2023 Creative LIAisons Coaches

David Shirley

Creative Director
, New Zealand

David Shirley is a trained philosopher. But that didn’t pan out career-wise, so he’s now working as a Creative Director at Special in New Zealand. In the 14 years he’s been roaming the halls of advertising agencies, he’s amassed a portfolio of work that runs the gamut from surreal to “what the f*@k was that?!”
Always provocative and intriguing, Shirley’s campaigns have included a memory removal service for young drinkers, a world-famous social influencer who also happens to be Death, a highly seductive take on syphilis, a tense story that encourages everyone to get in touch with their inner-meerkats and, most recently, a campaign that saw young campers enjoying a sleepless summer, as they roast pillows over an open fire and attend a cave party DJ’ed by an owl.
While his craft of choice these days is copywriting, in a previous life Shirley was a graphic designer and art director, giving him the ability to slide between the worlds of copy and art, and making him really annoying to art directors.
For his efforts, his work has been recognised globally at shows such as D&AD, Cannes Lions, The One Show, Spikes Asia, AWARD, Axis, Effies, and by his mum, who's "super proud".