This week's Adland Rockstar is Preeti Verma, creative group head, Bates141.
How did you get into advertising?
When I was in college, I actually didn't know what I will be doing except that it will be something related to art, because I was not good at anything else. So I took a course for a year in commercial arts. Then I went to Ahmedabad to stay with my grandfather and I started weaving. He had a friend at Mudra, whom I met and eventually showed some of my work. He had a look at it and said, "I don’t think you can do it, but if you want you can give it a shot." I still remember the way he said it, I was very disappointed. So I started preparing my portfolio again and after three months of searching, I came to Delhi and joined Grey as a trainee.
Any memories from your first few days in advertising?
On my first day, I remember reaching office at 7:30am. I was told that I could come by 9am, but I was so enthusiastic about the new job, I decided to come early. Except the security guard, I was the only one there! I also remember, in my first week at Grey, I used to go to office just to sit in a chair and observe the people. They all seemed a bit chaotic to me. And after a few days I went to a creative director there and said, "I don’t have any work. Can I get some?" So she gave me a logo to do.
If you weren’t in advertising, what would you have been doing?
Fashion designing! I’ve done weaving as well, and its certainly more peaceful than advertising.
What is one thing you like about your job?
You get to meet so many new people, directors, photographers and there’s so much one can do everyday. Every day is a different day and one has to come up with ideas. So it is exciting.
What is one thing you don’t like about your job?
Photoshop. Art direction is not about Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator. It’s so much more than that.
One person in advertising that you’d like to have dinner with?
There’s an Italian photographer by the name of Oliviero Toscani. I would love to meet him.
One person outside advertising you’d like to have dinner with?
My boyfriend! We barely get to spend time together, since we’re so swamped in work all the time, even dinner together seems like a big thing. But on second thoughts, Orlando Bloom wouldn’t be a bad idea either. He’s pretty handsome.
How do you cheer yourself up on a bad day?
I listen to The Beatles. Music definitely cheers me up.
Three films you really enjoyed watching?
Big Fish, Inglourious Basterds, Waltz With Bashir.
One advertising campaign you really admire?
‘Life is sharing’ by T-mobile. It was staged at the Liverpool street station.
Three things you’d want with you if you were stuck on a deserted island?
Vegetarian food, vegetarian food, vegetarian food! I don’t know why, but somehow I can’t get myself to eat non-vegetarian food. So on a deserted island, I’ll have to ensure that I get vegetarian food in plenty.