This was always meant to be our first project. No really. This was going to be the thing that launched us, our proverbial “Hello World!”. Our intentions were good - they were great in fact. We’d laugh each day as we thought about the impending launch, excited to shift the giggles we had with friends when we told them the idea to worldwide Internet LOLS.
Of course, plans are a funny thing.
Turns out, it’s actually quite hard to print on toilet paper. You can’t just roll it into your HP and let it go, it simply doesn’t work. And so you have to go and deal with an actual toilet paper printer - and where on Earth might one find such a thing?
Where on Earth indeed - believe us, we looked. China, Hong Kong, India. Yes sir. No sir. Three bags full sir. Everyone we spoke to was eager to fulfil our request, so long as we had a 2,000 minimum run order. We scratched our heads. Who among the Internet’s seemingly inexhaustible supply of miscreants and imbeciles could we select to print 2,000 of their 140-character’s finest onto toilet rolls and hope to sell out?
You can guess the names that were at the top of the pile, but thankfully another option presented itself. Turns out, there was one man who could help, and he wasn’t running a sweatshop in the third world, he was running his dad’s printing business in Illinois. Saviour!
The rest is now of course history. We had joked with friends about wanting to “win the Internet” which, for a day or so, we did. The aim was never to make money - and believe us, there is no money in short-run, custom-printed toilet paper - it was to have a laugh on as big a scale as we possibly could. And laugh we did - that is until we saw the pile of paperwork we would need to fill out for US customs if our international orders were ever going to make it out of the country.
The joke was on us it would seem, but we were glad to laugh along. Now that the laughter has died down of course, we’re on to the next one.
For our first project, we had something a little more ambitious in mind. Trouble with ambition of course is it generally drives you to places outside your comfort zone. You learn a lot, but, in the words of Donnie Rumsfeld, “there are unknown unknowns.”
David had been kicking around this idea of doing a digital shrine to the word “Mate”, at least as it pertained to Australian vernacular. He sat on this for a good couple of months while project #1 crept slowly along. Finally one day, and without telling any of us, he approached a good friend about featuring in the videos, pitched him the idea, and The Meaning Of Mate was born.
The catch was, of course, timing. Australia Day happens each year on January 26th, and that would be the perfect opportunity to launch the site. The day he first pitched the idea? January 13th.
And so began a dash to find a director, a designer and a developer to pull it all together. Collector’s Edition’s advantage is pulling together the right team for the right project under a tight schedule; little did we know we would be testing a core competency to the limit with our very first endeavour.
The end result, while a little rough around the edges, was a resounding success. Designed, developed, shot and edited over a long weekend, the videos themselves notching up over 200,000 views in less than week a number which continues to climb daily. Several people asked what brand or client it was for, but that belies the Collector’s Edition ethos. We made it because it made us smile, we hope it made you smile too. Special thanks to our friends at Projucer, without whom it would not have been possible.
Until next time…
- Collector’s Edition.