What’s the most creative advertising idea you’ve seen recently?    

Bombay Sapphire; it clearly references still photography but the motion is just enough to not be perceived as simply moving stills. I would have loved to have been asked to direct it. I’d have slowed it down and drawn more attention to the craft of each frame. I don’t think we need to rush things to entertain.

Bombay Sapphire – Saw This Made This

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What’s the most recent piece of tech that you’ve bought?   

We are downsizing our living arrangement and have bought a very small factory-like building that we want to redo, employing the Passivhaus criteria. This will be quite a bit of tech and a lot of insulation, so the end result is both carbon efficient and uses almost no energy. 

What product could you not live without?    

My camera and my bicycle, and a well-made, straight-cutting guillotine. Nothing bugs me more than badly trimmed prints.

What’s the best film you’ve seen over the last year?

Wild Tales, directed by Damián Szifron. It's a great title (you’ll agree after seeing it) and extraordinary! Well, first of all, I love short stories because you have to pare down to the essentials, but not so much that the subtleties are lost. In doing so, the work becomes surreal, and nothing excites me more than the irrationality of the surreal. 

What film do you think everyone should have seen?    

Cold War, directed by Paweł Pawlikowski (his previous film, Ada, was even better). I was groaning with delight in the cinema, people were turning round and looking at me…  Ooooof, the format not being 16:9 was a pleasure, the framing was as close to godly as I can imagine, the pace was considered (but you didn’t feel, “Oh, this is so f-ing arty...”) and the black and white grade is so perfect I was in a trance. Put all that I’ve said together, and then add the economy of the gestures and body language, and that makes for wonderful performances that need no spoken voice to have your heart banging. Look out for the shot in the café looking at the two of them while, behind them, is a mirror showing all the café... and the moving, blowing grass right in the closing minutes. A massive treat.

What’s your preferred social media platform?   

I post on Instagram but have a love/hate relationship. I post because I honestly hope to inspire others and, from time-to-time, post work that inspires me. So, if the words are read, I’m hoping that insights into fearless based creativity can be nurtured rather than jealousy or regurgitation of others’ ideas. I don’t like scrolling much as it has the frigging power to have me stumble where I could be walking comfortably. Said another way… when I look back at my creative work, I have walked a straight road without deviation… i.e. I see a consistent 'something' in the work I deem good. Instagram, or any other method of seeing large amounts of unassociated work all at once, can have you turning left and right off your straight road.

What’s your favourite podcast?  

The Messy Truth. Gem Fletcher hosts artists, curators and critics which help me deepen my ideas. It has nothing to do with advertising which, in my opinion, is a good thing as I don’t believe that much good comes from advertising inspired advertising.

What show/exhibition has most inspired you recently?  

Cornelia Parker at TATE Britain. Her work is always ideas based, and so clever. She inspires a simple way of looking at what is in front of you that you may never have come to without her help.  Her blown up Shed, Cold Dark Matter, An Exploded View, which she did with the help of the Ministry of Defence, is a great example. Thirty Pieces of Silver flattened silverware is wonderful too.

If you could only listen to one music artist from now on, who would it be? 

You have to give me two…. Please…. The soundtrack to the movie Perfume because I have spent so much time working on images I love while listening to this eerie, evocative music. And Nirvana Unplugged because it feels to me to be about as raw and real and heartfelt as an album can be. The score to Perfume is credited to Tom Tykwer, Johnny Klimek and Reinhold Heil.

If there was one thing you could change about the advertising industry, what would it be?

Slow down a little. But also be decisive. It is very difficult to collaborate if your collaborator is sitting on the fence.

Who or what has most influenced your career? 

The books I’ve bought and digested. They’ve made me clear about the aesthetic I achieve. A few examples are Edward Weston, Penn, the paintings of Michael Borremans, and John Currin.

Tell us one thing about yourself that most people won’t know. 

Folks who have worked with me would know, but most wouldn’t know or expect that I love the collaborations when working closely with creatives. People always seem surprised that I crave input to bounce off. It feels to me like building a tower, block by block. Left alone I may never get to the height that a collaboration can reach. An editor can lift what I expected to an unexpected film. The set design can be so simple the viewer remains engaged, wishing to have questions answered. Lighting steers the viewer to feel. Oh, I’m going off subject… sorry.