Art & Copy

Recommended to me by a friend I was eager to check this one out. Somehow I missed it despite my healthy obsession with watching as many documentaries as possible.

Interview after interview with many people whom I can feel should register as important yet I do not recognize any of them, this is a world I don’t know anything about. The title alludes to the concept, introduced early in the film, that successful advertising campaigns combine art AND copy – the copywriter and the art director need to be in the same room for the kind of synergy that produces great advertising, some of which is important enough to even be “world changing.” I got introduced to a lot of ad campaigns, that I either hadn’t seen before or wasn’t aware of their status as icons in the ad world. I enjoyed this aspect of the film.

The title also references the kinship between the advertising world and the art world. Over and over I was told how a really great ad campaign is like a piece of great art – able to inspire and even effect world change – yeah and sell things. Despite the passionate argument and the obvious dedication and hard work of these genuinely creative people, I couldn’t get over the fact that in the end you’re trying to sell something and the creative output wouldn’t exist at all but for the deep pockets of the company financing you. Sure the most successful campaigns are usually the ones that scare these benefactors the most, and are usually the most out there and out of the box, but I still found this a hard pill to swallow.

As an artist/creative person just about the only kinship/connection I felt with the ad creators was the notion that you really have no idea where your next great inspiration will come from and it’s really hard to muster great creativity on demand, but you can nurture it as long as you have the right environment.

(image from three imaginary girls with a more positive take on this film)