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Behind the Scenes with Creative Team Vera Keiter BIC ’15 & Delilah Kim

By BIC CCNY Posted on 02/11/2021 17:00

The Aviation Gin commercial proves why these two are a match made in creative heaven! When asked about their unique dynamic, Delilah spoke about how “when we started working together, we realized that our priorities for the creative process were very similar...This is the thing that keeps teams together.”

On January 12th, 2021, one of our favorite creative teams, Vera Keiter BIC ’15 and Delilah Kim, hit the BIC grid for "How Creativity WORKS," our new speaker series which explores how to transform your passion into a profession and creativity into a career through the lens of successful BIC alums.  A copywriter/art director duo since first meeting at BBDO, Vera and Delilah spoke candidly about their award-winning projects, how creativity fuels their professional (and personal) life, and the secret to having an effective creative partnership.  In addition to working together at BBDO, 160over90, and now Facebook,  Vera and Delilah were featured in The Drum's 50 Under 30 in 2018 and have team-taught B3011 Multi-Media Executions in the BIC Program.

So exactly how does creativity work? BIC Program Director Nancy R. Tag demonstrated the importance of creativity by first asking the audience to consider  life without it. Responses included "defeated," "depressing," "rigid," "dull," and "boring." She then introduced Vera and Delilah by playing one of their recent commercials for Aviation Gin Commercial -- a perfect example of how creativity is put to work. Vera and Delilah jumped into the conversation by spilling the tea on how a celebrity brand turned Arlene Mako, an 84-year-old gin drinker, into an unexpected star. What inspired the idea? What was the process of transforming a big idea into a produced commercial? And how cute is Ryan Reynolds? 

It turns out that the process was fairly unconventional -- a lot like the agency where they were working, 160over90, which sits inside leading entertainment and media talent agency William Morris Endeavor. As a talent-forward agency, creatives often receive "open briefs" not for a specific brand, but built around a personality, an occasion, or some other trigger. The creative catalyst for this particular brief was Leap Year. For Vera and Delilah, the brainstorming got interesting when considering what life was like for "leaplings," people born on Leap Day who celebrate their birthday every four years. What were some of the challenges when their "official" age was significantly lower their actual age? One light-bulb: they're not allowed to legally drink alcohol until they're 84! Suddenly, the product category became clear and they searched among 160over90's long roster of alcoholic brands for the perfect sponsor, zeroing in on Ryan Reynolds' Aviation Gin. Not only did Reynolds love the pitch, he made the production happen in a matter of weeks so it could air in time for Arlene's 21st birthday on Leap Day 2020. 

The Aviation Gin commercial proves why these two are a match made in creative heaven! When asked about their unique dynamic, Delilah spoke about how “when we started working together, we realized that our priorities for the creative process were very similar...This is the thing that keeps teams together.” 

After their gig at 160over90, the team made their own leap to Facebook where they are currently Senior Creatives working on brand messaging around Facebook's mother brand. Delilah spoke about how a lot of what they do is around storytelling of people who use the platform. She added that “finding creativity in this job is about finding the right stories.” You can check out their work here.
Nancy wrapped up the conversation by asking Vera how her BIC degree made a creative career work for her. “BIC is the only program that teaches creatives to be more than just creatives," Vera explained. "It helps you understand other people in the agency.” BIC grads accelerate faster. Beyond just developing a portfolio for that first job, they become true professionals who are well-rounded, collaborative, and strategic innovators who see the big picture.  

But the evening didn't end there.... Prospective students interested in the Creative Track stuck around for "LATE NIGHT with Gerardo" where BIC Professor & Creative Track Director Gerardo Blumenkrantz provided tips and tricks for submitting a killer BIC Admissions Portfolio and answered questions from prospective students. 

Overall it was a fantastic evening. A big BIC thank you to Vera and Delilah for sharing their creative wisdom and letting us in on How Creativity WORKS for them. Stay tuned for our next alumni conversation in our newest series.
 

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