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IHAVEANIDEA.ORG > ask jancy >  Can I skip ad school with a promising but unpolished book?

Can I skip ad school with a promising but unpolished book?


I’m about to enter my final year of undergrad studies at an American university and I have an inkling that copywriting is where my skills are most prevelant…I have written several ‘mock ads’ and I enjoyed it, but I also enjoy comedy writing for television…my main concern is that it seems that a budding creative, no matter how talented, can’t get a shot in this industry without a highly polished book that is the product of a pricey stint at portfolio school. What is the policy among you and your peers as to hiring writers who write talented but unpolished pieces?

intro Can I skip ad school with a promising but unpolished book?If you have a great portfolio, we don’t care if you didn’t go to an advertising school. It’s not the school or the degree that impresses. The book is the bottom line. Having said that, you’re unlikely to have a great junior book if you haven’t had any training. And your competition, that’s been to the ad school, will probably clean the floor with your raw efforts. Guess who gets the job?

There really aren’t a lot of shortcuts to a book that can get you a job. You have a year left—switch gears now and get into your school’s advertising program, if it’s a good one. Change schools if it’s not. Prepare to stay in school longer than you hoped, but know that without the foundation for success, you’ll be working at the Gap for a long time to come.

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About Jancy

'Jancy' is Janet Kestin and Nancy Vonk, Co-Founders of Swim, a unique “creative leadership training lab for advertising creatives and marketers.” Prior to Swim, Jancy was globally renowned as the Co-Chief Creative Officers of Ogilvy & Mather Toronto, a position they held for thirteen of the twenty years they were a creative duo at the agency. Over the years they've racked up Cannes Lions, Clios, One Show pencils and CA credits, and have lead their shop to two Cannes Lions Grand Prix and a Grand Clio. They've judged CA, Cannes, D&AD, the One Show, the Clios and other prestigious award shows. Creativity named them two of the top 50 creative people of 2008. Known for their outspoken, no-bullshit style and a passion for mentoring juniors, they're ready to give you advice if you're ready to take it.

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