The White Pencil was launched last year, with the support of Unilever, to mark D&AD’s 50th anniversary with the aim of rewarding ‘an idea that has a genuine social impact’. D&AD teamed up with Peace One Day, the movement begun by filmmaker Jeremy Gilley with the aim of instituting Peace Day, a global ceasefire on September 21 each year. Entrants to the White Pencil award were asked for ideas which would ‘grow awareness of and engagement with Peace Day’. Those ideas had to actually run this year, rather than just be concepts.
The winner, announced at D&AD’s White Pencil Symposium last night, describes itself as ‘a social movement that brings people together over food. The intent is to build awareness for Peace Day on a global scale, while inspiring peaceful action on an individual level’.
To test the idea, Leo Burnett Chicago worked with local organisations committed to working for peace in the Middle East, bringing them together over a lunch to discuss the issues. Seventy-five local restaurants, chefs and food trucks joined the movement and promoted the idea in the city. Recipeace branded olive oil bottles and place mats were put on tables to tell the story of the project and raise awareness of Peace Day. Postcards which came with the bill in participating restaurants (one shown above) pointed people to the Recipeace website, which had recipes for creating your own ‘Peace Meals’.
Is it a worthy winner? It certainly scores in terms of growing engagement with the Peace Day idea, providing a practical and easy to replicate method for people anywhere to get involved. And the idea of sharing a meal with those who you may be in conflict with is a universal and a powerful one. It does, however create quite a strong, albeit complimentary and very well-executed, brand in its own right. The original brief was all about promoting Peace Day – Recipeace does that tangenitally but in terms of a direct response to the brief that is purely in the service of Peace Day, perhaps the student winner (shown below) was stronger?
Earlier this year, Martin Headon and Olly Wood from the School of Communication Arts 2.0 won the student White Pencil category for their idea to work with computer games brand EA Sports to establish a global ceasefire among game players during Peace Day. Their concept involved asking players of EA’s Battlefield 3 game to lay down their virtual arms on September 21 – they could even take part in a Word War One style ceasefire kickabout in EA’s football game FIFA 12. A clever, powerful idea to enagage a difficult to reach global audience in an appropriate and novel way.
The difference, of course, is that the professional winner had to have run whereas the student entries were just concepts. Would EA have gone with Headon and Wood’s idea? You would have liked to think so.
There were 19 projects shortlisted for the White Pencil, with two shortlisted in addition to Recipeace – Blood Relations (above) from Baumann Ber Rivnay Saatchi & Saatchi and The Peace Flag (below) a self-initiated project by Tadas Maksimovas, Leong Darren Abriel, Aaron Fein and Tadas Vidmantas. For details on those projects and more on the White Pencil, see D&AD’s website here.
D&AD says that the White Pencil will be incorporated into the main professional awards next year and is open for all design work and creative campaigns for both brands and not-for-profits.
CR In print
In our December issue we look at why carpets are the latest medium of choice for designers and illustrators. Plus, Does it matter if design projects are presented using fake images created using LiveSurface and the like? Mark Sinclair looks in to the issue of mocking-up. We have an extract from Craig Ward’s upcoming book Popular Lies About Graphic Design and ask why advertising has been so poor at preserving its past. Illustrators’ agents share their tips for getting seen and we interview maverick director Tony Kaye by means of his unique way with email. In Crit, Guardian economics leader writer Aditya Chakrabortty review’s Kalle Lasn’s Meme Wars and Gordon Comstock pities brands’ long-suffering social media managers. In a new column on art direction, Paul Belford deconstructs a Levi’s ad that was so wrong it was very right, plus, in his brand identity column, Michael Evamy looks at the work of Barcelona-based Mario Eskenazi. And Daniel Benneworth-Gray tackles every freelancer’s dilemma – getting work.
Our Monograph this month, for subscribers only, features the EnsaïmadART project in which Astrid Stavro and Pablo Martin invited designers from around the world to create stickers to go on the packaging of special edition packaging for Majorca’s distinctive pastry, the ensaïmada, with all profits going to a charity on the island (full story here)
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