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Tattoos are uniquely and deeply personal to the wearer. We wanted to honor that and create something that was as authentic, powerful and meaningful as the tattoos themselves.


Japanese firefighters used to paint dragons on the back of their fire jackets for protection. For greater protection, they began tattooing these dragons to their actual backs. A symbolic coat of arms. Today’s tattoo artists gleamed inspiration from this tradition and applied it to their craft. We attempted to capture that through a series of posters and a campaign that included a citywide Instagram scavenger hunt and outdoor elements. The latter included bus wraps, college bus shelters, print, mobile, digital display, nontraditional collateral, a customized content sponsorship with Tattoo Artist Magazine and a block party, to celebrate the tattooing of the ndp building by a world-renowned muralist. The efforts attracted a new audience, with 40% of attendees being new visitors. During the first month alone, our campaign helped VMFA nearly double projected ticket sales. A combination of earned and owned media efforts increased the VMFA budget by 40%, and their social media fan base increased by 20%.

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