21/12/2009

2009 - My year in review

To say 'it's been a year of highs and lows' doesn't even cover it for me. Like everyone else, 2009 started under a cloud of recession. Through the course of the year survival has been the name of the game. We've all seen the stories of great agencies and brands running in to problems. Some high profile, some closer to home. However it has not all been doom and gloom. There have certainly been some highs.

Along the way I've worked with a handful of great people and had the pleasure of meeting a few very interesting characters. The biggest lesson for me, has been about protecting myself and my career. It became apparent this year that I had submerged myself too far in to my agency and seperating myself from it was a sticky process.

Looking back it feels like a lot has happened. My perspective on my work and my friends has changed radically a number of times. But the year is ending on a massive high with a nice long break.

So this is my brief round up of the year...
My Best Bits from 2009
- Preview's 15th party
- Falling deeper in love with Apple's iphone
- Launching the lowcostholidays.com brand and seeing it on London buses
- Spotify
- Road tripping down the California 101
- Getting addicted to Nike+
- Reading the wave of positive responses to my news of leaving Preview. Friends are good.

My Worst Bits from 2009
- Constantly hearing about the recession and great agencies like BB/Saunders and Designers Republic going under, brings a dark cloud in to the design world.
- I got bullied in to signing up for a race, next year, which is not good.
- Leaving Preview was a pretty emotional and uncomfortable experience.
- A Disney Land (LA) was a big let down. Kids loved it though.
- Had some grotty clients (won't name any names).

Inspiring Things in 2009
- Aol rebrands and gets it right.
- Proud Creative's work for the SyFy rebrand.
- Landor's work on branding the City of Melbourne
- Matt Brown for Last.fm
- Watching Che (1&2)
- Karen O -writes and releases an amazing album with Yeah Yeah Yeahs, plays every festival on the planet, tours the world, makes headlines for her fashion style, writes and releases amazing solo album for Where the Wild Things Are movie and looks hot whilst doing it all.
- Coke gets its brand in order with new packaging and guidelines
- Mad Men Series 2
- Honda - Brawn - Mercedes: It seemed as though we may never get to see Ross Brawn as team leader and Jenson Button race a good car. But never count Ross Brawn out. He bought the team for £1, pulled in new investors and kept Honda's cash, released an amazing car, kept up development and won both championships, then he sold the team to Mercedes for (a reported) £30 million. The man is a genius. Fact
- Penguin Modern Classics series

Quotes of 2009
Kasper De Graff (AIG London):
"wayfinding is giving people the confidence to get lost, knowing they will be found again"
"it's not about the space between places. it's about the space between your ears"

Michael Wolff:
"1. appreciation - understanding users and businesses, 2. curiosity - questioning everything, 3. imagination - go beyond the obvious. Exercise these three muscles rigorously, tostay creatively fit"

Related news from 2009
- Attik pulls up its roots and moves to London
- TDR shuts and Golden opens
- Moving Brands takes on the Brand for London pitch
- Twitter gets used to source brand agencies
- Scott Thomas releases his book on Designing Obama
- The UK goes crazy for pop up shops
- The internet shows its power over TV by putting Rage Against the Machine at number one.




2010 - What next
'New' is the key word for 2010. New work (details to be unveiled soon). New location, new lifestyle, new challenges, new side projects, new travel plans. All exciting. I don't remember the last time i felt so excited by the new year. Thanks for watching, I'll see you in 2010