Interview with Daniel Upputuru : Ogilvy New Delhi

He was still dreaming about Army when he stumbled upon Advertising. Besides a few nominations, Bronze pencils at One Show and a D& AD, he has also had the pleasure of taking home the Lion, that too in the colour gold. The list of his love affairs is unending. NIIT, Microsoft, Real Juices, Modi Goup, ABN Amro, RED FM, Dabur, Seagrams and Oral-B. And now the man finally decides to unleash. Before he steps his heels out of Ogilvy, meet Daniel aka Danny Zenas Upputuru.

-Interview by Shoneeka

Let’s start with your crawling first few steps in advertising.
Unlike a lot of perceptions that I had a cake walk into the business, I had a really tough time. After six months of getting “we’ll get back to you” got a break at Rediffusion. But they said, “we won’t give you money”.
But life somehow evens out and its payback time. I am joining Rediffusion as Creative Director. As they say C’est La Vie.

Why art?
I could draw Horses. And my father somehow had the insight that I could make money out of it. And also that the damn Army didn’t take me.
No, but seriously I love Visual dialogue. There’s nothing more I enjoy doing. You can make people laugh, brood, cry, it’s crazy.

Where all have you been before Ogilvy?

A brief peroid in Rediffusion, Contract, a brief stint in St. Lukes London, Enterprise, Ogilvy (does anybody know who Mr. Mather is, please write to me at information will be suitably rewarded).

Would you throw some light on your creative expedition at Ogilvy?

For a lot of people Ogilvy is the Mecca of advertising, I remember I once met these couple of guys at a restaurant and the moment they got to know that me and my friends were from Ogilvy, they kept looking at us as if we were on a display. Perception. Not a bad one either, since we are in this business of making things look larger than life. But the truth is that the atmosphere, energy and positive competition in this agency is actually sometimes electric. It’s been amazing all these years. Of course there are these people like MAFOOSAS-as the king squirrel in Madagascar says – ‘Mafoosas, who come and ruin our paarrties and tear our limmbs apart’. But they are there in all the agencies, so that’s a consolation.

How about turning a few faces green. Awards & nominations in the pocket?
Oh, I am a humble man, do you really want me to go on about this?!

Your view on Scam?
With the kind of Clients that we have to deal in our day- to -day lives, I think it makes us reassure ourselves that our sensibilities are still in place. And that we are feeding a billion dollar industry and in a larger sense the economics of the world, why not? ‘BRING ON THE SCAM’, I say!

Comment on ‘Big egos in advertising’.
I feel people are being rather childish if they think they are doing anything worthwhile in this Industry.

Do you see Delhi ever being the hub of advertising?
If you are talking nationally, then yes. We are already heading there. It won’t be long before it completely shifts from Bombay (what with global warming and the BMC screwing them up anyways ; ).

What are your future plans?

I am working really hard at becoming Immortal.

Any advice for young creatives?


Interesting experiences?
Once or twice upon the land of Enterprise Nexus there appeared a bearded man and I got into quite a heated debate with him about a certain piece of advertisement as to whether a newspaper layout should be ideally vertical or horizontal!
Almost lunged to yank his beard off!
All the while my fair writer was kicking me under the table to cut it off! After a while when my shins couldn’t take it anymore, I asked her wassup? She said, ‘Dear that’s the guy who owns the place’, and at the same time I could hear him saying ‘you can either do it my way -vertical-or leave this place’.

Abby or AAAI (forget Ogilvy for a moment)?
To begin with I think AAAI has a brilliant set of Jury. Though it would be fantastic if they come together.

Favourite ad campaign.
Stella films. Brilliant.

Favourite oneliner.
Hey! I am an art director!

One thing you’ve heard the most in agencies.
ASAP! I mean I want to meet these people who come up with such things, really where do they come from?!

If not advertising, then what?

Daniel Zenas Upputuru
Associate Creative Director
Ogilvy & Mather
New Delhi.

12 thoughts on “Interview with Daniel Upputuru : Ogilvy New Delhi

  1. Priyanka says:

    ha ha, i wonder who that beared guy was 🙂

  2. momo says:

    Fantastically done. The person interviewed almost falls for the cruel designs of Shoneeka. But then again, hey, he’s the lion! All in all, it was nice and fun!

  3. Pranay says:

    nice interview. its good to read about someone who actually contributes to the day to day work of an agency, rather than a couple of big Honchos who you see on national TV in any case! keep up the good work!

  4. bearded guy? could it have been mohammad khan?
    can we see some of danny’s work?

  5. would love to know what danny plans to do after advertising!

  6. Ek Kanya says:

    Vikram see this ad for Discovery that Danny and Suchitra made

  7. spaced-out sniff says:

    Seems like the closest Mathers, I say.

  8. Neeraj says:

    Hey! I like the way questions have been framed. They capture the usual stuff but in an interesting way. Makes me want to read the interview.

  9. Lol…this guy’s got a great sense of humour.

  10. Ruchi says:

    I just want to ask a very simple question from Mr. Upputuru : From where should a fresher who has a zeal for making ads and who also has some ad concepts with him start? Will Ogilvy take such Freshers???

  11. Daniel says:

    I just read this after this many years and I remember it being tons of fun doing this. Shoneeka wherever you are, cheers : )

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