A For Adventure

Tales Of Adventure / A For Adventure's Blog

"Tales of Adventure" A for Adventure's official blog.

Posts in Inspiration
Lamp, A Sequel 16 Years In The Making

Waaaaaaay back in the year 2002, director Spike Jonze working with agency Crispin Porter + Bogusky for IKEA, created one of the most celebrated, iconic, and unexpected ads of the century, Lamp.

It only took 12 years for someone to work up the nerve to attempt a sequel. Rethink Canada developed the creative concept, and after multiple directors demurred, Canadian director, Mark Zibert, stepped up to the plate – and hit a home run.

When We Talk About "Brand Values"

A Thanksgiving message from our clients / friends at Shockoe Atelier...

"Let me introduce you to Yolanda “La Jefa” aka the boss lady. If you own a pair of Shockoes they’ve passed through her hands at some point.

Yolanda was born in Juarez, Mexico and moved to Texas after falling in love with a young soldier, Roberto, on leave from Fort Bliss.

Like many families in the service they moved all over the country until they settled in the Richmond area where Roberto served as a drill sergeant at Fort Lee. Yolanda has two sons, Roberto Jr, an industrial mechanic, and William, a firefighter and volunteer EMT.

I was born in Washington, D.C., the son of Brigitte and Pierre Lupesco who immigrated here from France and Romania respectively.

When we say that our products are “Made By Immigrants In The U.S.A.” it is also our way of saying made by Americans, as it is our belief that we are all immigrants here of one kind or another.

Shockoe Atelier is a funny collection of French, Korean, Mexican, Guatemalan, Scottish, German, English and so on – brought together by fate or circumstance. We have the gumption to endeavor to make a line of classic American apparel in an old cinderblock box of a building in a part of Richmond most known for flooding and the slave trade.

Thanksgiving feels like the perfect time to try to elaborate on our story and our values – a uniquely American holiday that celebrates the coming together of cultures in peace and friendship, sharing prosperity, traditions, and food.

In our own way we celebrate Thanksgiving every Friday at the shop over our staff lunch – especially when Yolanda makes the most amazing arroz con gandules this side of Puerto Rico.

We are thankful for Yolanda and the rest of our staff, family, and friends – and especially our supporters / customers.

Thank you all and have a wonderful holiday!

Anthony Lupesco

Founder, Shockoe Atelier"

Hiding In Plain Sight

Richmond, the little just-slightly-Southern burg we call home, tends to be particular about who and what it celebrates. We love our underdogs and our "weirdos", yet we also star-gaze like champs. That leaves a lot of room in between, and we have some real superstars hiding here in plain sight, and Sean Wotherspoon / Round Two is one of the most (least?) prominent examples.

Sean Wotherspoon started Round Two, a sneaker and street style obsessed "men's boutique", right on here on Broad St. in 2013, and in such a small amount of time has grown to have stores in LA and New York, and to be considered the premier source for vintage footwear for a whos-who of urban trendsetters.

Sean is not simply a walking footwear Wikipedia, he's graduated to a bona fide shoe designer after winning Nike's Vote Foreward Air Max 97 competition by a landslide.

Designed to age and fray with grace, Sean's Air Max's are a beautiful blend of vintage and future – simultaneously loud and understated.

We look forward to seeing what Sean has in store for fashion, design, and retail, and will do our small part to shine a brighter light on this star rising out of Richmond.

How Does It Feel?

"Bob Dylan is the father of my country. "Highway 61 Revisited" and "Bringing It All Back Home" were not only great records, but they were the first time I can remember being exposed to a truthful vision of the place I lived. The darkness and light were all there, the veil of illusion and deception ripped aside. He put his boot on the stultifying politeness and daily routine that covered corruption and decay. The world he described was all on view, in my little town, and spread out over the television that beamed into our isolated homes, but it went uncommented on and silently tolerated. He inspired me and gave me hope. He asked the questions everyone else was too frightened to ask, especially to a fifteen-year-old:"

“How does it feel... to be on your own?”

"A seismic gap had opened up between generations and you suddenly felt orphaned, abandoned amid the flow of history, your compass spinning, internally homeless. Bob pointed true north and served as a beacon to assist you in making your way through the new wilderness America had become. He planted a flag, wrote the songs, sang the words that were essential to the times, to the emotional and spiritual survival of so many young Americans at that moment."

"I had the opportunity to sing “The Times They Are A-Changin’” for Bob when he received the Kennedy Center Honors. We were alone together for a brief moment walking down a back stairwell when he thanked me for being there and said, 'If there’s anything I can ever do for you...' I thought, 'Are you kidding me?' and answered, 'It’s already been done.' - Bruce Springsteen

A Lesson In "Core Values" From Steve Jobs

In 1997, Steve Jobs returned to Apple as CEO after being forced to resign by his board of directors in 1985. After 12 years of mismanagement – pre-iPhone and pre-iPod even, Apple's marketshare was in the basement. Steve needed to rebuild the company from the ground up, and the first place he started was with the Apple brand itself. Steve rehired the Chiat Day agency, and began an intensive, eight-week sprint to find and define their brand's "core value." What follows is an incredible speech Steve gave internally at Apple, revealing their motivation, thinking, and ultimately the first salvo in what would come to be known as the "Think Different" ad campaign.


TRANSCRIPT:

“To me, marketing is about values. This is a very complicated world; it’s a very noisy world. And we’re not going to get a chance to get people to remember much about us. No company is. And so we have to be really clear on what we want them to know about us. Now, Apple fortunately is one of the half-a-dozen best brands in the whole world. Right up there with Nike, Disney, Coke, Sony, it is one of the greats of the greats. Not just in this country but all around the globe. And – but even a great brand needs investment and caring if it’s going to retain its relevance and vitality."

"And the Apple brand has clearly suffered from neglect in this area in the last few years. And we need to bring it back. The way to do that is not to talk about the speeds and fees, it’s not to talk about MIPS and megahertz, it’s not to talk about why we’re better than Windows."

"The dairy industry tried for twenty years to convince you that milk was good for you. It's a lie but they tried anyway. And the sales were going like this. And then they tried Got Milk and the sales are going like this. Got Milk doesn’t even talk about the product – as a matter of fact it focuses on the absence of the product. But the best example of all and one of the greatest jobs of marketing that the universe has ever seen is Nike. Remember, Nike sells the commodity. They sell shoes. And yet when you think of Nike you feel something different than a shoe company. In their ads, as you know, they don’t ever talk about the product, they don’t ever tell you about their air soles and why they're better than Reebok’s air soles."

"What is Nike doing in their advertising? They honor great athletes and they honor great athletics." 

"That’s who they are, that’s what they are about."

"Apple spends a fortune on advertising. You'd never know it. You'd never know it. So when I got here, Apple just fired their agency we're doing a competition with twenty-three agencies that you know four years from now we would pick one and we blew that up and we hired Chiat-Day – the ad agency that I was fortunate enough to work with years ago. We created some award-winning work including the commercial voted the best ad ever made – "1984," by advertising professionals. And we started working about eight weeks ago and the question we asked was: Our customers want to know who is Apple and what is it that we stand for? Where do we fit in this world? And what we are about isn’t making boxes for people to get their jobs done, although we do that well. We do that better than almost anybody in some cases. But Apple’s about something more than that."

"Apple at the core – its core value is that we believe that people with passion can change the world for the better."

"That’s what we believe. And we had the opportunity to work with people like that. We have the opportunity to work with people like you, with software developers, with customers who have done it in some big and some small ways. And we believe that in this world people can change it for the better. And that those people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones that actually do."

"And so what we’re going to do in our first brand marketing campaign in several years is to get back to that core value. A lot of things have changed. The market is a totally different place than it was a decade ago and Apple is totally different. Apple’s place in it is totally different. And believe me, the products and the distribution strategy and the manufacturing are totally different and we understand that. But values and core values, those things shouldn’t change. The things that Apple believed in at its core are the same things that Apple really stands for today. And so we wanted to find a way to communicate this and what we have is something that I am very moved by it – it honors those people who have changed the world. Some of them are living and some of them are not, but the ones that aren’t, as you’ll see, we know that if they’d ever used a computer it would have been a Mac."

"And the theme of the campaign is “Think Different”. It’s the people honoring the people who think different and who moves this world forward. And it is what we are about. It touches the soul of this company. So I’m going ahead and roll it and I hope that you feel the same way about it that I do."

Here’s to the crazy ones – the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes, the ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. But the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.
The Making Of An Icon: A History Lesson From Art Chantry

The legendary / infamous designer, Art Chantry, reminds us of the value of a concept...

The idea back then was to NEVER give a client a perfect finished comp. You didn’t want them to see the finish until it came off the press looking brilliant and magical. We presented IDEAS as rough sketches to get the client personally invested in the process.
— Art Chantry

"This is a series of images showing a rough step-by-step of Grace Jones cover image for her "jungle fever" lp. the first image is the initial rough sketch. it's a lot different than those perfect "exactly as printed" comps you computer whizbangs give to your clients today, eh?"

"The next image is the actual photograph as taken in the studio (just one of several snaps). The third is the a cut-up and pasted together layout/image of the what the final photo was intended to look like BEFORE AIRBRUSHING. This is the stage that is so astonishing – look at what we had to do. photographs were not ever done 'in camera'. They were done as constructions on drawings boards. Honest."

"The final image is the photo as it was seen on the actual lp cover. It's virtually a completely new image. It's an illustration – a construction – that looks just like a photograph. The whole process was about total control and manipulation of the image created to exert total control and manipulation of the viewer. That is still the goal even today."