The director and former Wieden + Kennedy creative director looks back on the lessons he’s learned about peeling back the ‘veneer’ of advertising to make people laugh, cry, and truly believe in what they’re watching
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Nevertheless, in his years as a director – which have seen him make award-winning work for brands including HSBC, VW and the Guardian – he’s learned some of the sleight of hand that helps the sales facade vanish. “Ultimately you’re making it up, but you try to give it that sheen of authenticity so the emotional high and lows connect more strongly,” he says. “You’re trying to take away the advertising veneer, in a sense. If a performance suddenly doesn’t ring true, or the reactions are too big, you massively undermine that.”