Category Archives: JUSTIN J.

Video

Cheerios’ Bold Move Outs Racist Maniacs

Kudos to Cheerios for bravely taking a step into the new multiculturalism that already shapes America’s population, but is rarely portrayed in media.

In less than 72 hours, Cheerios’ “Just Checking” commercial racked up 300,000 views on their YouTube channel (now close to 3 Million) and pulled the sheets off of America’s closeted, racist underbelly. Following suit of the other spots in the campaign, “Just Checking” innocently features a child interacting with her parents. The pot-stirring difference appears to be the ethnicities of the multiracial daughter, Anglo-(looking) mom and African American(-looking) dad. So stirred was this pot of discrimination, so visceral the comments left by trolls, that Cheerios decided to disable its comments on this video, proving that with progress does not often come without resistance.

Gawker.com has continued the dialogue on their message boards, where you can read (or chime in) on both sides of this heated and storied debate. Even Ad Age wrote a post on the breakfast cereal that was socially shared more than 600 times within hours of its posting.

Shaherra Rolen Family
Our own Shaherra Rolen commented that for the first time in recent memory, she saw a commercial image that resembled her own multi-racial family. She stated:


It’s great to finally see a commercial that is relatable to me, a wholesome family that just happens to be multiethnic.  Growing up I didn’t see a lot of mixed people fully represented on television.  Even now, the family structure is still shown as two parents of the same ethnicity.  I’m so glad to have had my bowl of Cheerios this morning and will do more to support General Mills products.

In your opinion, do you think Cheerios and General Mills took a brave step into the new multiculturalism, or did they try too hard? And how do you think this will affect the casting of future American TV spots?

Justin J. Jordan
@ArtistDirector

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Thirst for Multicultural TV Satisfied Online

Image

It’s no secret that there’s a dearth of multicultural roles in Hollywood on either the big screen or silver screen. Even J.J. Abrams’ vision of Middle Earth (“Lord of the Rings,” from J.R.R Tolkein) was populated by only milky-skinned faeries and hobbits, wizards and knights. But this dilemma has not stopped homegrown content creators from producing their own programming. For distribution, sites such as YouTube and Vimeo allow users to create Channels that perfectly house episodic content and grow audiences through subscriptions.

There are several web series gaining millions of views from their respective demos, and attention from potential advertisers. Most recently, Issa Rae’s “Adventures of Awkward Black Girl” has exploded, averaging 180,000 views per episode and currently has over 12MM channel views.[1] Shonda Rhimes, executive producer of primetime gems “Scandal” and “Grey’s Anatomy” recently greenlit another Rae spinoff “I Hate LA Dudes.”[2] Donnie Leapheart’s “Osiris” won the “Best Web Series at the 2012 American Black Film Festival.[3] Latino web series “East Willy B” centers Willy Jr. who struggles to keep his Bushwick bar afloat amidst gentrification. The series has some heavy hitters on both sides of the camera, and earned 100,000+ views in its first 6-episode pilot thus far.

The term “web series” no longer equates to a few teens recording pranks on their mobile phones in a poorly lit room. Some online shows tackle serious issues with HD production value and quality. Even the author of this article has produced a Mommy-centric web series entitled “Mommy UNcensored™: Confessions of a Real Mom,” based on his wife’s adventures through motherhood. This wild comedy tackles the serious challenges that motherhood poses upon a woman’s body, marriage and social life.

Networks are getting in on the fun, too. The Comcast-owned TV channel Mun2 is set to produce 3 web series targeting the Latino demographic.[4] With the pioneering of Internet TV colliding with emerging smart TV technology that streams the web, it’s only a matter of time before these web series jump from YouTube to the Silver Screen.

By Justin Jordan, Sr. Art Director
J.jordan@imagesusa.net
@ArtistDirector

Where’s Our Creativity Going??

With the recent release of Adobe’s study on the “Global Creativity Gap,of course the creativity-driven advertising industry has been buzzing non stop . The first to react here at IMAGES is our Senior Art Director Justin Jordan. Join in on the discussion, look out for more reactions (surely there will be many – from reactions to the study itself, to reactions to reactions of the study) and enjoy Justin’s food for thought!

Link to Adobe’s graphic summary of the study

As Art Director at IMAGES, I find my creative inspiration challenge to flex my creative muscle. Yet daily, I find my very creativity in jeopardy of falling victim to the media for which it designs!

According to Mashable.com, Digital is killing our creativity (suffocating may be a better word). It states, “In a recent global study, three-quarters of [the 5,000] respondents said their creative potential is being stifled.” Being smack dab in the crosshairs of the digital & creative spaces as Art Director of IMAGES, this is the perfect time for the author (and reader) to do a Creativity self-examination. Here goes:

  • Does your phone incessantly remind you of emails day and night?
  • Do you have problems concentrating on any real-world task without the temptation to tweet, text, email, youtube, or facebook?
  • During your daily commute, how many times do you “handle” your mobile device between points A and B?
  • Do you interrupt your own thoughts with meanderings in social media or social media consumption?

Check out the original Mashable.com article here (including the engagingly excellent infographic), and examine digital’s effects on your own creativity.

-Justin Jordan, Senior Art Director, IMAGES USA

Do you feel like the digital age is hindering your creativity or enhancing it? IMAGES wants to hear from our readers! Join the discussion by commenting below, responding through your own blog, reblogging, or Tweeting us @IMAGESUSA. Let’s hear it!!

What NOT To Do in Social Media – IMAGES 2012 Client E-Summit

Continuing to entertain, showcase our in-house talent and encourage our clients/ partners to log on for IMAGES USA’s digital client summit, we have two more teasers giving a preview to one of many topics we’ll cover as we discuss Decoding Digital: Branding in a New Language.

IMAGES USA Would like to invite all clients to join us online on Thursday, March 29th from 10:30AM – 3:30PM EST.

In acknowledgment of the increased influence of the digital space in the ad industry, IMAGES USA has decided to host our first E-Summit. We will share insights on new and innovative ways to reach consumers online, digital strategies, and insights on social media engagement.

*IMAGES USA Clients exclusively

RSVP by sending an email to m.browner@imagesusa.net

Amtrak Seeks Student Filmmakers for 2nd Annual TRAINsportation Video Contest

Is the next great student filmmaker aboard an Amtrak Lincoln Service, Wolverine Service, Missouri River Runner or Hiawatha Service train? It’s a possibility, since Amtrak is looking for another winning video travelogue in the 2nd Annual Amtrak TRAINsportation Video Contest. Created with the IMAGES Amtrak team, the rail giant is gearing up for their second search for the Midwest’s most talented student film makers. For details on how to enter, check out the video above produced by IMAGES’ Creative.

The contest is open to all college students in Illinois, Michigan, Missouri and Wisconson for the chance to win more than $3,000 worth of prizes including a MacBook Air, a Fuji 3D Digital Camera and travel on Amtrak. Students can enter the contest by submitting a train travel-themed video by Feburary 28, 2011, through the amtraktrainsportationvideocontest.com website.

Read more here.

Isn’t She Lovely: IMAGES USA Welcomes McKenzie Jordan!

Having a child is surely the most beautifully irrational act that two people in love can commit.Bill Cosby

On March 5, 2010, Mckenzie Love Truth Jordan was born to IMAGES Sr. Art Director, Justin Jordan and his beautiful wife, Charity. We’re so happy for the Jordans and are excited to see what the future holds for these three. See more photos of Mckenzie and her family here.