This week we welcome the incredible talent that is Martha Riley to the show. Martha has forged her career at some awesome agencies working on some incredible brands. Her stand out billboards however have all seem to come for the Airline industry.
Once Hugh got all the airline gags away in the safety announcement, we managed to get behind why Martha loves the Outdoor medium, and what makes it first class [I can’t help myself now].
She took us on a trip [sorry] down memory lane with some fine examples of Outdoor work from her early days while on placement at Saatchi’s for the BA client. It happened to be her first billboard campaign too which was a great take off point [OK I’m stopping now]. Martha told us the story of a young account manager @CarrieHindmarsh – who went on to become a CEO – taking the risk of presenting it to the client. Without the bravery of a fantastic account person, this billboard would not have seen the light of day.
We moved on to Martha’s work on Virgin Atlantic while she was freelancing at Rainey Kelly. This is where we she worked up one of her most famous ads that actually trolled BA one of her first clients…. Famous because she very nearly got the word Shite into an ad.
We then talked about another awesome poster for Virgin around their new Caribbean routes. Amazingly well crafted in terms of art direction and typography.
We then talked about a great campaign featuring Dumbo and a Moose. Martha talked very passionately about the late Nancy Fouts, model maker and artist who had an awesome irreverent sense of humour and all round genius. You should read her obituary here.
We chatted briefly about some other 18-30, Silk Cut and others.
After taking some time out to have a family, Martha found her route back into advertising came from an unlikely source.
Her son was set some homework to design a poster for London 2012… The creative director inside was itching to get involved and worked on her own!
Getting back to her professional life we talked about Martha’s work at BBH for Dulux and Guardian among others. Then on to Ogilvy where Martha again knocked some amazing work out of the park… going full circle we end on an incredibly topical ad for British Airways around the World Cup.
We had such a great chat with Martha, and we could have spoken for hours… but she had to go and get her visa as she’s off on a new adventure to Silicon Valley!