Inspiration can come from anywhere, so every other week I share my Friday Five, a curation of dots for you to connect.
From the world’s first-ever credit card that caps your CO2 consumption to exploring how Animal Crossing is accelerating a new era of digital advertising, here are my favourite ideas and insights that have kept me inspired over the last two weeks.
To follow: Prince Gyasi’s iPhone Art
The instantly recognisable photographs of Ghanaian artist Prince Gyasi, shot to fame after he revealed that he uses just an iPhone. Even with limited equipment available, Prince is still able to capture both resiliency and strength through his striking silhouettes positioned against brightly altered landscapes and vivid backgrounds.
I love how his art spotlights the grace of black skin, in a counter-narrative to dominant notions of beauty and how he transcends expectations with every post.
To watch: The Cinematic Comeback of Converse
With no consistent voice in the city and a lack of engagement with the brand, Converse needed to win back young women in London. So last year, they tasked ON ROAD to uncover the subcultures and stories of 14 young women who embody the creativity of the new generation. W+K then transformed these insights into a unique video campaign. The coalition of these brands resulted in a phenomenally shot film that shined a spotlight on how these women are setting the cultural agenda in the city.
Beyond the film, Spark Progress has evolved into a pivotal platform for young people to execute their own creative missions with Converse’s support. It’s helped Converse continue to embed its relevance into the foundations of the community a year on from the launch.
To admire: The World’s First Credit Card That Limits Your CO2 Consumption
Doconomy, a Swedish startup for climate action, is making it easy to (quite literally) put your money where your mouth is. After joining forces with Mastercard, they’ve released the DO Black card that enables the eco-conscious to align their spending habits with their desire to act against climate change.
With DO, users can track and measure CO2 emissions associated with their purchases, limit the climate impact of their spending, and offset their carbon footprint through projects meeting the criteria of UN certified green projects. This idea will help those with good intentions who unconsciously buy things that negatively impact the environment – it’s a great way to educate and change shopping behaviour.
To read: The Midnight Club’s 100 Days
Following the sell-out of ‘The Times’ that threw The Midnight Club into the limelight over lockdown, 100 Days is their final zine of the series. Curated in collaboration with designers, photographers and artists from across the UK (including me?), the zine documents the weird and wonderful moments experienced during the pandemic through a creative lens.
To think about: How Animal Crossing is Pioneering a New Era of Digital Advertising & Virtual Experiences
Who would have thought that the game that became irrelevant at the start of the last decade would become the game that pioneers a new era of advertising at the start of this one? When Nintendo released the latest installment of Animal Crossing at the start of lockdown, enthusiasts and non-gamers alike went batshit crazy over the fictional world, sparking a eureka moment for a few forward-thinking brands who reacted at lightning speed.
But first, what’s all the hype about? Animal Crossing opens up a whole new realm of creative expression to the younger generations who see their digital selves as an extension of their offline personas. So much so, that they’re even willing to pay £700 for a pair of digital Gucci sneakers. This rising sub-culture offers brands exciting new opportunities to be part of the cultural zeitgeist in ways that don’t feel overtly transactional – opportunities that have already been grasped by brands like Marc Jacob, Valentino and Supreme.
In a slick move that’s redefined shoppable entertainment in the quarantine age, Klarna recently jumped on the movement by hosting a virtual pop-up in collaboration with stylist and DJ Micah “Noodles” Mahinay. What separates Klarna’s activation from the others is that it extends into the physical world, as gamers can win those pieces in real life by Instagramming their experience.