“Fear is the mortal enemy of creativity, innovation and happiness.”

Says Alex Bogusky.

Seconded by Paul Shearer in last weeks Campaign magazine.

Thirded by Mandy Wheeler in last week’s workshop.

“It’s your job as a creative to make clients feel brave.”

Because clients are playing with money.

Every ad they buy has the possibility, big or small, of losing them money, their job or even their company (Ouch.)

So “We can’t be scared of feeling passionate about our ideas.” (Paul Shearer.)

George Lois used to PROMISE clients that his ideas would work. Promise!

Now there’s a fearless creative. He also once threatened to commit suicide if a client didn’t buy his work. Maybe he’s crazy? Whatever he is, it works.

We can’t be scared when we sell our work. And we can’t be scared when we create it either.

“Any ad that doesn’t cause a ruckus is a lousy ad.

I’m constantly in trouble and I think that’s proof of my worth.” (Ed McCabe.)

(Cheers Dave)

We can’t be scared as creatives; of doing something weird, unusual, or inappropriate. Stuff being realistic, you’re being paid to do the exact opposite. Being realistic is the most commonly travelled path to mediocrity.

We can’t be scared to annoy people, to get up people’s noses, to shock, to provoke, to stop people dead in their tracks as they go about their day.

Yeah we want people to like the brand and all that stuff.

But if you really stand for something, well, some people will identify with that and some won’t.

I don’t think there’s a brand in the world everybody likes.

If you’re scared you’re never going to create brilliant work.

At some point, if you want to get to a great idea, you have to let go of the ropes and sail into the unknown.

The same applies in your personal life.

If you’re constantly scared of doing or saying the wrong thing, or doing something that is different or that’s out of your comfort zone, life’s going to be a pretty mediocre existence.

When you slip, you don’t know if you’re going to land back on your feet or if you’re going to fall to a gruesome thud on the floor.

This terrifies some people.

But for me, for that split second, I feel like I’m travelling through time, like I’m being given a glimpse of another world, of something greater, of the unknown.

And it reminds me I’m alive.

Seldom do ads do this, but when they do, they really fucking do.

Written by Elliott Starr of blog.clarkandstarr.com


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