Paul Arden: a true maverick

Paul Arden died yesterday after a long illness. As executive creative director at Saatchi & Saatchi during its heyday, Arden was responsible for some of the great campaigns of British advertising, including British Airways and Silk Cut. But he will also be remembered as one of the great characters of the industry

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Paul Arden died yesterday after a long illness. As executive creative director at Saatchi & Saatchi during its heyday, Arden was responsible for some of the great campaigns of British advertising, including British Airways and Silk Cut. But he will also be remembered as one of the great characters of the industry

Arden’s unconventional management style is legendary. When a piece of work failed to meet his exacting standards, it was not unknown for him to express his displeasure by jumping up and down on it. Yet the majority of those who worked with him cite his great passion and unyielding perfectionism as utterly inspirational. Even after stepping down from his full-time agency career, Arden continued to devote time to helping students and young creatives.

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In 1993 Arden set up the film production company Arden Sutherland-Dodd. In his latter years, as well as opening a photography gallery, Arden and Anstruther, in Petworth, Sussex, he developed a highly successful second career as a writer. A weekly column in The Independent was followed by the publication of his first book, It’s Not How Good You Are, It’s How Good You Want To Be, which sold over half a million copies. This was followed by two more titles, Whatever You Think, Think The Opposite in 2006 and, last year, God Explained In A Taxi Ride.

He was a true maverick, the like of which is increasingly rare in advertising today. Creative Review would like to open up this space as an online book of condolences to mark Arden’s unique contribution. If you would like to post your tribute to Arden here, please use the comment space below or email me at patrick.burgoyne@centaur.co.uk

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