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The Guy in the Booth

2.27.2010

Watch out, I’m going to gush! I’m doing a little job for Harper Collins Publishing, recording author Thomas Cobb reading his novel, Crazy Heart. Yeah, that Crazy Heart. The one that was adapted for a movie in which Jeff Bridges gives a performance that may very well win him the Best Actor Oscar. And here’s the best part; Cobb’s a nice guy and he can READ. It’s like watching a movie to hear him, and, believe me, that’s not always the case. I’ve recorded other authors reading their works (no names) and the results could be painful. The producer from Harper is Michael Conroy, also nice and a real pro.
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The Sincerest Form of Larceny

2.8.2010

There’s a local, and very successful, furniture retailer that has serially co-opted other peoples’ creative in their TV and billboards. Most recently they have used the cut-out- figure style from South Park to represent the three brothers who are principals in the business. They do it rather well. They may have sought permission. I doubt it. But it really doesn’t matter whether they have or not. It’s a kind of abduction. In this case, an entity, barren of ideas, steals somebody’s brilliant, subversive baby and puts it to work selling stuff..... I feel better now.

I hear you shouting, “Satire, Parody, FAIR USE!”, and I reply; even if it’s legal, that doesn’t make it right. Full disclosure: in the past, I have deployed sound-alikes, both voice-over and music at a client’s behest, ...
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Accidental Mentors

1.5.2010

There were two of them. One was lanky, the other stout. One, a man; the other, a woman. Both were married, Both, the owners of successful agencies. Both came up in the "Mad Men" era of advertising. He in Boston; she in Chicago. Their names were Dick Conwell and Janet Body, and their philosophies of advertising were diametrically opposed.

Dick was a pragmatist and used media like a blunt instrument: straight to the point, no frills, massive, highly targeted buys. Move the product any way you can, Janet felt that commercials were an art form; that quality and intelligence would move product. She was the best radio copywriter and producer I've ever worked with. She loved awards; thought they validated the work: Dick thought they were beside the point.

Janet thought Dick ...
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