover hound is sourced, to the lighter, more candid shots of Man About Town the images are impeccable throughout.  A true eyegasm.

Worst feature : the price.  it’s an amazing magazine, I only wish it weren’t so expensive so I could justify subscribing.

Rating : (a completely biased) five out of five.

f&sGRID my photos don’t do it justice and look like they’ve been taken with a potato

more awkwardreviews here