Create something out of nothing

The Creative Shootout

For the second year, Bottle has been shortlisted as a competitor in The Creative Shootout. We’ll be joining eight finalists’ teams from agency or in-house –  from any marketing discipline – to show our creative response to a brief that we only see on the day. And then we’ll be pitching our idea four hours later.

To make it, we were challenged to do something creative that judges could ‘consume’ in sixty seconds. Here’s how we did it:

When there isn’t (really) a brief…

…write your own. Pretend you’re the client (we just knew it was the charity – Mind), imagine their problem, and what they would brief you to do. Loneliness, that’s one of the problems they’re trying to solve. Make it about Loneliness.

Identify what we’re not going to do.

Not going to bake a cake. Not going to show we’re creative with loads of agency shots of us being creative, with jump edits and hand-held footage of someone’s trainers. Not going to send our showreel.

Identify what we could do.

Do what we’re good at. Make a story. Make it short. If Hemingway can do it in six words, we can do it in sixty seconds.

Do what works.

Make a film. We’re good at making films. Made a film for Creative Shootout last year, and it worked. Make another one.

Steal stuff from Sesame Street.

Unparalleled masters of the sixty second story. Keep it simple. Use a song. Maybe don’t go the whole way and make it about ladybugs and picnics.

Go Magnolia.

Remember that Aimee Mann did that song about loneliness in the movie. Here it is. And here’s the original. Use that. One is the loneliest number. Hmm.

Play. Write. Play.

Just dabble with words on a page. Mess around a bit. Hope that a voice starts to speak back.

Storyboard it.

Just use words, no good at pictures.

Try not to go too far.

Just do the words. Just set out the beats.

Go too far.

Try to make an animation using powerpoint and moviemaker.

Share it.

With the real animator. Wes. Our head of creative. Who uses the same face he uses when his four year old daughter proudly brings a pasta-picture back from nursery.

Critique it.

Accept everything, everything, that Wes says. Didn’t have to kill my own darlings, ‘cos he killed them for me. Spared me the pain. Kind of him, really.

Make it.

Wes did that bit. Try to add darlings back in. Nope.

Send it.

Listen for distant applause.

Eventually hear polite handclaps. That’ll do.