Marcelo Andrade joined the Preliminary Jury at AD STARS for the second time this year, where he was one of 240 creatives responsible for choosing this year’s finalists.
We spoke with Marcelo – who is Senior Creative Art Director at Binder in Brazil – about life in Sao Paulo, his love for music, and his unique creative process. His work has been recognised by the Cannes Lions, One Show, El Ojo, Wave Festival, Lusófonos Awards and many others.
As an independent agency, Binder believes “frameless creativity” has the power to make brands and the world more interesting. It operates in six Brazilian states, sharing knowledge from each region and segment across the network.
Can you tell us a little about you: when did you first discover your passion for creativity?
I think I always loved to create new things. When I was a kid, I enjoyed writing stories, composing music, taking photos and recording videos for me and my friends. It's amazing to bring some ideas to life. It's awesome when someone recognizes your creativity.
At a certain point in my life, some friends told me that I should study advertising, and I realized that maybe, they were right. So, I've been working in this industry for the last thirteen years.
Where are you working right now? Do you have any interesting projects underway?
Today, I'm a Senior Art Director working for Binder, an independent advertising agency in Rio de Janeiro. When I'm not creating for our clients, I'm trying to produce some music in my home studio. I want to launch an EP, but I confess to you I'm two years late.
How does the city where you live inspire you?
Well, I have to tell you that I live in a city full of life, people and culture. Rio de Janeiro – it's not only a place with natural beauty. It is a mirror that reflects all of Brazil's culture. If you would like to feel what it is to be a Brazilian, and if you could only choose one city, come to Rio.
The energy, colors, and easy-going way of life inspire us. I believe that's why many Brazilian artists live here, and so many different art expressions were born here. We, Cariocas, like to mix things. And as you know, when you mix things together, you're creating something new.
Do you think the pandemic will change the creative industry in any positive ways?
I believe that the more difficult the times we live in, the more creativity will be needed.
Brazil has one of the largest economies in the world, but it also has one of the highest levels of social inequality. This hard scenario, which we must avoid and change, creates a demand for creativity, which is the only tool that everyone can freely use to change their lives. To earn money when you don't have a regular job. To find a way when you don't have a road.
So, yes, I think the pandemic is changing the creative industry. And for me, one of the biggest changes has to do with the way we hire talents. It doesn't matter anymore where you are. It doesn't matter anymore the time zone you work in. You can work in a big agency in New York, making money in Dollars and living in the interior of a small city in Brazil with a low cost of living and high quality of life.
This is a small change that creates a new disposition in the workforce globally. It is amazing.
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned over the past year, which has been such a strange and chaotic time?
This answer is a cliché, but I learned that family and friends are everything.
Do you have a creative process: is there a certain way that you approach a brief?
Well, yes, I have. The difference between an art director and an artist is the limitations. I'm not talking about creative ability. I'm talking about the limitations that developing a communication campaign requires. So, that's my starting point.
I like to think in this way: first, I have a blank sheet of paper. Then, let's put everything that is crucial to solving the clients' problems in this paper. So, after doing this I will look for the blank space that survived and I try to fill it with some creative ideas that would make it interesting. So, usually, that's my process: I start with the limitations.
How many times have you judged AD STARS, and what do you enjoy most about judging this festival?
This is the second time I will judge AD STARS. And it's an honor to me to be part of a jury with so many talented professionals.
To be judging AD STARS is like visiting a new place. It is like walking down a city street I don't know yet. At every corner, I discover a new restaurant or a new local artist.
That's my feeling when I'm judging AD STARS. As an international festival, with the presence of works created for professionals from different cultures, I learn a lot. I discover new perspectives for the same problems I have in my routine as a creative. That's what I like most.
Marcelo Andrade was involved in the first stage of judging the AD STARS 2021 Awards. The winners of AD STARS 2021 will be unveiled on 27th August.