CINCUENTA Y CUATRO: Miracle mile.

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“!@#$%&”

Holy macaroni. Am I done? Is this the real life? Or is this just fantasy?

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My awesome room. Sharkie says hi.

54 BLOG POSTS?! Heck before this project, I couldn’t even finish a page writing of my diary. Holy macaroni. Did I really just walk a miracle mile? My miracle mile?

For my very last post, the idea is to take the word “convergence” literally. The process or state of converging.

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My usual corner, library third floor.

You might start to wonder by now, “what the heck is he doing in these pictures.”

Well, I am sharing my process of converging through this blog. The process of coming together. I am taking a picture of myself in every places where I’ve worked on this project. It’s showcasing my progress from post #1.

I still remember the day I got my first email ever from Scott about Curiousness. My initial reaction was “WTF?! What have I gotten myself into?!”

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But here I am 5 months later, writing my last entry for this project.

It’s been quite the journey. In a way, this entire project is like a Volkswagen. Meaning, through this project, I’ve pushed myself further than the usual. I’ve explored and learned many aspects of advertising, of creativity, of myself, of life. This project has challenged me to think outside of the box (or you might say, innovatively), given me the most absolute pleasure (and disgust), prepared me to think critically artistic and be curious – something that I can use my entire life.

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Whitney and I’s usual spot. We usually stay until 3 or 4 in the morning.

Last but not least, I want to say thank you to my mom, Abbi Andriani, who’s always pushed myself to my non-existent limit. My new creative buddy, Whitney Downing, who’s given me access to Mac Lab (LOL) and motivated me throughout this project. My awesome professors, Scott Sherman and Gary Garbett and their (non)directive even though I hate it with a burning passion.

Shout out to my other creative friend, Corey Vaughn, my VCU buddy, Nami Khurelchuluun, my best friend, Drew Whitregan, and my roommates, Greg Golter, Chuck Myrick, and Wuddy Zhao.

Thank you guys!

Cold War Kids – Miracle Mile

FIFTY THREE: The calm.

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I’ve been toying with this idea for a while because I realized I have made a lot of visual imagery, so this is my exploration and the challenge to totally push my idea.
To be completely honest with you, I am extremely musically challenged. I cannot read musical notes, I do not have “the ear”/super tone deaf, and I don’t have any musical knowledge whatsoever, so this post was quite a challenge.

This post is another collaboration and this time, I talked to my best friend and discussed how can we materialize this idea. We browsed for ideas and listened to different musical style, from mellow indie like Jonsí to musical theatre like Cole Porter. I decided that the song would be somewhat chill and calming.

So after several days (for real!), we came up with this!

The connection to the brand is the everyday pleasure. Just like music, the brand offers something pleasurable. Something that everyone will definitely enjoy. I purposefully picked this type of tune because Volkswagen, under the everyday motoring pleasure umbrella, could be described as something chill and calming. I also decided to split the track into four “acts”.

One represents the innovative design or the buildup of the tension.

Two represents the enduring value. Something that you have that’s been around since forever and you just appreciate it even more.

Three represents the everyday motoring pleasure aspect. Imagine you were driving home about midnight. You turned onto the freeway. It was raining and it was a bit chilly outside. You decided to open your windows a bit so you can feel the fresh air coming in. You turned your radio on and this song came on. How do you think you would feel?

Four represents convergence. The state of converging from one, two, and three all wrapped up into one brand: Volkswagen.

Of Mice & Men – The Calm

FIFTY TWO: The information.

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I was browsing for ideas for a post, when my friend who majors in Graphic Design at George Mason University, asked me if I could help her infographic project. I happily said yes because she’s one of the few people that share the same art style and perspective as mine. She would criticize my work and I would criticize hers. Back and forth, back and forth, since 2012.

She told me that most of infographic she’s seen around isn’t pretty enough to our “standards.” Then, she suggested a post to create an infographic about Volkswagen. Challenge accepted.

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To be honest with you, making this infographic took me almost 5 hours. It was really hard to fit all of the information to a single page. I based the information and the visual style from these two images.

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Definitely not as pretty nor informative as my sources but I tried. I really did. And I’m happy with my result because this is my first infographic attempt! So, yeah!

The connection to the brand (except the abundant information there) is the process and the outcome of infographics. I now truly appreciate Volkswagen’s effort to make every car as functional as possible, without forgetting the visual aspect of it because I now realize how difficult that task might be. Just like how I did the infographic, it is extremely laborious to fit all aspects into one pleasing design. #infographic #is #hella #difficult #yolo

Beck – The Information

FIFTY ONE: Eat that up, it’s good for you.

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As I am typing this, I am still in disbelief that I am three posts away from being done with Project 54. Done from this semester. Done from my first semester ever at VCU. I know it probably is not a big deal, but for me it kinda is.

Looking back to my first post, I wrote something about menu and restaurant. So this is my promise to me 13 weeks ago: exploring the possibility of Volkswagen as a restaurant and what would the menu look like. This one’s a bit tricky because I could list the ‘ingredients’ of the car, or a brief descriptions of each car, or both. I ended up doing the brief descriptions one.

Menu

I created this ‘menu’ of the restaurant, Volkswagen. Their dishes consist of the types of their current cars. I didn’t put in the price because I feel like they would be the type of restaurant who knows their value so they won’t bother to include the price information.

This is how I imagined the brief interaction between the guest and the server.

“Good evening Frau und Herr. My name is Gustav and I will be your server for tonight. Tonight’s Germany dinner specials would be the premium SUV, Touareg. Lavished with stylish details, thoughtful design, and smart technologies, the Touareg is the best of everything we’ve perfected.”

“Thank you, Gustav. My wife and I will need a moment to see the menu.”

“Absolutely sir. May I interest you in our German Chardonnay, Jermann Dreams?”

“That would be fantastic. Thank you Gustav.”

Two Door Cinema Club – Eat That Up, It’s Good For You

50: Midnight city.

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In class today, we were discussing about people’s story of pleasing experience while driving or as a passenger. Matt Allen came up to me and asked about my story. I told him the story of my 21st birthday (also the day I first experienced the everyday motoring pleasure value of a Volkswagen <— not a lie) I totally forgot about that night and I’m gonna share it with you now.

The day was September 18th, 2013. According to my birth certificate (and multiple texts from my mom), I was born exactly 21 years ago. It was a chilly Wednesday, but not cold enough that you had to wear a winter coat.

For some odd reason, I was feeling just okay that day. Not super ecstatic nor disappointed, just okay.

I went to my 9:30 AM class, it was a Mass Media Communications class. Nothing major happened but we had a great discussion of the rise of television and that was interesting. Then at 10:45 AM, I had ten minutes to run to my next class, which was Introduction to Marketing. My desk neighbor/my friend/my co-worker knew it was my birthday and she told the professor about it and the professor made the whole class sang Happy Birthday. It was nice but again, my mood that day was only okay so… It was okay.

After class, I came to work and worked from 1 to 8. People wished me happy birthday, but nothing else happened. Or at least that’s what I thought.

The clock was 8:01 PM. Right after I punched out from work and locked the store, somebody grabbed me and put a paper bag over my face. I panicked hella bad. I heard an indistinct conversation. I heard a loud bang. I heard some weird laughter. I heard all kinds of noises.

With my face still covered with what I assumed a Chipotle paper bag, I was being forced into a car. Then I heard one of my friend’s voice so I know it was just a prank – a really distasteful prank I might add. I sat there silently for only God knows how long because it felt like forever. Then the car stopped and they told me to get out of the car and escorted me like a criminal.

They finally removed the bag and the sudden exposure to light blinded me for a bit. When my eyes finally adjusted to the environment, I saw my friends and co-workers and family and everyone there! It was a surprise party for me! In Virginia Beach! Needless to say, I was really surprised.

The clock was 10:21 PM and people were still buying me drinks. I had all kinds of drinks – Four Horsemen, Buttery Nipple, Irish Car Bomb, Blowjob, Liquid Cocaine, Liquid Marijuana, and many, many more that I stopped caring asking the name of the drinks.

Ultimately, I was too drunk to drive so my friend made an arrangement with the restaurant manager and promised him that someone would pick up my car the morning after. My best friend, Anthony, then drove me home. I was perfectly fine and could remember the whole thing, but it seemed like I was experiencing the night not from my own body – I wasn’t floating but just barely out of myself.

The clock was 12:08 AM, just a little past midnight. Anthony asked if I had a good birthday and I definitely did but couldn’t say anything but “mmhmm.” I nodded as a sign I was listening and I was okay. He then turned the seat warmer on and I felt this warm sensation entering my body.

It seemed like the radio station wanted to wish me a happy birthday as well because when Anthony turned the radio on, I could hear the intro to Midnight City by M83. MY JAM. My absolute jam. Forever my jam.

I remember this “scene” (felt like a scene because I saw it not from my body) where we were driving through the city. I could see the city lights and M83 playing in the background. Mind you, I was still out of myself so the whole experience was very interesting – interestingly good. It was such an indescribable feeling. It’s like that moment when everything just falls into place.

It was perfect.

Also, did I tell you Anthony’s car was a silver Volkswagen Golf GTi?

M83 – Midnight City

FORTY NINE: Pure imagination.

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When Scott asked the class what brand next Curiousness class should do, George, Corey and I started discussing what will be a good one. Somebody from the back of the class said ‘Twinkies’ and for the longest time we were trying to figure out the parent company of Twinkies. George asked if it was Post and Corey said no. I asked if it was Mrs. Freshley’s and George said no. We had no idea. So as a joke, we started saying random brands, like Nike or Samsung.

George ended up Googling it and it turned out to be Hostess (D’UH).

Anyway, I got the idea for this post: what if Volkswagen were made by a different company? Say…. Apple?

  • The car would probably be called iCar
  • It would have the sleekest design
  • Siri compatible
  • You would have to slide the door to unlock the car
  • Comes only in black/gray, silver, and gold
  • You could access your whole iTunes library
  • The starting price would be $199.000 but if you sign a contract for 5 years, you can upgrade your car for a cheaper price.
  • It would be steerless, but instead it would be touch screen
  • Your insurance for the iCar would be through AppleCare
  • You can bundle your AppleCare altogether with your iPhone, iPad, Macbook.
  • Just like all of Apple devices, it would be virus free. Meaning, it will be impossible to break into.
  • iCar will not have any windows (ha ha)
  • 100% electric and you can use any of your Apple devices charger

This is all pure imagination, but I imagine it’s what the future will look like. iCar will still have Volkswagen’s three aspects (innovative design, enduring value, and everyday motoring pleasure) because I think in a way, Apple value similar aspects.

AND look what I found! Just exactly what I had in mind.

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Fiona Apple – Pure Imagination

FORTY EIGHT: Dear Wes Anderson, you should like this song.

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Do me a favor please – before you go on, play this song so you can really feel the Anderson vibe. Trust me.


In case you didn’t know already, I am a big fan of Wes Anderson. You could probably see my crappy Wes Anderson-esque video diary from the previous post.

I made this intertitle of Anderson’s movies to get the feel of his quirky style.

Wes Anderson Intertitle

I can’t help but wonder, what would Wes Anderson do if he were the art director for Volkswagen? Volkswagen’s advertisement might look a bit like this.

WAGolf WAPassat WATiguan

I made this based on Anderson’s obsession of symmetrical objects and highly saturated and limited color palette.

The connection to the brand is Wes Anderson as a person. He is a person of innovation and tends to challenge conservative methods but also still makes it visually pleasing. His films probably appeal only to a very specific audience, but it doesn’t mean it’s poor.

Like Volkswagen, people initially rejected them because they challenged the trend at the time (with Beetle), but Volkswagen now is the top-selling and original marque of the Volkswagen Group, the biggest German automaker.

Uno Lady – Dear Wes Anderson, You Should Like This Song.