Tuesday, November 25, 2014

On hornblowing

Recently, I sat down for a leisurely chat with an ad industry veteran. Turns out he is also a rabid fan of R17 so naturally, because of my insatiable need for validation, I hung on his every word.

I had mentioned that it had been a while since I put any new work in my book, or my online portfolio to be more accurate.

He stopped me mid-sentence.

"Are you crazy? Your blog is your book. You don't need new spots or outdoor boards or banner ads. You put up new material almost every day. It's digital. It's current. And it's probably the best writing you've ever done."

Here was a man who was also writing my checks at the time, so who was I to argue? Though to be honest, not every posting (this one for example) is what I would call "bookworthy." But I do subscribe to the volume theory of writing, that is for every ten pieces I write, one is good enough to make the grade.

This quantity to quality axiom does not appear to be in good favor those days.

It seems anything and everything that makes it to the Telly or the Internet also makes it to a FaceBook newsfeed. It doesn't matter whether it's good or not, in most cases not, it just matters that it was done.

And so we are treated to a cavalcade of work that is flat, uninspired, has no trace of an idea, or a deadly combination of all of the above.

Am I guiltess?
No, I am not.

Years ago I posted a homestore.com spot that I dubbed, "The Worst Commercial I Have Ever Produced." And it was. A million dollar, Joe Pytka-directed colossal piece of shit.

Had I been more diligent with my file keeping I could have continued the series. Here's one from the vintage folder:

That's crazy bad. But the funny thing is every time AIS would run that commercial the phones rang off the hook.

Believe me if I could find more bad work from the early days I would be an uploading fool. Hell, I'm 44 years old, what have I got to lose? Besides, as my wife often says, I lack the genetic material for embarassment.

Some of you younger hipsters and hipsterettes do not. And I would posit that not everything you do is something everyone should see.

By the way, if you recently posted some 'questionable' work and you're wondering if I'm directing this post at you, I probably am.

1 comment:

george tannenbaum said...

As a freelancer, I get more work from my blog than my book.

I agree with your friend.

People hire your "brand."

And your blog is your brand.