Creative Minds of Venice: Ben Nott

BenNott2-smAt 19, Ben Nott became the youngest creative person ever to win the Grand Prix at the Cannes International Advertising Festival.  While some claimed beginner’s luck, over the next eight years, Nott returned to win the Cannes Gold, Silver, Bronze Lions and the Cannes Titanium.  Proving to not only himself but to his peers that he would be a creative force to reckon with in advertising.  Ben has now been in the industry for 23 years, and has branched out into Writing and Directing films, Music Videos and Television shows.

Being from Australia what drew you to Venice, California? 

Los Angeles is one place that has cool creativity, a film industry and it has surf. All the things I enjoy.  And for me Venice is one of the best places in LA. It’s a bit like the northern beaches of Sydney where I grew up.

Venice has recently become a very tech savvy place; some call it Silicon beach. Why do you think Venice is drawing the tech people here?

I think it is a combination of the vibe Venice offers and people with entrepreneurial nature.   Art and filmmaking are blending into the tech world.  Venice has many artists, and people in the tech industry notice that. I think the combination is great, it just adds to the creative possibilities.

The company you have founded World Wide Mind has a location on Abbot Kinney Blvd. Has that been advantageous to the company?

Yes, I think when people see that we are located there they know what high level of creativity we have to offer them.  For fun we also created a small pop up surf shop that carries merchandise from a film we recently released, called Drift.

What made you want to get into advertising?

The buzz of being able to share an artfully created thought to millions of people is what got me into advertising.   I wanted a job that would be fun, and I would have fun doing.  I have fun everyday doing what I do!

You founded the creative agency World Wide Mind.  When was it founded, and what is the agency about?

I founded World Wide Mind in 1996 in London.  We now have offices in Surry Hills, Sydney, Australia and here in Venice, CA.  World Wide Mind is an agency of like minds around the world working in various formats such as design, film, and advertising.  (Ben was also a founder of creative agency called Droga5 in NY, SYD, LONDON)

You started with advertising, but recently released a feature film called Drift about two brothers who love to surf and are on the search for the perfect wave.  What inspired you to make the movie?

Surfing movies tend to either have really good surfing scenes and a bad storyline or a really good storyline and bad surfing.  We wanted to make a movie that had both a great storyline and great surfing.

Do you have any films or projects in development currently?

Yes, we have three films in development, and begin shooting one in March 2014.  We also have a television series in development with Fox.

Can you give some words of wisdom to those who want to go into the creative industry?

Be patient, just enjoy the creative process, any success that may be due to you should naturally follow.   But if you just enjoy the process then you have already succeeded.  Time is the most expensive thing.

 

With a successful career spanning over twenty years, and many accolades behind him, Ben attributes much of his success to having a clear conscience and helping communities around the world through his foundation FUN(d).   FUN(d) allows  clients to come up with a fun way to raise money for a charity they support.  They have FUN giving back to communities around the world donating proceeds.   We are excited to have this Aussie native located on Abbot Kinney Boulevard and we look forward to tracking his next projects.

Favorite Local shops:  The pop up Drift Surf store at World Wide Mind, 1306 Abbot Kinney.  A+R is pretty cool too.

Favorite Local eatery: Rose Cafe

Favorite Local hangout: Pacific Ocean

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-Rochelle

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Suzy Frank is an expert on Venice Real Estate as well as L.A.'s entire Westside.

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