May – in a nutshell


29th May 2020

May has come and nearly gone – it feels like only yesterday we were compiling our April in a Nutshell post! Here’s what we’ve been up to and what we’ve been inspired by in May.

1. Smeaton Homes – COVID-19 Campaign. Coronavirus has played havoc with the housing market, with confusion, fear and practical difficulties making buying, selling or renting almost impossible. Our clients at Smeaton Homes needed a way of communicating to their audience what they could do to help. We collaborated again with illustrator Sean Morgan to develop a campaign with bold illustrations and snappy headlines to give plenty of social media content as well as physical printed posters and information on their website.

2. Schuh rebrand. The rebranding of one of the UK’s largest shoe retailers came with a subtle evolution of the existing brand. Stockholm-based studio Snask (if you don’t know Snask you neeeed to familiarise yourself with them quickly!) gave refinement to the brand with an intense bright green stripe graphic, which is used throughout all communication. It may not look like a huge change but the way they have given extra special care and attention to each individual part means a much more unified and engaging identity. The rebrand has divided the opinion online but we love it. What do you think?

3. The Simplicity Illusion – The Sequel. ‘Is simplicity really all it’s cracked up to be? Does it have to be so highly revered and prioritised? Is it really the key to good communication? I guess it depends what you mean by simple.’ An article Owen wrote in 2015 investigated the idea of simplicity not being quite what people think. Recent events have inspired him to write an update, addressing the subject from a slightly different angle. Why not take a read and let us know if you agree.

4. James Reekie PDF entries. Constant badgering and the effect of being in furlough gave our friend and Macmillan client James the nudge he needed to submit his own awesome interpretations to the PDF 400 challenge. Now he’s hooked and keeps adding more as he goes back through the list of subject titles! We loved this first one for ‘Isolation’.

5. In These Times. Cliches for days! COVID-19 has not only changed the way we live, but it’s changed how we speak. How do you communicate and connect with the feelings of others during such a unique, atypical and turbulent time as a pandemic? What do you find yourself saying to describe ‘these times’? We had a bit of fun with the variations we repeatedly see and hear.

6. The Last Dance. If you haven’t heard of Michael Jordan you must have been hiding under a rock! In fact, if you haven’t watched The Last Dance you might still be considered out of touch – even our ‘I-have-no-time-for-telly’ creative director has been enjoying it. The Last Dance docuseries follows the legendary Chicago Bulls’ 1997-1998 season from start to finish with previously unseen insight into Jordan’s career – a stunning portrait of one of world sports’ most iconic athletes and his team.

Be sure to check in with us next month to see what the Upshot team (still at home!) have been up to and see what inspires us in June.