Director Olivier Venturini Talks About The Fableists’ Film Project

We have an exciting project in the works: Olivier Venturini will be heading up The Fableists’ first film advertising campaign.

Olivier Venturini

Olivier Venturini

Olivier is an established commercial director. He is known for stunning visual work as well as his character development and comedy. He began his career in 1996 in Los Angeles. He then moved his family to London where he has completed work for high profiles clients such as Adidas, Playstation, BBC, Scottish Power, Coca Cola, Cartier, BMW, amongst others.

Olivier is represented by Great Guns.

The Fableists > Welcome to the Fableists’ fold! How did you get involved?
Olivier > Laura Gregory thought of me and I was dreaming for a long time of getting involved on less client-driven projects with more creative opportunities. So I literally jumped on the occasion. The beauty of working with a startup is that everyone is genuinely excited, there is no history or established rules yet and you get to discuss ideas and concepts directly with the key people. No politics, no egos and even if we might have slightly different agendas, we all understand the work needs to be outstanding to be noticed.

Still from Otrivin - 'Castaway 2'

Otrivin – Castaway 2

The Fableists > What is your film making style like?
Olivier > I like film-making that appeals to your intellect as well as your emotions, I am always impressed with the efforts directors make to strip down the story to what really matters, I like unsettling time-jumps, I like realism and I hate anything explanatory. I am totally fascinated by actors capable of conveying emotions without doing much. I dislike loud film-making that calls too much attention. This is what I aspire to and hope I can achieve one day.

The Fableists > What do you think about The Fableists’ mandate for these films?
Olivier > It is brilliant, universal and yet unique. Turning our attention to kids anywhere in the world that have absolutely nothing in common but the fact that they best represent the Fableists’ philosophy is a concept with a great potential and exactly the kind of things I would love to see for a kid’s brand. Regardless to where these kids come from, whether they are poor, rich, going through a tough time or live a happy life, all that matters is that they impress us by how driven, how passionate, how courageous or how talented they are.

Still from Olivier's work

Still from Olivier’s work

The Fableists > How did you get your start as a director?
Olivier > I started as a runner, grew up in production companies and did all sorts of jobs before I got a chance to direct. The first chance I got was to direct a commercial for the Burkina Fasso in Africa. It was supposed to take place in a small remote African village and we ended up shooting people bare-chest in a Fontainebleau sandpit on a grey and cold day of February. A very exciting time of my life indeed.

The Fableists > What type of work are you best known for?
Olivier > I don’t know. [The Fableists: very modest answer!]

Still from MTC - 'Christmas'

MTC – Christmas

The Fableists > Do you have a favorite job that stands out from your whole career to date?
Olivier > Nur Die or William Lawson perhaps.

The Fableists > Tell us a bit about what you have planned for The Fableists’ films?
Olivier > We want to create a series of documentaries directed by Great Guns talents with only a few key elements in common to the platform. The rest is left to the directors’ interpretation. Our guidelines are still in discussion but I suggested that we don’t use voice over or any explanatory device, that we are never judgmental or melodramatic no matter how controversial the subject might be and that we have indeed consistent titles. We also want to keep it fairly short although we haven’t discussed a duration yet. To make it cost efficient, we will try to take advantage of the trips the directors make when on jobs and shoot with lightweight equipment, most probably the 5D. We want to also record sound and use a score. It is all in gestation.

Still from France Telecom - 'Ball'

France Telecom – Ball

The Fableists > How will this appeal to both kids and their parents?
Olivier > If we find the truly fabulous characters we are after, it will hopefully talk to the adults and shall also grab kids’ attention. We certainly don’t want to make this marketing driven and rather reflect what the brand truly is at heart.

The Fableists > Where do you get your inspiration for the work you do?
Olivier > I watch lots of photos and other people’s work. I always listen to lots of different music when I write and that’s mainly where my inspiration comes from: it seems to open my emotional valve. It doesn’t always work though.

Lovable - Zerogram-3

Lovable – Zerogram-3

The Fableists > Do you mostly win work through an advertising agency? Or via the client directly?
Olivier > I am a director, I am open to anything, really.

The Fableists > What do you suppose your kids, or the kids you know, will think of The Fableists?
Olivier > It is hard to say. I have 2 teenagers and a little girl in the Fableists’ age range. They have their own taste and I am curious to see what they will make of all of this.

L'Oreal Elvive - Mexico

L’Oreal Elvive – Mexico

Meet One of our T-Shirt Artists: Gregori Saavedra

Illustrator Gregori Saavedra - Represented by Jelly London

Illustrator Gregori Saavedra – Represented by Jelly London

Barcelona born Gregori Saavedra is represented by Jelly London. We will be posting the artwork he has created for us this week, so stay tuned!

TheFableists – So how did you get your start in illustration?
Gregori – Ten years ago I decided to go on this great adventure because I had spent 10 years as a creative director in advertising, as a copywriter. And then suddenly I had a baby – not me, my wife, of course! I decided to change my mind and I quit from that. I decided to try some other disciplines such as illustration, design, graphic design and that is how it started.

TheFableists – Which ad agency were you last in?

Gregori – The last one was Euro RSCG in Barcelona, before BDB and before that J Walter Thompson which was in Barcelona, Madrid and Munich.

TheFableists – Do you miss it?

Gregori – Not at all -it was crazy! I used to spend so much time talking. Talking but not doing anything. I remember the sensation of not using my hands for anything. That was up to my team, and I hated that, because my team was working on the stuff I would like to put my hand on but there was no time. There was just time to sell stupid things to our clients. People think that’s an exciting world but it is not.

TheFableists – What inspires your day to day work? Does it have a look/feel?

Gregori – I started doing something really weird, and that was to create folders filled with images that might inspire me, and every month my mission was to create something with the stuff I had collected. This method made me convert the stupid things that surround me into something that is relevant. This is key to my work, which is a mix of useless things that you turn into something interesting. Also, it is like a private diary because if I look at every album I have done, I know exactly which month I created it in.

TheFableists – So, do you draw every day?

Gregori – Yeah, but I guess every illustrator [does] because it is the only way to keep the ideas and work together. I have two daughters also, and I have to share my life with them. At the same time they inspire me with a lot of things. When I take them to do an activity I am there so whatever they live is the same as I live. In a child’s world there is so much to take in.

TheFableists – What about these pieces you’ve done for The Fableists? What were the inspirations behind these?

Gregori – First of all, the text that I got from you! (the brief the Fableists sent him) But the main point is that I really agree with your philosophy. This made it quite easy to draw the illustrations because it is exactly the world I would like to live in.

Matt – What do you think about what we are doing? Do you think there should be more of it?

Gregori – I really love it. The point is, more people should live this way because we are being really greedy. We are eating whatever is around, not thinking that there has to be enough for more people. I think it is lovely and great, and lots of people should follow this.

TheFableists – Do you have a dream client? You are directing now, doing a mixture of still and moving graphics. What work do you aspire to? Is there a specific brand?

Gregori – Somebody intelligent at the other side, who will look behind that image and work. My usual stuff is quite complex, full of plenty of images and details, but at the end there is just one idea. The other stuff is just trying to distract you from that. But I am quite stupid and I need to word a lot on what I do, and I need to feel exhausted every time I finish something.

There is a lot of punishing in my work, at least [there was] at the beginning of my illustration career. I used to draw myself tied and tortured. Why would I do this? I guess it is because I feel so happy doing what I like to do, and this [does not seem] fair. There are a lot of people who cannot do what they would like to do.

TheFableists -There are so many different platforms for your work now available in advertising: art, moving art, online, TV…

Gregori – Yeah, but in the end, what I think I learned from advertising is that you have to communicate something. In illustration there is a lot of decoration but not so much communication. That is an obsession for me. I cannot just decorate something.
For example, your project is great and I have a chance to communicate my personality. You are my platform in this case and that’s great because thanks to you I can say what I have in my mind.

TheFableists – We hope to discover artists through our t-shirts. Do you think that can work?

Gregori – I think so because art is an instinct. Your product and philosophy is an instinctive reaction to what is happening and the way it is happening. So, if the artists need a place to communicate this message, you are perfect. In the last one I created, I made your t-shirt as a flag, because it is not just a t-shirt, it is what we use to say we are here, we are like this. You want the people to follow you.

The First Fableists T-Shirts Back from the Printer ~ Designed by Crispin Finn

'Made Strong to Wear Long' by Crispin Finn for

‘Made Strong to Wear Long’ by Crispin Finn for

Here are our first t-shirts, back from the printer in India! These gorgeous little numbers were designed for us by Crispin Finn, a British design duo who produce everything in red, white and blue. We love the striking simplicity of their designs. We’ll be featuring an interview with Crispin Finn soon, so watch out for that.

These tops will be printed as a limited edition run – wearable art – so once our web site is up and running, you’ll have to snap them up quickly!

We’d love to hear what you think of them.

The Fableists

Labels on the T-Shirts

Labels on the T-Shirts

Why Choose Organic Cotton?

Rolls of 100% Organic Cotton Jersey

Rolls of 100% Organic Cotton Jersey

The cotton used in all of our clothes is 100% organic, certified by Global Organic Textile Standard, or GOTS, among others. Organic Cotton is stronger and softer than conventional cotton. It is purer and less likely to trigger a skin reaction (such as eczema). It is grown using methods which impact the environment less. These methods maintain the fertility of the soil and replenish it. Chemicals are used in the growing and processing of organic cotton but GOTS monitors the process in order to make sure that these chemicals are not persistently toxic or synthetic and don’t produce toxic by-products. Over 8,000 chemicals are used to process conventional cotton, versus less than 200 to process organic cotton. GM cotton is not allowed to be certified as organic.

We think of cotton as the most natural of fabrics; cloth that you would swaddle your baby in. The truth is that cotton is nicknamed the ‘dirtiest crop’ because of the heavy reliance on insecticides used to grow it. These cause illness to the farmers, their families, their communities and affect the environment. 99% of the world’s cotton is grown in developing areas, where the farmers don’t have access to safety equipment and training or proper storage facilities for the hazardous insecticides. Most items labelled 100% cotton contain almost 30% of the chemicals and resins that went in to the production of the cotton. When your child is wearing clothes that contain these pollutants, it can contribute to skin and respiratory disorders. The chemicals can be absorbed by the skin and cause further harm to the wearer.

In addition to the harm the pesticides used to grow non-organic cotton can cause to the wearer, the farmers and the food chain, there are other sinister forces at play in the cotton growing industry. Fast fashion is always looking for cost and corner-cutting methods to mass produce items and pass them on to consumers at the cheapest price. As a result, the wages paid to garment workers and the prices of cotton are constantly being beaten down. The industrialisation of the livelihoods of Indian cotton farmers results in less than fair prices for their output and has left them in a cycle of debt from which they cannot get out. Nearly 300,000 Indian farmers have committed suicide to escape debt – over 17,000 in 2009 alone. Some kill themselves by drinking the pesticides they use in farming.

Farmers who grow organic cotton stand a much better chance of receiving a fair price for their cotton. The rigorous certification process means that they can charge extra and that their output is monitored by an NGO, for whom profits are not a consideration in the process. Their cotton is bought by companies for whom sustainability is more important than the cheapest price. The end consumer can feel glad that they have supported the change that must happen in the world of fast fashion.