If You’ve Ever Looked for a NYC Apartment, You’ll Love These Brutally Wry Ads

StreetEasy illustrates the formula

Apartment hunting in New York City is a series of endless, gut-wrenching compromises. If you want this, you won't get that. If you must have that, you'll never get this. It's a math problem as much as anything, and StreetEasy captures it nicely in an illustrated campaign from new agency Office of Baby.

The NYC real-estate site's "Find Your Formula" ads show the kinds of dismal equations that will eventually lead you to housing in the astronomically priced town. And the ads are full of comically frank images—like toxic waste (Gowanus), rats and roaches (East Village), hedge-fund babies (Meatpacking) and third marriages (Upper East Side).

Click the images to enlarge.

Paul Caiozzo and Nathan Frank, creative partners at Office of Baby, brought StreetEasy with them from Goodby Silverstein & Partners New York after that office closed last summer.

"As longtime New Yorkers, we are intimately acquainted with the challenges that everybody faces when they look for an apartment in New York," Frank tells AdFreak. "Nobody gets what they dream of, but New York has a way of forcing you to understand what you really value. We wanted to capture the decision-making process we have personally gone through when you decide upon an apartment in NYC."

The work builds on the visual style of Caiozzo and Frank's 2015 campaign for the brand at GS&P, which was themed "Live as you please." And the funny, intricate illustrations are great for the subway, where people stare at the same image for an entire commute.

"We also wanted to carry over some of what we perceived to be the magic from our previous campaign," says Frank. "That is, the deeply detailed illustrations that people could spend time with and investigate further on their commute into the city. And the hard truths and sacrifices of NYC living."


Client: StreetEasy

Campaign: "What's Your Formula?"

Agency: Office of Baby

Creative Partner: Paul Caiozzo

Creative Partner: Nathan Frank

Art Director: Esai Ramirez

Copywriter: Steve Mcelligott, Jerome Marucci

Executive Producer: Anthony Nelson

Illustrator: Shy the Sun