Aug 16, 2023

Award-winning art director Brian Campbell dies at 56

Campbell produced famous campaigns for the likes of Smirnoff, BT, Sony PlayStation and Thomas Cook.

Brian Campbell (top left) and some of the campaigns he worked on.
Brian Campbell (top left) and some of the campaigns he worked on.

Award-winning art director and creative director Brian Campbell has died aged 56.

Campbell started his career in 1991 at Saatchi & Saatchi but within a year he and his copywriter Paul Falla were poached by then-Lowe Howard-Spink (today MullenLowe). During his tenure, he began work on the Smirnoff "Through the bottle" campaign, producing the award-winning "Ducks" poster. Two of his Smirnoff posters are now exhibited at the V&A.

When Falla left to join Simons Palmer in 1994, Campbell teamed up with Ben Priest. The two went on to win accolades for their work, such as for Heineken, Reebok, Vauxhall and, most notably, Olympus cameras. In 1996 Campbell won three D&AD silver pencils in one night for the duo's Olympus "Fanatics only please" press campaign.

In 1999 Campbell and Priest left Lowe to become group heads at TBWA, where their output included "It's time to leave the country" for Thomas Cook, Holsten Pils ads starring Ray Winstone and "The third place" for Sony PlayStation.

When Priest left in 2004 to become executive creative director at Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe, Campbell teamed up with Patrick McLelland and later Phil Martin.

In 2005 Campbell and Martin moved to Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO and the pair went on to produce the hugely successful "Adam and Jane" campaign for BT, featuring Love Actually star Kris Marshall. Loved by the public, the campaign ran for six years and produced over 40 ads in that time.

Recently, Campbell left the ad industry and returned to his native Kings Lynn. He is survived by his ex-wife Lizzy and daughters Hannah and Eve.

Adam & Eve/DDB creative founder Priest said, "Brian was a gentle, softly spoken man, with a fierce creative talent. He improved the output of every agency he worked at. He was a true creative's creative, respected and loved by everyone who worked with him."

Campaign UK

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