Taking Imagination Seriously

November 13, 2012

This week, we’re bringing you another great video from TED. Janet Echelman talks about finding her true voice as an artist, when her paints went missing and she was forced her to look to an unorthodox new art material.
She wanted to go from creating ‘something that you look at to something you get lost in’. As advertisers, our clients are often looking to do the same.
While watching the video, we drew many parallels between her story and how to create innovative advertising solutions. The key to creativity in advertising is to look at things differently. Every day, we get new briefs in from clients, all with their own challenges to overcome and objectives to meet. In a world where the media landscape is constantly changing, we’re always looking for new approaches to traditional challenges. How can we get people to notice our ads in a cluttered market? How can we help to differentiate our clients from their competitors? The solution is often simple, in theory – ‘be different, use your imagination!’
Janet took inspiration from some fishermen and wanted to create sculptures from netting. Even though she had nailed her concept, she came up against some challenges with the materials she was using. How could she make them durable yet fluid? In order to overcome these, she formed a partnership with a netting manufacturer, working closely to create a bespoke product to suit her needs.
Just like Janet, we want people to engage with messages instead of just noticing them and just like her we often meet logistical challenges in making that happen. But there were two key things that she did, that we can all learn from. She didn’t stop believing that it could be done, and partnered up with a specialist to make it happen!

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