The New Blood Awards Yellow Pencils

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Awards: Introducing this year’s tremendous D&AD New Blood briefs

It’s that time of year again; late nights in the studio amid feverish attempts to win one of the most prestigious young creatives’ awards around. That’s right D&AD’s New Blood Awards are back for 2014 with 16 exciting and engaging briefs for entrants to get their teeth stuck into.

Formerly the D&AD Student Awards, the scheme has brought under the New Blood umbrella this year to reflect the fact that any young creative is eligible to enter, not just those at college or university. Kati Russell, senior programme manager at D&AD, said: “For young creatives looking to kickstart their career and create that elusive something to stand out from the crowd, D&AD’s New Blood Awards are back with a bang. We’ve got a new name, a new look and new brands with exciting but testing challenges.”

Last year we were invited to set a brief and Thomas Fitzmaurice scooped one of the famous Yellow Pencils for his proposed screen-printing tour in a repurposed It’s Nice That ice-cream van. This year we are working with D&AD again to promote the briefs, some of which encourage very particular skills in graphic design, typography, moving image, photography and illustration. But this year’s ideas briefs have a multi-disciplinary emphasis to encourage collaboration (and more closely mirror the direction the creative industries are headed).

You can see the 16 briefs sketched out below, some of which come with a special podcast examining what those setting the challenges will be looking for. There’s also a live-streamed Q&A on 5 February which will be packed with hints and tips for those stepping up in 2014.


Some of last year’s winners

This year’s briefs are based around four topical themes; Open Culture, Urban Renaissance, Authenticity and Retail Revolutions. They are as follows:


ASOS want you to imagine what’s next after street style – how can they present and share fashion inspiration in an entirely new way? Your idea will need to engage with a future generation of global 20somethings who are permanently connected and live on their digital devices.


Enter this if you’re interested in: Branded Content, Digital Design, Mobile Marketing or Technological Innovation.


Present an idea that uses open platforms to allow consumers to contribute, adapt and develop their own experience – to give the BBC news audience around the world a more global voice. Can big global events create a shared global experience? Or can local newsworthy events be given more global relevance through a more personal viewing, listening and reading angle?

Enter this if you’re interested in:
 Digital & Service Design, UX, Interface & Navigation, Mobile Interaction & Experience orTechnological Innovation.

Additional Prize: On top of all the other benefits of winning, this brief offers a chance to be fast tracked to the interview stage of the BBC’s 2014 UX Design Trainee Scheme

British Council

Create a bilingual identity for the Dressing the Screen exhibition. Reflect the high-fashion and moving image nature of the exhibition through the physical graphics, way-finding, web presence, brochure and print design. This is an exciting challenge to take the origins, history and pioneering role that British filmmakers and designers have played in the development of the medium to Moscow and beyond.

Enter this if you’re interested in:
 Crafts for Design, Graphic Design, Branding, Wayfinding & Environmental Graphics, Integrated Graphics or Publication Design.


Share your own personal story. But don’t tell us what you think we want to hear. Explain who you are, your values, your identity, your purpose… your truth. This is telling, not selling. 1.Know who you are 2. Communicate it.

You should use this opportunity to showcase your creative talent in the execution of your story. Once you know what you want to say, impress us with how you say, show and present it. We understand that your story is a work-in-progress; it’s still being written. We’re interested in your journey to-date, a suggestion of what’s to come. Get people excited about your “To be continued…”.

Open to All Disciplines: Advertising, Crafts, Design, Digital Communications or Make Your Mark.


Create a 25 second ident and fill it with your creative interpretation of the true power of cinema. You will need to visualise emotion, literally showing how film feels. The DCM ident is one of the first and last things that people see when going to watch a film. It needs to set the scene and have an impact. Something that illustrates and celebrates the emotion we all feel when we take our seats and enter the magical world of the movies.

Go BIG – big concepts, big ideas, big executions. Something authentic, genuine and extraordinary to make the big screen come to life before the eyes of cinema-goers. In short, this is an opportunity to turn your great ideas into screen icons.

Enter this if you’re interested in: Crafts for Advertising, Moving Image, Animation or Brand Expression.

Additional Prize: On top of all the other benefits of winning, this brief offers the chance that your work could be put into production and seen in cinemas.


Develop a new typographic system for a local street paper that helps readers, sellers and the rest of the world see the connections between the familiar (the paper), the new (digital transactions and online media), and the very personal (the people who support themselves by selling the paper).

Your response may be new and iconic type or lettering that helps the paper and its vendors stand out, that could encourage good will and support. Or it may be new type that helps the digital activities feel more like the personal connection at the heart of each sale. It could even be a redesign of the paper that better carries over to new media.

Enter this if you’re interested in: Crafts for Design, Typography, Typeface Design, Graphic Design or Newspaper Design.

Additional Prize: On top of all the other benefits of winning, this brief offers a chance to get Monotype membership, giving you access to a portal full of beautiful typefaces and design tools

National Trust

Reposition the National Trust away from its current perceived image; make it relevant to the modern visitor.
 Put the Trust firmly at the centre of a drive to re-establish the importance of place in our lives. Create an integrated campaign that makes their brand stand for a positive impact on people’s relationship with nature and beauty, forever.

Enter this if you’re interested in: Advertising, Integrated Campaigns, Digital Communications or Experiential.


Use your intuition to capture an image that is not disposable but speaks of, or represents, a particular moment in time. Revisit the concept and evolution of the ‘decisive moment,’ whilst considering the access and immediacy that photographic technology has now enabled. The challenge is to understand your own world-view, knowing that a picture can say as much about the photographer as the subject in front of the lens. Through a single image create a distinctive piece of cultural reportage.

Enter this if you’re interested in: Crafts for Design or Photography.

Additional Prize: On top of all the other benefits of winning, this brief offers a chance to be represented by "Making Pictures":http://www.making-pictures.co.uk/ as part of their MP Award and an invitation to take part in a project using Nokia devices with work produced featured on the Nokia brand website.


Design an app that helps people use their energy more wisely, which at the same time is fun or interesting. There must be a stand-alone reason to use the app, in addition to it being functional.

Enter this if you’re interested in: Digital Design, App Design, UX, Interface & Navigation, Mobile Interaction & Experience, Technological Innovation.


Repackage Purdey’s Rejuvenate and extend its range to include one new product – Purdey’s Natural Energy. With the world increasingly looking for products that work in harmony with our bodies, it’s time for Purdey’s, in its own way, to share its secret more broadly. Your challenge is to create packaging designs which enable this to happen, without losing the curiosity of the brand.

Enter this if you’re interested in: Packaging Design, Structural Design, Graphic Design or Branding.


Create a radio campaign for Mile High that communicates the brand’s exuberant approach to the ultimate pop-up dining experience. Think innovatively about how radio can spread the unique Mile High story and help them extend their audience. Whether through spot advertising, branded content, competitions or partnerships, this is an opportunity to bring the theatre of the mind to life through radio.

Enter this if you’re interested in: Crafts for Advertising or Writing for Radio Advertising.


Create a copy-led, integrated campaign that uses Sky’s unique personality to thrill and excite current and future customers through eye-catching headlines, scripts, long copy or stories. With so many ways to watch TV and movies, and new competitors entering the market all the time, Sky needs to stand out from the noise.

Enter this if you’re interested in: Crafts for Advertising, Writing for Advertising, or Integrated Campaigns.

The Body Shop

Create a new visual language for their brand communications that reflects their pioneering spirit within the beauty industry and as a forward-thinking British brand. Anchored through their window posters, the challenge is to expand from there to form a new visual communication style. Your work should encompass their quirky tone of voice, product efficacy and premium beauty credibility.

Enter this if you’re interested in: Crafts, Graphic Design, Brand Expression, Poster Advertising, Spatial Design or Digital Design.


Pick either Domestos, PG Tips or Ben & Jerry’s to act as a catalyst to create lasting, city-wide behaviour change on one of the following areas; health and wellbeing
, reducing environmental impact or enhancing livelihoods. You can choose the city, but it must be a mega-city home to over 10 million people. You must explain why you’ve chosen it too. Whichever of the three brands you choose, your ideas must fit their values and personality. Again you must explain why you’ve chosen them.

Enter this if you’re interested in: Advertising, Design, Digital Communications or Product & Service Innovations.


Create a campaign that not only makes people accept we have a problem, but persuades them to do something about it. As Al Gore says: “We have to put a price on carbon in the economy, and a price on denial in politics.”

Enter this if you’re interested in: Advertising, Integrated Campaigns, Digital Communications, Social & Environmental.

Additional Prize: On top of all the other benefits of winning, winning entries will be presented to Al Gore, with a chance that the best will be produced and help to make a real difference.

XL Recordings

Illustrate a significant event, or series of events, from the history of XL Recordings. Celebrate the artist and highlight their seminal moment(s) in a way that engages and communicates to your audience.

Enter this if you’re interested in:
 Crafts for Design, Illustration, Print with Digital, Moving Image, Photography orTypography.

Additional Prize: On top of all the other benefits of winning, this brief offers the chance to win three months’ representation from Bernstein & Andriulli Reps.


Tom Fitzmaurice’s winning It’s NIce That brief


The awards ceremony 2013


The awards ceremony 2013


New Blood showcase 2013