Eat Ramen Noodles Until Your You’re 30

Wieden’s Mark Fenske, by his own admission, is “out of bounds idealistic.”
We can find evidence of this in the poetry he dedicates to his VCU Adcenter students:
Forget the money.
Pay no attention to it.
Go after what your inside wants–the work.
Love the making.
Screw the mammon.
You can’t eat it.
You can live on work. You’ll see.
“Screw Fenske. He’s an idealist.”
I can hear you think it.
You’re right.
I’m out of bounds idealistic here.
You have to be.
Don’t do this if you aren’t.
I’m an idealistic person, but I can’t say advertising is worthy of these lofty sentiments. If you want to be an artist, then rock on with your bad self. Advertising, on the other hand, is a business, and in business a healthy respect for money can be a good thing. Personally, I’d rather see a peer strive for money, than for something as hollow as an industry award. Sure, the Zen-like among us may find a higher calling in advertising, but for most it’s a way to hone their art and writing skills while getting paid a decent wage.



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.