A blog for the New Zealand creative advertising industry, now at www.campaignbrief.com/nz. Email news to: michael@campaignbrief.com

Wednesday, October 04, 2006


Karen Maurice O'Leary, just two year's out of completing her Axis Ad School course and a rising creative star at TBWA\ Whybin, has been invited to judge at next year's D&AD awards in London, one of up to five Kiwi judges to be invited over the coming weeks.
O'Leary (29) is already a multiple award winner for work she has produced in partnership with her creative colleague Verity Butt. She has been an integral part of successful TBWA\Whybin campaigns such as 'Be the Ball' for adidas and 'Failed Messages' for Multiple Sclerosis Society, which have both received international accolades.
"TBWA\Whybin is an agency that encourages input from everyone, and values that input accordingly. Being mentored by TBWA\Whybin Group CD Andy Blood has helped my development enormously, as it has for all our creatives, and that development has culminated in the invitation to be a judge at D&AD," she says.
"The thought of witnessing the sheer volume of excellence produced by the advertising world's creative community and being part of the judging process at D&AD gives me goose-bumps, so I'm both excited and thankful," she adds.
TBWA\Whybin's ground breaking outdoor media campaign for adidas, known as 'Be the Ball', picked up a Yellow Pencil at D&AD in May earlier this year, the only New Zealand agency to have received such an award.
O'Leary says that working at TBWA\Whybin has been the perfect start for her career, and that working in tandem with Butt on the TBWA\ 'Young Bloods' scheme this year (a mentoring scheme designed to foster young talent throughout the TBWA\ global network) has been an ideal environment to develop her skills. Group CD Andy Blood is equally enthusiastic about the value derived from the 'Young Bloods' scheme.
"As an agency we strive to grow our talent from within, and Karen's meteoric rise to the top of the judging tree is clear evidence of that - we're thrilled for her and what this means for the value attached to her creative judgment and insights," he says.


Blogger Anto said...

Wicked. Well done.

Did anyone else feel that the MS 'Failed Messages' was the wrong way round? Red at the top, green at the bottom? Shouldn't it have been red at the bottom, for the failed messages to the legs? Any thoughts? Perhaps I don't understand MS.

Not trying to detract or distract from her achievement but it just reminded me is all.

2:12 PM NZDT

Anonymous Anonymous said...

yes! I totally thought it should have the other way around - i.e. red in the legs that aren't responding to the unaffected brain...

2:45 PM NZDT

Blogger roffe said...

Congratulations! You rock! Have fun. Cheers, Will

2:50 PM NZDT

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well what is this if not a forum to discuss ads, 2:50?

3:15 PM NZDT

Anonymous Anonymous said...

about time we got some more young ladies in doing well in the industry. that are comiing through the system. cool.

4:31 PM NZDT

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Debate's always healthy. But it doesn't always look like a debate on the blog.

However we have a letter forwarded to us from the MS client written by a lady who saw the adshell and realised 'that's me, that's what I've got', then she knew who to seek help from, and she did. And this is after months of failed diagnosis through the medical system. (Will get this posted. To end the debate.)

So I don't think we got it the wrong way round. Signals pass both ways-from the nerves in our feet to our brain, and from the brain to the muscles in our legs. Both through the CNS. And with MS both are disrupted.

For me it's as simple as 'brain says stop, legs keep going', but it is open to multiple interpretation which is fine.

Either way, Karen and Verity do incredible work for all our clients.They're our future. And it's a really bright future.

Well done Karen. And Verity.

Andy Blood.

5:02 PM NZDT

Anonymous Anonymous said...

How pissed would I be if I were Verity right now.

9:14 PM NZDT

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Regardless of whether or not it works, the MS ad is pretty average awards wise. There have been plenty of other campaigns for MS that blow it out of the water creatively - light switches for example, another on, off (read stop, go) idea. However, nice to hear that it did the job of what advertising a charity is supposed to do - before it wins awards - HELP PEOPLE.

But does being part of one good ad (Ball) mean you\'re an expert? Or more importantly a good judge?

That is what should be up for debate.

When the Karate Kid won his first fight, do you think Mr Miyage thought he was ready? No, he had more montages to do.

9:46 PM NZDT

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wrote a retail ad for a car once, someone saw it and realised 'that's me, that's what I want', then he knew who to seek the car from, and he did. And this is after months of failed searching for a car.

Unfortunately that was the only car that Rover sold that year and went into liquidation.

I won't be entering the EFFIES. But I'm off to find a serious disease that people care about, like cancer.

9:51 PM NZDT

Anonymous Jello Biafra said...

While over in the UK, can you please pop into a duty free store and pick me up a carton of Marlboro, a nice 16 year old single malt, and some Lego.

I asked Andy to do it while he was 'having lunch' in LA with Lee Clow (like, dude, whatever) the other week, but the useless bugger either forgot or snubbed me.

9:34 AM NZDT

Anonymous Anonymous said...


10:05 AM NZDT

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who came up with be the ball the list of names is kinda long.

1:18 PM NZDT

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Andrew Blood,

Please can you stop doing the fingers at everyone in your PR shots. You are not 14 anymore.

Thank you,

Northern monkey.

6:17 PM NZDT


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