The general view of the jury was that this was a good year rather than a great one. There were a number of really strong, really well crafted pieces of work, which have been rewarded accordingly. Most members looking for another Guinness "Surfer" or Volvo "Twister" were unable to find a piece that truly transcended. Many entries caused great debate and the delineation between sound design and use of music, and animation and special effects, was particularly hard to judge.
The standard this year was set primarily by four commercials - NSPCC "Cartoon", the two X-Box films, and the Audi "Bull". These pieces exhibited great craft contributions throughout. The John Smith campaign also made strong representations in certain categories. Perhaps controversially, the BMW mini feature films, although well shot, lit, directed, cut, etc, raised a difficult judging principle as to whether they constituted commercials in the strictest sense - and ultimately they laboured to gather votes.
Non-English language Press Advertising: Marie-Catherine Dupuy, TBWA Paris
As the first non-English Language Press jury to be invited to D&AD, we felt we needed to be swots - so we took a long time to finish our judging. Let me give you a few impressions. It was very pleasant and we were generally happy with the results. Seeing as the judges came from all four corners of the planet (including some of the most far-flung parts of London W1), we had expected it to be a shouting match, but in fact we genuinely agreed on the results.
Some verbatim comments: "advertising is like advertising should be"; "very few outstanding or fresh pieces of work" "too many metaphors"; and "you need binoculars to read the copy". Some people told us we had been a bit tough, but, hey, this is D&AD.
Poster Advertising: Rosie Arnold, Bartle Bogle Hegarty
It was a bittersweet year. Lots of wonderful posters, particularly in the charity section. However not a single 48 sheet poster made it into the Book. The jury were all perplexed and revisited the entries several times but sadly couldn't agree on any entries. On the bright side, the standard is extremely high and the use of photography and illustration is strong, making for a visually varied and exciting year.
Posters Non-English Language: Tom s Lorente, Age
In order to judge international pieces, you must distance yourself from your own local culture. Clearly, pieces with great appeal in a one country can be totally meaningless in another. Given this fact, we have perhaps been inadvertently unjust on occasion, but I believe that the jury conscientiously strove to honour the most outstanding work among the pieces submitted.
The importance of outdoor media within the worldwide advertising industry is now beyond dispute. Rather than producing mere adaptations of print media, creatives are seeking a differentiated and appropriate communication with high-impact, objective language designed for rapid consumption. Awarding specific categories like posters helps orient the development of this idiom. I believe that the pieces selected succeed in showing some of the most innovative work being done in this category. And that they will, to a certain extent, serve as guideposts for future work.
As foreman for the first edition of the Non-English Language Posters category, I'd like to express my thanks for this opportunity - without being unfair to any culture: obrigado, gracias, grazie, merci, dank, arigatou, tack, zahvatiti, takk, hala, mauruuru, dziekowac, remesye, dhanyavAda, oliwni, diakuvaty,
Press Advertising: Ken Hoggins, Banks Hoggins O'Shea FCB
A hanger-sized room crammed with over two thousand pieces of work. This wasn't going to be easy. Can a category become too big? However, when we reviewed our shortlist on day two we found we had plenty to commend. A few executions were felt to be stronger as part of a campaign than as individual ads and were recognised accordingly. And despite our moans and groans, the five entries we enthusiastically nominated did not have conventional copy or headlines.
A particularly diverting vote was the show of hands on an ad for the Singapore War Museum. All the male jurors wanted it in, while all the female jurors wanted it out. Vive la difference!
Television & Cinema Advertising: Charles Inge, Clemmow, Hornby Inge
We sat through over 40 hours of TV advertising and voted just under two hours into the book. Of that, 45 minutes were taken up by three BMW 'commercials' each 15 minutes long. Among the 70 or so items that did get through there were few surprises. American ads did well, especially those with the sort of comedy violence that would never be allowed on our TV screens. Generally, "funny" seemed to win over "serious," and "human" seemed to win over "spectacular." There was little that changed the face of advertising.
That's not to say the winners weren't very good. They were - just not very different. The most debate centred on the BMW entries. Were they ads or short films? Certainly they were excused the normal restrictions that apply to advertising. We included them in the Book for the record. Watch the DVD and you decide.
Television & Cinema Advertising Non-English Language: Neil French, Dentsu, Young & Rubicam Wunderman
We all felt that, while the final list of work was worthy of being included in the Book, there was nothing mind-blowing. There were only a couple of films that were shoo-ins, and the only time we had any disagreement was when it came to silver nominations. I think, personally, that we were a bit lenient; but then, a nicer bunch of people would be hard to find!
However, I believe we were all a bit bothered by the category itself: Non-English-language TV. Since all films had to be sub-titled or dubbed, we weren't seeing the stuff "as made." Some work was badly dubbed or suffered from atrocious translation, and some definitely gained in the translation. But making sure that your work is judged in the best-possible light is part of the art of entering awards.
It's my feeling that all work should be judged by the same criteria and the same judges. Having native Spanish, Swedish, Hindi, or Portuguese speakers judging work that is shown in English somewhat defeats the purpose, surely? A good idea, beautifully executed, will shine in any company. So by all means have non-English judges, but my advice would be to let them help judge all the work. You might end up with a less Anglo-centric book, but non-English-language entrants would feel that they're getting a fair suck of the pineapple, and would be content to take their chances.