Only about 1,500 people have watched this. Which is a shame because it’s one of the fathers of ad planning talking about brands. It’s still as relevant as the day it was made. Watch it if you want to be smarter.
Advertising is the rattling of a stick inside a swill-bucket.
George Orwell wrote this. But he didn’t say it. A character of his did. And while characters can often speak the truth, they’re working as commentary on the world. If you see this quote and it makes your blood boil the proper response is not to stomp off in a huff.
The proper response is to prove it wrong. Which, in my opinion, very few people in advertising today are trying to do. Shame.
Trailer: ‘Her' - Nov 20
Written and directed by Spike Jonze, starring Joaquin Phoenix, Scarlett Johansson, Amy Adams, Rooney Mara, Olivia Wilde and Chris Pratt.
'Siri the Movie' looks pretty good.
I wish I liked this movie because of Spike Jonze’s insistence on directing some of my all-time favorite visuals or Joaquin Phoenix’s acting talent (I maintain that he was robbed last year for The Master) or some other appreciation of the art of movie-making. But then came “Skeletons” by The Yeah Yeah Yeahs and I’m already writing the pledge to share extra love with the people around me that, in a couple of months, watching Her will inspire.
I was hooked seconds into the trailer. Being completely alone yet completely fulfilled? This looks excellent.
Calling all bikers! We have 12 gorgeous Gotham Bicycle Defense Industries “Defenders” to give away.
The Defender is a theft-proof, weather-proof, city-proof headlight that locks onto your handlebars for years of urban assault. These retail for $60 but we’re going to send them out…
I usually hate these kinds of contests. But biking is cool. These lights are beyond cool. And CentUp is a great cause. I’m using it to sling money around the internet because sometimes paying for content feels good even when you don’t have to.
Suppose this is what they mean when they say “life is a journey”. His journey is more interesting than most.
While I was at Seneca College this morning, one of the students commented on the difficulty of avoiding creative block when you’re trying to generate lots of ideas. Every person in advertising knows this feeling, and also the self-loathing it generates.
Fortunately, there are all kinds…
One for the students, a great resource
This is fine, fine resource. Though there is no better way, at least in my experience, to overcome “creative block” than talk about some unrelated topic for a while and then when you come back around to the problem at hand a solution presents itself.
That’s all you have to do.
The contrivance here is heavy-handed: You never see people’s ages in newspaper headlines or TV news crawls. But this is still a powerful idea.
It would be nice to like this. But I can’t. Although I may be overthinking things a bit, the concept of the ad is sold out by the copy. If hate were abolished, or had been retroactively abolished, it would undercut all of the examples of things these people went on to do. (With the exception of Anne Frank but it’s very possible that without the tragedy she went through there wouldn’t be a writing career for her at all.)
One of the unfortunate realities of life is that conflit creates what we do. I am not advocating for hate, or anything the ADL fights against for that matter, but the ad does a disservice to the people it is remembering. It is because of them that we continue to fight for good causes. To fight against issues that poison society.
Now all of the people in this ad may have gone on to do great things in a world without hate or bigotry or problems (even though that world seems highly improbably). But we can’t know. That’s a different world. A alternate reality.
It simply doesn’t work for me because the premise is flawed.
Production is a four-letter word.
“Hey, can you crank this out for me? It’s just a production job, so no biggie, right?”
Sure. I’ll get to it right after I crank out this movie script I’ve been working on. I’ve already got the idea, so writing it should be no biggie.
I’m not sure why people assume that “production” jobs are simple, but they are most certainly not. Taking a bucket full of information and squeezing it onto a page in a way that is both pleasing to the eye and comprehensible is no easy task.
In fact, I’d argue it’s every bit as “creative” as everything else we do.
It takes an incredibly keen eye. It takes an innate understanding of how we process information. And it takes a healthy dose of patience—because it can take several attempts before you come up with anything that doesn’t make you want to scratch your eyes out.
So why do we undervalue production work so much?
I think it’s all in the name. Production just sounds lame. It sounds dull. It sounds like something a monkey or a robot could do. Better yet, a robot-monkey!
But it’s not lame. It’s not dull. And it most certainly is not easy.
So perhaps we need to give it a more fitting moniker. But how are we going to find a name that aptly encapsulates the many challenges and benefits of this type of work?
Here’s a thought:
Why don’t we simply call it “creative”?
Another thought is viewing things as “just a production job” is detrimental to the values of an agency. To be committed to good work, good effort needs to be extended to every project.
The alternative is letting these little production jobs suck the lifeblood out of an agency. Allows the quality of all work to suffer. Allows clients to believe they can walk all over you.
That’s not good for either party.