Alex Crowe

Archive for December, 2012|Monthly archive page

Final words for 2012

In Announcements on December 20, 2012 at 4:42 pm

christmas decorations

It’s going to be very difficult, but I’m taking a break from blogging until January 7th. I hope you have an excellent mid-Winter break – and look forward to hearing from you in 2013.

Ethical news

In Great work by others on December 19, 2012 at 11:14 am

I posted something borrowed. Then something old. So now it’s time for something new – all the news, in fact, from the Ethical Consumer website. Spend a few minutes exploring it now. You’ll be surprised.

Saving the world, one seed at a time

In Portfolio on December 14, 2012 at 11:01 am

The Millennium Seed Bank Appeal was one of the best briefs I’ve ever been given. Apart from the chance to save the world, seed by seed, I got to write a letter signed by living legend Sir David Attenborough. He approved the text and the quote on the back cover with no changes. Here’s the mailpack we sent out:


Years ago, I remember hearing about some testing by Ogilvy & Mather Direct on the effectiveness of images and headlines on envelopes versus blank. Blank won. If I was to redo this now, I’d argue for a cellophane-free window and recycled paper.


Here’s that letter. Again, I’d push for FSC paper at least.


Leaflet front cover. This is A5 landscape and faced recipients as they pulled it from the envelope.


First reveal.


Second reveal. I remember wrestling with the call to action on this. I asked Joe Fraine what he thought and he suggested the: “…send your money today. Tomorrow could be too late.” He meant it as a joke but I went with it. It’s a good line.


Back cover. Full disclosure: Sir David never said that – that was me.


And an envelope to finish. I wouldn’t go with a full stop in the “Affix stamp here” box. This must have been done when I wasn’t looking.

Final thought

A few years ago I went to Wakehurst Place and saw the Seed Bank for myself. What stopped me in my tracks was the logo I saw on a lab coat draped over the back of a chair – a logo I sketched on a layout pad years before, that was finished by my art director, Keith Douglas, and Head of Studio, Carl Shand. I really hope the scientists like it – they’ve got to look at it all day.

Helping hands

In Great work by others on December 13, 2012 at 12:48 pm

I saw this in Ad Madness when looking for new clients this morning:


It’s arrestingly beautiful work. The line reads “Give a hand to wildlife”. Which probably started out as “Give wildlife a hand”. You’d have to test it.

Back in business

In Announcements, Uncategorized on December 13, 2012 at 12:28 pm

Here’s something I didn’t expect to write a week ago: I am now available for strictly ethical copywriting projects worldwide. If you can deal with a supplier who’s based in a yurt in the middle of the French countryside, please get in touch. I promise the countless advantages of creating from here will be reflected in my work.

You can email in the first instance to alex(at)ecovallee(dot)com.

I don’t carry a smart phone, so don’t worry if it takes a few minutes to respond. I’m probably feeding the chickens.