In Ireland, a relatively small island nation of 4.9 million, I think there is an innate drive to make a mark more prominent than the place we come from. We’re hungry for creativity with a perpetual appetite for innovating. You can see it everywhere. Not just in music but also in art, design, theatre, commerce, tech - the Irish certainly turn up in the most unlikely of places.
There are droves of Irish people running some of the top creative houses in every major creative centre - VFX, post, agency creatives - you name it! It's terrific to see. It helps build a global chain of like-minded people who are willing to trust the madness.
With over 31.5 million Irish residents in America, the Irish have always had a natural affinity and powerful bond with the US. Not only do our values align, but the US has great appreciation for the Irish way of creating/doing things. The fact that we have a 5-8 hour time advantage is only one part of it - it's mainly about craft and perspective. Perhaps it's due again to the size of Ireland in comparison to the US or other countries. Still, the idea of international collaboration seems to be second nature to the US.
Working across timezones, especially in the field of music, sound and composition, means that you can essentially keep a project ticking along 24 hours a day - one of the many reasons collaborations such as these work so well. Often production teams are already remote and international, so receiving assets for review first thing in the morning on their side is a benefit. It usually allows for same-day feedback and expedites the process without taking up a lot of time. Not to mention the added bonus that creatives tend to be more specific and considered in their remarks.
Ireland, though, has really opened its doors to the potential of immersive audio as an active component of filmmaking/storytelling more recently which is fantastic to see happening - it's considered a key creative selling point now rather than a requirement for producing film; one of the many reasons we see more powerful creative work emerging.
Only when we craft creative ideas on the atomic level do we begin to do the best work. Irish creatives understand this now more than ever, and the country's growing international creative standing reflects this desire to continue to punch above its weight. If we consider filmmaking, especially short-form storytelling like in advertising, to be a series of disconnected steps that don't impact each other, we risk fostering less than ideal results. It's a warren of crafts - the script affects the music, the edit affects the grade - the list goes on. I think there is an understanding generally that whatever the project is, to do something with verifiable impact, it needs to be creatively better in every way.
Production value has rapidly evolved, and whatever we thought was good enough five or ten years ago doesn't cut the mustard anymore. It doesn't matter that we are a smaller market than, say, London or New York. Creative ideas and their execution are subject to the same evaluation process the public has for blockbuster films and streaming content - 'fine' is not good enough anymore. That holds as much for the financial resourcing of a creative idea as it does for its execution.
Irish people also tend to 'speak freely' - with a deft ability to meander politics to get our point across. With international clients, I sometimes joke that the accent lets us get away with unusual ideas or perspectives, but I think it comes back to that idea of 'hunger'. No one wants to phone it in or create 'enough' - life is too short.
Communication is critical, as is expediency. Advertising, in particular, is inherently fast-paced, and if you thrive in that environment, you will fit in nicely. I think we are in for a period of significant creativity post Covid - people are creatively hungry, and I, for one, am ready to go.