This week, Shayondeep Pal, creative director at Lowe Lintas, Delhi, recalls his first week in advertising and tells Campaign India about his favourite project since then.
1. How did you get into advertising? What’s your career path been like (do elaborate on agencies and brands worked on and people worked with)?
At the end of my journalism stint at IIMC(Mass Comm), I realised I lack the drive of a journo to take up a cause armed with a Cello Gel. I told my prof and she landed me an internship at McCann, Delhi. That’s how it started.
I’ve been quite steady. I think it comes from ‘loyalty pays’ attitude of a conservative middle-class Bong. I’ve worked in just three agencies – McCann, Grey and now Lowe Lintas. I’ve worked on General Motors, Nestle, Reckitt, Dominos, Greenlam, Halonix, Hindustan Times, Maruti and now Micromax.
2. Do you remember your first week in advertising? Could you describe it?
I was asked to copy check back panels of Nestum Baby Food packaging. By the end of it, I knew more about baby care than all mothers put together. I wish Derek O’Brien had conducted a quiz on Baby Food back then.
3. What’s been your favourite/most satisfying campaign you’ve worked on till date? Could you elaborate on the process of making it?
There are lots. But my favourite is a campaign I did at Grey for Halonix bulbs which never ran on TV. The current campaign of Micromax Qube was a great experience. We shot with live ammunition. On the last day of the shoot, there were more bullet shells on the ground than cigarette butts.
4. Any international TVCs/campaigns you’d have loved to have your name on the credit list for?
‘Prison Ship’ TVC for Stella Artois done by Vince Squib and Jonathan Glazer of Academy Films. I would have loved to see my name on the credit list.
5. Any Indian TVCs/campaigns you’d have loved to have your name on the credit list for?
Definitely, the ‘Get Used to Tension’ campaign by Neo Sports done by Varma of Nirvana.
6. What’s the one thing you love about your job?
Come to think of it, it’s actually a blank canvas for a creative guy despite a planner’s brilliant brief. The feeling of ‘blank’ or the ‘unknown’ is what I love about my job.
7. What’s the one thing you don’t love about it?
9am meetings fixed by ‘enthu-cutlet’ account executives who try everything possible to accommodate the client’s gruelling travel schedule.
8. Who’s the one person in advertising you’d love to have a working dinner with?
My wife wins hands down. Incidentally, she’s with JWT.
9. What do you like to do outside of advertising?
I love the hills and I love driving. Now marry the two.