Introducing the THE UNCHOSEN.
Anyone who’s worked in a creative agency knows the scenario. You’ve worked all week on your branding option. The copy and the creative sync beautifully. The colour palette’s been perfected (no-one mention Wednesday, when we went briefly neon). The executions are on point. There are pantone codes. There are typefaces. There are cue cards with notes and timings for all the jokes you’re going to make presenting it back “HAHAHA we knew you’d say that, Brian, that’s why on the next slide we…”
Cut to three minutes after the door closes, with the satisfied clients on the other side. Yes! High fives all round! Thank god we bought the expensive biscuits! It’s a done deal… on… the other route. Your stunning brand identity is no more. Consigned to a folder marked ‘what could have been’. After all the oohs and aahs and sage nods of approval, they went with option two. A great route. First class. Lots to love. And when you see it plastered across billboards, social tiles and travel mugs you’ll be so proud that your team made that happen. Except you’re also a bit gutted that it didn’t happen with your awesome route.
You can’t win ‘em all, clearly. Even the ones you do win! So what happens to all that fantastic work? Internally, we’ve always shared the work we loved creating, whether or not it made it across the finish line. But we think that work deserves a little more than a few excitable GIFs on an email chain. So that’s how The Unchosen was born…
We’re now proactively showcasing the work that didn’t make it. Because so much time and effort went into it – not to mention a whole range of integrated skills, from photography and videography, to illustration and copywriting. Names we’ll never use again. Hand drawn identities that won’t work with another brand. Product mockups that will never grace the supermarket shelves. A whole bunch of inspirational creative work that deserves appreciation, and to act as a springboard for work in the future.
You can now find The Unchosen proudly featured on the ilk website. It’s somewhere we’re already referencing when beginning new creative projects. What worked there? What tricks did we use? How did those colours or fonts work? Remember that amazing ad layout? But it’s also somewhere we can point clients to show our design skills firing on all cylinders. Because it’s rare that work makes it through the full approval process without losing some of the shine of a freshly minted project, straight from the keyboard of a copywriter and the sketchpad of a designer. In many ways, it’s the purest expression of creative talent. At least, we like to think so.
There’s a real mix of stuff already, from illustrations and full brands, to packaging and animation. Internal projects, stuff for startups, campaigns for big brands – anything really. If it’s cool, and a client isn’t using it (and they’re happy for us to showcase it), it’s in.
As a Design Director, I’d definitely encourage other agencies to take the leap too. Our creative team is already loving the new outlet. Not only does it help take the sting out of not getting the client nod from the client, it also means all that hard work doesn’t just slide off into obscurity.
The Unchosen is now live. We hope you like it! You can find it at ilk.agency/the-unchosen