The art of collaboration

You often hear that ‘ideas can come from anywhere’, unless you’re employed as a creative in an ad agency, then from the creative’s pov it’s ‘ideas should come from me, because it’s my profession.’ It’s a difficult notion for others to accept. “You get paid… to think up ideas?” yet because it’s a profession that sounds both attractive and yet doesn’t have one definable skill, it is sometimes abused.

Because ideas can come from anywhere means that clients quite often take that to mean that the ideas can come from them. Their son has Photoshop, their sister shot their wedding… And because of the accessibility of technology to everyone that last wall (we have the tech), between the ideas makers and the ideas takers, has for the large part been eliminated.Now anyone can think up and implement ideas / ads. Now that’s both scary as well as exciting.

And this is great for some things. After all, ideas should come from anywhere. Walt Disney’s father was a labourer and spent time building balustrades and boardwalks at the Chicago world fair of 1892. Who would have thought a labourer telling his son countless tales of wonderment would lead to Disneyland 60 years later? For further examples of this cross hibernation of ideas you have to look no further than James Burke’s books…the ’Connections’ series.

In them he describes in fascinating detail how 12th century underwear was crucial when it came to the development of the modern day printing press. Or that the canon was essential when it comes to modern day movies. Ideas literally can come from anywhere, especially in this day and age when you can be chatting to an old school friend one minute and looking at superconductors the next.

Ideas can come from anywhere, and usually many places… I guess that’s the point I mean to stress. That great advertising ideas are a formation and collaboration with creatives and sometimes external sources as well as I hate to admit it, clients. As long as the creatives aren’t too headstrong to hog the entire project and the clients aren’t too bullish to send top down orders, anything is possible. For, when we manage to collaborate rather than stand our ground and push forward our own ideas (adamant they are the best) we can create the best and most memorable ads.

Subscribe Scroll to Top