I was hired by Gensler’s branding team for 2 exciting projects, including branding and advertising for the MGM City Center development in Las Vegas and rebranding the city of Calgary.
For the first project, we were asked to help brand one of the towers at City Center because it had a very unique promoter and creative director. The tower was designed by Foster & Partners and was called the Harmon. We completed the branding as part of a team with Orange22 that involved an elaborate viewing product (designed by Orange22) to tell the Harmon's brand story. We were then hired directly by The Harmon to help creative direct their advertising. The Harmon was sadly found to have faulty concrete and never reached its maximum height.
For the second project, I was embedded with Gensler’s team in order to make a film about their capabilities and help pitch and win the Calgary client. I made a photo-film of the Gensler team at work, helped write the script and capture the spirit of the place using my photofilm technique. Once we won the project, I was on board in the discovery sessions with the city stakeholders, helped interview Calgary’s citizens during our discovery and research phase, helped create photofilms that told the story of the different forces in Calgary (Arts, Business, Rodeo, etc), shot portraits of citizens, and helped animate logo studies for the team.
The Harmon project required getting into the psyche of the promoters and creative directors of the Harmon tower. We teamed up with Orange 22, who had designed an incredible way (through a portable viewer) to let investors learn about the towers. My team helped come up with the branding for the building and then to do creative on how to tell the Harmon’s story which was exclusive, sexy, a mix of work and play, and different than what Vegas had at the time.
With Calgary, I created a photofilm to tell Gensler’s story to Calgary's stakeholders. I was part of the research and discovery team and roamed the city, interviewing citizens with an unobtrusive camera. What came from it was surprising to all and revealed the rich diversity of Calgary. The stories even surprised the stakeholders themselves. After the brand started to take shape, I directed three photofilms to capture three distinct groups in Calgary: Business, Arts, and “the Stampede.” The photofilms ended up being mesmerizing and immersive and more than 1 stakeholder was moved to tears after viewing them, sharing that this was the Calgary they wanted people to see. It was a success.