Fierce Excerpts: The daunting task of visualizing Don Draper’s brilliant ideas.

Beckie ManleyAdvertising, Fierce Excerpts

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Now Reading | How Mad Men Co-Producer Made Don Draper’s Work Believable.

In this awesome little article, Adweek talks about Josh Weltman, a co-producer of Mad Men, who created most of the ad campaigns seen on the show. As a creative director myself, I know this must have been an incredible responsibility–and a daunting one at that.

Here were a few of the questions he was asked in the interview about the process of creating Don’s artwork. And above are some of his fun ad layouts that brought Don Draper’s ideas to life on the show.

To look authentic, did you do the ads freehand?
Usually I pulled old ads off the Web. I’d mirror the typefaces and design, then print it out and either copy it freehand or trace it. For instance, with the “Mark Your Man” lipstick ads in the first season [for the fictional brand Belle Jolie], the layout was done on the computer, but then I did the pastel freehand.

Like in a pitch to Hershey at the end of Season 6 when Don reveals he grew up in a brothel?

The advertising pitches were a great way to let the audience know what Don was thinking. It kind of let us into his secret, private world the same way that Tony Soprano would go into Dr. Melfi’s office [on HBO’s The Sopranos] and the audience would find out what he was thinking.

It seems ironic that Don’s campaigns capture his truest impulses, since many critics think of advertising as being coercive and deceptive.
I don’t think of advertising that way at all. It’s always finding the truthful insight into why people are motivated to buy one thing over another that helps me sell stuff.

Read the entire interview here: http://www.adweek.com/news/television/how-mad-men-co-producer-made-don-drapers-work-believable-164652