The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]


Look For The Rabbits …
February 5, 2015, 6:25 am
Filed under: Insight

Despite what many think, advertising – and planners in general – like to talk about honesty.

What’s really going on in our audience’s mind.

What really will make a difference in their life.

What really they will respond to.

And while many may think that’s total bollocks, the fact is – in the main – it’s done with good intention.

But because of the way our industry works and the expectations placed upon us by clients, we tend to be quite one dimensional and obvious in our ‘honesty’ … where the backbone for our recommendation is based on identifying one thing that will sell our clients brand/benefit in a way that will reach the most people as possible.

And that’s good.

Except by looking for that one thing, we ignore all the other things that could add more texture and intrigue and perspective to what we’re trying to do. The other things that may actually attract people interests rather than continually trying to chase after them.

The reason I say this is because I recently read an article about David Hockney.

For those who don’t know who he is, he is a British artist who is renowned for his art and his pugnaciousness.

Anyway the article says this:

DAVID HOCKNEY: YOU’VE GOT TO BE HONEST

David Hockney has never been troubled by criticism, says Tim Lewis in The Observer.

Even in his youth – a gay, grammar-school boy from Bradford – he was protected by his own confidence.

“When I first got to the Royal College of Art, people used to mock me: ‘Trouble at t’mill, Mr Ormondroyd’, stuff like that, but I’d look at their drawings and think: ‘If I drew like that, I’d keep my mouth shut.’”

He wasn’t scared of being openly gay, either. “I thought ‘I’m going to be an artist, I have to be honest. We lived in bohemia, and bohemia is a tolerant place. There was a bohemia then. There isn’t now because you need cheap places for bohemia, don’t you?”

He loves to smoke – not least because it annoys “dreary health-freaks”.

“One time …” he relates, “… I was walking in Holland Park and I stopped to watch some rabbits playing”.

“I sat on a seat watching and then some magpies came down, black and white birds, and they looked rather good. I was sitting there having a cigarette and three girls come running by, jogging, and they see me and come: ‘Ow, ow …’ [he wags his finger] … and I sat there and thought ‘They think they are very healthy, but they haven’t seen the rabbits.’ And I thought: ‘I’m healthier than they are.’”

___________________________________________________________________________

So remember, next time you are given a planning project … don’t blindly follow the path that you’re being led down, look for the rabbits.


44 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Brilliant. A great way to explain your belief in breadth being as valuable as depth. If this story had been around when we first started working together, it would have saved me a lot of head scratching.

Comment by Pete

if campbell told you this to explain the basic fucking premise of “look around you not just in front of you” you should have fucking lamped him and told him to speak fucking english. this sort of shit might make planners wet their knickers but it makes normal fuckers think youre all twats.

Comment by andy@cynic

Gold.

Comment by DH

You forget I’ve heard how you sold ideas to clients Andy. Rabbits sounds like plain English in comparison. ; )

Comment by Pete

Scrap. Scrap. Scrap.

Comment by DH

I dont hit mentalists.

Comment by andy@cynic

You are all heart.

Comment by DH

Stop being argumentative Andy. You were the person who told me way back before electricity was formed that the secret to creating something interesting and different is to look for something interesting and different and that comes from looking broad not narrow. So if anything, this is all your fault. Accept it and move on.

Comment by Rob

I believe the young kids call that “being owned” Andrew.

Comment by George

I believe the cooler kids say pwned.

Comment by John

pricks.

Comment by andy@cynic

I was at the RCA with David ( I was a year behind him) He won the College’s Gold Medal in his last year. At the award ceremony he collected it wearing a gold lame suit and bleached blonde hair. Pissed off a few of the professors. It was a fucking riot. Too bad he’s from the wrong side of the Pennines!
Cheers/George “AdScam” Parker.

Comment by adscamgeorge

player.

Comment by andy@cynic

I like him even more now.

Comment by Rob

I have had the pleasure of meeting Mr Hockney on more than one occasion. He is definitely forthright but his perspective is always a joy to hear because he is insightful and conveys it with just the right amount of venom to be intriguing. This story is a fair representation of his character. Look for the rabbits indeed.

Comment by Lee Hill

name dropper.

Comment by andy@cynic

That would be an interesting conversation to observe.

Comment by Rob

who the fuck would give a shit about some rabbits when theres 3 hot women running to look at. ill tell you, fuckheads and planners. and theyre not mutually exclusive descriptions. hockney is a bad tempered fucking prick. i fucking love him.

Comment by andy@cynic

Gay artists?

Comment by DH

Andy… David does not consider women “Hot.” Don’t know about rabbits… Fuck. Do I have to explain everything to you?
George “AdScam” Parker… A fucking Prince!

Comment by adscamgeorge

unfuckingbeiievable.

Comment by andy@cynic

I never knew you went to the Westboro Baptist Church, Andy?

Comment by Rob

twat.

Comment by andy@cynic

Rabbits lead you down rabbit holes.

Comment by John

What John said.

Comment by DH

just like planners. no wonder campbell likes this fucking story so much.

Comment by andy@cynic

I know you’re just trying to be a bastard but that is actually a good point.

But the thing is, I believe too many planners think exactly that so don’t even investigate where these rabbit holes may end up going. Sure, many will lead you to nowhere, but there will be some that take you to the rabbits but if refuse to examine them you will never know and never end up somewhere new and beautiful.

Comment by Rob

Well said Robert.

Comment by George

I resent your assertion. Just because you ramble on for ever doesn’t mean that other people can’t make subtle, cogent points with concision and brevity.

And, yes, I am now doing what you wrongly accused me of.

Comment by John

Too many people focus on finding a solution rather than solving the problem.

Comment by John

Exactly. Nicely put. And not just planners; writers, artists, teachers, architects, even doctors who refuse to be open to alternative ‘rabbits’ and are unwilling to see possible solutions, possible new paths, possible possibilities….

Comment by judyt54

Now that I will agree with you 1000% John.

Comment by Rob

Or worse, they make the problem the thing they want to answer rather than what the problem actually is. I had that situation recently and kindly pointed out they have no right to challenge a clients business issues when they don’t even understand the clients business. As the old adage goes … anything is easy for the person who doesn’t have to actually do it.

Comment by Rob

Great post, now go and take care of your Mum.

Comment by Ciaran McCabe

We haven’t got the operation dates yet Ciaran but you can be sure that the moment we have, I will be.

And it’s lovely to have you pop by. You still owe me that post. That’s probably the reason I started this blog again. All your fault. Ha.

Comment by Rob

You’ve just had a kid and you want to look at rabbits? What sort of dad are you?

Comment by Billy Whizz

It could be worse, it could be a different sort of rabbit. One that uses batteries and goes in a completely different sort of hole.

Sorry, it’s been a long day.

Comment by Rob

You can take the boy out of Nottingham …

Comment by John

I like this post and I like you’re writing posts.

Comment by Bazza

What’s happened? Are you OK?

Comment by Rob

Even though you really never left Im glad you ‘re back, even if you didn’t go anywhere specifically…although it is hard to miss someone who keeps popping up from behind the couch shouting BOO every few days…
but if you had gone, I promise I’d have missed you. Probably.

Comment by judyt54

Well diagnosed Rob. I’ve woken up with manflu.

Comment by Bazza

You mean boyflu.

Comment by Billy Whizz

Smallboyflu

Comment by DH




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