SB LVI: The Celebrity Bowl with Some Bright Spots

by / February 14, 2022 /

Welcome to Celebrity Bowl 2022. Or nostalgia bowl? Or maybe Crypto bowl? We’re still fully processing that QR code. Regardless, advertisers in every category led the big game with celebrity formulas. For the first time ever, female BIPOC representation (46%) and male BIPOC representation (41%) mirrored the 38% BIPOC US population. While it was refreshing to see women and people of color wo[Read More]

Overheard at a Super Bowl party

by / February 14, 2022 /

Look, there are a thousand places you can get a take on every ad that ran during the Super Bowl. You don't need more opinions from us. But what do actual, non-ad folks think? Since we attended a nice, outdoor, socially-distant Big Game party, we have your answers. We didn't want to be the creepy losers doing no socializing, so we didn't get them all, but here's what we heard.

"What does that have to do with Toyota?"

"Shouldn'[Read More]

What Makes a Great Effie Award Submission

by / May 27, 2021 /

It was an honor to judge the Effie Awards this year. As perpetual students of the industry, it’s always inspiring to get that exposure to the greatest home runs of the past year and the cases that attempt to do them justice. 

That said, it’s not lost on me how tedious and overwhelming the process of writing an Effie Case Submission is. Not unlike pitching, you’re committing to a process of gathering, revisiting, wri[Read More]

SB LV: Some Bright Spots in a Celebrity-Filled Ad Game

by / February 9, 2021 /

Advertisers led the big game with celebrity formulas, and some tackled gender, diversity and inclusion. Representation in front of the camera was consistent with 2020 levels and showed a continued commitment to casting women of all types. But behind the camera, directors were 5% women and 7% people of color, indicating a much-needed shift around those who write and direct these ads. 

[Read More]

What I Learned In 2020 – Drake Paul, John McNeil Studio

by / December 30, 2020 /

2020 was a lot—for everyone—but I had an especially different kind of year. I moved from Chicago to the Bay Area in August of 2019, with my pregnant wife and dog. Became a dad in January. And then, like everyone else, locked down in March. That feels like important context.

Here’s what I learned…

People try to scare you before you have your first kid, but kids are actually a lot of fun (I highly recommend having one). 

Making ads doesn’t always matter—but [Read More]

What I Learned In 2020 – Andreas Berner, Ntropic

by / December 29, 2020 /

The work is about personal resilience and the will to push on - this challenging year has asked a lot of every one of us.
It was dark and exigent. Nevertheless, we have managed to stay afloat and, in many cases, grown.
In my project, "Power From Within," I am elaborating on that idea - showcasing the beauty of our relentless determination and soulful reflection that in the[Read More]

What I Learned in 2020 – Jon Wolanske, Goodby Silverstein & Partners

by / December 23, 2020 /

What an insane year.

Wow. Thanks, Jon, for that insightful, rarely uttered observation.  

But really … what a year. And it’s still going. Wheeeee!

I learned a lot in 2020. Many of the lessons are lessons others have already written about for this site in far more eloquent ways than I could ever put. While some other things I learned just don’t feel right to expound upon. Like the fact that I am way more productive when wearing a pair of non-elastic-wais[Read More]