Damon Stapleton

Chief Creative Officer at DDB New Zealand
Location:New Zealand

Profile

Damon went to New Zealand to work with his old partner Shane Bradnick and make some secret creative sauce. Before that he was ECD at Saatchi and Saatchi Australia, before that, Group ECD of TBWA Hunt Lascaris and Global ECD of Standard Bank. He's the only ECD in Africa to win a D&AD Black Pencil and the annual Directory Big Won Rankings lists him as one of the most successful ECDs of 2016, based on international award wins...
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The worst laugh is at the back of the room

One of the most painful things you can ever see is a comic bombing. It is like watching somebody else being kicked in the balls but somehow you feel the pain. This was happening to me about a week ago...

By Damon Stapleton 11 Apr 2018

Be somewhere

I want you to imagine I am telling you the story of Goldilocks and the three bears. In your head, run it through. Picture all the details, the twists and turns and the big ending...

By Damon Stapleton 28 Mar 2018

Respect the pain

I would like to talk about a feeling. A very strange and specific feeling that you can get, being a creative in advertising. To explain it, I will take you back a few years, to a job interview I had in London...

By Damon Stapleton 7 Mar 2018

Advertising was never supposed to be a generic medicine

The first thing advertising has to do is be noticed. It would seem right now many are forgetting this. If an ad isn't noticed the rest doesn't matter, does it...

By Damon Stapleton 7 Feb 2018

Aloha, porn, missiles and the unchanging human race

So, it's a balmy morning on 13 January 2018 in Hawaii. You can smell the hibiscus and you can see the early morning light dancing off those over-sized waves only the Pacific Ocean can bring. Life is good. As you stroll along the beach your phone makes a strange noise. You look down and squint a little to read the screen. It says that there are incoming missiles about to hit and the alarm is not a drill...

By Damon Stapleton 31 Jan 2018

Maybe we should try 'fun' this year

Last year was a very serious year. People were very serious. They were serious about where advertising is going...

By Damon Stapleton 17 Jan 2018

The magic of Coltrane and the farm

In December 2017, our creative department got to visit Gibbs Farm. It is a sprawling Willy-Wonka type meadow filled with exotic animals and dotted with some of the most gigantic and beautiful sculptures the world has ever seen...

By Damon Stapleton 10 Jan 2018

"Like chicken soup for a dead man. It can't hurt"

I have been a creative for 25 years. It is all I have ever done to make a living. First as a photographer, and then as a creative in advertising. So, after a quarter of a century, I thought this would be a good time to write to my younger creative self about what I believe are the rules for successful creative living...

By Damon Stapleton 13 Dec 2017

Listen to the dead man talking

On 17 January 1977, Gary Gilmore was executed by firing squad for two murders he committed in Utah. His final words: "Let's do it"...

By Damon Stapleton 8 Nov 2017

The human pattern

Saturday night. My wife, Minky, had informed me we were going to a cabaret with some friends. The cabaret was called The Sound of Falling Stars...

By Damon Stapleton 4 Oct 2017

The preachers and the busker

A couple of days ago I was walking down a windy Queen Street, the main street in Auckland. It is a street every port city has...

By Damon Stapleton 27 Sep 2017

Ideas: They are not for everyone

Narratives that don't make sense. If you have been in advertising for more than 10 minutes, you will have seen this before...

By Damon Stapleton 20 Sep 2017

How to make a Neo-Nazi sad

When the tragedy of Charlottesville was only a couple of days old, I came across something from all that sadness that made me smile...

By Damon Stapleton 13 Sep 2017

What if the right answer is wrong?

The thing about process is that it leaves very little room for madness, obsession and mistakes. To be human...

By Damon Stapleton 26 Jul 2017

Cannes. Strangers at the circus

There were two boats in Cannes. They were part of the seemingly endless cavalcade of behemoth yachts moored in the South of France for the Cannes advertising festival of creativity...

By Damon Stapleton 28 Jun 2017

The wisdom of taxi drivers

Many years ago, I was in New York for the first time. I was in a yellow cab I had seen in a hundred movies. It was like cinematic deja vu...

By Damon Stapleton 14 Jun 2017

Perhaps a little more Roger Moore?

OK, so this one isn't really about advertising. Let me explain...

By Damon Stapleton 7 Jun 2017

Judging D&AD: The hustle and strive

Where do you find inspiration? As it happens, I found it on a windswept balcony overlooking Shoreditch...

By Damon Stapleton 3 May 2017

The postcard is never the place

I had been walking with my new friend Alexander Kalchev through Chinatown in San Francisco. I had visited these streets before in my head...

By Damon Stapleton 26 Apr 2017

We need to leave the gardens of Versailles

Charles Maurice de Talleyrand, French foreign minister, was a fascinating character...

By Damon Stapleton 19 Apr 2017

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