Morihiro Harano is a multi-talented creative director with stellar achievements not only in advertising but also in new business development, strategy, product design and media initiatives.
Joining Dentsu in 1994, Harano was committed to helping the agency’s digital subsidiaries with their digital initiatives. After leaving Dentsu, Harano helped a media startup to conclude a successful IPO, following which, he returned to Dentsu to launch Drill, a non-traditional creative agency. In 2011, he co-founded PARTY and led it to win the Independent Agency of the Year at Spikes Asia 2012. Soon after, in 2012, he founded Mori Inc., which is selected as ‘The World’s Leading Independent Agencies 2014’ by Campaign UK.
Who are you?
Morihiro Harano, Creative Director at Mori Inc. You can see my work at Mori Inc.
I spent ten years at an ad agency doing media planning. And then in the early 2000’s, influenced by the work of UK’s Naked Communications and Holland’s KesselsKramer, I launched the non-traditional creative agency Drill.
In the creative industries, I get the sense that work gets divided up according to people’s job titles and there is this atmosphere where you aren’t allowed to encroach on each other’s territory. I’m originally from outside anyway, so everything I’ve done has been encroachment. At first I was really worried about the prejudice or conflicts that might arise from this, but now I’ve been able to achieve a few things, encroaching has become my style of creative direction.
Pola Apex Campaign
Design in Japan
I like how, similar to traditional Makunouchi Bento, there are all kinds of things crammed into it. Well, I like Bentos but I don’t like that kind of design.
I opened Hotel Japan, a souvenir store in Aoyama for non-Japanese people. It’s pretty small, but by working like this where I am meeting the customers directly it then became much easier to understand how my clients think.
Good ideas and insights ultimately only come out of your own personal experiences. I think it is important to make the most of your own life. In my case, I focus on accumulating lots of experiences when traveling overseas or going on business trips abroad.
What are you thinking about?
2014 was the worst year in my astrological cycle and it’s just now coming to an end. I’m hopeful that next year will bring some nice developments.
My office is in Ebisu. It’s very minimal, very economical. I don’t have a photocopier or a refrigerator; just a Muji table, sofa, and desk. I think it’s really important to make the place where you work into the kind of space you like.
Miru: To See
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I work with a MacBook Air, iPad, and iPhone. I also often use Keynote and iMovie. I sometimes even make presentations just with my iPhone.
I made the music video for OK Go’s “I Won’t Let You Down.”
It got over a million views in 10 hours and the next day CNN came to my office to interview me. After that, views passed 10 million in six days and I even got interviewed by Brazilian TV, on the other side of the world.
The website for the music video is itself quite interesting. With an interactive drawing editor it allows users to create their own version of the dance scenes. It`s also possible to fork (copy and adapt) a version from a different user.
Previously when I made “Forest Xylophone” for NTT DoCoMo there was also quite a good response but compared to ads, music videos spread as pure entertainment, so the speed at which they spread is completely different.
A big arigato gozaimasu for the interview to Morihiro Harano!
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If you happened to be in Tokyo, don`t miss the chance to pop by to Harano-san`s shop: