What if ads were art?

Just how different would ads be if creatives didn't have to listen to account people and clients?

Just how different would ads be if creatives didn’t have to listen to account people and clients?

Toronto-based agency John St, along with its design firm Amoebacorp, played on this idea for a holiday party last month. The partners rounded up all the creatives at the end of October to brief them about the optional party project. They could each sign up for the brand of their choice (as long as it was a client of the agency’s), and were given a week to come up with their own interpretations. The resulting projects were displayed at the party, which replicated an art gallery opening soiree. Although each of the pieces played with brands, they looked far more like works of art than ads.

‘We got to do whatever we wanted – it was a free-for-all,’ says Pam Purser, designer at Amoebacorp. Purser is dedicated to the agency’s AstraZeneca business, but opted to take a go at playing with the iconic Girl Guides of Canada badges. She did her homework, even trekking up to the organization’s Toronto headquarters to study its badge archive.

Purser produced five thought-provoking executions. One badge features little

food patches, with the copy: ’52% of girls begin dieting before age 14.’ The Girl Guides of Canada were so impressed with the badges, they bought all five to display at their headquarters.