Monday, April 25, 2011

NEW 1-Year Anniversary Flood Relief Print

This is our latest Spirit of Nashville print. Created to commemorate the 1-year anniversary of the Music City Flood, 500 limited edition prints will raise money for on-going flood relief work. They are for sale now on at

Within a week of the devastating Nashville floods on May 1-2, 2010, we began illustrating 2 new prints to raise money for flood relief efforts. We joined forces with McQuiddy Classic Printing and Athens Paper who donated printing and paper to produce 1,000 limited edition prints which were sold at our Spirit of Nashville Studio Store and on our web site. The initial run of prints sold out in a few weeks, generating over $30,000 that was donated directly to several flood relief agencies including the Red Cross, Samaritan’s Purse, and the Community Foundation.

These two Flood Relief poster designs recently won Gold ADDY Awards, Best of Category, Regional ADDYs, and have gone on to represent Nashville in the National ADDY Awards—a competition that recognizes outstanding commercial art, design and advertising.

Within weeks of the flood, we began giving the prints for free to anyone who had lost their homes or businesses in the flood. Those who bought the prints did so for different reasons—some wanted something to commemorate the historic event that redefined our city’s character. Others wanted to give to the flood relief fund raising effort. Many flood victims bought the prints to give as thank-you gifts to friends and neighbors who had worked tirelessly in their time of need. Once we sold out of the prints, people started asking us if we planned to do another print to commemorate the 1-year anniversary of the flood.

So the answer is YES! McQuiddy Classic Printing and Athens Paper donated printing and paper to help us produce a new 1-year anniversary flood print. (Above: David McQuiddy III and Joel Anderson posed just after the artist’s proof was pulled from the Press on April 22, 2001. This signed proof will be auctioned off at a fund raising event.)

The new 18” x 24” anniversary flood prints, illustrated by Ligia Teodosiu feature a mandolin set against the Nashville skyline sprouting flowers as the flood waters recede. The print features the words Nashville: Stronger. Better. Brighter. 500 of these limited edition prints will be available at starting on April 28 for $35 each while supplies last. $30 of every purchase go directly to the Community Foundation’s flood relief fund. 

In addition to the new print, Spirit of Nashville has produced a CD featuring 2 new songs that commemorate the historic flood. Inspired by the 2010 Spirit of Nashville flood relief prints, local songwriter Wendy Wills wrote 2 songs to be released in conjunction with the 1-year anniversary of the flood. One song, titled Rise Again, is sung by Nashville singer Amber Turner. The other song titled, Play On was co-written and performed by local country artist and rodeo cowboy Paul Bogart, who knows about overcoming adversity after personally suffering major flood damage. The 2-song CD can be purchased for $6 separately, or bought with the new commemorative print for $40 at the Spirit Of Nashville store.

Preview the 2 songs:


About the Musicians:
Wendy Wills has been writing songs professionally for about 20 years. Her songs have been recorded on several Grammy and Dove Award-nominated projects. She says: “Truly amazing is how I would describe both the devastation of the flood and ethos of the city of Nashville, TN. Though people were broken and though so many dreams washed away, the indomitable spirit of this town held firm. And as the waters receded and the skies cleared, Nashville began to rise again. When I saw the Spirit of Nashville flood relief posters, I sat down at the piano and in a matter of a couple of hours had the majority of “Rise Again” finished.”

Paul Bogart is a young Oklahoma singer and champion rodeo cowboy whose life was turned upside down by the Harpeth River in May 2010. He and his wife left for church Sunday morning and could not return home for 2 days. And when they finally did, they were shocked. Yes, the damage was great. But even greater were the strong hands and willing hearts of friends, neighbors and total strangers that helped them dig out and clean up. It was not hard for Paul and Wendy to sit down and write Play On. That’s what Paul was able to do, because that’s what Nashville does—we Play On.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

BBQ Fight Club is selling out at Williams-Sonoma!

We got the news a while back that Williams-Sonoma would be carrying Hog Heaven's BBQ Fight Club line of sauces, but it's another thing to see it.

Apparently they've been doing pretty well too. Congrats to our friends over at Hog Heaven on a job well done.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Crazy New Cicada Invasion Campaign

Every 13 years, Nashville is invaded by billions of noisy, flying red-eyed critters that emerge from the ground when the temperature reaches 67 degrees for a week. The cicada grubs tunnel up from the deep, climb trees, split out of their shells, sprout wings, and then make an infernal racket for about 4-6 weeks. Their sole purpose is to sing, fly, mate, lay eggs, and then die. This year, experts say it will happen around the end of April or early May.

The last time this happened was 1998—and it was truly apocalyptic. At that time, Joel Anderson (founder of Anderson Design Group and the Spirit of Nashville) wanted to do something to celebrate the historic and creepy event. But by the time he had a few t-shirt ideas hammered out, the plague was over. So he’s had 13 years to get ready for what is about to be another monumental natural phenomenon.

Joel and his team of artists at Anderson Design Group have created an entire line of Music City Cicada Invasion Survival Gear. Starting with limited edition posters and postcards, the collection has grown out of control with the creation of guitar-shaped cicada swatters, beer mugs, coffee mugs, stickers, magnets, t-shirts, even Anti-Cicada ear plugs! Andy created 3 limited edition silk screen prints—the series is called the Great Southern Brood. Liga created a stylish coffee mug and postcard design. Edward created a hip t-shirt. Dawn sourced a full range of products to adorn with our nutty designs. We even added a shirt and print design to our line up from Ryon, one of Joel’s students from Watkins College of Art & Design.

As Designers, it’s a lot of fun to tap into the psyche of popular culture and create art and products that will help everyone come together during a crisis, or laugh in unison as a community. This cicada outbreak has given our designers a chance to create funny and practical things that will serve as keepsakes—souvenirs of an amazing and bizarre natural event that will (thankfully) not happen again for 13 more years.

This campaign is also a great exercise in branding and marketing. (See other examples of our brand development work at : We do this all the time for our clients, but hardly ever do we go this far in such a short time (and with our own money!) Developing the colors, fonts, logos, illustrations and materials to create, launch and market a new brand—all in the span of 45 days—this was truly daunting challenge to undertake! The resulting web site, social media campaign, blog and product line will be a great way to inform and entertain Nashville during the cicada invasion. It will also be an effective way to showcase our design and marketing services.

Watch informative videos, get answers to frequently asked questions, and see the full line of whacky prints and gifts at: