D&AD New Blood 2014

For the past week I’ve been spending my time as a D&AD New Blood Festival Guide – this gave me the opportunity to meet some lovely people, attend various D&AD events and have a good old nosy at the Festival and the work on display. As always, there was an abundance of great work and I was really pleased I got the chance to have a really thorough look around the stalls as the exhibition can, at first glance, all be a little overwhelming and some clever ideas are lost behind other more attention-grabbing pieces of ‘eye-candy’.

I thought I’d share on here a selection of the work I admired and a bit of an insight into the events I attended during the week. (I was keen not to take too many business cards as I figured students would potentially rather them go to a future employer than some graduate fanny-ing around with a blog but hopefully all of my accreditations will be correct!)

Aside from Falmouth’s stand (of course!), it was Norwich’s that I was possibly most interested in seeing. They churn out fantastic packaging work year after year and I was really intrigued to see if this trend had continued – spoiler alert, it had!

I really liked this popcorn packaging from Joshua Miller, which combined the simple idea of a cinema ticket with popcorn to create a really nice result. I can imagine these working well in a supermarket experience as they would stand away from the shelf.

Joshua Miller Butterkist

Helen Mak’s work also caught my eye on Norwich’s stand – although really I shouldn’t be promoting her as she pipped me to the post to win this year’s jkr juice award! Again, I felt her work was effective as it combined the idea of oatcakes and Scotland to create neat packaging and promotion for Nairn’s oatcakes.

Helen Mak Crackers


I was also drawn to Abbey Hennebry’s work for Bassetts Allsorts which plays on their iconic look and heritage to create a unique range of packaging and set of posters that are sure to make you smile. I think I would almost prefer the packaging if each one just created a whole sweet but I guess she was playing with the concept of ‘allsorts’ and showing the variety, which makes sense!

Abbey HenneburyAbbey Hennebury

Moving on from Norwich now I really liked a series of posters by Anders Kristofferson and Michael McCallum from Southampton Solent University for the D&AD Sky Brief. Each poster plays with the idea of abstracting an element of a film’s plot and comparing it to a very different film and was deservedly given a D&AD In Book award.

Movie Mashups

Screen Shot 2014-07-06 at 18.08.44


Another clever poster I enjoyed was by Steph Hamer (I think! Please correct me if not) and is a clever observation that links drawing with football.

It's a draw

A final set of posters that I liked were created by Hannah Hughes and Tiffany Trethowan in response to a YCN Brief for Standard Life. These posters take the idea of saving with Standard Life and depict an exaggerated scenario of what happens when people choose not to save.

YCN Standard Life YCN Standard Life YCN Standard Life

There were some great examples of photography on display too. I really loved this one from Patrick Kelly, particularly the confidence of composition and the dreamy quality the photo has.

Patrick Kelly

Screen Shot 2014-07-07 at 21.46.34


I also loved Tereza Cervenova’s Photography and she was even kind enough to give me a postcard of one of her shots (Right before she won a Yellow Pencil so I should’ve got it signed!). Her work is hugely varied exploring emotions, light and just plain beautiful compositions.

terezacervenova terezacervenova

In terms of cute-ness, I just couldn’t resist Stephanie Morgan’s work for Save The Bees. I really like the simplicity of the pack and the illustration style and I want one of the little ones on my window sill!

Stephanie Morgan


Another sweet bit of illustration was this cactus Jessy Morris from Plymouth University:
Jessy Morris


I also liked Abi Sambells‘ illustration work, she turns a lot of her images into animations and I like the way she documented her character development.

Abi Sambells

Abi Sambells


Moving onto Falmouth now, we had a range of different work on show from the illustration, graphic design and advertising courses. It’s always hard to be subjective when looking at the work of your friends but I thought I’d include a small snapshot of the work on display.

From the advertising courses (that’s BA(Hons) and MA) I liked Miranda & Pat ‘s campaign for Dove for Men, playing with the simple premise that ‘It takes someone special to be a daddy’.mirandaandpat mirandaandpat


I also liked the work of Tom Dixon and Jo Griffin who took phrases and completely changed the meaning with the simple addition of a polo ‘o’. These just stood out as really simple and clever, working particularly effectively as animations which can be seen on their website.

Jo & Tom


The illustration course was particularly strong this year with fantastic work from a number of different students.

Key pieces for me came from Josh McKenna:


David Doran:

David Doran

Rachel Saunders:

Rachel Saunders

And Fiona Rose:

Fiona Rose

I think the thing that sets Falmouth’s illustration course apart is just how well developed each person’s style is. Walking around the full degree show felt almost like looking through an agent’s book with each student demonstrating clearly what you would get from them if they were commissioned.

Finally we come to the Falmouth Graphics show. I won’t dwell too much on this one as I’m very biased towards various bits of work but I thought I’d pick out a few pieces that really stood out.

Firstly, I loved Adam Peacock’s posters for the Syrian Appeal, cleverly changing war paraphernalia into child-like drawings.

Adam Peacock

There was also some nice branding work from Adam Chescoe for a gift shop for the Forestry Commission. I particularly liked the way he’d changed the bar code to resemble a forest and used tree rings to create markers for his map.

Adam Chescoe

Adam Chescoe\Adam Chescoe

Another stand out piece was April Temlett’s silver prize winning entry for the Design Bridge rebranding competition (Coincidentally she also got the gold prize but I happen to prefer this entry). She chose Florette and played with the idea of lettuce creating french girls’ skirts.

April Temlett

It was also nice to see a small selection of my work up on display, a branding project for an immersive theatre company. You can read a bit more about this project here.

Maisie Benson


Finally, it wouldn’t be right to write a post about the New Blood Exhibition without a nod in Craig and John’s direction. They created the signage and branding for this year’s festival and it looked brilliant. The outer walls of the festival were full of great gems of copy and it really got people excited and curious about what was inside.

IMG_0043 IMG_0042 IMG_0046 IMG_0047


I did plan to write a little more about the events I attended but I think that may have to wait for a future post! I hope this did the festival some justice and reflected the incredible quality of the work on display. See you again next year!





Taking the social out of media – The Social Media Guard.

It can be a little frustrating when you’re working on a brief and you see the exact thing you’re trying to communicate done in a really new and funny way. This is precisely what has just happened to me.

Recently a fellow student and I have been collaborating on a brief that aims to reconnect people with nature and take them away from modern technologies, (some of you may recognise the description of this as the D&AD National Trust Brief). It’s been a really fun project and David Beavis (hello!) and I have come up with a campaign we’re pretty happy with and almost ready to submit, but I’ve just seen an idea that I’m actually a bit gutted that we didn’t come up with!

This is the new Coca Cola advert, from Memac Ogilvy Dubai, and it’s a brilliantly simple solution to an actually quite similar problem:

The thing that I think makes this advert successful is that it doesn’t make the consumer resent the brand for telling them to put down their phones. It can seem like quite a patronising thing for a brand to say, but by incorporating wit into the advert Coca Cola avoids this feeling of superiority that can sometimes come across.

If you see National Trust social media guards come out soon then it definitely was just a huge coincidence…

Found on the Creative Review Blog.

A Limited Edition Viral.

The pull of something being ‘limited edition’ is a route that’s been explored by almost every well known brand. People swarm on short-time products that offer an unusual flavour, colour or even just a different type of packaging. When you think about it it’s a really odd way of appealing to people, why is it that we want to find a taste we enjoy only for it to leave our shelves after a few weeks?

There are a few different reasons this method works, firstly by adding time pressure you’re far more likely to encourage an ‘impulse buy.’ Then, you’re adding in the incentive of being the first to try something, the consumer becomes special, one of a ‘select few.’ Finally you tempt the buyer that your product will become a collectable item (although this incentive is most applicable to the limited edition bottle designs or non-consumable examples.)

Many brands exploit our inquisitive natures and use a limited edition sample to test how viable the product is. If it’s a success they then go on to release the same product later in the year, normally with people celebrating the return of an item they missed rather than by calling them out on the broken ‘limited edition’ promise.

However, one thing I’ve never seen before is limited edition advertising – Or, perhaps more intriguingly, a limited edition ‘viral.’ Now that’s a complete contradiction in terms but it seems that’s exactly what  Clemenger BBDO Melbourne have attempted with this video for Cascade First Harvest. They’ve created a video that can only be seen 5000 times, for an experimental beer that they’ve only made 5000 cases of. It’s a very risky strategy but I think it’s a really interesting idea.

There are only 130 views left, click here to be one of them.

(I would have liked to insert the video there but I’m having a few technological difficulties – sorry!)

Looking at design from a different angle – A brilliant campaign to stop Child Abuse

There aren’t many adverts out there that are appreciated by the general public. Adverts have been given a bad name from the plethora of rubbish out there selling ‘Foxy Bingo’ and ‘Injury Lawyers 4 U’ however one recently has been recommended to me by two different (non-design) people and shared all over my facebook page so I figured it must be worth a post!

Grey Spain have designed a poster for the children’s charity ‘Fundacion Anar’ which reveals a hidden message when viewed by a child. They have used a technique called lenticular printing which means that they can show different images from different angles and so have added beating marks, a helpline and an additional supporting line of copy that can only be seen by people smaller than the average 10 year old’s height. The thinking behind this is that it will mean adults will not disuade their children from calling the helpline or stop the children from looking at the poster.

Grey Spain Child Abuse Poster

Grey Spain Child Abuse Poster The only problem is that this has been almost too-well received and due to all the publicity people will probably recognise the poster as the one with the hidden message! That said, I think it’s a really simple and clever solution to a very difficult problem.


The best ideas seem the simplest – A brilliant campaign from Ogilvy for Expedia

I’ve been meaning to write this post for a while now (well, about 4 months but let’s not worry about that!) having first seen these adverts on It’s Nice That back in January, but with one thing and another that didn’t happen so I’m sorry if this is all old news to you! Why not just take a minute to appreciate the genius of them again?

Created by Ogilvy for Expedia, I believe the whole campaign stemmed from them seeing a lady walking around the airport with ‘FUK’ on her luggage tag and finding this pretty funny, from this they wondered what other words or sentences were out there and, with over 900 three letter combinations to choose from, a full campaign was formed.

I think this is a brilliant example of why it’s important to go to the place you’re designing for, just one simple observation has formed a brilliantly witty and direct series of adverts:

Ogilvy Expedia Luggage Tag Campaign

Ogilvy Expedia Luggage Tag Campaign

Ogilvy Expedia Luggage Tag Campaign

Ogilvy Expedia Luggage Tag Campaign


Finished with a neat tagline in a passport stamp style I think this campaign is pretty much faultless.

More in the range can be found here.


Car adverts – are we set on repeat?

I recently came across this advert on Hello You Creatives for Fiat, it was a student project and I thought it was quite a nice idea. Whilst it doesn’t particularly highlight any of the car’s features I think it would engage with the right target market who are just after a nice looking, easy to use car.

fiat print adThough on doing a bit more research into it I came across this advert by Crispin Porter & Bogusky for VW Beetle:

Crispin Porter & Bogusky VW dare to be happy advertWhich shows to me just how much difference the execution of an idea can make. It also shows that a bit more confidence and pushing the idea as far as it can go is really what sets apart student work from industry.

It’s interesting that the student work has received a lot of criticism for ‘copying’ this advert when, if you look further through the archives there’s a whole heap of adverts that focus on the personality of a car from it’s headlights:

Listen to your inner animal DDB vw adThe original? From DDB for VW in 1999

BMW car advertCundari for BMW in 2005

TBWA car advertTBWA for Nissan in 2005

BBDO for Hankook TyresBBDO for Hankook also in 2005

All found on Joe La Pompe

Although before I began writing this I wouldn’t have been aware of any. Are we a bit quick to jump to this conclusion that everyone is copying each other? Is it that all of the good, simple ideas have been done already, are we all just dull and unoriginal nowadays or are people just looking for ways to criticise and put down new work by drawing tenuous links to the past?

If you’re interested in this idea of where trends emerge from I looked at a similar thing going on in logo design in this post.






QR codes; when done right, they’re not shite!

The title of this post is from Charlotte Allibon. Blame her.

I’m not usually much of a QR code fan. I generally think they’re used just to seem ‘cool’ or on trend but actually don’t find that many people use them. However some of them, normally ones that only work in certain situations, are really clever (such as the Sunny Sale QR code.)

I came across one yesterday from BURO in Turkey that I think is even better. The idea is for potential tattoo artists to fill in the QR code to apply for the job. It will only work if their lines are neat, thus showing they’ll be good tattoo-ists!

Clever QR code for tattoo artists