D&AD's Digital Footprint

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Entries were first just spread out on the kitchen floor of a design studio. Today, over 300 creatives judge over 25,000 bits of work over a week in a hall the size of four football pitches – and it isn't only about print work anymore.

Digital was the biggest and fastest growing sector this year for a few reasons. First, the work now gets the appropriate budget and attention from not only the creative industry, but from clients as well. It's no longer a bit that's been bolted, it's integrated really well into multiple agencies and even multiple industries. Second, there has been a move away from digital advertising being purely about signposting to being a tool, content, or a community. "Uniqlock" does all three and is a great example of the things that happen when the whole brand is behind work that covers everything from product to retail through to the user/consumer. So where is this all going? D&AD introduced a mobile marketing jury this year. It's a small (for now) but soon to be very important vehicle for creative communication. The jury awarded two Yellow Pencils – to the WTF 'World's Worst War' from Hakuhodo and BBH's 'Get In There' – providing boys with even more toys to get birds. It's going to be a gold rush in this sector as our phones turn into connected devices and increasingly add physical location and freedom of mobility to our normally sedentary digital lives.

In the meantime, we have an unprecedented six Black Pencils. This was a year that reaffirmed the value of traditional media, with The National Gallery Grand Tour taking fine art onto the streets of London and a TV ad with a drumming gorilla whose pitch I would love to have witnessed. The frontiers of digital were pushed even further by the beautifully crafted "Get the Glass," and again "Uniqlock" – is it a film, is it a website, is it a blog? I'm still trying to work it out. Finally, what year is complete without Jonathan Ive adding to his Pencil collection, the man has the Faber-Castell of all collections (other brands are available). These pieces of work have not just scratched the surface of their respective disciplines, they've made a dent, they've smashed through what I thought possible and because of their existence, the creative bar is now that little bit higher. Bollox to them all, I wish I had done that.

Congratulations to all the Pencil winners this year – I am deeply, deeply jealous of you all.

Simon Waterfall is co-founder of Poke, London and president of D&AD.

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