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This was my last full year at HHCL, and my last proper year of advertising showboating. A pinnacle of sorts, but every year since has had something to celebrate. Carmen

When David Atter moved from Tango to the BBC, he was quick to award HHCL the job of launching the Beeb's online shopping portal, It was tough concept to explain so we pretended there was a Ladybird book to explain it.

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The classic 1970s Ladybird book style  worked so well in 1994 for Mercury that we used its easy, explanatory style to tell's story in some press ads.

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When we approached Ladybird to ask permission to use their intellectual property, they suggested we actually write an actual Ladybird book. And so I did. The result was a 50,000 seller that you can still pick up on eBay. A proper labour of love.

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The book is now a collector's item and kick-started the Ladybird revival. Ladybird in 2000 saw themselves as catering to the under fives, seemingly oblivious to the vast heritage they owned and the huge love that the public had for Ladybird books. I encouraged them to merchandise their iconic illustrations and with Ronnie Fairweather at the helm, they have never looked back.

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We then shot a whole lot of 10 second ads simultaneously by using ten cameras in a cafe, hired ex BBC newsreader Angela Rippon and rewrote the lyrics to Bizet's Carmen. Cretaed with Jim Bolton and shot by Lloyd Stanton.

Sony Playstation: the Future of Gaming

This was a collaboration with Sony and RSA. The animation was the work of Jonny Hardstaff and all they needed was some kind of disconnected voice to keep it all together. This was the last piece of work that I was involved in that made it into the D&AD annual. Created with John Payne. 

Birdseye: Breasts

Sean was back in 2000 with three more commercials in which we embarrassed him in front of a pretty girl, continued Stephen's obsession with his mum and showed Sean as a typical older brother. Here Ben Whishaw is on the Graham Norton Show being asked about Birdseye.

Birdseye: Washing

It's pouring with rain and someone has to get the washing in. All Sean knows is that it isn't going to be him.

Birdseye: Bomb

Sean is hungry and has the perfect solution to getting fed - a younger brother. Not sure a bomb analogy would get through today. Small point: the audio is ice hockey commentary. Throughout my career I've tried to avoid football in ads. Note to creatives, there are more interesting sports.

London Eye: Pets

The client who commissioned the Go airline was now working on the London Eye and commissioned a launch poster. What could be more 'launch' than sending animals up there first to declare it safe? I'm not sure if this ever ran but we made it anyway.

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Classic Ford Magazine 

My 1964 Ford Anglia was still making headlines - this time it had not only its own feature in Classic Ford mag but its own postcard too. Underneath the polish and snazzy chrome, the car was a dog and broke down on almost every journey.

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The Alpha Course: OOH

We were asked to pull together some posters for the Alpha Course and chose to use posters in the background to tell the message more subliminally. Photos by Tomas Schelp who also shot our Martini 'flirtation' ads (1995).

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Cannes 2000

For some reason we decided to go to Cannes despite not having any work entered. By now, my Anglia was hopelessly unreliable and I'd acquired a 1968 Reliant Regal for £50 which I named Pig. I drove Pig all the way to the Croisette with Trevor Webb and Andy Taylor and met Jim Bolton there. Also in Cannes was Justin Hawkins who was hoping to sell some of his jingles to advertising people. A high point was having the concierge at the Hotel du Cap in Antibes valet park Pig.

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From rotting in a garden in Bexleyheath to table at the Gutter Bar. This was Pig's biggest (and most glamorous) journey to date, but there was better to come.

In August 2000, I helped launch the online idea bank, Idea a Day with EMI music exec David Owen, Quiet Storm copywriter Becky Clarke and primary school teacher, Rupert Kaye. The site was revolutionary compared to the  'get rich quick' land grab that was going on with the world wide web. We had some great fans - Suggs from Madness, Yahoo's Seth Godin, Malcolm McLaren, Wayne Hemingway and Justin Hawkins. Built by Fortune Cookie. 

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Sadly this lo res image is the only screengrab I have of IAD in its final iteration.

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Happily, a dotcom giving away intellectual property was big news. David soon got bored of the project but I kept it going till 2014. For the site's 10th anniversary in 2010, Radio 5 Live hosted a live breakfast phone in where I picked the best ideas sent in by listeners.

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AA Roadwatch: Radio campaign

These ads didn't need any music but it meant keeping Justin going so we made sure they had music on them.

Unknown Track - Unknown Artist
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Meeting the Archbishop

George Carey realised that the C of E needed to embrace communications and asked my then boss Rupert Howell (front row second left) to pull together some people who might be able to help. Back row far left is Francis Goodwin, founder of the Churches' Advertising Network (and now godfather to my daughter). I'm far left at the front.

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Amazon: 3 Things

Charlie Chaplin only needed a park, a policeman and a pretty girl to make comedy, so Amazon should only need three things to tell people about their services.

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Iceland: Penguins

This was part of a campaign where we decided to do about 50 different ads for Iceland. Which meant the ads had to be very cheap. Here are the Promotional Penguins. Created for HHCL+Partners with Jim Bolton. 

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Shape: Like a bloke

The thinking here was that Shape is so low in fat that women needn't feel guilty about indulging. And who, as a rule, don't feel guilty about indulging? Blokes! Simpler times. Created for HHCL+Partners with Jim Bolton and Axel Chaldecott. 

Campaign Diary

Me, Leo Sayer, David Owen from Idea a Day, all at the Groucho Club. This was the world I left in 2000 to embark on a new adventure, my own agency. First though, I had a journey that I needed to go on.

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Church ad: Happier Christmas

For Christmas 2000 we created a new image of Jesus showing him laughing.

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