Let's do lunch

Inside the world of advertising
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The Independent Online
Having lost his goods and his children, the Bible's paragon of patience, Job, prepared himself for the worst by shaving his head. Much the same preparation was made by Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO's gloomy creative pair, Tom Carty and Walter Campbell, last week, as they faced the prospect of the 1996 D&AD (Designers and Art Directors Association) awards at Park Lane's cavernous Grosvenor House. The aerodynamic crops might have brought some luck, because their apocalyptic "twister" ad for Volvo won the only gold pencil of the night. Did they smile about it? Did they heck: that award was for Tony Kaye's extraordinary direction.

Meanwhile, Paul Marciano Advertising picked up four silver pencils for its Guess Jeans work: the spoof detective film directed by Andy Morahan through the production company Great Guns. Rumour has it that Hollywood liked the Guess ad so much it wants to make a full-length movie. Maybe next year they can add an Oscar to their pencil collection. Tony "gold pencil" Kaye, who has leanings towards making movies, must be spitting blood.

It's not only cows, sheep and sharks that feel cut up by Damien Hirst. The D&AD president, Graham Fink, has good reason to feel disappointed by the artist-turned-taxidermist. Fink optimistically announced some time ago that the judges for this year's awards would include the novelists Martin Amis and Will Self, the comedians Bob Mortimer and Vic Reeves and the artists Gilbert and George, and Damien Hirst. "Who better to judge illustration than Damien Hirst?" Fink had said. But Hirst didn't accept the invitation. And some of those who did accept didn't take the job terribly seriously. Mortimer only popped in for the final round of judging, and to hand out awards with Reeves. One celebrity judge who deserves praise for carrying out his duties in full, however, is solid, reliable Griff Rhys Jones.

Judges lined up for next year include the scribblers James Joyce and Tolstoy, cartoonists Vincent van Gogh and Edvard Munch, and funny men Oscar Wilde and Griff Rhys Jones. Of course, the D&AD can't promise they'll all turn up!

If the president, Graham Fink, felt let down by the judges, he didn't let it show: his speech at the D&AD awards won hearty applause - from a table at the front where he'd installed his parents.

Call the RSPB! McVities is preparing to wipe out penguins! The snacks company is planning to eliminate the birds from its advertising. Rather like Thatch with her poll tax, the beastly biscuit maker is trying this out on Scotland and northern England first. In place of the birds will be a flock of celebrities wearing big yellow beaks. These include the Arsenal footy star Ian Wright - which shows how far the company has left behind its funny-walking feathered friends: in the old days they'd have called up Chris Waddle (geddit?).

ALEX SOMERSET

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