Friday, July 27, 2007

Some more stuff to do this weekend

Its sunny. We're not underwater yet. Tomorrow we will have got over our hangovers. Celebrate with the following 3 lovely things to do:
The V&A Village Fete: Highlights include Scarlet Projects' Tombola - with hundreds of 'designer' prizes, including the chance to win a Voido chair designed by Ron Arad, Bluegrass music, Jam stalls etc

Publish and Be Damned
Self published writers, artists, zine makers, musicians, filmmakers etc meet and show off their wares, at an annual festival of font fancying and navel gazing:

50 Years of Helvetica
Exhibition at the Design Museum all about a font. The one we use on all our word documents actually.

A Genuine Scientific Breakthrough - The Nobel Prize Awaits

And you thought we were making it up!
Fernly, one of our breed of super-planners (all the brains, none of the social awkwardness - try it sometime) has tracked down the science behind our extraordinary rotting-biscuit-that's-gone-hard happening:
"They also argued that the distinction between cakes and biscuits is simply that biscuits go soft when stale, whereas cakes go hard. It was demonstrated that Jaffa Cakes become hard when stale and McVitie's won the case.[5]
The issue was revisited in an article entitled 'Are Jaffa Cakes really biscuits?' published in the Journal of Unlikely Science (Volume 1, issue 7, 2005).[6] The article attempted to classify biscuits via a scientific analysis of various features (size, shape, filling etc.) and determined that the Jaffa Cake should be regarded as a biscuit, or 'pseudobiscuit'"
Now, we don't want any of you religious types coming on your pilgrimages here, we're too busy right now. Whether our biscuit is a genetic freak, touched by the hand of God, or just a bit peculiar, we love him/she/it just that little bit more now.

Rot Blog 6: The Great Stink

It's been a couple of weeks since we checked in with our gently rotting friends over on Craig's desk. Things are getting pretty pongy now with the satsuma looking increasingly worse for wear. We're sort of hoping something ugly spits out of it soon, but no such luck yet. And we've discovered the most amazing thing: the digestive biscuit has gone hard. Now apparently this isn't supposed to happen. Biscuits are supposed to go soft with age, cakes go hard. I always knew, in my heart of hearts that this wasn't a simple time-wasting bit of blog-filler nonsense. We have a genuine scientific breakthrough on our hands. As I speak the planning discipline here is busy searching the information super highway, and a couple of the B-roads too, for the full SP on this amazing set of circumstances. Watch this space kind blog reader, watch this space.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Alex - Our Latest Addition

This week we welcomed Alex Hyde (as in Jeckle and Park, but not in Seek) into the Karmarama family.
Alex is an account director who has recently returned from a tour of duty in Australia after working at Campaign Palace and most recently Host. Host have a bit of a go-ahed approach to things creative by not actually employing any creatives. Alex is constantly surprised to see our creative boys and girls turning up day-in day-out, but she's coming to terms with it now.
Alex, we are now your family and you are ours.

That sounds a bit creepy doesn't it

Sorry Madam Cyberspace

We're terribly sorry here at Karma Banana, as we've been terrible busy on pitches and client stuff and things. Indeed, too busy to keep our lovely blog quite as updated as you would come to expect from such a dedicated bunch as us.
Plus horror of horrors, some of us will be popping off for our hols next week, so things may go even quieter on the blog front. However, rest assured, as soon as we're all back, tanned and revitalised, we'll get posting with more thrilling installments from London's most original communications company.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Things to Do this week

Just a little list of stuff for people who want to do some...stuff.

1) For Sporting Billies - a free sports day to show off at on Sunday on Clapham Common. Caution: its held by Gumtree so I am guessing it may be packed full of muscular gentlemen from the colonies - maybe you should stick to egg and spoon and avoid volleyball.

2) For Harry Potter Fans (or the parents thereof): Wizardy themed funday on south bank this sat to celebrate the launch of yet another Rowling doorstop. Its your basic facepainting, balloon modelling thing, and to avoid disappointment I should warn you that neither JK Rowling nor Mr Potter himself will be making an appearance. Still, you know, there's a lucky dip.

3) For Rich People with Curly Hair: Mammoth Indoor Picnic (at mammoth prices - £85 a head) in aid of combatting not just your hunger but World Hunger. For your wad you get champs, a mix and match top notch picnic thing made by Top Chefs and all that, and the opportunity to hurl money at one of those auctions where drunk people end up buying helicopter rides for 1200 pounds.

4) For Poor people with Expensive Tastes in Lingerie: Coco de Mer sample sale, Monmouth Street store, tomorrow (Friday) 11am til 6pm.

Coming Up:
For Country Fans: Wanda Jackson, squeaky voiced queen of rockabilly is playing Kilburn with punk rockabilly band Hot Rock Trio next Friday 27th

Featured Event!
London's undisputed event of the year (go on try it, I'll have yer) is the Lambeth Country Fair in Brockwell Park this sat and sun.
Its a blistering cocktail of the following:
small children from SE London being shown livestock for the first time, ('Mummy which bit of it is nuggets?')
the octagenerian cowboy knifethrower,
Ragga and other Rooty type Music, (of varying quality but some of it good and Horace Andy is on)
Small dogs running very fast over random obstacles such as entertains those in rural areas
jerk chicken, curried deliciousness and WI cakes
assorted yoghurt knitting and Prize Vegetables stalls.
What's more you can Hold an Owl if you like.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Another Karma Project

We've recently been working with Una King on the Make Space Youth Review, an initiative designed to encourage the Government to fund more youth centres. We produced a campaign a couple of months ago that showed Tony Blair in a hoodie, projected onto the Houses of Commons. Last week Una was able to get Lilly Allen involved and, quick as a flash, we produced a few dozen 'speak out' mouths on sticks for the photocall, which seemed to go very well as the campaign has now received lots of news coverage. A good thing to do, and good karma all round.

This Man is Dangerous

Meet Phil. He's one of our extremely talented and ridiculously hardworking Account Managers. Phil has the shoulders of an ox, allowing him to work on a dizzying number of accounts without ever breaking sweat.

Phil comes from somewhere foreign and is something of a cultural melting pot. We think there's some eastern European in there, with a touch of northern European and, it is rumoured, a touch of Camden. He is very fluent in many tongues. Nice.

Finally, the last thing you need to know about Phil is that he is sometimes referred to as 'Filth'. Why, I don't know. But if you ever meet him, perhaps you'll find out why.

Phil, we salute you.

This Is Not Just a Bat

Ping Pong, Table Tennis, call it what you will, it's something that we take very seriously at Karma Crescent. Back in the day, when Dave was setting up our little enterprise, he was offered a leaving present from Channel 4 here he'd been Creative Director. Would he like a nice fat cheque, a comfy executive chair, a small island off the coast of Portugal, or shares in Microsoft? Dave, being a visionary type of chap said no to all these, and plumped instead for a table tennis table. Bored with the traditional table football or pool tables found in most agencies, Dave wanted something that would represent Karmarama's often left of centre approach, together with a sense of the exotic, with a bit of hand-to-hand combat thrown in. So, the tradition of table tennis was born.

Some years later your favourite web 7.0 agency (recently voted 'most interesting place to go for a 2 week placement' by students at Nordoyggjar College of Art, Faroe) joined the Central Table Tennis League. There humiliation awaited, recounted in Dave's award-winning short book shown here. If you'd like to order one, tough as they're all sold out. But give us a lot of cash in used notes and we'll gladly break the glass.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Midake rambling.

So I went to see Midlake this week at the RFH, which was nice.
And I spotted two things.
1) Their guitarist is the spitting image of Reinhard who was here on placement last week. See (the one in the middle):

2) Jason Lee from My Name is Earl fame was at the front trying to get a picture of the band. The paparazzi who were standing next to him , scrabbling for a shot of special guest Paul Weller didn't seem to notice. Much as I hate to be this uncool about celeb sightings, I thought I'd give it a go with the camera phone (who knew it could be so useful to have a CAMERA on your PHONE?) and maybe I could impress all my friends at work with it, on account of he's quite cool and hip and that, even if he is a scientologist, and his programme shares many values re. Good Karma with ourselves (and, it seems, with Tom Cruise)
This was the result.

That's what you get for creating bad karma by snapping unsuspecting celebrity skaters at a lovely gig put on by their friends.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Aussie Innovation

Seeing that there are a few aussies here at Karmarama, we like to keep up with news form the homeland. And it seems Oz has gone gangbusters at the most recent Security Expo (??). Check out the 'Truck Stoppa Gate' and look out for the jubilant designer crossing in slow motion. And yes, that is a cheer after imapact (again ??)

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Rot Blog 5: Brothers in Arms

You may recall, in last week's thrilling installment of Rot Blog, someone defaced the biscuit with a 'bin me!' plea. During the course of this week, whether by the hand of man or some cosmic force of greatness, the satsuma followed suit. Now the two, forever joined together, struggle onwards to their final rotting destiny. The satsuma is now looking decidedly puffy; the biscuit, true to its carbohydrate rich roots, just sits there, ready for all comers. The saga, and the smell, continues.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Advertising UB40 Sao Paulo Style

Imagine one day you woke up and advertising didn't exist any more. Apart from a lot of people with those funny square specs and tight polo necks being out of work it would be kinda nice. No nasty ads cluttering up our beautiful countryside, no annoyingly bad Channel 4 editing around ad breaks (what ARE their editors doing at the moment - they've all gone loco).

Well something similar has happened in Sao Paulo where the people in charge have decided enough is enough. They've passed a Clean City Act and removed all the posters. How does it look? Pretty striking actually and somehow quite wonderful.

Although it probably means that your holiday camp friends at Karma Avenue would all be on the jam roll as a result, let's hope Ken-E-Boy decides to do the same in London soon. And let's start with them pesky free sheet fellas, the pesky pests

Friday, July 6, 2007

In Praise Of Old School

Yeah yeah yeah it's all gone digital. We know, we know. Stick it on a website for tuppence and millions will see it. Alright, fair play. Now don't get me wrong. Your pals at London's most loved creative agency (recently voted 'place I'd like to work at most' by art students in Frederiksborg, Denmark) love a bit of digi and we do it lots. But every now and then we like to go a bit old school, produce a nice big poster and stick it jaw-droppingly big in some cities somewhere and see what happens.

And this is the result. Our latest campaign for Amstel started small with a few posters, and then sort of got bigger and bigger. Big love to Toby, our very smart Amstel client, for not only buying good work with some right odd looking people in it, but for also getting us some nice big sites to show off on. Tobs, we loves ya.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Spotlight on ... Numbers People

So you've got a plan to start London's soon-to-be most successful creative communications and good tea-making agency. You hire best in class planners, account people, creatives, producers and a firey person to man reception. Good plan. You think you've got it sorted. The business comes rolling in. Everyone's happy. End of the month comes. Oops! There's no bleedin' money in the kitty, no one's been paid, mass unrest, everyone leaves, agency folds. Why? Because you didn't hire any of the unsung heroes on the agency world - finance people.

Where oh where would we be without them? With their calculators, spreadsheets and stuff? Up the creek that's where?

So, to give them their 15 megabytes of fame, please meet:

Kevin The Enforcer

Kevin doesn't take any nonsense, knows his stuff and is a bit of a whizz when it comes to numbers and suduko and things. A bit like Roy Keane, when Kevin gives you one of his looks, you know it's time to fess up, get your accounts in order, pay your bills and move on.

Angela The Giggler

Angela is a bit like those little cuddly toys at the entrance to Hamleys that giggle maniacally when you clap your hands. But don't let her easy-going demeanor fool you. Angela is in charge of the most important aspect of running a business - expenses. Many a quivering wreck of a young account director has had their claim for 'Acme Leisure Services of Old Compton Street' rejected. Get Angela on your side, it's the only way to ensure you've got money at the end of the month.

So, that's finance. Gawd bless them, beautiful people. Can I get my expenses now please?

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Rot Blog 4: Traitor!

Now I know how Oppenheimer felt. Or Darwin. Or that bloke who invented cat’s eyes (no, not God, the WW2 bloke).
Here we are, trying to conduct a simple experiment, the results of which could have highly significant ramifications (good word) for all mankind as we know it. Only for people to start complaining about the smell! Digital Craig is getting all a bit “the smell is making me sick”. Well let me tell you sonny, better men then you have had to put up with more torment in the name of science. Look at Pete Burns for crying out loud.
So, despite attempts to ‘bin’ the manky specimens, Craig has been manhandled and ‘persuaded’ as they say in New Russia, to embrace our scientific experiment once again. How could we possibly let down our many loyal watchers and readers. How are the two of you by the way?
Anyways, in truth, not much to report this week other than the Satsuma is now really pongy and the biccie is just sitting there with its British stiff upper lip. Tune in next week to discover what thrills and spills throw themselves at our gently rotting pair.