BBC | Edinburgh FestivalPosted: November 7, 2016
The beginning of a new project, and once again I am filled with that sense of openness, freedom, the brief is fairly vague and includes the chance to work on film and animation, something that would go well in my portfolio and that I am excited to experiment with. I also get to work on a D&AD New Blood Award brief, a recognised and respected achievement in the industry, if I win that is. There are still a few things I need to tie up from the last project, and of course keep writing my dissertation, and work on a couple of commissions outside of university. But still, I’m excited to get cracking.
As a slight side note, I am starting to get that nagging feeling of having work pile up and losing grip on my productivity, but I think with a little rearranging and inspiration, and maybe a little caffeine, although I really shouldn’t rely on a coffee induced buzz to get me working, I think I’ll manage to pull myself out and stay on top of it all. I can only try my best.
The brief explains that the BBC want to take advantage of the developing digital world and bring together visitors of all six of the August festivals, the performers and also the people at home, or on their commute, who also want to be involved even though they can’t be there in person. One of the areas for improvement I found when doing my research was that there isn’t one single place for the festivals to all come together, so considering creating an umbrella brand for them all might be a good place to start. I also considered an app where visitors and performers could upload their photos and videos so everyone can see what is going on from their point of view. An extension of this thought is to stream the festivals live onto a digital platform; through Facebook Live, Twitter or even a virtual reality headset.
VR is looking likely to be the ‘future’ of digital technology, closely followed by augmented reality. Thinking quite far ahead of the now, an idea I had was to create an ad or feature designed for virtual or augmented reality, where the viewer can experience what it would be like to actually be at the festivals; they could chose a point of view, a festival and even a specific stage to watch and interact with. This thinking seems a little too advanced for what is currently available and commonly used but I would much rather be thinking two steps ahead than two behind.
One of the things I discussed with a variety of different people was the question of whether or not apps are going out of fashion. When was the last time you downloaded an app that wasn’t essential? Probably not much since the demise of Flappy Bird. And of the apps that you do download, how many do you use frequently and for an extended period of time? I found that the majority answered unanimously in that they do not use apps in the same way they did when they first became popular and maybe creating yet another app that would sit in the app store and not actually used wouldn’t be the best idea. Also the chances of someone downloading an app for a festival they weren’t actually going to might not be very high. Despite this I am not ruling the idea out, there may be a way of working around this and reinvigorating app culture. I’ll do some thinking.
The brief mentions using existing platforms to promote or accommodate the idea, and potentially use them in different ways. The festivals already have a twitter that people interact with, which is present on the Edinburgh Festival City website, and I imagine also makes an appearance on screens at the festivals themselves. Snapchat often includes relevant filters dependant on the events that are happening locally. They also let people share stories; small clips of their time at the events. Maybe I could introduce a hashtag for people to use to share their experiences on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter as well. Considering a lot of the BBC is aired through TV an advert might be appropriate, or something like the E4 estings where viewers can contribute their own footage and the events can be shown in not such a pushy way as an ad.
There are ENewsletters and email updates already sent out about the different events but I personally just end up deleting newsletters as they get too repetitive and invasive. Maybe there’s a way to share information in a more engaging way that people will find less intrusive. There is a lot of friendliness going on between brands and their audiences at the moment and I know for some people, in the industry and otherwise, this is going a bit too far, and brands need to take a step back and realise they are not their customers’ friends.
So basically I have a lot of ideas about the issues already existing in the current design, and a few solutions. I think from here I need to firstly sign up for the After Effects workshop on Wednesday so I can improve my knowledge of that as it might help with the project, and also keep working on research before my next tutorial on Thursday. And of course, send the emails I need to send and God forbid take a break before I start to feel overloaded again.