2016 was a big year for NORTH + NOMAD. We learned a lot and were grateful to have adventures around the world. Here's a recap of our biggest successes and favorite work-related moments of the year.
1. Submitting our first project to film festivals! We created a short film in the Mojave Desert with a handful of talented friends, and after editing and coloring the footage and composing original music, it was hugely satisfying to send our project out into the wild. We’re still waiting to hear if it will be accepted anywhere, but just completing and submitting the project already feels like a win. Here's a behind the scenes snap from the shoot; fingers crossed we'll get to share the final product with you soon.
2. Learning the DELQA project we shot for Listen and Microsoft won 3 Cannes Lions. The whole team worked really hard to design and create this interactive installation at the New Museum.
3. Visiting Paris and driving around Lake Como in a tiny Smart car for our honeymoon in perfect sunny late October weather, a year after we tied the knot at the courthouse in NYC. We brought our new A7sii with us and since we #cantstopwontstop, we ended up filming time lapses around Paris and Italy that will soon be available to license from Nimia.
4. Meeting with the New York Times and giving a mental high five to the 18 year old journalist and photojournalist versions of ourselves who would have killed to get a meeting at The Gray Lady a decade and a half ago.
5. Urban camping in the backyard of Meadow HQ's San Francisco warehouse for a week to make it possible to continue working on our feature-length documentary. To make creative work, you have to get creative. It was chilly and loud back there, but we are so excited to see a project we love come to life.
6. Teaming up with A76 Productions to produce a campaign for Lavazza Milan and Havas. Karen took on the role of executive producer, with a 3-camera video team capturing flash mobs across NYC with 100 mullet-clad Andre Agassi clones dancing in Union Square, the High Line, Times Square and Grand Central. Simultaneously, a second video team, led by Simon behind the camera, interviewed Agassi at a press event. Runners delivered footage to two remote editors throughout the day, who cut five separate video deliverables before midnight, one of which played on the jumbotron at the U.S. Open in Arthur Ashe stadium! Pure insanity. Super fun.
7. Getting paid to pitch on a project! Typically when an agency comes to us with an RFP (request for proposal), they'll ask us to present our creative ideas. Usually the expectation is, in an effort to secure the project, people like us will contribute ideas for free. We were grateful to COTY for paying us for our time, effort, expertise and the 15-pages of ideas we gave them about how we would approach their project, even though we didn't land the contract.
8. Living in a cabin in the woods and making time for daily walks in the woods. Fresh air + nature + quiet reflection = strong mental health = better quality of life = renewed inspiration = better work.
9. Witnessing an impromptu rap by Big Boi while interviewing Big Grams behind the stage at the Okeechobee Festival in Florida for the Microsoft Music x Tech project.
10. Attending the famed Robert McKee Story Seminar, a three-day intensive course on screenwriting, story structure, scene composition, character development, with tons of practical information about what makes a story work and what makes them fail. Phenomenally inspiring, full of ideas and techniques about the art of storytelling that has shaped all of our future narrative work, from commercial spots to short films.