Staff Reporters
Jun 6, 2024

Creative Minds: Michelle Walsh's favourite work was inspired by her grandparents

The Leo Burnett creative explains while the campaign was not her most awarded piece of work or even her most creative, it holds a special place in her heart.

Creative Minds: Michelle Walsh's favourite work was inspired by her grandparents
In Creative Minds, we ask APAC creatives a long list of questions, from serious to silly, and ask them to pick 11 to answer. (Why 11? Just because.) Want to be featured?

Name: Michelle Walsh

Origin: Melbourne, Australia

Places lived/worked: Melbourne and Queensland

Pronouns: She/her


  • Creative director, Leo Burnett Australia, 2015-present
  • Creative director, Publicis Mojo, Melbourne 2010-2015
  • Senior writer, Publicis Mojo, Melbourne 2003-2010
  • Writer, Publicis Dialog, Melbourne 2001-2003
  • Freelance writer, 2001
  • Writer, WCJ/Impiric, Melbourne 1998-2001
  • Writer, Sanford Vick, Melbourne 1996-1998
  • Writer, DDB, Melbourne 1996

1. How did you end up being a creative?

I knew I would do something creative from a young age; I didn’t know what. So, I pursued art, graphics, and photography at school, hoping to have some epiphany. That epiphany came when I attended Open Day at RMIT University in Melbourne, where the advertising students’ work was displayed. I remember pointing to the work and saying to my mum, “That’s what I want to do!”

I got into RMIT and completed a three-year Bachelor of Arts in advertising (creative) course. Although I graduated thinking I was an art director, I decided to become a writer after two weeks of work experience doing countless hand-drawn layouts.

2. What's your favourite piece of work in your portfolio?

I did the Deaf Man spot for iSelect. It’s not my most awarded piece of work or even my most creative, but it has a special place in my heart because it was inspired by my beloved grandparents, who both passed away in recent years. They always say to write down what you know. 

3. What's your favourite piece of work created by someone else?

There’s so much work out there that I’d love to have in my folio, but my earliest pang of jealousy came when I saw The Bud Light Real Men of Genius campaign for the first time. The writing, the voiceover, the song was gold.

4. What kind of student were you?

I was the class clown. I was always trying to make my friends laugh and often got in trouble for it.

5. What's the craziest thing you've ever done?

It’s probably not wild to most people, but it was pretty wild for me to do. I went on a game show called The Rich List. I was asked to name 15 Clint Eastwood movies, but I could only name 14. It still haunts me to this day. 

6. What's on your bucket list?

The Northern Lights, a White Christmas, an African Safari, and volunteering at an orangutan orphanage in Borneo.

7. What career did you think you'd have when you were a kid?

When I was very young, I wanted to be a vet because I love animals. But when I found out that I’d have to put dogs down, I ditched that idea real quick.

8. If you could, what advice would you give to a 10-year-old you?

Put the scissors down. Do not cut your fringe.

9. What would you do on your perfect day?

Go to a Western Bulldogs AFL match with my family.

10. What food can you not live without? What food would you be happy never to taste again?

I can’t live without cheese. Even though I think I may have a minor lactose intolerance, I can’t get enough of the stuff. It’s so worth the aftermath. As for the food I never want to taste again, it would be marzipan.

11. What's your guilty pleasure? (Don’t limit yourself to food; this could be anything you indulge in)

Trashy reality shows like MAFS, Below Deck and RuPaul’s Drag Race, to name a few.

Campaign Asia

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