Answering a D&AD Brief.

Robin HamiltonCreative Director

During my final year of studying Graphic Design at The Arts University Bournemouth, one of the many projects was entering, answering and competing in the D&AD New Blood Awards. Answering a brief is a very important challenge in itself, so this blog aims to highlight the journey from answering the brief to produce a best of year project for the D&AD New Blood 2013.

D&AD has been inspiring a community of creative thinkers by celebrating and stimulating the finest in design and advertising. A D&AD Award is recognised globally as the ultimate creative accolade, entered and attended by the best from around the world. –

D&AD exists to stimulate, enable and award creative excellence in design and advertising. Every year a series of world class programmes are created for the new creatives. This is called New Blood, which aims to reach young creatives to offer inspiration, learning and genuine breaks on the way into the industry.

For a student it allows your portfolio to stand out by working on robust industry set briefs, provides a chance to meet people from the industry, and gain a taste of life in a creative workplace.

Undertaking the New Blood Awards in 2013 was an exciting challenge which was shared alongside a fellow student and friend, James Bowler.

Together we analysed each individual brief and chose a brief which would push us to our limits in terms of knowledge and application. Studying a Graphic Design course, the experience we had in motion graphics was limited, so taking on a motion graphics brief immediately put us out of our comfort zone. However, both of us had a keen interest in motion so we couldn’t wait to get started.

The brief was set by Channel4 and MPC to ‘Create a motion graphic ident for 4seven, Channel 4’s new-to-air channel. Channel 4 and MPC want you to create a motion graphics ident that represents the social and innovative new way of programming.”

Studying the brief closely was initially the most important aspect. We had to make sure we were answering it fully. This in turn gave us a hierarchy of key words and phrases that would help us begin the creative process. A couple of the key phrases we thought best described 4seven consisted with words such as ‘buzz’ ‘social’ ‘communicate’ ‘trend’ and ‘wave’.

From this hierarchy we began to implement various ways they could be portrayed. Many different ideas surfaced until we both agreed on one that had the most potential, whilst ticking all the boxes within the brief.

The most important aspect from here was to keep heading back to the brief, questioning ourselves at each progression. This management kept us from straying too far off topic throughout, and helped immensely with answering the brief successfully.

Our idea was to simulate the social buzz through magnetism using iron fillings. Using iron fillings as a medium exposed us to lots of hours experimenting which helped to create a journey that highlighted 4seven’s core values.

Highlighting the communitive nature of the piece was something we wanted to get across in the final outcome.

Here is a video of our final ident.

And alongside the final submission was a video highlighting our journey.


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