Thursday, November 22, 2007

I'm On A Course

And you know what? The training is bloody good fun, and feels like it could be really useful.

Sadly, this is the first course I've had since a 1-day 'Writing for Radio' workshop in 1995. That's TWELVE YEARS ago.

Why do creatives get so little training? Is it because creativity is felt to be innate and therefore unteachable? Or do people worry we'll just throw bread rolls and not listen to what we're being told?

I suspect it's part of an ongoing conspiracy to not treat creatives like proper businesspeople. Maybe more on that another time.


Anonymous said...

bbh sends CDs on courses? that's gay.

J said...

Well, we have always tried to distance ourselves from that association.

Puerile attitudes like moaning about client meetings, powerpoint slides, throwing tantrums at suits and, this idiotic idea of wanting to be perceived like artists instead of problem solvers are not exactly helping us to be taken more seriously.

So I wonder if it's more of a self-conspiracy.

See previous anonymous comment for a more illustrative example.

Anonymous said...

Nobody gets trained on anything, anywhere.

The Angryist said...

Training for creatives is worthwhile because it makes you think about your work outside of your normal work context. That makes it mentally refreshing. And anonymous 4:03, by 'gay' do you mean happy? If so, then you'd be right.

Lunar BBDO said...

What course are you on, Scamp?

I assume it's something managerial, rather than a guide to writing better ads taught by someone without a Cannes Grand Prix.

Anonymous said...

A course in how to be a creative director would be useful. Being a creative and being a creative director are completely different jobs. Just because you are good at one does not mean you are automatically good at the other. I've tried both and frankly being a creative director I found to be a really crap job.
So a course to help creatives become ceative directors would help.
I felt like one of those Spitfire pilots who go up with only 4 hours experience and none of the older, wiser pilots advise you because
a) it's not the done thing.
b) they knew you'd be dead by morning.

Anonymous said...

If creativity is in fact innate and therefore unteachable, why do you have to be qualified up to the tits to be even looked at for a creative position?

Training is the rubber stamp that allows big agencies to turn down Jo's who didn't go to Central St. Martins and are best bum buddies with Paul Arden or don't have arty team names like 'Rummy and Twit'.

If some dude can sketch a flying biscuit, or knows some fancy graphics jargon, for the most part because he is trained to do it, should it matter? No. Does it? Yes.

Scamp said...

j - really interesting comment about the self-conspiracy. The way we all dress like children, for example, no doubt encourages others to treat us that way.

to Lunar and anonymous - it is a course that has been designed for people new to creative directing, and I totally agree that this kind of thing is essential. Ridiculous to expect that someone can begin a completely different job with absolutely no training.

Anonymous said...


when i said it was gay it was because it is gay. gay in the big corporation sense (which bbh is now).
going on training courses is gay. see The Office.

The Angryist said...

Sounds good scamp. I could have done with one of those 7 years ago... BTW: did you see that your discussion on creatives presenting work is this week's Campaign "Close-Up" piece?

Anonymous said...

anonymous @ 6.10PM, BS!

"why do you have to be qualified up to the tits to be even looked at for a creative position?"

- A good book is a good book, regardless of where you came from. If people won't hire (or even talk to you), then you need to take at look at yourself and work or the agenices you are approaching. If they just won't blatantly speak to you like Fallon (generally Fallon don't to juniors), then don't bother.

"Training is the rubber stamp that allows big agencies to turn down Jo's who didn't go to Central St. Martins"

- Firstly don't slag off hard working European students (other students who attend, their fee input outway their creative) who worked their balls off to get into a good college.

-Secondly, going to a college which has contacts is a help. But use the fact that you're the 'underdog' to your advantage. People will always give you more credit for doing it the 'hard' way. (Find people who are from your hometown/city, it always worked for us.)

Creative output is always more relevant than 'training'. If you still think differently then you shouldn't bother.

Anonymous said...

Scamp - I think training, especially at CD level is essential. It's the difference between two famous name CD's I worked for.

CA a - "Shit, seen it before, shit, shit, shit, there might be something in that, shit - do more"

CD b - "That's not right - heres why...."

CD 'b' was the best creative I ever worked for, he could kill all your work but still send you away fired up to do more and better. And he believed in training and sent me and others like me on similar courses when we hit CD level.

Scamp said...

richard - yes, I saw that.

Looks like they couldn't get anyone in London to agree with me!

Anonymous said...

there is a conspiracy at agencies to retard creatives' development. the further you are from hands-on involvement in clients' business the less likely/able you are to steal the biz.

but you can't rely on your employer (or anyone else frankly) to take an interest in your personal development. let's not forget, this is advertising, nobody really cares! they must really fancy you at bbh. look out senor o'keeffe.

just out of curiousity, who taught your course? and why was it good. most of my agency "training" experiences have been more mystifying and embarrassing than useful.

Anonymous said...

Any course in learning how to persuade clients how to buy ads (especially with the abundance of great account men these days...) is a bonus. Bring on the courses. The more the better.
And for those who don't agree, get yourself on a 'I don't give a shit about where my career is going because I'm an arrogant arsehole' course.

p.s. Can i also suggest a 'coming out of the closet' course for Mr gay obsessed on this page.

Anonymous said...

@previous anon.

a "coming out of the closet" course? dude, that would be totally gay!