Design is Alma Maters

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Trampoline was named among the top in the nation in the 2014/2015 Collegiate Advertising Awards program. The Collegiate Advertising Awards (CAA) is an elite program recognizing higher education organizations for excellence in communications, marketing, advertising and promotions of their schools.

The awards had more than 900 entries from across the United States representing educational facilities from small community colleges to large universities.

All submissions were reviewed and scored by a national panel of industry experts, with a possibility of 100 total points. Awards were issued for entries that received high marks from judges placing them in the top 16% of the nation for educational advertising excellence.

The agency won awards in the areas of institutional advancement, campus communications and student recruitment—all very different avenues of communication in the higher-ed arena. We’re proud of the work, and grateful for our counterparts on the school side who work hard to develop materials that make their institutions shine.


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Paul Smith’s College took their 2013 giving report online last year, and Trampoline created a site to recognize donors, share highlights and make financial information easily accessible to alums across the country. giving.paulsmiths.edu won a silver Medal. The Paul Smith’s Bobcat also got an overhaul, and took home a bronze.PBC1
The student recruitment collateral suite for SUNY Plattsburgh was awarded gold. A series of brochures set in Cardinal Red helped reinforce the State brand, and headlines embraced the campus location. The suite positioned the college as a place worth visiting and a valuable start on the track to a degree.PBC2
The on-campus experience at Plattsburgh was aided by a redesigned map that featured custom iconography and illustrations of key buildings at street-level. The way finding piece earned a gold medal.

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A series of direct mail cards that forwarded the #myplattsvisit hashtag, and invited potential students to visit the Plattsburgh campus, take photos, and share their experience, also won a gold medal.PBC3

Process: A portrait

“What’s your process?”

This is a question we are asked in preliminary meetings with clients, and proposal requests we receive. It’s a question that is disregarded by some companies and individuals who might not put the time into decision-making, probably because time is money. We don’t set out to be the cheapest or the most expensive, we just want to be the best for our client.

The answer is that each project works in its own way, but the basic structure of creative and communication at Trampoline remains.

We start with a conversation, listening and then asking questions. Later, our entire team gathers around a table spitballing ideas. What about this? Or what about the opposite?

This process often involves laughter and ribbing, as we push the communication envelope and play with language. The fun that we have creating with each other can be seen in the end product. Colors, stocks, fonts and finishes are suggested, torn apart and reworked. This results in deliverables that demand attention, and create repeat impressions.

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We talk things through, confirming that the avenues we explore for design or messaging are as effective as they can be. This process makes a product stronger by ignoring ego and putting our collective energy, spirit, and skill into the creative.

Once we’ve done this, it’s time to put pen or pencil to paper, because the reality is that while we ultimately deliver things digitally, we still begin with a sketchbook.

The space between sketch and print allows for critiquing within the shop. During face-to-face meetings with clients, we further refine (or roughen) the graphics and illustrations.

As we talk through concepts and identify points to emphasize, the idea of using an illustration may shift to using a photo, or the other way around. The first idea is rarely the best or without room for improvement; we focus on identifying the strongest elements and tailoring them for the intended audience.

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The goal is to have something worthwhile, based on a process that we believe in as an agency invested in your success.

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2015 Winter Board Meeting

After a week that saw the launch of our new website (cue kazoos and confetti) and with 2014 now in the rearview mirror, the Trampoline team was ready for a little R&R. So on Tuesday, we traded mouse and pencil for skis and boards and headed to the Catskills for a day of skiing at Hunter Mountain Resort.

Our staff’s skiing and riding experience varies. Derek, Paula, Sean, Will, Cara, and myself all grew up earning our turns on east coast gnar. Growing up in Washington, Amanda was on skis at an early age and has been forced to sharpen her skills to keep up with Sean and their three girls. Kate, on the other hand, risked life and limb digging her board out of her parent’s storage shed back home in Guilderland, and Matt pointed out that the last time he strapped on the planks, rear-entry boots were all the rage, the Buffalo Bills were in the Super Bowl, and Kate and Cara weren’t born.

We couldn’t have picked a nicer day. Bluebird skies and temps hovering around 30 degrees. Better yet, it being the Tuesday after the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend, lift lines were non-existent. After setting Matt up with rental gear and leaving he and Kate with encouragement, a few pointers, and silent prayers on the novice hill, us “fall-hardened” skiers loaded onto the six-passenger Kaatskill Flyer chair lift — which lives up to its name,  zipping us to the 3,200 ft. summit in a bar-gripping 8 minutes.

We arrived late in the morning, but bagged five runs before lunch, sticking mostly to blues like Belt Parkway and Kennedy Drive before testing our legs on the black diamond, Hell Gate (Going down?).

Let me pause to say that Hunter Mountain’s snowmaking is top-notch. Mother Nature hasn’t spared much in the way of natural snow in the Catskills, yet there were no bare spots or ice to contend with. With 1,100 tower guns and 60 miles of pipe, combined with single-digit overnight lows, they were able to crank out 11 inches of manmade snow over 40 acres in the past 24 hours.

Around 1:30, we retreated to the lodge for lunch and a brief production meeting. While our new studio space is great, I was reminded how a change of scenery can refill the inspiration tank and provide a fresh perspective. Looking at the snow-frosted Catskills out the window, my laughing co-workers around me, and the A-list of clients on the page in front of me, I couldn’t help but feel grateful for the opportunity to work with this team. Also for the fresh pint of Saranac IPA in my hand.

After lunch, we geared up for more runs. I was itching to check out the Empire Terrain Park and get some GoPro footage for our video reel. The park was in peak shape. As I had learned while working on the resort’s magazine, Hunter Mountain Life, the park crew had just welcomed a respected jump builder, Randy Nelli, to its team. It was obvious by the perfectly cut table tops and smooth transitions throughout the park that his presence was being felt.

After making it out of the park mostly unscathed, the group headed back to the upper mountain and spent the remainder of the afternoon on black diamonds like Jimmie Heuga Express, The Cliff and Hell Gate. On mellow lower-mountain cruisers Fifth Avenue and Mossy Oak, we had real estate to lean into big, sweeping turns and feel our edges grip into the buttery corduroy.

With the late-day sun sending mountain-sized shadows across the Catskill Valley, and with sore legs, we threw in the towel on a great day of skiing. Back in the lodge, as we shared war stories, we were visited by Hunter Mountain VP of Sales, Marketing and Sponsorships Gerry Tschinkel. It was my first time meeting him in person, and it was great putting a face to the person I’d talked with over the phone so many times while working on Hunter Life. We discussed ongoing and future projects (stay tuned!) and assured him we’d be back again before the snow melts.

We left the mountain all agreeing that the day couldn’t have gone any better. And with an unspoken understanding that we’re all pretty damn lucky to do what we do for a living.

 

Rooting for growth.

Capital Roots started in 1975 as a community service project of Garden Way, the former manufacturer of Troy-Bilt Lawn and Garden Equipment.

Today, the organization connects people and communities with the knowledge and resources to improve their well-being.

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A new name and a new look for the Capital District Community Gardens.

 

Capital Roots works to reduce the impact of poor nutrition on public health in New York’s Capital Region by organizing community gardens, providing healthy food access, offering nutritional and horticultural education for all ages and coordinating urban greening programs in Albany, Rensselaer, Schenectady and southern Saratoga Counties.

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In 2015 Capital Roots built The Urban Grow Center in Troy, NY, a regional food hub where the power of local agriculture is being channeled for the social, economic, and physical benefits of the entire Capital Region.

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The ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Community Grow Center.

 

Through increased and improved produce storage and distribution capacity, the Urban Grow Center enables Capital Roots to supply more people with more food from local farms, improving access to nutritious food in urban areas while helping regional farmers cost-effectively reach new markets. The facility also includes a produce stand which serves a neighborhood without access to fresh food.

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Trampoline created a system of word marks for the family of programs offered.

 

Other Capital Roots programs have a direct impact on the health of Capital Region residents, including:

  • Taste Good Series
    Where staffers and volunteers bring fresh fruits and vegetables right into the classroom to introduce as options.
  • Veggie Mobile
    A produce food truck that travels into neighborhoods with little access to farm fresh food. It operates like a farmer’s market on wheels.
  • The Produce Project
    A year-round training program for underprivileged youth. Students are given a stipend and school credit for operating three acres of farmland
  • Community Gardens
    50 plots throughout the Capital Region that are used to grow fresh produce.
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MVP Health Care President and CEO Denise Gonick (left) with Capital Roots’ Executive Director Amy Klein at The Urban Grow Center’s produce market, at 594 River Street, in Troy, NY.

 

Design Takes Flight

We say very genuinely that any chance to drive north is a treat. The Adirondacks are magnificent and the options of things to do are endless. However, when the call came in to head to St. Petersburg, Florida to get to know the Loews Don CeSar Hotel in preparation for a campaign for an event on New Year’s Eve, well, we were able to tear ourselves away to fly south. And fly we did.

The New Year’s Eve Takes Flight materials for the event at the inimitable pink palace on the water was fun from beginning to end. We started with an event logo that would work with existing Loews branding and continued into campaign materials for print, web, and on property distribution.

The materials and results speak for themselves.

 

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One Good Turn Deserves Another

We have worked with Glens Falls Hospital on many projects over the years. When they asked us to help them create a brand and campaign for an initiative, funded by a grant through the New York State Department of Health, aimed at increasing healthy choices we were thrilled. The mark needed to work for multiple audiences, including school children, and have the flexibility to encompass a number of aspects of healthy living.

Working with the team at Glens Falls Hospital we created a name, tagline, and color palette. We created billboards, ads, tote bags, napkins, and pencils, each with a distinct message specific to the distribution and intended audience.

The campaign won a gold award in the Graphic Design USA Health & Wellness Design competition. It was also so successful that other departments received grant funding to carry the message farther throughout the region.

 

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Award

Recently the team came back to us and asked for a complementary campaign to use in a tobacco cessation initiative. The goal was to create a system that would be recognizable as being related to Good Move, while also standing alone. It was a pleasure to go back to the creative process to conceive Fix-It, the name of the campaign that Glens Falls Hospital will be rolling out to merchants, landlords, medical offices, and the general public to work toward eliminating the use, promotion, and celebration of tobacco products.

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Selling the Future

There’s no denying that the SUNY System is an incredible asset for New York State. Last year we were contracted to create a new suite of print collateral for SUNY Plattsburgh recruitment efforts. Our directive was to create materials that would stand the four-year test of time for engaging a new class of students in an increasingly competitive higher ed landscape.

We conducted focus groups, researched the competitive set within the SUNY system as well as in non-SUNY school in state and nearby. What emerged was a concept that the students polled consistently said was, “Cool” and “Solid” and “…really creative, and like, on point.” The concept was North of Ordinary and, along with secondary branding elements, it was threaded throughout the print and digital materials.

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Destination Newcomb for New Outcomes

Newcomb is a jewel within the Adirondacks, with its incredible vistas and beautiful hiking and horseback trails. We’ve been working with a dedicated group of individuals in Newcomb for several years. Late last year the opportunity to work on a project with SUNY ESF presented itself and we leapt at the chance.

This particular project involves the historic Masten House, which belongs to the ESF College Foundation. The Masten House, perched near Henderson Lake and within site of Mt. Adams, was built in 1905 and used by NL Industries as a corporate retreat. It is an easy walk to the historic old blast furnace of McIntyre Mines. The building will expand the lodging and professional training space available through the Northern Forest Institute.

Before the holidays we took a crew up to conduct a photo and video shoot at Masten House as well as on the SUNY ESF Newcomb Campus. Despite frigid temperatures, the beauty of the setting was undeniable. The fireplaces must be seen in person to be believed, we did our best with the cameras until the doors officially open for reservations.

Welcome to Masten:

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Toasting 2014

At a production meeting in late November, a question was posed:
“Are you interested in throwing a holiday party?” The response from the staff was a resounding yes.
Paula quickly shot back, “Great, it’s on you. Here’s your budget, have fun.”

We’d be lying if we didn’t fess up to having had a passing moment of, “Is everything on track? Are they handling all the details?” The day of the party rolled around, every light fixture was bedecked with holiday trimmings, a beautiful tree took center stage, and Will tricked out the larger than life chalkboard with some Willustrative, hand-rendered type.

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Russell Porreca, proprietor of Raúl’s, arrived with the food, Matt and Cara unloaded the wine and spirits from Adirondack Wine Merchants, John worked with the Wonder Beards to get the band’s equipment set up, and we were ready.

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Will and Matt were armed with cameras to document the evening, but we also made sure they didn’t get parched.

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The pool table we purchased from Todd Shimkus, was quickly claimed by Matt Fuller, from Fountain Square Outfitters.

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The photo booth area that Cara and Kate set up was very popular. First a pack of Colemans mugged for the camera.

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Followed quickly by the Greenslades and Rounds under the watchful eye of our taxidermy squirrel. If you want to meet the little guy, you’ll have to stop by the shop, he’s camera shy.

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Throughout the evening friends like John and Janet Cordes, part of the power team behind the Glens Falls Brewfest, colleagues, Sara Mannix, and downtown neighbor Gordon Woolworth, from The Chronicle.

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