Quick. What’s the first thing you think about when you think about Seattle? Wait, don’t answer that. No, Seattle isn’t just coffee shops, clouds, and rain. Walk the streets of Seattle recently and you’ll see a lot less weather discussion over coffee and a lot more football discussion about Seattle. I recently wrote about how flight searches at the end of the NFL’s regular season saw Seattle and Denver fans the most confident about their chances of reaching the big game. And now here we are, a few weeks later, with that data proving true, as Seattle and Denver find themselves competing against each other in the big game this weekend.
So to show support for the local team, the brains behind Expedia went to work this week. And went to work they did. Drive through Bellevue this week and you’ll see what a little creativity, spirit, and teamwork can do, as plastered on one side of Expedia HQ is a nine-story image of Seattle defensive back Richard Sherman, recreating the play from the San Francisco versus Seattle game, and what many have referred to as, “The Immaculate Deflection.”
I sat down with the creative geniuses (Expedia employees John Grim, Jonathan Graham, and Joseph Mangan) behind the Hawkitecture to find out more about what went into it.
Where did the original idea of this come from?
It originally came out of a meeting we had with Expedia’s General Manager, John Morrey. We wanted to come up with an idea of how we could support the local team. It was a “go big or go home” moment for us. While we originally thought about projecting an image, we felt like something more creative like this would send a bigger message.
Expedia’s Hawkitecture (photo by Jonathan Graham)
What exactly is the nine-story image of Richard Sherman made of?
The original idea was for post-it notes. That’s right, sticky notes, like what you have sticking all around your office desk. But that would have taken weeks. Instead, we used over a thousand pieces of colored construction paper.
What was involved in the planning process?
It took a lot of creative minds, hours of planning and mapping, and a little bit of elbow grease. We mapped the entire design out on the computer, each sheet serving as a pixel. But that was the easy part. We knew it’d then take hours into the night to put it up. So many people wanted to help out, that we ended up having nearly 50 volunteers, and had the entire display up in less than a couple hours.
What has been the response?
Well we couldn’t actually see how it appeared until the following morning, since we put the display up at night. When we finally saw it, we couldn’t have been more thrilled at how it turned out. Twitter, Facebook, and Reddit were quickly buzzing with photos of people from adjacent offices posting photos about it. The community as a whole has really gotten behind Seattle, and the Richard Sherman display is no exception.
And how will you up the ante if Seattle wins this weekend?
You’ll just have to wait and see!