One of my earliest memories is of swimming. I originally had a fear of the water. I still have a bit of it now swimming in the open ocean. I was born in Malta surrounded by the Mediterranean. The fear came in the surf in W.A. when I was dumped and thought that I was a goner. Sometimes I think you have to challenge your fears. I want to swim the English Channel next year. It’s 32 kilometres and, of course, a tidal, cold water swim. The English Channel is the Everest of swimming, so it’s something I’d really like to do.
I also loved painting when I was a youngster. I wanted to pursue an art career, but I sort of fell into advertising. I find advertising photography and photography, in general, interesting. I think the composition of a photograph is always important. It can help you take a story out of it. The power of an image is that you can say a million words, without a single word. Creating images is one of the most exciting things you do as an art director.
Some of the creative people that I admire are Paul Arden and Marcello Serpa. They make sure that every element of an ad is right. Technology has changed things a lot, but you can’t ever forget the importance of craft. I try to collaborate with everyone I work with, so I’ll take anyone’s opinion on board if I think it’s valuable. Ultimately you get better results working that way.