The holiday season is in full swing with our clients here at Central Station! Adding this one to our wish lists...
Rocco’s New Daughter! Congrats, You really art directed the hell outta this one!
After 3 long days of delegation, debate, and sleepless nights, the judges have chosen a winner of Central Station's first annual Mac & Cheese Bowl.
Inspired by the industrial history and rebel spirit of Gastown, we created a unique piece for a neighbourhood sneaker shop that embraces artistry. Aged copper, rusted metal and stained wood converge to form a show-stopping brand piece that really turned heads.
Our new Cup. Talk about a great Mug Shot!
Central Station capped its first full year of operation with a total of twelve new hires across creative, design, digital, account management and finance.
Proud to announce that the first annual Central Station food drive on behalf of the Daily Bread Food Bank went swimmingly. Thanks to all the Stationeers who got involved for the cause!
Our latest Nike store takeover featuring the “SF-AF-1” - Special Field – Air Force 1. This incredible production was completely custom made using the latest technology as well as a few magic wands and miracles along the way.
Central Stationeers showed their support at the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run for the Cure.
Wow. Look what we did in our first year! Needless to say, we’re not even in it for the money as much as the warm, fuzzy feelings we get working with great people… (Cue the Music – Cut to commercial)
Order the sounds of what's actually played in the Central Station office in 5 easy payments...or find in a thrift store in 6 months from now for $5.
“So, what’s the idea?” That’s what people are always asking. Great ideas are not always sitting there out in the open. Sometimes they have to be coaxed out of their caves. And sometimes we focus so hard in the finding them, we can miss the good stuff sitting right there under your nose. When Paul McCartney first wrote Hey Jude, it was called “Yo, Mike” but then he worked on it and worked on it and made it into the hit is today. If nothing else, great creative starts from a great exploration of what is possible and an open mind to what something could be given half a chance.
While there are always boundaries in place for where you can go, there are also holes in the fence that often lead to the best places. At least until the neighbours yell at you to get off their lawn. The best Advertising comes from the marriage between the truth in the brand, something that everyone already believes… and then combine it with what you’d never expect. Sometimes it’s just a lens change for the consumer and sometimes it’s a complete reset all together, but in any case, as long as you stick to that single strain of truth, it’s amazing what you can get away with.
If you listen to showrunners like Vince Gilligan [Breaking Bad], Lena Dunham [Girls] or Mike Judge [Silicon Valley] talk to their fans you’ll hear something interesting. The fan/interviewer always wants to ask about plot. When did you know this would happen? Did you always know x was going to happen to y? The showrunner wants to talk character. They are most comfortable explaining who the characters were meant to be, and how that lead them to the plot points everyone is so excited about.
Try it. Go to a podcast where the creator of your favourite show is being interviewed by a fan of the show, and you’ll hear the same dynamic.
Great shows keep us coming back week after week because we care about the characters and the world they live in. Isn’t that what we want most brands to be like? Something you want to return to again and again because you relate to it? Mainstream brands should be a bit like a successful sitcoms: characters people like enough to come back to each week.
In advertising we often talk plot before character. We want the logical, factual arguments lined up. Those things are important, but they’re much more powerful coming from a character with tone and personality that people engage with. Character is, in the end, more powerful than plot. It keeps people coming back for more. We should all find the right character for every brand we work on. It’s the thing that will make people care about your plot.
We’re all inherently visual learners and it’s much easier to remember an amazing visual rather than something read or heard. A properly designed ad gets the message across in a clear and concise manner through strategic layout & hierarchy, graphics, typography and copy. When it’s well designed, people notice. In a world where people receive information at such a fast pace, it can make them stop. It can entice users to share what they’ve discovered through social network avenues like Pinterest or Design Blogs. The same principal works for everything else. Great design strengthens your brand, legitimizes products and draws people in. After all, attracting people is what this is all about.
So how do we do that?
It starts with talent and Central Station’s success story has always been partly rooted in recognizing and hiring good people that are good at what they do. Part of my responsibilities as Director of Design is to not only lead and inspire the creative team, but also bring out the best of an extremely well versed group of in-house illustrators, production artists, 3D illustrators and designers. It’s recognizing their core strengths and talents from those individuals and assigning jobs that put them in a position to deliver work that exceeds people’s expectations.
Of course, all things start with a good strategy and creative brief, but it always comes to rest on the power of great design to get the job done.
Part of my job heading up production is to never say “it can’t be done”. There have never been more opportunities and ways to facilitate your wildest dreams than there are today. One of the things that makes what we do at Central Station different is our continued exploration of the arts and sciences that are available to bring a creative vision to life. With world class clients such as Nike, the windows (see what I did there?) of opportunity to continually push the imagination and the execution allow us to create one of a kind displays, activations and initiatives that consumers can’t get enough of. Have I tangled myself up in 6km of LED’s? Yes. Have we made shoes float? Yes. Have we made windows that go on for infinity? Yes. Have I suspended myself upside down from a building with a blowtorch and squeegee? Not yet, but there’s always tomorrow.
Most of us think that technology has improved our lives, but the challenge is how to use technology to improve your business operations, not just to watch the latest viral video, in 3D, on your smartphone. From inventory management systems to multi office synchronization; from warranty processing to online trading platforms, we’ve developed systems to help our client’s businesses run better. Our approach is to get to understand the operations of your business as though they were our own. Then we walk you through a process of prototyping your new web application so you can play with it and make sure it really achieves the business goals. Our experienced programming team then builds the product and gives it back to you for final testing before launch. This well-structured web application design process, involving input from all stakeholders, allows everyone to Arrive Together.
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"Companies become a part of the PROFIT 500 through innovative thinking, smart strategy and sheer grit" - James Cowan, Editor-in-Chief of PROFIT and Canadian Business
"Companies become a part of the PROFIT 500 through innovative thinking, smart strategy and sheer grit” - James Cowan, Editor-in-Chief of PROFIT and Canadian Business