Gary Marjoram, Art Director, MullenLowe, London
It’s week six in the house/office/school/pub/gym/thing I exist in. I don’t know if I’m working from home or home-ing from work… it’s all just space that changes shape based on need now. This is a picture of me in our hair salon, which had been my office 3 minutes before and the family lunch table 2 hours previous to that.
I know it’s now a well-trodden cliché but at MullenLowe London we’re finding that distance is in fact making us feel closer. Via Teams; deep conversations are springing up between people who for years had swapped only a nod. It’s a fantastic leveller – clients and CEOs alike seem less scary when you can (literally) see their dirty laundry or half-finished DIY projects. The window into their real life fuels my inner voyeur. Don’t pretend you’re different.
I’m one of the lucky ones: I’m busy. I’m working with my creative partner, John Dean on our ever-growing ‘stay at home’ OOH campaign and we’ve also recently begun inspiring men around the world to get fancy with their fur for Wilkinson Sword. If I could grow a good one, I’d have a very different picture to share with you.
I’m probably most proud though, of work that wasn’t done by me but was done by our Agency. We’ve been relentlessly producing stuff for the NHS and the government’s COVID response. I live just behind the Homerton Hospital and the exhausted and overwhelmed people that walk by in their scrubs and crocs and the constant sirens are a reminder that this isn’t just a bank holiday on loop. I’m proud that what we are doing right now is important.
Whilst we are definitely not key workers I feel we are doing key work. Brands are proving their value to businesses over and over again as brilliant storytelling, the use of context and radical thinking allows businesses – against all odds - to stay afloat. For us every brief no matter how big or small has always been important. What’s different now is it feels like everyone agrees.
There is a lot I miss but WFH or HFW isn’t so bad. If all I’m worried about is running out of wine or keeping up the blatant charade that I understand my daughter’s school work enough to teach; then I’m doing OK.