Blog post by Glosswitch
I cannot believe I didn’t see the connection between the use of balloons and the word ‘POP’ in the opening clip from March 28th visiting speaker session for Hull School of Art and Design. The film for Nokia advertised the built-in camera using kite-aerial photography; the final image was the word POP spelled out in carefully arranged colour coordinated balloons, on top of an abandoned warehouse roof in Canary Wharf, London.
Sarah Jenneson is an Art Director who graduated in Fine Art at Leeds University in 1999. After graduating she transferred to London and worked at an art supplies shop in Islington. Whilst there she made a point of creating ties with the entire customer base and through continuous enquiry secured a position as a prop maker for children’s programme Hoobs. This is the first indication of Sarah’s persistence and tenacity that will drive her career forward and in the next ten years, see her working on major/ground breaking campaigns with some of the biggest brands in advertising.
This idea was key throughout today’s lecture. As a post-graduate it can be hard to visualise yourself in your chosen field. Wherever it is you start out from, be that journalism, film or fine art as it was with Sarah, may have no bearing on the position you find yourself working in, ten years later. Sarah stated that she is more likely to remember those who have followed up initial job enquiries with more emails and phone calls ‘…you have to be persistent, take the knock backs and keep hassling people for jobs.’
Sarah explained her job as Art Director is predominantly about problem solving, whether it’s working out how to simultaneously release thousands of helium balloons on a rainy day in London for Nokia ‘Push’ (Dir. D.A.R.Y.L.) or building LED jackets for Samsung ‘LED Sheep’ (Dir. James Rouse) This film featuring the Welsh farmers and their flock’s night-time antics would go on to become one of the most successful viral ads of the decade.
By using on screen diagrams created on presentations tool Prezzi Sarah showed the different roles and responsibilities she has as Art Director from Client to Shoot. She showed how each person/team fitted together and something of the Management chain of command, in terms of budgeting, design and delivery. With the balloon project for Nokia, the first idea to use a steel frame mechanism to release the balloons wasn’t going to work, due to material costs, weight of the steel and difficult access to site. Sarah and the team managed to come up with a cheaper, lightweight solution to keep the shoot on schedule and meet the needs of the client and director.
Sarah spoke highly of the F.D.I. (Film Design International) Draughting and Art Directing course at Pinewood Studios run by Terry Ackland Snow. The knowledge learned there would aid her when coming up with set design and set layout solutions for Samsung ‘Mirror’ (Dir. Ed Robinson). This ad. features a vanishing handset that somehow manages to continue filming, thus posing a how did they do that question for the viewer. Sarah shared the secret with us in the room, but it wouldn’t be right to reveal it here.
I asked during the Q & A about whether there was a need to go to London to get ahead: highlighting the issue of retaining skills in the city, Sarah commented that it wasn’t key to move to London suggesting that Bristol, Manchester and Leeds would all be places where you could make headway. She couldn’t say whether Hull had a film industry; and apart from the corporate films for Public and Private Sectors and the growing number of Shorts screened each year at Glimmer, neither could I. Has Hull even got a working film studio?
Charles Hadcock has ‘…a compelling need to make things’. In his lecture 21st March 2012 to students from Hull School of Art and Design , he illustrated his creative process from inspiration and exploration of materials, through to exhibiting the finished work. Read more…
It was the poster that drew me in, the promise of a visiting speaker working with video and text was just too inviting. Lizzie Hughes is a professional artist; she graduated at the Slade School of Fine Art with an MFA (Master of Fine Art) in 2002. She spent five years as resident artist at the ACME Fire Station Building in London where she worked on a number of photographic and moving image works. Read more…