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Get Back, Tohoku.

Award: Collaborative Pencil

Collaborative Pencil / Collaborative / Creative Agency - Client Collaboration / 2020

Get Back, Tohoku. is an ongoing, nine-year campaign developed for the East Japan Railway Company after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami that devastated Japan’s Tohoku region. Launched in the wake of tragedy, it required close client-agency collaboration and a relationship of trust to make daring decisions in unprecedented circumstances. Presenting trains as heroic figures that unite people and communities, it has lifted the spirits of a suffering nation and contributed to the recovery of the railway and the entire Tohoku region.

“The railway services that are crucial to the daily lives of Tohoku people run 365 days a year, rain or snow, on time, under strict safety regulations. We worked on a challenge to show these trains as content. If a local, daily train transforms into art that touches people, it will lead to richer experiences for both dwellers and visitors. 

We learned that there is gold in our most mundane subjects like local trains, but you won’t be able to find it unless you search slowly and carefully. Your trip doesn’t have to be getting first class seats and drinking champagne. If you find something in Tohoku that is unique to your point of view, then it makes that trip special, and it leads to the true value of travel. The local trains made us realise how beautiful Tohoku’s nature was throughout the year. I hoped that it would inspire local people to see their everyday landscape in a new and different way, and bring back their pride for the region.” – Yoshihiro Yagi, Creative Director at Dentsu Inc.

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