Lee Clow: Legendary Creative Behind Iconic Apple Ads Retires

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| News

Lee Clow, the man behind Apple’s iconic “1984”, “Think Different (Here’s to the Crazy Ones)” and Mac vs PC ad campaigns announced his retirement Thursday. He will take an advisory role, and the title Chairman Emeritus, at TBWA, the agency founded in 2006 to work with Apple.

Apple's legendary "1984" TV ad.
Apple’s legendary “1984” TV ad.

30 Year Relationship with Apple

Mr. Clow began his career at agency Chiat/Day. He worked with Apple for 30 years of his 50-year career. In that time he helped conceive the legendary “1984” Superbowl ad, and the “Think Different” ad which relaunched Apple in 1997.

More recently, Mr. Clow was behind Apple’s Silhouette iPod campaign and the “Get A Mac” campaign. He went on to develop the campaigns that launched the iPhone and iPad. Mr. Clow also led the team that launched Apple Music and worked on the Apple Watch’s introduction.

Apple CEO Tim Cook, said: “During his long partnership with Steve and Apple, Lee told powerful visual stories that elevated new technologies with the passion, creativity, and ingenuity that define our own humanity. He helped Apple carry itself through times of challenge, and his work inspired audiences to look beyond the horizon as an exciting future came into view. Lee’s body of work over five decades hums with cleverness, warmth, and enthusiasm—and there is no doubt that it will inspire and motivate generations of ‘Crazy Ones’ still to come.”

“The years I spent doing this thing called ‘advertising’ have been fun: challenging, rewarding, maddening—sometimes painful—but mostly, joyful. And I wouldn’t trade a day of it,” Mr. Clow said.

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