Banking on Community

Glens Falls National Bank and Trust Company is a local anchor. The sign shown in this photo is visible from our window, one side features the time, the other the temperature. We often call out, “What’s the temp?” before heading out for lunch, the Glens Falls National Bank sign helps us know to bundle up accordingly.

An image of Glens Falls National Bank's flagship location in downtown Glens Falls beneath a bright, blue sky. In the foreground a digital clock tells the time.

Glens Falls National Bank has been the place for people to go for mortgages, home equity, and car loans since before any of us, or our parents were born. Banking has changed a lot, continues to change, keeping pace is a dance.

The majority of 2018 was spent delivering a message of commitment. As a society, we have become accustomed to immediate gratification. There’s no denying the joys of convenience, but playing the long game, we believe that driving home the idea of faces you can see, people you can literally turn to, and investments in the communities people live in can be a value-added benefit to local banking.

People often talk about campaigns as love letters to an audience, in this case, it’s actually true. From spreads in print collateral:

An image of Glens Falls National Bank's brick building on Glen Street in Downtown Glens Falls alongside a page reading, "Caring for our community since 1851."

to billboards in communities across the region, Glens Falls National Bank reached out to its neighbors to let them know that in addition to helping members achieve financial goals, they are putting money back into the community.

A stark billboard against a blue sky, reading a in cursive font, "Hello, Glens Falls. We're investing oin you."

Traditional messages about products they offer also flashed across screens and traveled in envelopes, sending a message that Glens Falls National Bank cares about supporting your quality of life, at home and at the office.

A man and a woman stand in a kitchen, he wears an apron while she romantically places a bite of something in his mouth. To the right of the image it reads, "Someday is now" as a lead in to an ad for home equity loans. A digital banner ad reading in white type against a deep red background, "Small Business Banking, we work for you. Glens Falls National Bank and Trust Company."

As we look over at that sign and think about how many people have checked the time or the temp over the years, we can’t help but feel proud to be part of a locally committed bank.

Producing ‘Create You’ Took Precision

The SUNY Purchase ‘Create You’ campaign was intended to speak to prospective students about how Purchase could help them take steps towards becoming who it is they want to be. The piece extended beyond academics, highlighting clubs, connections, and community they would be introduced to and become a part of while attending the college. We wanted to show the individualistic nature of the Purchase experience, a heavy lift for an eight-page booklet.

Four brochures for SUNY Purchase are spread out on a table. Each brochure has a student on the cover.

We honed in on demonstrating the way students have more than one side to them, reflecting the mirrored importance of their campus life and the things important to them outside of academia. Integrating overlaid cover images and using an angled die cut revealing the image beneath, we designed an approach that let us do more than a traditional viewbook. Put more simply, we designed extra covers. We intended to produce multiple versions, six total, to cover the wide range of interests, studies, causes, and talents of the student body.

Bright colored brochures open on a table.

To further this exploration into the students’ true personalities and to represent the freedom offered to them at Purchase, we allowed the students to costume themselves, no limits or censoring from the college or ourselves.

A split screen photo shoot with a male college student in two different outfits, the first in traditional masculine clothing, in the second he is in a burxgand lace gown.

Reading between the lines you could say that we created an unpredictable scenario with an incredible reliance on accuracy and continuity. We worked, on-site, with the incredible Kelly Campbell, a photographer closely associated with the college, to stage identical photos in completely different costumes for the die cut covers. The final result was, in my opinion, a great victory in producing unique higher ed content and overcoming the difficult production hoops one has to jump through when running wild with a unique idea.

A young black woman faces the camera wearing a black t-shirt with the BLACK LIVES MATTER written in bold red and white letters.

While working on this project I felt as though I was also undergoing my own version of the ‘Create You’ experience. It was an overwhelming and exhausting series of firsts—

The first time I had to fully execute a concept that was not my own.

An African American woman can be seen in front of cameras and lights through the back of a man and woman.

Rob works to set up the shot of a SUNY Purchase student, which will then be recreated with the student in an entirely different outfit and vibe.

The first time I had to consistently travel for work.

The first time collaborating with a freelance photographer.

The first time allowing models to outfit themselves (I’m still sweating).

The first time helping oversee the production of such a complex print piece.

All firsts, of which I hope there will be seconds and thirds and so on, and all things that will help to make me the designer/art director I want to become.

Cobleskill Through the Tramp Lens

 

An active video shoot on the SUNY Cobleskill campus. The sky is wide and blue overhead, two photographers stand on the bright green grass while another crew members holds a boom mic toward a blonde female student being interviewed.

Terese Garcia:

The Cobleskill series of collateral that we worked on was visually stunning because of its color, image selection, use of texture, a visual play on words, and overall unique physical features.

The first project of the Cobleskill series was the “Travel Piece.” This was a small piece that would cover both the school of Agriculture and the School of Business and Liberal Arts & Sciences and be handed out to potential students as Cobleskill traveled to high schools. This is often the first interaction a student will have with a new college.

Photography, Typography, and Diecuts Telling a Rich Story

The travel piece was a 12-page brochure with a short fold cover and short fold center spread. The overarching theme on the cover was to have two images juxtaposition in content visually continue across the short fold. Image selection would be necessary to make that strong visual connection while at the same time be true to Cobleskill and show all that they have to offer memorably.

Two brochures for SUNY Cobleskill sit on a dark wood table. They have photographic images of a clock tower and a cow pasture.

There was also a type element that followed the same concept. Headline words that ran across the short-fold cover would finish similarly with purposeful letters from the reveal page. The message was strong.

BE A PART OF OUR CULTURE / BE A PART OF THE FUTURE.

A SUNY Cobleskill brochure sits on a table with a page break showing how the word culture on the front, switches to future when the brochure is opened.

This concept and design that incorporated image-precise short folds with sentence-finishing type reveals would play out on two other view books and the Junior piece. Production of these pieces and attention to detail would be necessary. Having an excellent printer would be critical.

The Cobleskill collateral also tested our color matching chops. Cobleskill’s orange is very bright—Pantone Orange 021 to be exact. As often happens, that Pantone color did not translate well to the four color process. It became very muted and soft. We chose two CMYK color breakdowns that we thought worked well. One to represent that Cobleskill orange and another to compliment the clapboard texture that was being used throughout.

A photo of stacks of print poofs of unfolded brochures with images of a clock on the Cobleskill campus and a post it with Pantone chips and a color formula for accurate printing of specific colors.

This was a project we had the good fortune of shepherding on press. We were also able to have more than one piece printed at together: the travel piece, two view books, the Junior piece and two postcards to be exact. The benefit of that was that once we had the color adjusted and all of the pressmen on board, there would be color consistency across the pieces. This little tear from a color proof and chicken scratch on a post-it note served to be very important throughout the proofing and press-check process as well as for future pieces (that die-cut cow!)

Nine pieces of print collateral for SUNY Cobleskill displayed on a table. Two very pronounced pieces include a diet cow and a die cute of a building on campus with a cupola.

In the end, we were able to provide Cobleskill with a series of pieces that were bright, inviting and memorable. Important when trying to catch the eye of a prospective student or reassure a future student that Cobleskill is the college for them.

A photographer crouches and laughs as he pets the head of a flirtatious goat.

Bringing Collateral to Life Through Illustration

Oliver Derosier:

Cobleskill is an institution that stands apart from the pack. Students explore complex ecosystems in one classroom and re-assemble tractor engines in another. Cows are tended to in a dairy barn with the colorful Schoharie hills in view. A few hundred feet away, a kitchen full of eager young cooks preparing a chocolate fondue.

I was lucky enough to experience this vibrant campus culture first-hand on a photoshoot. Every classroom felt like a world of its own and yet there was an undeniable connection between each space. Subjects varied from a horse therapy class to students mapping out farmland with drones. A collective enthusiasm for the present and future was observed in every corner of campus, and we raced to capture all of it. We had the opportunity to witness the unique experience Cobleskill has to offer. For those intangible moments and feelings that Photography couldn’t quite capture, we turned to illustration.

When the time came to consider how students would receive their highly anticipated college acceptance letters, we knew It had to be big, bold and undeniably Cobleskill. Through extensive research and teamwork with the admissions department, we landed on the concept of a larger-than-life campus panorama. Instead of a realistic view, structures and scenes were arranged to create a sense of the passing of time, from the start of a day to its end. Little details like the school’s tiger mascot and the famous campus clock tower especially resonated with Cobleskill’s team. Vibrant colors and art-style helped to paint a picture that we felt could instantly feel like home to anyone.

Through photography, we were able to capture so many moments grand and small that were all crucial to the bigger picture. Illustration allowed us to depict scenes that blurred the lines between memory and imagination. Having both tools available to us and the skills to execute a shared vision lead to a suite of materials that we were all beyond thrilled with. In a poster for counselors and students, the glow of a campfire beneath the pavilion and a bright starry sky portrayed the splendor of Cobleskill’s scenery, and the limitless potential to grow and succeed there. In a piece for prospective students, the image of a class conducted in a freshly cut corn field was juxtaposed against a 3-D printer in action. Bucolic images accompanying those of tomorrow’s technology and jobs re-inforced Cobleskill’s tagline.

To capture both the spirit and characteristics of such a place requires more than a camera and more than a pen and paper. Our relationship with Cobleskill is one that flourishes with teamwork and a shared passion for thinking differently. Courage to hold firmly to values and culture, and vision to look progressively to the future.

 

Superheroes of Design

When I learned that Marvel Studios patriarch Stan Lee passed away recently, it struck a chord with me. I collected Marvel comic books and trading cards growing up; it’s largely what sparked my interest in drawing and graphic design. I filled countless notebooks with sketches of Spider Man and Wolverine, and monopolized the TV watching X-Men cartoons on Saturday mornings. My comic books gathered dust as I got older but my love of drawing only grew, eventually leading me to a career in graphic design.

You may be wondering how Stan Lee and comic books tie into December’s theme of focus?

Comic books are a great example of the four-color printing process in its purest form; but it’s only through close inspection with a magnifying glass (called a loop in our field) that you’ll notice the color separation into halftone or Ben-Day dots. This printing method, that is so often associated with comic books, was first devised in the 1930s as a cost-effective way to create shading and secondary colors in mass-produced comics and newspapers.

In the 1960s, artist Roy Lichtenstein built his fame mimicking comic books of the time, meticulously hand-painting halftone dots at enormous scale. Still today, artists and designers alike lean on the halftone technique, whether to keep costs down when screen printing apparel and merchandise, or to give their artwork a nostalgic look.

I’m not the only one at Trampoline that has a penchant for pulp fiction. Sean has boxes full of comic books from his days as a collector, and looks for any excuse to incorporate comic book stylings into his work. Rob also jumps at the chance to use halftone dots to give a poster a touch of pulp fiction. It’s our way of harkening back to the heyday of pulp fiction, and the superheroes of design.

Sean’s pulp fiction parody can be seen here in an ad for Meyer & Fuller PLLC.

 

Rob’s rockin’ retro poster for Druthers Brewing Co. used halftone dots as a pattern to give it a pulp fiction effect.

 

Call us biased, but we think Megan Coloccia’s Batman and Robin are the cutest superheroes of all time.

Two Tourism Excellence Awards & a Davey!

The New York State Tourism Industry Association has awarded Trampoline in two destination marketing categories.

GoNorth: The sights, shops, and stories of Northern New York won in the Public Relations category, and the Hunter Mountain: It Gets in Your Head campaign win in the Niche Marketing category.

The Go North campaign was the result of regional collaboration across communities and counties in the upstate region. The W!LD Center’s leadership (and grant-writing prowess) allowed for the inclusion of many cities and towns to benefit from tour visits. Businesses, Museums, and Destinations from Saratoga to Tupper Lake agreed to participate and extended special offers to tourists.

Hunter Mountain’s season campaign ran in the New York City Metro market as an effort to entice skiers away from Vermont resorts and into the Catskills. Hunter is the closest mountain to New York, and this campaign reminded skiers in the city just how nearby adventure is. Ticket sales improved 15% as print and digital ads made their way into the marketplace, supported by TV spots, social graphics, and print collateral.

The Hunter: It Gets in Your Head campaign was also awarded Best in Show at the American Advertising Federation’s ADDY Awards.

NYSTIA is organized for the purposes of bringing together New York State tourism industry interests to raise consumer awareness and appreciation of travel and vacation opportunities in New York State.

Trampoline’s Award-winning work shared the stage with other incredible campaigns for destinations throughout New York, including Binghamton’s BING concept, the Niagara Falls USA rebrand, and the Unexpected Buffalo, among others. Each winner was beautifully designed by organizations and creative agencies working to say how much We  New York.
The family of Mean Max craft beer cans and the silver Davey Award their label design won
A few days after the NYSTIA event we got the word that the Mean Max Brew Works crowler suite received a Silver Davey Award. Our partnership with Mean Max has been a labor of love and hops. Designing these, as well as yet-to-be-released barrel aged series in glass bottles, allows us to continue supporting this region. We’re also able to offer guests at the studio exceptionally fresh beer.
Cheers!

Planting Roots

Of all the rebrands I’ve been involved with at Trampoline, Capital Roots holds a special place on the list.

The partnership between Trampoline and Capital Roots began in 2014, when Executive Director Amy Klein reached out to rebrand an organization then known as Capital District Community Gardens. They had outgrown the name, which dated back to its formation in 1975 as a small collection of community gardens.

I was new to the Trampoline team. With just a couple of months under my belt, I was still timid when it came to speaking my mind in a room full of more seasoned designers. Nonetheless, the prospect of renaming such a great organization was something I was eager to be involved in.

We began with a process we call “namestorming,” where we gather around a whiteboard, throw out names and see what sticks. All the while we vet names to be sure there’s no competing trademarks.

The session produced a list of 50 names. We narrowed it down to seven that we sent to the client. None of them quite hit the mark, so went back to the drawing board. Then, a breakthrough: “What about Capital Roots?”

Eyes lit up. Someone ran to a computer and did a Google search. The name was free and clear of trademarks and patents. We pitched it to Amy and she and her team were as excited as we were. We got the green light to begin logo design.

As with renaming, logo development involves a lot of trial and error. Our first concepts were safe and conservative: words inside a badge or geometric shape; clean and legible. I felt that if ever a logo lent itself to an organic, unrefined shape, Capital Roots was it. I started sketching out logos where the “O’s” in “roots” were made of fruits and vegetables: apples, tomatoes, etc. After some lighthearted debate, we ultimately landed on beets. After all, beets are a root vegetable, reaching out as if searching for fertile ground to take hold and grow. The client liked it, too, and—after some fine tuning—it was adopted as their new mark.

Then it was on to creating system of word marks and taglines for the family of 11 programs and services they offer, like the Veggie Mobile food truck, The Produce Project, and the centerpiece of their transformation: the Urban Grow Center, a 12,000 square-foot headquarters and food hub in Troy, NY.

 

Since the initial rebrand, we’ve worked with Capital Roots on various other projects, including a 40th anniversary mark and, most recently, a case statement piece for Phase II of the Urban Grow Center project.

 

Maybe it’s because it was one of the first rebrands I worked on, but it remains one of the most memorable. I love seeing how logo has been embraced and implemented by Capital Roots: as vehicle wraps, apparel, tote bags, and even a mosaic mural designed by a local artist and collaboratively installed by the community.

 

I look forward to seeing what the future holds for this special partnership.

Stock in Photos

Consumers are surrounded by photography in their public, personal and social lives. With more visuals cluttering up the landscape, it’s more important than ever to invest in the best imagery possible.

Photo capture is at the top of the features list for new product offerings from Samsung, Google and Apple. Faster sensors, enhanced ISO and smart HDR combine with bokeh and depth control to produce better pictures—and there are reasons for that.

Visual content is more than 40 times more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content.*

When people hear information, they’re likely to remember only 10% of that information three days later. However, if a relevant image is paired with that same information, people retained 65% of the information three days later.*

Posts that include images produce 650% higher engagement than text-only posts.†

Tweets with images receive 18% more clicks than tweets without images.On LinkedIn, 98% of posts with images receive more comments than those without.‡

A common element in many of our most successful campaigns is the Trampoline strategy to show, not tell. The simplicity of a well composed image can communicate a concept easily. Here are 12 examples of how our staff leverages photography to turn heads.

1. Excitement

It’s FOMO, plain and simple. Show a consumer what they’re missing, and you’ll have them eager for an experience.

Photo of telemark skier Jack Fagone at Wildcat Mountain by Rob Hendricks.

2. Occasion

Captured moments are rightly seen as significant. Events are special when they’re worthy of a photo.

Photo of John & Alexis Coleman at High Falls Gorge by Staci Oswald.

3. Personality

Our expressions, emotions and humanity are on full display in a portrait.

Photo of Donnelly Construction worker on Rt. 66 in Chatham, NY by Allison Valiquette.

4. Quality

Professionally shot products imply that the seller values presentation. It speaks to pride, craftsmanship and quality.

Photo of burger lunch special at the Riverview Café by Staci Oswald.

5. Perspective

Offering a look at things from a different vantage can help an audience find ownership in big-picture concepts.

Aerial photo of downtown Glens Falls by Derek Slayton.

6. Emotion

Tension, elation, suspense, concern, sorrow or laughter—all of these can be easily interpreted in a single snap.

Photo of John Coleman on Arbutus Lake by Meg Erickson.

7. Inclusion

Candid shots work to make viewers feel like they’re part of the activities.

Group photo of hikers at Thompson Falls in Pinkham Notch, NH by Sean Magee.

8. Placemaking

Landmarks help travelers to orient themselves. Seeing a photo of a destination, and then experiencing that place, creates a repeat impression that reassures and provides familiarity.

Photo of the Hudson River at Glens Falls by Amanda Magee.

9. Opportunity

Behind-the-scenes photos or before-and-after shots show what is possible, and empower viewers to go out and experience their world.

Photo of Sawmill Terrain Park workers by Derek Slayton.

10. Delight

If it’s advertising, products in use by satisfied customers is a safe strategy.

Photo of outdoor adventure at West Mountain by Sean Magee.

11. Action

The act of doing, whether it’s a low-tech chore, or more state-of-the-art interaction, always makes for compelling content.

Photo of Woodsman’s Team at Cobleskill by Allison Valiquette.

Photo of Thoracic Surgeon at Glens Falls Hospital by Allison Valiquette.

12. Priority

Put the focus on what’s important.

Photo of Purchase College student: Shelley art directed by John Coleman and Rob Hendricks.

* Source: HubSpot
† Source: Medium.com
‡ Source: Wordstream.com

Turning a Location into a Destination

As a full-service marketing agency, we have our hands in a lot of pies. Marketing as a whole may sound straightforward, but the marketing needs of, say, a small business are worlds away from that of a university, and marketing for a destination is another matter altogether. Even within the specific niche of destination marketing, no two locations are alike, and each place has unique strengths and pain-points that we take into account when developing a strategy.

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National Write Your Story Day: The Story of Trampoline

Today is National Write Your Story Day. As a partner at an agency that specializes in storytelling, through visual elements and words, I can’t help but approach this day with delight. We’re celebrating our 15th year in business and I want to take the opportunity to look back on all that has changed around us, personally and professionally.

It was late fall 2003 when we incorporated. We shook hands as newlyweds and new parents at a campground in Dorset, Vermont, pledging to create a company that put family first and would have an unerring focus on design and communication that hit the mark. The early months were lean, with late nights and light paychecks (if any). Two of us held full time jobs to keep us all covered by health insurance, the books were done after bedtime, headlines written before sunrise.

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Surviving Instagram in 2018

Instagram has over 800+ million engaged monthly users. The photo-sharing platform is on track to hit a billion users this year, and currently boasts an estimated $100 billion market value. And while it falls behind its parent company, Facebook, in size and value, it outpaces Facebook’s engagement rates by over 15%.

While using Instagram may seem as simple as posting an image and calling it a day, the Instagram algorithm plays an important role in determining what each person sees when they open their phone. These parameters are an ever-changing puzzle, but if you understand how to leverage the rules you can take your Instagram—and your business—to the next level.

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