You are here

Thriving in the Heart of the Industry


Not many shows capture the business of advertising just right. And on Mad Men, it would be integral to the storyline, period behavior and character development.

Communication Arts alumnus Josh Weltman (’86) had been a leading Creative Director in L.A.’s advertising industry for years when he was approached by Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner to advise on the show. The move to television may have been daunting to some, but Josh’s strong background in the arts made him comfortable shifting from illustration to advertising to entertainment and on to literature.

One of Josh’s roles was to help brainstorm the perfect pitch that built up the first season finale. Mad Men frequently used campaigns to express how the often stoic characters felt about recent conflict, and the show’s creator wanted the final campaign to show how leading man Don Draper felt about his business, his marriage, and his brother’s suicide.

Josh teamed up with the show’s writers and researchers to create the perfect campaign and product that could tell that story by sharing Don’s nostalgia: The Carousel, for Kodak.

Josh’s foundation in art also gave him insights into how traditional advertisements were handcrafted back in the 1960s, before the advent of computers. That technique was put to use when he worked on the weekends to draw the actual advertisements used during the firm’s big pitches in the show.

At Otis, you join a driven class of hardworking artists and designers in the heart of the Creative Capital, preparing for just about any career from Hollywood Blvd to Madison Ave.

“You’ll build onto the foundation you get at Otis. The most interesting thing you get to create is your career.” —Josh Weltman

Learn more about Communication Arts at Otis