THE LATEST FROM THE NORTH

TD BANK

Online Commercial & Social Content

NORTHERN x DIAMOND x NIMBLE + TD BANK

Halifax Pride is a week-long celebration the whole city is swept up in every summer. But, as with so many other events, the COVID-19 pandemic presented daunting challenges in 2020—even threatening to cancel Pride Week. Being out—in both senses—is central to Halifax Pride’s popularity. However being literally out in the street couldn’t happen this year. But with support from sponsors like TD and encouragement from stakeholders throughout the community, the organizers made the bold decision to take Halifax Pride online this year, and celebrate virtually.

Two key players in the local LGBT+ community and on the organizing committee who pulled out all the stops to bring Halifax Pride 2020 to life were Jake Rafuse and Steve MacLeod—better known by their drag queen handles, “Dyna Might” and “Deva Station.”

Sponsors couldn’t count on the same kind of exposure they would typically have either, but TD Community Banking Manager, Tina Murphy, not only ensured the bank hung in as a sponsor, she found a way to celebrate Halifax Pride Week and TD’s involvement online too, leveraging an ongoing campaign, #TDThanksYou, then in production throughout North America.

That’s where we got involved, being asked to partner in creating this Halifax-focused video for the campaign with Diamond, TD’s agency, and the production house, Nimble Content—both based in Toronto. We acted as their producer on the ground in Halifax, and directed this piece too, working both virtually and on location while observing social distancing protocols.

Like 2020’s Halifax Pride itself, the work was extremely well appreciated by any measure. Within two weeks, it garnered over a million YouTube views.

We had fun and got to flex some of our own creative muscle telling Jake and Steve’s inspiring story, and helping TD present them with an equally inspiring surprise reward for their valiant efforts.

ALEXANDER KEITH'S

Online Commercial & Social Content

NORTHERN x DOSE + ALEXANDER KEITH'S

A little over 200 years ago, a young Scot named Alexander Keith immigrated to Nova Scotia, where he learned to brew beer. Then, exactly 200 years ago, he opened his own brewery.

Two centuries on, Alexander Keith’s Brewery is still going strong. In honor of its history, the brewery hired Halifax design firm, Do2e Media, to develop a bicentennial marketing campaign. The mandate was to celebrate the entrepreneurial sprit of young Nova Scotians—as embodied by Alexander Keith himself. Do2e themed the campaign accordingly, including package design for special commemorative products. And they partnered with us to create a commercial that would serve as the campaign’s focal point.

The spot would focus on eight individuals whose determination, like Keith’s, is as rugged as Nova Scotia’s coastline. They range across a broad spectrum of disciplines, from hip hop artist to lobster fisherman. Our script matched their stories to Alexander Keith’s own, culminating in the Tag line: “This century is yours.”

We were all ready to shoot when the coronavirus pandemic forced us back to the drawing board—literally. Animation would overcome limitations to what we could photograph, and add another dimension. Our subjects couldn’t travel, so we did, hitting Nova Scotia’s highways in a mobile studio built into a 16-foot cube truck. We observed social-distancing rules, wore face masks, and came back with the goods. Working remotely while collaborating closely with Do2e and their outstanding clients at Alexander Keith’s Brewery, we completed the project right on schedule. Proof a creative approach can turn an extraordinary challenge into an outstanding opportunity.

To celebrate, we raised a few glasses of Keith’s Century Brew. We recommend it. Here’s to the next century!

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