Monthly Archives: April 2011

Here’s to the Head and the Heart

(the head and the heart above in concert, not the concert referenced in this blog post because it’s way better than the quality of my own iPhone video)

So for those of you who read this blog with any regular consistency, you know that here at TBWA\Chiat\Day, there are a lot of perks. And many of those perks happen to be music related. In fact, I believe we even had a blog title: “The Perks of Being an Adgirl at TBWA\Chiat\Day\LA” that was about that very subject. And then there was that other blog post about 5353 Fest.

Well, the Head and the Heart played on our very own basketball court just the other day. A beautiful acoustic set with guitars, tambourines and violins. And harmony. It was lovely. And JDB and I had front row seats! (li refused to join because she didn’t want to be rude and walk in front of people like we did). Here’s the proof!




And then, because we hadn’t had enough, JDB and I, along with some fellow Chiaters – Matt Magsaysay and gf, Greg Halbreich our new Visa buddy, Laura Albers, Chris MacNeil and Chris Spencer – all saw them again that very same night.


This band’s gonna go places, and I’m super happy I saw them on our basketball court before they blow up and become huge and too cool to autograph our posters (which we definitely asked them to do, because we have no shame like that!)

Because it’s a fact that after bands play at Chiat Day, their careers get a kickstart.
Little Dragon played on the Media Arts Lab patio and the next time I saw her she was on stage with the Gorillaz Sunday night playing for 100,000 people.

The Morning Benders played at Chiat Day and the next thing we know they’ve got a song in a Reese’s commercial.

And finally, Aloe Blacc played at Chiat and he ALSO got a song in a commercial for Boost Mobile.

Seriously, it’s the Chiat Charm!

And as evidenced by the lali DJ sammie lunch, advertising and music go hand in hand… (but that subject was already covered by another post.)

And Dear Head and the Heart, we <3 you! And if we finally get to produce SOMETHING from one of the five and a quarter brands we’re working on at the moment, you’re on our list!


PS A special shout out goes to Chris Spencer for a) introducing me to the band and b) for making the basketball concert happen at all. Baller!

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matchey matchey!

as an art director, you always want the different parts of a campaign to match each other. at least i do. it’s important that consumers see consistency among various media, and brand recognition helps clients get the most of their ad dollars. HOWEVER, some people think too much matching is bad. it’s a fine line between matching (good thing) and matchey matchey (bad thing).

clearly, we like to err on the side of matchey matchey! like today:

solid-colored v-neck tee…check! skinny jeans…check! gray ballet flats…check!


and if you can believe it, we didn’t even try to match. this time.

xo from the lali in purple,

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lali lessons in advertising #8: get inspiration everywhere (AKA take a few days off and dance in the desert for Coachella!)

A couple weeks ago, li and I got invited to a Pepsi meeting. And while we can’t give away the secrets of our briefing, the music festival Coachella did come up. And again, while we can’t tell the specifics, we were told to let music inspire us and our planner even mentioned “imagine the feeling of being on a drug trip” when concepting. Which, for those of you who have attended Coachella, it’s a drug trip when you’re stone-cold sober. And there is certainly music to inspire. So guess who went…

Coachella 2011 Poster

Useless to convince anyone I went to Coachella merely to inspire for our Pepsi brief. But that’s not to say it wasn’t a completely inspiring weekend nonetheless. There’s something about three days in the desert that feels like you leave reality for this fantasyland of music and heat and art and people and strangeness for weeks. In fact, Goldenvoice founder Paul Tollett said: “By the end of Sunday you need to have gone through a range of emotions. The experience of the art and the ambience has to play a huge part in that.” In those three short days, you feel frustrated, sad, happy, angry, ecstatic, annoyed, exhausted, excited, famished, parched, moved, thrilled, enlightened, enhanced, loved, lonely, everything. All in a hundred degree heat with music playing everywhere and dust filling every orifice of your body. Maybe it’s really three long days.

Regardless, I came back to work Tuesday missing a couple brain cells and lighter by a few pounds and exhausted by a lot, but certainly inspired. If Pepsi is getting into culture, I certainly got my culture on.

Blog readers, if you were there, you don’t need a recap of everything because well, you were there. And blog readers who weren’t, you’ll just be jealous. I will say that Friday was a dance party, that YACHT and Cut Copy and Robyn got our glittered bodies jamming, that Mumford & Sons brought the first real soul to the stage on Saturday, that Arcade Fire was one of the best shows I’ve ever seen (rivaling only my Big Sur experience with them), that I was a needy girl for Chromeo on Sunday, that the National by sunset was the best time for friends and that Kanye can certainly put on a show. For a professional opinion on the music, check out Spin‘s or Pitchfork‘s take.

The ball drop for Arcade Fire is a moment I’ll remember forever. Let’s hope it helps inspire some Pepsi spots other people will remember forever… Maybe I can write off the cost of the concert to TBWA\Chiat\Day? Ha, doubt that on both those thoughts. What isn’t in doubt is how awesome this video is, and how much more awesome it was in person. In the original definition of the word.

Now I would definitely say the title of this blog post is appropriate. Get inspiration everywhere. If we spent all our time inside the walls of Chiat Day we wouldn’t be very good creatives. And Coachella is all about getting inspired. But I would be lying if I tried to tell you that I thought about work for more than twenty seconds the entire weekend. It was about dancing and music and living and friends and not really about advertising.

Here’s the proof:





And ten blog shout outs to anyone who guesses correctly what music instrument this is supposed to be:

So thanks to Hobart Birmingham, Jacqui de Borja, Anne Hurty, Chris Spencer, Spencer Larson, Travis Pfeifer, Noah Roper, Chris MacNeil, Sean Carroll, Chase Madrid, Kristina Krkljus, and many other desert dancers for both helping me forget about work and inspiring me to do better work last weekend. Justin and Allyson, Coachella love to you and I’m sad you weren’t there this year but there’s always next year!

And now, back to work. We just got briefed on something new, and it looks like I’ll be taking this lali lesson to heart while working over Easter weekend.


PS For those who no-chellaed it, here’s the playlists I made for the weekend. And let that inspire you :)

Friday Coachella Mix
Saturday Coachella Mix
Sunday Coachella Mix
The Coachella Hits Mix


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Portmanteau…the most interesting word I’ve learned since interrobang.

Holding down the fort this weekend while la is desert dancing (if you need a visual, here’s a picture of la desert dancing in 2008 that i raided from her flickr account):
air piano

Anyway, lots to do back here at the office! The highlight of my day, so far, is the new word I just learned from Rob Schwartz while sitting in a Pepsi meeting. He wrote it down for me so I wouldn’t forget.

Portmanteau! A great word for me to know since I’m constantly merging words and calling it good copywriting. Hehe.

Would “lali” be considered a portmanteau, of sorts?

Anyway, la, if you are getting reception at Coachella and can read this, Samson is doing great and totally remembered how to use the doggy door. I think we’ll go to the dog park tomorrow!

xo and trying to think of the perfect closing portmanteau (…it’s hard to do on command!)

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lali has another brush with celebrity!

la and i were honored to be invited to …something… today where we got to meet …someone… and see …something that hasn’t been released yet…

seriously, it was awesome. and as usual, we tried our best not to geek out too much.

but sadly, as we were walking out of the meeting, ACD glenn sanders specified “no blogging, lali” so this post is redacted.

suffice to say, if we get to do the thing we want to do with the person we met today, it’s going to be awesome. stand by.


xo and excited!

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“Do you two ever separate?”

Upon learning la and I were taking a break from working to attend book club together, new-guy-social-media-expert Brandon Kleinman asks “Do you two ever separate?”

Welcome to the world of lali, Brandon! The answer is “not usually” and it’s the secret to our success! You’ll learn to love it. Hopefully.

Peter Estermann, beloved account guy, is such a huge lali fan that he even brings us gifts from time to time, like these matching JUKE tanks.

Anyway, back to book club. I was honored when la first started inviting me several months ago, and I actually (mostly) read the book this time! It’s called World War Z and it’s about zombies. We highly recommend. Here is la being happy-homemaker hostess. The lemon buttermilk sugar cookies were super yum, by the way.

And here we are enjoying the rest of her goodies.
photo (1)

How many partners out there can work together for 11 hours and still look forward to an evening of literary fun?

xo… back to work, and onto the 6th meeting of the day!


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lali lessons in advertising #7: don’t be sexist and have a tough skin

Is any press really good press? When people tweet that Nissan should fire their copywriter for being sexist (and that copywriter happens to be me), maybe not.

Thank goodness Nissan didn’t listen to those naysayers and I still have a job.

Here’s the story:

Nick Ciffone (pronounced Nixophone like saxophone) is a new copywriter here (sorry we stole him RPA!). He and I wrote a radio script together for Pandora. Not a big deal. Actually, we kinda threw it together because we had so much stuff going on.

Here’s the script:
Radio Script

And here’s the petition to take it down:

(On a good note she didn’t get any signatures!) On a bad note, other people agree with her. Check out this article about sexist commercials… Yah, we’re the first example.


And this tweet, where they recommend physically beating us.
fire your agency

At least the tweet is grammatically incorrect in a number of places?? And li and I don’t have any bruises yet????

Well, let me just say I feel a little bad about being sexist. I promise I didn’t mean it. And while we offend people all the time with the work we do, this isn’t the way I’d like to offend. It just goes to show that no project is too small (it was just a little mobile radio ad! on pandora only! to boys only!), and what we write/art direct/create really is out there in the world for people to see, feel and react to.

So the next time I tell someone to be promiscuous with their music (and it really was more about the music and less about the ladies), I’ll leave it at just the music. Really it was a way for me to end the sentence with a metaphor and hey, the Juke is the car that makes really popular videos out of girls running in slow motion in bikinis…

So really I was just sticking with the campaign. I guess not an excuse, but really, Lindsey and I are creatives who like our creative luggage to match!

Thankfully, Juke is almost over and we can move on to Versa and a non-millenial-male target and I can stop writing sexist ads that make people recommend Nissan fire me!!!



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