Design doing good

D&AD’s New Blood Awards are an annual celebration of creative excellence and a chance to find fresh and hungry creative talent. Students from all over the country are given the opportunity to have their work judged by some of the world’s leading creatives on real project briefs from huge brands. All to try and bag themselves a highly sought-after D&AD New Blood Pencil. The bar, as always, was set extremely high this year and the quality and execution of ideas was super impressive.

The main thing that stood out for me whilst wandering around the D&AD New Blood Festival at the Old Truman Brewery was the diverse range of work from multiple different courses showcased through the many university stands. Advertising, printmaking, packaging, photography, typography, UI/UX, the list goes on. Amongst the sea of design and the communication of ideas, engaging with the designers and listening to how passionate they are was exciting and inspiring.

Some work that stood out…

Made by Refugee
In response to the New Blood Side Hustle with Adobe, Made By Refugee highlights the cultural contributions that refugees have made to humanity. This beautifully simple awareness campaign used stickers reading ‘Made By Refugee’ which were placed on refugee-made products around New York City. A very simple yet powerful project that will have a positive impact on society.

T.E.S.T yourself
A campaign in collaboration with Coca-Cola, the largest red platform in the world, highlighting the symptoms of blood cancer. An incredibly simple yet potentially lifesaving idea whose bold graphics can reach a phenomenal amount of people.

#DearMrHousingMinister
This is a campaign in response to the Nationwide & Shelter brief to raise awareness about social housing and how it’s being torn apart by regeneration. The project targets the Housing Minister himself with the aim of making him feel what it’s like to be kicked out of your home so ‘they’ can knock it down and build luxury apartments for those on the highest wage.

The Luminous view

Amongst thousands of projects showcased at New Blood, for me one theme shone through. With the rare, door-unlocking white pencil up for grabs, this year’s competitors took the opportunity to harness the power of creativity to try and do some good in the world. So many of the responses to the briefs used the extensive audiences of the world’s top brands and guerilla advertising to make a positive difference to society. From curving the famous three stripes of adidas on the day of London Pride to empower LGBT footballers in England, to Burger King offering to publish the CVs of millennials via one of the most-read media: the paper liner in their serving trays.

What they all have in common is the belief that an intelligent, distilled idea, communicated through an engaging piece of creative work, can make real change happen and that is something we can all celebrate. I’m excited to see what the next generation of creatives can achieve.

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