{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "Why are copywriters better conceptual thinkers than art directors?", "post_id": "60eb514d9e0fca0022199080", "reply_count": 24, "vote_count": 5, "bowl_id": "591a223804ff130016b983f4", "bowl_name": "Copywriters" }

Why are copywriters better conceptual thinkers than art directors?

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They are not.


Cd 1 is right, they are not. Both partners, AD and CD are suppose to be top conceptual thinkers. But, I will say that you will encounter some art directors who should be designers.


And some copywriters that should be carpenters.


It’s because many designers think they’re ADs, and they get AD titles. Agencies encourage this by conflating design and art direction. I say this as a former AD. I switched to copy because of this.


I think you might be thinking this because often times designers get the art director title with very little training in insight-driven, big-idea thinking. But, this isn’t universally true. That said, some of the best designers are very conceptual. They are trained to tell the brand’s story in the simplest, most interesting way.


I get where you’re going. I’ve heard multiple people remark that more copywriters make high-level positions because of their ability to think big, or tell grander stories. That said, I don’t fully buy it. As a copywriter, my best art directors are worth their weight in gold.


A lot of the work starts as writing. Good teams do this first part together.


The ego on this one...


Art directors are 3x better conceptual thinkers than copywriters.


Ain’t a lot of big ideas floating around on either side of the table these days.


Ask the waiter for a new table

The simplest and truest answer is that’s where our value lies. An AD can roll in and be like “I made a this thing pretty” regardless of whether they had a single iota of thought in regards to the concept. Writers can’t show up with a book of pretty sentences in large font. It don’t work that way.


Who tf said that???


What pray tell is your sweeping generalisation based on

Not all

This seems to be true at my shop. But it’s probably because my shop specializes in mid-funnel content for automotive. That means we’re often working with the same assets for several years, and using them in different touchpoints. So essentially the creative part becomes, what does the headline say? Since we can’t change the image, the conceptual angle comes from the copy. Unfortunately this does bleed into other work where we can actually create original assets. Like if we’re doing video … the ADs seem to think they’re only in charge of the pretty pictures, and I feel like the hard lifting is being left to me as the writer. Anyway, this is a very specific example particular to my agency. But to me, your statement has some merit to it.

They’re not.

Words can be abstract and brought to life in a million different ways. Visual artists tend to think in terms of how an idea will look, jumping to colors, type, imagery, sooner.

Because CW stare at a blank screen and have to make it an idea.

So do art directors.

My partner is really well read, with an amazing command of language while I always think picture first, have a keen eye for design and love the subtle nuances of art direction. We joke we should do each other's jobs but when it comes down to it, I'm shit at Photoshop and his dyslexia means lots of grammar mistakes. I guess what I'm saying is you should both pitch in equally on everything, not just concepts but scripts and design too.

I don’t feel like either role is inherently better at concepting. But I have experienced ADs steamrolling over CW ideas as though CWs can’t concept (so in other words, the opposite).

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