Read any article on good copywriting and you’ll find the same names appear.
David Abbott and Tony Brignull usually battle for the top two slots, Tim Delaney and John Salmon fight it out for third place.
But talk to writers about the same subject and another name appears; Richard Foster.
Richard is the only one of the five who has worked under the other four.
(He may well be the only writer to have worked under the four?)
For a number of reasons, the other four are better known.
Two have agencies named after them.
They were all Creative Directors, (or Chief Creative Officers as we call them today).
Each took on the title of Chairman.
All four became President of D&AD.
With those roles came P.R.
Whereas Richard wrote.
He wrote for everyone, from 14 year old girls (Lil-lets) to Captains of Industry (The Economist).
He wrote for products from 1p up to £100k.
He wrote ads that featured in 29 D&AD annuals.
He wrote the best section in D&AD’s ‘THE COPY BOOK: How 32 of The World’s Best Advertising Writers Write Their Advertising’.
And he wrote this piece for Mark Denton and I for the 2008 Creative Circle Annual we produced, it’s a tribute to David Abbott on his induction to the Creative Circle Hall of Heroes.
Still the best tribute on David that I’ve read.
We had a great chat, hope you enjoy it.
Vernons Creative Department 1970.
Top row l to r: Paul Delaney, Martin Reavley, Andy Arghyrou.
Middle row l to r: Bruce Gill, creative secretary, Margot Mann.
Bottom row l to r: RF, Madeleine Thornhill, Peter Harold.
Tetley Coffee Bags.
Back to BBDO.
Yves Saint Laurant.
(A pitch they didn’t win. You can tell it’s a pitch by the models featured; Art Director Ron Brown in the dark jacket, Copywriter John Kelley in the mid-grey jacket.)
COLLETT DICKENSON PEARCE.
It’s strange, this next ad looks very gentle here, it didn’t when it ran.
Saab had just decided to put their entire ad budget behind tv ads proclaiming that they not only made cars, they made jets.
The following week Saab’s biggest rival ran a single ad that killed the campaign.
It was like a snipers bullet.
“A campaign positioning the Volvo against people carriers – rejected on the grounds of being too ‘knocking’.”
DfE Road Safety. (A poster designed to run in the gents toilets in pubs and clubs.)
(The ad ran in the programme for the NABS Charity Boxing Night.)
They look easy, for a start you’ve got John Cleese right?
P.s. A few years back Richard and I were looking into producing a book on David Abbott, we got a lot of stuff together, but we also got distracted.
So it still doesn’t exist.
You’ll hear Richard say in the podcast that if more than a thousand people want one he’ll write it.
So if you want one, copy ‘I WANT ONE RICHARD!’ into the comments, let’s get this thing done.
ARTICLES BY AND ABOUT RICHARD.
The D&AD Copy Book.