When Kanye West decided to turn his talents to fashion, he enlisted one of his favourite photographers, Nick Knight, to bring his Yeezy clothing label website to life. The rapper gave him little in the way of direction but was clear he wanted the site to be predominantly blue. This direction somewhat confused Knight, as he knew how much Kanye loathed the colour. When asked why, he replied ‘I’ve had enough of working with things I love, I want to work with things I hate’. What a great idea.
When Creatives aren’t creating, they’re normally moaning. Client comments, research findings, brand guidelines, you name it. But what if we took Kanye’s approach? Instead of fighting against our problems, we embraced them. Branding not strong enough? Put the branding at the heart of the idea. No one interacting with the product? Make every single person in the entire campaign use the product.
Usually, we fight against the problems we face but sometimes it’s the problems that lead to the most original answers. If you don’t believe me, just look at the Benson & Hedges posters from yesteryear. Bound by countless rules they ended up with work that’s often cited as one of the best ad campaigns of all time.
If we embrace the issues head-on, two things are guaranteed to happen. You’ll come up with ideas you wouldn’t have before and secondly, if you can find an interesting way of doing it, your chances of selling it in should be a breeze.
Through The Wire, Kanye at Abbey Road, 2005.