Advertising Concept Book by Barry, Pete [Thames & Hudson, 2012] (Paperback) 2nd Edition [Paperback] Paperback
by Barry (Author)
Publisher: Thames & Hudson,2012
Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
By Book Lover on August 4, 2008
The point of this book is that the concept is king. Focus on great ideas, and only then should you focus on crafting them with whatever tools you need – PhotoShop, InDesign, and so on. To illustrate (excuse the pun) the point, every single ad in the book has been done as a pencil sketch (or comp, or scamp, or rough, depending on your preferred terminology). These sketches alone are beautifully done. They cover many of the most famous ads of all time, and they do make their point well: the great ideas shine through.
The book is broken up into expected sections: Print, TV, Taglines, Strategy and Ideas, Integrated, and so on. There is detailed coverage of different types of strategy, a series of `tools’ to help generate ideas, and lots and lots of examples – including some (often very good) from Barry’s own students. The author makes some very good distinctions. For example, many advertising teachers insist that students avoid puns. Barry draws the distinction between various types of headline that use bad puns and other headlines – many of them classic ads – that use strong double-meanings. As I think George Felton says in his great book (Advertising: Concept and Copy), “It’s got to cut both ways” – in other words, both meanings need to work. Anyway, it’s a worthwhile discussion.
Barry clearly has a lot of experience both in agencies and in teaching. Sometimes he over-explains the point, but I actually don’t mind this because at least it means it’s well understood.
There’s a lot that you’d find in other good advertising books, like “Hey Whipple” and “Advertising: Concept and Copy” but there’s enough new material to make it worth adding to your library. I’ve been getting an enormous amount from it already.