Pomegranate Crits – By @MrBenGolding
By Ben Golding
I have had a few crits recently that I am beginning to think of as ‘Pomegranate Crits’. They share a lot of similarities and I am beginning to see a trend in the views on my work. But first, to explain my analogy.
Pomegranates are hard to eat, you’ve got to spend a lot of time extracting the flesh from the fruit itself, often the juice sprays around you and your nice clothes are left covered in a reddish hue. The high-level CDs are damn hard to get to also, often you can be left without a reason why they can’t even see your book, let alone tell you what they think about it. To see a really good CD, someone who is at the top of their game, you first try to be really nice to them and the people in their office. When that fails you try to be really clever, how can I get referred to them form someone. Finally, you often have to be really crafty. How can you get to see them in a non-traditional way. I think quite often the best creatives use a mixture of the three. Do whatever it takes and get your book in front of them, even if it means going to their local on a Friday after work and plying them with drinks.
Once you sit down with these titans of industry, you’ll most likely find that they are actually really nice. They are sweet. They are the flesh of the pomegranate. As Ethan and Owen acutely observed, the bigger the paycheck, the nicer the critique. Awesome, they love you. They’re probably going to hire you.
Hang on one second, hold your horses there. You’ve found the pip in the flesh. Theres a but, theres always a but. Your book is really really good, BUT. This is the bit you crunch down on or you find yourself picking out of your teeth. The hard truth at the core of your book. It’s not great yet. That seems to be my main piece of feedback. You’ve got a really good book, its just not great yet. And then they say some more nice things about your work and ask you to come back.
I suppose that’s one of the things that makes a good creative director, they know how to give a feedback sandwich, good-bad-good. You feel like they like you, but also you have some things to really work on. I think we need to do this more often in the studio, often its either just negative or positive, build me up and knock me down more!
*Chef-bonus!* It would not be my SCAB unless I mentioned something to help you with actual pomegranates. To avoid getting splatted with red juice, try pulling the flesh apart underwater, in a bowl. Works every time. Don’t do this with creative directors, even if it also works for that.