Ten thousand hours of practice? Easy peasy.

When you are completely in love with something, doing it isn’t work. It’s a joy.

It was like this with me when i first discovered creative advertising.

I had an intuition that advertising was for me and I followed it. This was made easier by the fact that I had no competing offers. Winking smiley face.

I was completely obsessed by it.

I spent every Saturday in the library of the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn pretending I was a student.

The Pratt Institute had a complete set of all the New York Art Director’s Club annuals going back to the early 1900s. They also had all the One Show annuals and British D&AD annuals.

I decided that I would absorb all these in chronological order. And that’s what I did.

I lovingly read every single page. In order.

Then one day the security guard asked to see my student ID, and the game was up. But not before I had accomplished my goal.

Advertising is something you get good at by osmosis. Your antennae have to be up at all times, taking everything in.

This went on for years. I was a maniacal reader of all the trade magazines. For years I was the only reader of the UK trade mag CAMPAIGN at DDB Chicago.

At a certain point you develop your own style and point of view on things. But until that happens,there’s nothing wrong with doing slavish imitations of the masters.

This post was partly inspired by the Grumpy Brit’s excellent blog post.

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