Significant seven: best creatives

Over the next few days, we are publishing highlights from this year’s Mumbrella Annual.

1. Ant Keogh, Clemenger BBDO Melbourne
Rivals snipe that Clems Melbourne’s creative department is so big and stable that it lacks dynamism, and creatives must wait in line for time with the agency’s ECD. But the reality is that Keogh has pulled off the seemingly impossible – strengthening Clems’ already formidable creative reputation with a consistent train of world class work. Said to be a handful to work with – but a genuine genius.

2.Ted Horton, Big Red
It is easy to write off Horton’s work for Coles, Westpac and JetStar as cheaply produced, lowest common denominator fodder for the masses. But the veteran has had more impact on the market than any individual creative this year, taking on massive accounts from under the noses of multinational giants almost on his own. After taking over the Coles business from DDB in March, Horton won Westpac with Lavender in May. A true one-off who is not afraid of making enemies, it will be interesting to see who he upsets next year.

3. Micah Walker, freelance
When Walker left Publicis Mojo Sydney in July he left a big hole in the creative department – one which Mojo’s co-chairman Craig Davis is himself struggling to fill. A hands-on craftsman who loves to get close to the work, his touch was there for all to see in Mojo’s work for Coca-Cola’s Burn energy drink, James Boag, Toyota and Hahn Super Dry.
Talked of in the same breath as Ant Keogh, every creative in town wants to work with him. And every agency in town will be fighting over his signature. Place your bets now on who snaps him up in 2012.

4. Justin Drape and Scott Nowell, The Monkeys
It’s hard to knock The Monkeys’ creative output this year. And it hasn’t all been about The Ship Song Project, as good as that was. Nowell and Drape have overseen some impressive work for Parmalat, Ikea and The Sunday Telegraph, and can claim to run the hottest young creative department in Australia. Drape took over from Rob Belgiovane as chairman of the Caxtons in October.

5. Dylan Harrison, DDB Sydney
After 10 very successful years in the UK, followed by less than a year at Saatchi & Saatchi New Zealand, Harrison returned home in September last year to DDB Sydney. Since his arrival he has produced some of the best ads of the year for Volkswagen, a client he produced some of its best ever work for at DDB London. The Telstra rebrand campaign was polished. McDonald’s, however, needs some of his love.

6. Dave Bowman and Matty Burton, Whybin\TBWA\Sydney
Installed in May 2010, Bowman and Burton have already proved that the joint ECD structure can work.
They have been producing some interesting work for uninspiring brands such as NRMA Insurance and RaboDirect. The Virgin rebrand was slick, but expect Matty and Dave to really stretch their legs next year once Whybins has bedded down its new clients.

7. Duncan Marshall, Droga5
Marshall’s work for Lynx, Renault, VB, Crown, Cascade Brewery and has shown that, on its day, Droga5’s creative product can live up to the hype. Having joined in April last year after four years in Droga’s New York office, Marshall has formed an effective partnership with creative chairman David Nobay. It will be interesting to see where Marshall takes Droga’s new clients – particularly Kraft – next year.


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