So, while Fred was the highlight of the week in Korea, lot's more actually did happen.
For starters, judging creative work with (mostly) creative directors.
For a natural introvert like me, this kind of thing is always heavilly laced with trepidation.
But to tell the truth, while I couldn't tell you if this is always the case at this kind of thing, everyone was really friendly, really good natured and at no point made me feel like 'just the planner'. In fact, there didn't seem to be any clash of ego.
(That said, after judging had finished and we went out to dinner, two people said, "Oh your a planner, I didn't realise". So perhaps it was a case of mistaken identity)
Folks were polite and while, in some cases, really wanted to make their case strongly, there was a massive level of mutual respect, give and take and folks really listened to each other.
Obviously there were a couple passionate debates, but even then, the mood was great.
It did uncover very different points of view on what makes great work and what doesn't. Exposed here.
I think some of that is about the kind of work you do and your cultural perspective.
Some seem to see great ideas that transcended 'advertising' others saw 'advertising ideas'.
Some celebrated the core creative idea, others were entranced more with craft. Most, I think, were looking for both.
Some wanted to see stuff that had really made a difference, while others looked for originality of idea.
But everyone respected the work that had gone into the entries and wanted to do them justice.
There's Fred carefully considering the merits of Ducks farting fire.
One massive observation from on my part is that, it seems, the more successful you are, the less you seem to have to prove.
People were passionate, but they left their egos at the door. I guess when you've achieved all the stuff these people have achieved, there just isn't any need to try too hard.
As far as the work is concerned. While the majority of the entries were average at best, the top 10% were really, really great.
I've noticed before that while folks in Europe talk about 'social media' and 'creative ideas' rather than 'advertising, in Asia, they're just getting on with it. It seems to me that the infectious dynamism and energy of the region, without the same baggage of 'traditional agency and marketing' means that, at their best, they're liberated to make full use of the endless canvas we have now.
Of course, I was only seeing the best of the best, and many talked of the conventions in their region.
But one of the biggest conventions in the UK is the notion that agency folks, especially planners I guess, are in great demand and can build a great career in Asia because they know better. If you think that, think again. I'm unconvinced that Western folks have anything to teach the dymamic Asian markets.
I suspect it's the other way around. There's opportunity, but I think it's about becoming part of something great.
Like the guys last week, it seems to me it's about leaving your ego at the door.