Archive for September, 2008

Diesel XXX: the creative experiment

Diesel are celebrating their 30th birthday this month with a party. It is not unusual for a brand that built its cool using stealth and influencer tactics to be throwing a bash. They have been doing great parties since I can remember and I do remember. I started working life at a company called Dont Panic Media (which my best friend had set up) and at the time Dan Barton was the UK Marketing Director at Diesel and we worked with them quite frequently on parties, parties and more parties oh and diesel u music, which also had a great bash at Fabric every year…another party then. This is no ordinary party however. They have taken a things to another level. Think Live Earth but as a cool party for the kids. They have taken every element you can have with an event and made that element the best it can be. Bravo.

# Venue

Firstly the venue in the UK is the newest super club on the block, Matter.  Matter is brought to London by Keith Rieley, who set up and owns Fabric. Matter only opened earlier this month and has all the technology you could imagine is housed inside Dr. Who’s tardis. It has a ‘bodykinetic’ dance floor, a step on from Fabric’s ‘bodysonic’ dance floor which vibrates to the frequencies of the bass speakers built below it. They are planning 3D mapped visuals and interlocking screens to give punters a true assualt on the senses. 








# Concept

The next aspect to point out is the concept. I love the way they describe it themselves as:

‘Diesel’s unparalled astonishing XXX party. Happening live around the world in 17 cities on the same day. ‘

So there you have it. The cool party concept gone UBER. And those 17 (now 18 I think) cities are all well chosen too. The list includes: New york, Toykyo, Helsinki, Copanhagen and Sao Paulo. The thinking is the musicians playing at all the different parties around the world will also somehow collborate and you can listen to it all online at  as a live broadcast.

# Music

The line up is ridiculous. Really. Its like the Space Ibiza We Love closing parties. Imagine every cool, great, popular DJ you ever wanted to see and then put them all on the same night. Well this is how the schedule looks for not only London but the world…Chaka Chan! MIA, 2ManyDJs, Uffie, New Young Pony Club, Mark (Ubiquitous) Ronson, Nerd……and in London alone: the Mystery Jets, Lethal Bizzie, Rob da Bank, The View, Filthy Dukes and my lovely friend Tayo to name a few.  Phew. can you repeat that? For the entire 30 strong (see the theme here) line up check online at









 # Charity

so the tickets are only £5 but all the money goes to charity, but not just any old charity (yawn) BUT wait for it – a cool charity for urban kids…! is my best friend’s company (will do another post on him later watch this blog!) remember I mentioned earlier working with Diesel in the Dont Panic days…well he is the same guy that set up Dont Panic too..Sam Conniff. Livity help underpriveledged kids. They have a magazine called LIVE which is written for the kids, by the kids, a TV show called Dub Plate Drama and even a music label and internship programme – all based on real life education, how to succeed in a life of creative possibilities not guns and teenage pregnancy. Nice. So you can party with a clean conscience.











# Viral

This is the best bit. How they have promoted it. Of course there are facebook events. (36 different event pages at the last count and all different countries). But the funniest thing ever is the super cool viral they have made which started circulating last week. I got it as a fwd in my email inbox and saw it posted here, there and everywhere and holy moly posted it along with the comment

‘Let’s be honest virals are the pizza delivery leaflet of the internet. I never EVER put up any shitty viral (unless they pay moolah obv), but this one is fucking brilliant.

Take note, all you lazy ad agencies – all you need to do is be original, funny and look like you’ve made a bit of an effort.
Well done, Diesel.
(They haven’t paid for this. Sadly.)’

# Fashion

They have made a limited run of Dirty Thirty jeans. Pushing the 30 year celebration, Diesel are making these jeans valued 30 units of whatever currency is dirty lucca in that country. Only available for purchse on party day (11th October) they will only be on sale for – you guessed it – 30 minutes!! at selected stores and you have to pre – register to get them…. 

11th October. 18 major cities around the world, 8 different time zones, 1 major party. Brap. Let me know if I missed anything…… 





Here I am….

We are currently working with Nike on their ‘Here I am’ campaign. As such I have been privy to more of the marketing collateral than your average Jo. I have to admit, whether it is as a woman, a creative type or just a human; they have succeeded in engaging me….big time.

The thinking is this, of course they want to sell more clobber, however, instead of creating a project that places clothes at the heart of all visuals; they have chosen several female stories that are compelling, interesting and beautifully illustrated to be the central theme. These 5 main biographies are the life journeys of female athletes documenting their rise to fame and strength, often through adversity.


If Nike can encourage more young women to play sport, by making them not emabarrassed to get sweaty or grow big muscles or be seen as STRONG – instead of PRETTY and essentially for decorative purposes only, teetering around on SATC style skyscraper high heels – then they will have done 2 things: made the world a better place (tongue in cheek) and sold more womenswear in the process.

Whilst I realise you have to spend money to make money, (and from one of the richest brands on the planet you wouldnt expect them to scrimp and save), in this instance, the thinking & execution is incrediably sound and detailed to perfection. Dont get me wrong, I am no hairy feminist and I wear ridiculously high heels with pleasure a good percentage of the time; but I do  see the inherent unfairness in how the whole world pivots around the idea women must always look pretty. We all know exercise is good for us, no one likes muffin tops – but exercise actually does a hell of a lot more good than just keeping down the calories. After a while you begin to realise it fights the black cloud of daily depression, and the physical achievements you make in the gym gradually carry over into everyday life. I know it sounds gushing and cheesey but its true. I recently went on a yoga holiday in ibiza and my gorgeous inspiring teacher would push us into positions we previously thought were impossible. She told us to see ourselves in the pose in our mind, as the starting point, or we would never get there..the next thing was to take a step, give it a chance and let ‘grace’ carry us the rest of the way. And you know what. It f**king worked. I ended up doing one armed hand stands…(well nearly but I did stand on my head). Her closing words were for us to take that achievement out of the class and into life, to know we could do the things we didnt think we were capable of. I know I know, its like the Just do it…mantra. All Chariots of Fire and motivational speeches…but my point is, I get what Nike are saying with the Here I am campaign. Nike takeyou on an interesting journey into these girl’s lives: Maria Sharapova’s animation, is a pencil drawn linear progress of her birth in Siberia during the chernobyl fallout right through to the tabloid frenzy making her the britney spears of tennis.   

It doesnt stop with the movies online, there is a book of sketches and illustrations to accomany it  which is a stunning mix of multi paper stock and print finishes alongside a cacophany of graphic styles and photography. Blow up pages and images from the book and movies are currently part of an exhibition in Nike Town and we will be  touring it  around key UK universities recruiting girls for the Nike Select Programme. If I dont steal all the artwork first! 🙂  Check out the Here I Am site here


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September 2008
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