By Jacob de Figueiredo
Without a doubt in my mind the most amazing aspect of this ridiculous school is the access and the opportunity to get a real look into the minds of some truly amazing people and it’s something that I still and probably never will come to terms with.
These masterclasses are all amazing and unique within their own right, but occasionally we have one that completely consumes my body with inspiration and wisdom and I walk up the studio stairs having been genuinely touched, stuck in deep thought and questioning everything. Honestly it’s like being in a film or something, you kinda can’t believe that these people have taken time out of their days to talk to us.
One of these ‘special’ masterclasses was by Steve Henry.
A incredibly inspirational and intelligent person who was spouting out nuggets of information left right and centre. Not only was it profoundly touching but the masterclass covered all aspects of the industry and gave us all a fantastic fresh perspective to attack the industry with as the end of our course approaches.
Marc introduced him as ‘The Masterclass’ and you can see why. Steve’s turn of phrase was something that I recognised within some of Marc’s speeches and teachings for us. The talk was introduced with Steve’s creative reel of work, it was really nice to see work that still gets a laugh from the room 20 years later. Super high energy and fun, I really wanted to know if the processed Steve used to create that work was as fun and high energy as the ads themselves, but we ran out of time to ask questions. So if anyone knows, lemme know. It feels like sometimes we get so caught up and consumed by stress and deadlines that fun, high-energy work can be lost within a world of lists and intense structured processes.
Steve described true creative as something that’s new. It should scare you, literally give you butterflies in the pit of your stomach but with an overwhelming desire to get it out there. It should be “unnerving, like the first night of a play.” And I couldn’t agree more with this. It’s something that I can struggle with, just trying to make work that “works” instead of work that scares me.
He then went on to talk about how clients can affect our work when we make it into the industry and how important it is to fight for the work you know is right and that the worst advertising clients are the ones when things are going well, because they don’t want change.
“Marketing budget can be used to do anything, it’s just money.” is another one of those sentences that instantly makes sense to someone and make you completely rethink the way to approach a brief.
He gave a brilliant example of how KFC fixed the holes in the road of a small town and loosely linked that gesture to filling their hunger or some pun. It seems ridiculous and kinda weird, but it just shows the real power a marketing budget carries and the connect a brand can make with a consumer when they choose to do a good act that benefits their lives instead of polluting their minds.