R.I. Creative Boutique Gets Noticed With Hatch Call for Entries
PROVIDENCE, R.I.–In the offices formerly occupied by one of New England’s most recognized creative shops, a boutique called nail is taking shape.
Lining the walls in a conference room is a growing body of nail’s work. It includes a spring branding campaign for Rockport, done on the fly while the footwear maker was conducting an agency review that ultimately led to the hiring of a New York shop, and print ads for the 2000 World Figure Skating Championships for ABC Sports.
By summer, creative work for new clients Stowe Mountain Resort and the Stowe Area (tourism) Association will also go up, according to nail creative director Brian Gross and president Chuck Carmone, who last week confirmed the wins.
Nail won the Stowe (Vt.) Area Association following a review that also involved KSV in Burlington, Vt., and the Hayes Group in Williston, Vt., Carmone said. Lifestyle sports is a category that dominates their portfolios, having previously created ads for Vail Resorts and Salomon North America while at Kelley/Dexter in Boston. The pair was recently joined by copywriter Alec Beckett who relocated to Providence from the West Coast, where he had worked at Ground Zero.
Nail expects to break a summer print and Web campaign promoting the resort’s summer activities. “Summer is actually busier at Stowe than the winter months,” Carmone said.
The trio volunteered to create the call for entries to the 40th annual Hatch Awards, and reaction to that has been mixed. At first glance, the fold-out poster for the Ad Club of Greater Boston is a staid black and white photo of judges eyeballing creative submissions laid out before them on long tables. Once the poster is opened, however, the unexpected is seen. In the upper left quadrant a judge, his trousers draped around his ankles, is squatting on the table. The intent is to show how tough judges typically are on Hatch entries.
Some older ad executives were appalled by the photo’s implications; others who examined it more closely dismissed the concept as sophomoric humor.
The trio at nail, though, believe it resonates with younger creative directors like themselves. The intent was never “to piss anyone off,” said Carmone. Instead, the concept is a display of nail’s guiding creative principal: Find the unexpected and make it relevant. K
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