My wife had the idea a while ago.
‘You ought to start an agency that does advertising the way it used to,’ she said. ‘Well-written press ads, clever posters, TV ads that are better than the programmes.’
‘You could call it something like The Old School. Maybe use an actual old school as your office.’
I liked the idea, but said it was probably a non-starter.
Apart from not having the capital or the connections to start an agency, I feared that such an enterprise would be seen today as a creative Jurassic Park, inhabited by old dinosaurs that should no longer be around.
So I did nothing about it.
I’ve just learned, however, that three advertising luminaries – two of whom are older than me – have decided to give it a go.
Adrian Holmes, John O’Driscoll and Seamus O’Farrell have announced the launch of Ancient & Modern, ‘London’s oldest agency’. And they announced it, not with a tweet, an Instagram post, a vlog or a pop-up ad, but with a beautifully-crafted print ad:
Warmth, wit, gentle self-deprecation: the qualities which used to characterise the very best of advertising copywriting are all there. The neat captions which go with the individual images reminded me of one of the classic ads for Albany Life – and then I remembered that Adrian Holmes wrote that brilliant campaign back in the day.
Writing of this quality serves to show up the poverty of most current print ads. If there’s any justice, they should be inundated with approaches from clients wanting work like this.
I really hope they succeed – even though I’ll never hear the end of it from my wife if they do.