Barry Owen: Rest in Peace


BarryOwen.jpgSad news today that Barry Owen – the Godfather of Thai advertising back when Campaign Brief Asia launched in the late 90’s – has died. Owen moved to Bangkok in the 1970s before retiring after two and a half decades in the industry.

He was the Executive Creative Director of Ogilvy & Mather Thailand and mentored and trained many of the greats of Thai advertising including Suthisak Sucharittanonta and Jureeporn Thaidumrong. He was also the person behind the emergence of creative Thai advertising on accounts like Singha Beer, Black Cat Whisky and Counterpain.

Suthisak Sucharittanonta (now Chief Creative Officer at BBDO Bangkok) posted this tribute to Barry today:

Barry Owen became my idol before I graduated, when I had a chance of a life time to work with him, even when I work in another agency he has always been my idol.

He has taught me everything inside and most the time outside the book . He not only taught me but show me too, practically doing everything imaginable that’s within the bound of a creative director job description. But what was more surprising is that He also goes beyond those…

Specifically the menial task of back translating work, rescuing my creative works that’s been shot down, and sometimes answering phone that has been wildly ringing endlessly around the creative department.

He never took credits for all the creative works, in fact he even gave praise, respect and gave the credits back to his teams.

He inspired me to be a detailed art director, a sharp copywriter…

But what’s most essential is that he made me want to be a generous, compassionate, and humble… person.

With much heartfelt gratitude and honor that I had a chance to work with him, know him, and learn from him.

Much respect and sorrow.

Suthisak Sucharittanonta