Connolly: Art Bombing the Bay

Connolly: Art Bombing the Bay

Do it for the #content

Content creation is a big part of our job. And sometimes we have to get into some pretty unique situations to effectively capture the pieces that help tell the story we want to tell. It could be climbing in a helicopter to get the perfect aerial shot or waiting hours behind a camera for the time lapse video to be just right. Regardless, great creators go the extra mile.

Even if it means sneaking around San Francisco in the dark putting up giant posters and avoiding getting arrested. When asked what the craziest thing he ever did to grab the right piece of #content, our graphic designer Ryan Connolly had quite the story for us.

“I was living in San Francisco, and I was asked to help out with a guerilla marketing campaign for this Joaquin Phoenix movie, I’m Still Here. Connolly says he agreed to the job, being told it was easy money. Then the posters showed up. “Some were pretty normal-sized, 24x36in posters, others were absolutely humongous, 5×7 feet, roughly. We were going to paste these posters all around San Francisco.”  

The Challenge

Besides hauling posters almost as tall as him solo around the Bay, they’d have to be in high traffic areas. The way Connolly describes it, it sounds dicey. “For a week after about 10 p.m. I’d pack a bag with the posters and wheat paste and scouted different areas to put up posters if the time was right. At night I felt too nervous getting caught so I started putting them up in the daytime.”

Just avoid eye contact

Connolly discovered the best way to avoid getting caught: Act like you’re supposed to be there. “I bombed Market Street, the Mission, and Howard street. It was funny because people would stop and watch what I was doing, but never ask any questions. They thought I was just doing my job, and I just avoided all eye contact.”

Not only did Connolly have to scout areas for these posters and nervously slap them up while onlookers stood by, but he had to photograph them the next day to prove the job had been done. In the end, he says he’ll probably stick to the graphic design gigs. “It was fun having a weeklong stint in graffiti art and public bombing, but it’s just not for me. The risk wasn’t worth the reward, but I was lucky to walk out of this life experiment unscathed.”


Heard at Hurrdat is a new blog series that will give you an inside look at our team’s background, culture, and favorite missteps and memories. Click here for all of the entries in the series.

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