CR Blog News and views on visual communications from the writers of Creative Review Tue, 25 Nov 2014 18:58:09 +0000 en Blog Weight Watchers takes unusual approach with new ad Tue, 25 Nov 2014 17:33:00 +0000 Eliza Williams

Our relationship with food is a complex one, as this new ad for Weight Watchers from Wieden + Kennedy Portland points out...


Our relationship with food is a complex one, as this new ad for Weight Watchers from Wieden + Kennedy Portland points out...

The spot is set to the light-hearted tune 'If you're happy...', though with the lyrics adapted to highlight the way our eating habits can be governed by emotion. It is an unusual approach by a dieting company – whereas we are used to inspirational stories of how weight loss has changed lives, this ad explores (in a fairly cheerful way) some of the more complicated reasons why we might eat too much.

The timing of the launch feels unexpected too. We are usually flooded with dieting and fitness ads in January, after the season of indulgence has finished, whereas this spot is timed to appear just before Thanksgiving in the US, the traditional beginning of the holidays. It all adds up to a shift away from the 'quick fixes' normally associated with diets and instead offers a refreshingly honest perspective that addresses the difficulties people might face when trying to lose weight, rather than focusing on guilt or reinvention.

Agency: Wieden + Kennedy Portland
Creative directors: Michael Tabtabai, Jason Kreher
Creatives: Brooke Barker, Robbie Rane
Executive creative directors: Joe Staples, Mark Fitzloff
Production company: Epoch Films
Director: Martin De Thurah

TEDxAmsterdam launches the Human Clock Tue, 25 Nov 2014 16:45:00 +0000 Eliza Williams

To promote the forthcoming TEDxAmsterdam conference, agency We Are Pi has created the Human Clock, a digital timepiece filled with faces from all over the world...


To promote the forthcoming TEDxAmsterdam conference, agency We Are Pi has created the Human Clock, a digital timepiece filled with faces from all over the world...

The TEDxAmsterdam conference takes place on Friday and includes speakers ranging from Greenpeace executive director Kumi Naidoo to fashion blogger Ari Seth Cohen. To promote the diversity at the root of TEDx, We Are Pi has created the Human Clock, an online 'experiment' at, which features faces uploaded from around the world. The aim of the project is to reach 24 hours worth of one-second faces – around 86,000 individual visages – by the time the conference launches.

The design of the site is simple – visitors can upload a pre-shot image from their hard drive, or use a webcam to take a new portrait. The photo is then immediately added to the clock, where it appears overlaid with clock hands that feature the words 'tick tock' in various languages.

The images work best when they are newly taken, as the faces then appear aligned in the centre of the clock face and merge with the new portraits as each second passes. Some people have clearly just uploaded photos that make them happy – hanging out with friends, for example – which are less successful, but when you've got 86,000 images to reach, no one is quibbling.

The obvious comparison point for the project is Uniqlock – an online clock that was a huge success for clothing brand Uniqlo back in 2007. Whereas that clock featured footage of dancers in Uniqlo clothes however, audience participation is an active part of this piece. Join in the fun at

Agency: We Are Pi
ECDs: Rick Chant, Barney Hobson
Creative design director: Nessim Higson
Art director: Kaz Salemink
Film and photography production: 100% Halal
Director: Mees Peijnenburg
Digital production: Media Monks
Post: Glassworks

How our December cover was created Tue, 25 Nov 2014 12:04:00 +0000 Creative Review

The cover of our December Photography Annual issue features a new digital finishing technique developed by Precision Printing that creates a high-build, super glossy finish


The cover of our December Photography Annual issue features a new digital finishing technique developed by Precision Printing that creates a high-build, super glossy finish

The two images from our Photography Annual which feature on the front and back covers of CR this month have been framed with a cross-hathc pattern that recalls Polaroid prints. In addition, the images themselves have been treated with a high-build finish that raises them proud of the surface of the cover paper.

The process, known as Lustre Enhancement, uses polymer to create texture and a high-build effect on designated areas rather like traditional UV varnishes. Unlike UV, however, it can be used to produce one-offs or, in combination with data files, personalised versions of each copy. The height of the polymer can also be varied across a sheet and the technique can even be used to produce foil-like finishes.

Precision created Lustre Enhancement using technology developed some four years ago by the Israeli firm Scodix. Our covers were initially litho printed and then sealed. Once they were dry, the Lustre process created the pattern around the frame of our cover images and the high-build effect on the images themselves. The area on which the finish was to be applied was stipulated by creating an Illustrator file, just as you would for a conventional UV varnish.

While Lustre is tough and resistant to the kind of wear and tear magazines endure both in binding and on the shelf, it is advisable not to apply it either right up to the edge of the sheet or where a sheet may be folded or creased. Otherwise cracking or peeling may occur. Because of the very high build of the varnish, we also had to use a different bindery to ensure that the copies ran smoothly through the process.

For the CR covers, "We pushed the technology very hard," says Precision sales and marketing director Simon Lythe who estimates that the job took between 40 and 50 hours on press.

While for our cover we have just applied the high-build effect to each cover image in its entirety, it is possible to pick out specific areas, just as you might with a spot UV. We could also have varied the height of the build across the sheet using different layers.

An effect similar to metallic foil can also be achieved by laying a sheet of silver laminate across the sheet before applying the high-build.

All of this can be personalised or done on very short runs: Lythe says that Precision do a lot of one-off jobs, for example, which just would not be viable using traditional UV varnish or foiling.

Although Lythe sees a great deal of potential for the technique in producing DM materials or personalised invitations, he says it is also being used for Braille printing as individual characters can be raised up from the paper surface, rather like embossing.

[Doing the Creative Review cover] is such a wonderful showcase for Lustre Enhancement," Lythe says. "We're really saying to the creative world, ‘where can you take this next'?"

See more about Lustre Enhancement and what it can do at

If you subscribe now (details here) you will still be in time to recieve our December Photography Annual issue

Eight of the best Christmas window displays Mon, 24 Nov 2014 15:48:00 +0000 Rachael Steven

With Christmas shopping season well underway, department stores on both sides of the Atlantic have transformed their windows with elaborate festive displays. Here's a look at some of the finest we've seen so far...


With Christmas shopping season well underway, department stores on both sides of the Atlantic have transformed their windows with elaborate festive displays: Harrods, Harvey Nichols and Selfridges' feature enchanted forests and fairy tale scenes, while Barneys' house live dance performances and intricate mechanical sculptures. Here's a look at the best we've seen so far from London, Paris & New York...


The theme for Harrods beautifully dressed windows is 'The Land of Make Believe' - described by the store as "a contemporary take on tradition, set against a Scandinavian landscape of silver birch trees, ice-blue skies and snow drifts."

Each window features a bespoke one-off item - from a spinning ballerina in a Swarovski crystal gown to a patchwork rocking horse by furniture brand Squint - alongside toys, miniature creatures and strings of fairy lights. White mice in waistcoats and dresses also provide a nod to the brand's stop-motion Christmas ad, which features a troupe of the tiny animals acting as Santa's helpers:

Images via Harrods


Selfridges festive display is this year inspired by the idea of storytelling: each window on its Oxford Street store depicts a different fairytale or children's fable "with a Selfridges twist". There's a golden goose, Hansel and Gretel outside a gingerbread house, a "not so ugly duckling" in a feathered dress and a trio of Rapunzels with dip-dyed pink hair. Each scene is lavishly decorated, and the store has also installed a two-tonne neon sign above the canopy overhanging its main entrance:

Images via Selfridges

Harvey Nichols

Harvey Nichols has also adopted an enchanted forest theme this year - its windows feature hand-painted trees with metallic trunks and branches adorned with accessories, while mannequins wear metallic make-up and theatrical masks and head dresses.

Harvey Nichols says the windows took a year to plan and 600 hours to make. Janet Wardley, head of display at Harvey Nichols, says they are designed to create the illusion of standing on the edge of a forest, "which will entice you to look deeper into the woods."

creating the illusion of standing on the forest edge, which will entice you to look deeper into the woods.” - See more at:
Head of Display, Janet Wardley says: “This Christmas we wanted to create an atmosphere that was instantly recognisable and spoke to all ages; we wanted to bring to life a fairytale landscape that makes you immerse yourself into the magic. The display is three-dimensional, creating the illusion of standing on the forest edge, which will entice you to look deeper into the woods.” - See more at:

Images via Harvey Nichols


John Lewis

The star of this year's John Lewis Christmas ad, Monty the Penguin, is also the main attraction in its festive windows. Displays at the store's flagship branch on Oxford Street feature a group of penguins wrapped in knitwear, a family of penguins baking and another doing the laundry - creating charming scenes out of even the most mundane household objects.


New York department store Barneys' holiday windows were this year designed by film director Baz Lurhmann and production and costume designer Catherine Martin. The pair, whose previous productions include The Great Gatsby, Moulin Rouge and Romeo & Juliet, have used lashings of gold, bling and sparkle to create theatrical scenes inspired by a particular word, from truth to love and freedom.

Each window features either live performances or moving sculptures - there's an eight-foot mechanical steampunk owl by sculptor Chris Cole; handmade kinetic sculptures by artist Anthony Howe, which look like giant golden snowflakes, a lonely princess skating in an ice cave and another enchanted forest-themed window with 9 foot high chrome mushrooms, a giant jewelled beatbox and a dancing elf in a golden suit. The windows apparently took a team of 100 around 10 months to plan and assemble.


Bergdorf Goodman

Also in New York, Bergdorf Goodman's holiday windows pay homage to the arts: each represents a different art form, from painting to sculpture and fim, and was created using a different material or technique. Theatre, for example, features neon lights, while a literature window is made entirely from needlework. Windows were designed by David Hoey and assembled by over 100 artists and craftspeople.

Painting, photographed by Ricky Zehavi for Bergdorf Goodman

Music (left) and theatre, photographed by Ricky Zehavi for Bergdorf Goodman

Tiffany & Co

The windows of Tiffany's flagship store on New York's Fifth Avenue feature a series of papercut scenes inspired by its 2014 holiday ad (watch it here). Sets depict figures skating through Central Park, strolling through Times Square and travelling past the city's skyscrapers in a yellow cab, complete with flashes of the brand's signature blue and tiny Tiffany's gift boxes.

Richard Moore, VP of creative visual merchandising at Tiffany & Co says the windows are designed to capture the style and energy of New York in the 1950s. A lighting display is also taking place outside the shop at 4.00pm each day, which pays homage to a firework display held for Tiffany Diamond in 1939.

Images courtesy of Ricky Zehavi for Tiffany & Co.

Image courtesy of Ricky Zehavi for Tiffany & Co.


Printemps & Burberry

Paris store Printemps has teamed up with Burberry this year to create a display based on the story of a little boy who travels from London to celebrate Christmas in Paris.

Displays feature puppets dressed in Burberry clothing alongside models of landmarks from both cities, including the Eiffel Tower, the Gherkin, the London Eye and Printemps. There are also snowy landscapes, moving train sets and trees decorated with miniature Burberry charms.

Images via Printemps

How to land that dream job and more student advice Mon, 24 Nov 2014 09:12:00 +0000 Pip Jamieson

As founder of creative community The Dots, Pip Jamieson knows a thing or two about getting started in the creative industries. Here's her (extremely comprehensive) guide for students and graduates looking to land that dream job, plus some Advice to Sink in Slowly


Poster by Andy J MIller as featured in the Advice to Sink in Slowly calendar. See below for details


As founder of creative community The Dots, Pip Jamieson knows a thing or two about getting started in the creative industries. Here's her (extremely comprehensive) guide for students and graduates looking to land that dream job, plus some Advice to Sink in Slowly

The scary thing about our industry 
is that while there are more creative jobs than ever before, the competition is fierce. Since starting professional creative community The Dots, incredibly talented juniors are always asking me for tips on how to get that all-important foot in the door.

To be honest there is no single thing that will land you that dream job, but after compiling tips from creative directors, artists, agencies, recruiters, industry bodies and lecturers I now firmly believe there is a combination of steps you can take; a secret sauce in a way, that if checked off will guarantee you're leagues ahead of others vying for your dream gig.


If you're a student in your final year or a junior looking for that first elusive job, before you even start applying for jobs it's best to get all your ducks in a row.

Before graduation, make sure you allocate enough time to work on your portfolio, cover letter, website, profile on The Dots and identity. This is a massive project in itself, but I guarantee it will set you up for life.


1. Work on Personal Projects

One of my all time favorite quotes is "If your portfolio reflects nothing personal, then it might as well be someone else's" .
All the Creative Directors we've worked with have been massive fans of portfolios that include self-initiated personal projects. In the end, these CDs review hundreds of portfolios, and if they only include responses to university briefs, they start looking a bit same-y. Including personal projects in your portfolio will not only help your portfolio stand out, but will show that you're a self-starter who's passionate about design. Below are some top tips on how to get the ball rolling with personal projects:

Create a Personal Identity
Let's face it, your own brand is the most valuable brand you'll ever work on and one of the only projects you'll have complete creative license over.

Do an Internship
Internships are an amazing opportunity to get real-world experience, build up your portfolio of work and make contacts that can last a lifetime. If you are at university, ask if they have an internship programme. If they don't, lobby for one! Also, more and more job boards have internship roles appearing. Obviously I'd recommend The Dots but hey I'm biased. There are loads more out there, just Google "Internships."
As long as they're paid and well structured, internships are an amazing opportunity to get real-world experience and build up their portfolio of work.

Enter Competitions
Competition pieces are a step above student work. If you don't win at least you have some great content for your portfolio. If you do win it's an amazing way to get your work and name out there. Fantastic competitions include D&AD New Blood, YCN Professional Awards, RSA Student Design Awards, The Lovie Awards, IPA Awards and Design Council Ones To Watch. But there are loads more.

Ask a Creative Director for a Brief
Contacting a Creative Director that inspires you, and asking them for a brief, is not only an amazing way to challenge yourself creatively, but if the CD likes your response they may even offer you a job.

Help out a Friend or Family Member
Friends and family always need creative services, be it designing their wedding or party invites, an identity for their business, a new website, some copywriting, social marketing tips etc. You'll not only get fresh content for your portfolio and resume, but also win major brownie points in the process.

Find a group of university friends you love working with (or approach people you respect on The Dots and start collaborating. Come up with your own passion project - be it doing an exhibition, a zine, a pop up store, a product range, an installation, hosting a creative event - whatever goes really. It's a great way to show potential employers that you are self-starting, with a true passion for creativity.


Poster by Simon Vince for Advice to Sink In Slowly Calendar

2. Get your portfolio / Resume ship shape

A well-crafted portfolio is a gateway to opportunities. Essentially it's your calling card. The better the portfolio, the more juicy the role.

Get Organised:
Throughout university make sure you compile all your briefs and projects in one spot; it will make it so much easier to organize your portfolio when the time comes.

Keep Project & Brief Notes
A well-written project description that allows companies to understand the brief and constraints is a really important component of your portfolio, since you're not always present to explain. So when you complete each project keep a written overview of the brief while it's still fresh in your mind. Trying to remember what you did, and why, a year ago can be a massive headache.

Revisit Old Student Briefs
Revisit old student briefs you enjoyed working on, but could have done better. Spruce them up with your newfound knowledge and feedback from your lecturers and friends. Employers will never know it's your second cut.

Cull, Cull, Cull
Don't worry if your portfolio isn't bursting at the seams. While it might be tempting to add filler content, less is actually more. Remember the average quality of your portfolio is brought down by your worst projects, so culling your portfolio back to just your best projects is definitely the way to go. Less is more - or as we like to say in the office ‘all killer, no filler'.

Give Credit Where Credit is Due
If you've collaborated on a project, it's great practice to credit those you worked with - it's not only the right thing to do, but it also gives more credibility to your own portfolio. In the end there is nothing worse than being caught out claiming full credit for a project that an employer then discovers is not wholly your own work.
Get Your Work Professionally Photographed
A beautifully shot portfolio will enhance your work. However, if you're not a dab hand with the camera, don't worry. The great thing about The Dots (sorry shameless plug) is that amazing photographers ( are only a click away.

Include a Resumé
In many of the larger companies it will be Human Resource Managers who do the first cull of portfolios, not someone within the creative department. So even if your work is incredible you might not make the shortlist unless you give them a feel for your background and experience, including where you went to university, your skills, past employers and clients.

Proof Read
It's a really obvious one, but often gets overlooked. When you apply for roles make sure you pay attention to detail. Companies are looking for reasons to cull the huge number of portfolios that hit their desk each day. So don't give them one.

Attend A Portfolio Masterclass
Sometimes it's hard to take an impartial view on what should and shouldn't be in your portfolio. I guess that's why we will soon be hosting Portfolio Masterclasses, a great opportunity to get your portfolio reviewed by leading creatives. Find out about the next class by following our profile.



3. Promote Yourself!

Now you've got an amazing portfolio raring to go it's time to get busy promoting yourself.

Submit your work to blogs & publications
Getting featured on blogs and in publications (such as Creative Review) is an incredibly powerful way to build recognition.

Create business cards
Now you've got an identify up and running, design and print some personal business cards to hand out at graduation shows, conferences, events and interviews.

Create a physical portfolio
Things are starting to move online, but the more traditional employers still want the tactile experience of viewing a physical portfolio at interviews. When it comes to printing your portfolio every senior creative I've worked with has had a firm opinion on design. ... keep it simple ... your work should be given centre stage.

Create a website
Get a website up and a domain name. The best domain names include your full name. Unless you're a dab hand at coding, don't worry about building your own website. Simply use a website building tool. My favourites are Cargo Collective () and Square Space, which are really easy to use and customize.

Create a free profile on The Dots
I may be biased but I reallybelieve this really is the best way to get your portfolio of work online and in front of the best collaborators, jobs, companies and clients. Over 1,000 + UK/EU companies use the site to hire talent - some of which are TATE, V&A, Frieze, Designers Block, Tent, Vice, Spotify, BBC, Net-a-Porter, Wolff Olins, Pentagram, Universal Music, Random International, AKQA, Condé Nast, Twitter, V&A, W+K, Guardian and many more.


Poster by Ben Javens


4. Network your socks off

The contacts you make as a junior can last a lifetime.

Immerse yourself in creative events
Including gallery openings, exhibitions, workshops, talks, networking events etc. They're not only great for inspiration, but also a fantastic opportunity to network. Great ones include Glug, Here, Nicer Tuesdays, D&AD Events but there are heaps more, just check for updates on The Dots.

Make the most out of your Grad Shows
Graduation shows are an incredible opportunity to come face-to-face with leading creative employers. It's all too tempting to hang with your mates and celebrate the end of year, but try to come out of your comfort zone and network with people milling around. They could turn out to be your future boss.

Join Industry Bodies
Join industry bodies such as D&AD, AOI, IPA etc and get access to industry events, news and promotional opportunities. They can be a bit pricey, so only join if you can afford it.


5. The all important cover letter

Cover letters are a pain, but can make all the difference.

Create a template
Before you graduate I'd get a really great template together that is easy to customise.

Make it relevant
In each cover letter include a section where you talk about the role and why you'd be perfect for it.

Praise the company
Every employer wants to hire people that are passionate about their work and brand. So take a couple of lines to reflect on how amazing their company is and why you'd love to work for them.

Design it
95% of cover letters are written, usually on a really boring word doc. If you want to stand out from the crowd a well-designed letter, including your personal identity, will put you leagues ahead.

Keep it short
Employers are time poor and have hundreds of applications hitting their inbox, so you need to keep your cover letters short and sweet. A good rule of thumb is to time yourself reading the letter; if it takes over a minute to read, edit it back.

Don't forget your contact details
I can't tell you how many amazing covers letters I've received that forget to add contact details. So make sure you include your name, email address, website url and link to your profile on The Dots ( Employers need to know how to find you.


Poster by Gemma Correll


6. Take a break after graduation

So now you've got all your ducks in a row; a kickass portfolio, resume, cover letter, a profile on The Dots, a website and a couple of internships under you belt, what's next?

Take a break
You've got the rest of your life to work, so enjoy that freedom. See friends, party, travel, volunteer, chill - whatever floats your boat, you've earned it. It's also great preparation for that all-important first gig, as you've got the freedom out of your system and you'll be ready to throw yourself into your career.

Check your emails
Make sure you quickly check your email at least three times a week. There would be nothing worse than coming back from an amazing break and finding you'd missed out on that dream job offer.



7. Time to land that dream job, apply for roles.

Keep in touch with your lecturers and careers advisors from university

Many creative companies ask universities for advice on their star performers, so keeping in touch will ensure you're top of mind.

Research companies and hit them up directly
Research companies you'd love to work for and drop them a line direct to see if they have any roles going.

Keep interning
Unless you're one of those lucky graduates who lands a job straight out of university, keep interning while searching for jobs. You'll keep your skills fresh and, if you make a good enough impression, the internship could evolve into a full-time job.

Get Creative
Two candidates I know landed jobs at a leading agency by holding the domain names of the top creative directors to ransom, in return for a meeting with them. They then showed up at a number of agencies, with a camera and wearing balaclavas to present their portfolio. And while I'm not advocating trying the same stunt (it's been done so don't go there) it does prove that coming up with a unique and innovative way to get in-front of a company can work.

Set up job alerts & apply
Hit jobs boards - like the one on The Dots - and set up job alerts and start applying.

Pay attention to the details when applying for jobs
It's really important to read job descriptions carefully and check if an employer has, for example, specified what type of portfolio they want to see. If an employer has asked to see an online portfolio, make sure that's what you send, and not a PDF or Word document.

Personalise your application
When you apply for jobs make sure you direct your application to the right person, don't just address it "Dear Sir/Madam". If you're not sure who the right person is simply call the company and check, they won't mind.
Don't forget to include your cover letter

Reengage with contacts
Email past contacts you made while interning, at events, at conferences etc. Let them know you've recently graduated and ask if they've heard of any great roles going.


8. Time to land that dream job, prepare for interview

Spending time preparing for interviews will not only improve your chances of landing the job but will also reduce the nervous energy that builds up before an interview.

Swot up on the company
Before interviews, research the company. Who are their clients? What are their areas of expertise? The more you know about the company, the more the company will believe you really want to work there.

Prepare questions
Prepare some questions to ask at your interview. Employers will invariably ask if
you have any questions during the interview, getting a blank response simply shows you're just not that interested.

Know your audience and plan your wardrobe accordingly
Before you rock up for an interview get a feel for what kind of environment they work in; formal, or informal. Believe me there's nothing worse than rocking up for an interview in a suit if the person interviewing you is in jeans, and visa versa.

Prepare physical examples of your work to bring to the interview
During an interview if you're showing a print piece in your portfolio, studios like it if you bring a copy of the actual piece with you, as it gives them something tactile to relate to.

Write a script about each project
Communication in an interview is key. Employers don't want to just see your project, they want to understand your thinking behind it. A top tip is to draft a script explaining each project ahead of time, which you can read just before an interview to refresh your memory. It will take the pressure off big time.


9. Time to land that dream job, interview time

Leave a calling card
An employer may see as many as eight people in a day while interviewing, so all too often the interviewees can blur. Leaving behind a calling card is a great way to refresh an interviewer's mind when they come to reviewing candidates; be it a business card, a piece of your work.... Or the wonderful Jeremy Wortsman from The Jacky Winter Group has gone as far as to say he'd hire anyone who brings him muffins... magic!

Follow up straight after
When you get home after the interview drop the person that interviewed you a note to say how lovely it was to meet them; it's a nice touch that shows you're not only passionate about the role but also efficient and professional.

Ask for feedback
If you didn't get the job, spin it to your advantage and ask for feedback. It will help you better prepare for the next big interview.

Be passionate and let your personality shine
Something I hear time and time again from companies is that they see lots of great creative graduates, but not that many great people. In the end companies are looking for creatives that will work well in their organisation, so if you're not friendly, passionate and personable they'll simply hire someone else. Oh and always wear a smile.

Be humble
Don't say you're a great designer; say you want to be a great designer. Employers are looking for team players that they can mould, not people who think they know it all. It doesn't matter how talented you are, if they get a feeling you're going to be a pain in the arse they won't hire you.



10. That first job!

So you've landed that all-important first job, but that's not a reason to take your foot off the gas. Quite the reverse in fact. First jobs are invariably not all you dreamt of; essentially you're doing the donkey work that no one else wants to do. But work hard, be professional and soak up as much as you can and you'll be promoted before you know it.

Read ‘How To Be a Graphic Designer Without Losing Your Soul'

Find a mentor
Identify which person in the office you aspire to be like in 5 years and ask them to be a mentor; they'll be honoured and you'll get someone to lean on if you need it.

Make yourself indispensable
Take on every task with open arms and ask for more if you have down time.

Be a sponge
You're there to learn, so lap it up.

Be lovely to everyone
Unfortunately not everyone out there is nice, but don't make enemies, they can last a lifetime.

Take it on the chin and get on with it
You're not going to love all of the tasks that are given to you, unfortunately that's the reality of work, but be enthusiastic about everything, work hard and always wear a smile. The more you jump to every task, the more you'll get to work on the fun stuff.

Be part of the conversation
Don't be afraid to ask questions. Talent only takes you so far, being passionate and a real contributor will take you the whole nine yards. There's always a fine line between passion and arrogance, so learn to get a feel for how people react to your suggestions and adjust accordingly.

Work your socks off
It's a simple equation - the harder you work, the faster you'll get promoted.

Ask for feedback
The more you ask for feedback, even if it's negative, the faster you'll grow as a designer. If you come to work every day with a big smile on your face, work hard, seem genuinely eager to learn and make yourself indispensible your boss will be more inclined to help you get to that next level.


Pip Jamieson is founder of creative community The Dots


Founded by John Stanbury in 2006, Advice to Sink in Slowly provides free illustrated posters to first year art students bearing wise advice and words of inspiration from established creatives. The aim, says Stanbury, is to provide advice in a creative format that "people will want to live with, and which can let advice sink in slowly and be there to help out later on."

Its first wall calendar is priced at £15, with all proceeds going towards producing and distributing new posters. It's a worthy cause, and features work by a host of great illustrators. Design: We Three Club.
Buy a copy at

Epica Awards 2014: The Winners Fri, 21 Nov 2014 16:59:00 +0000 Eliza Williams

The winners of this year's Epica Awards were announced last night at a ceremony held in Amsterdam. There were big wins for BBDO New York, Leo Burnett Toronto, Publicis Conseil, 72andSunny Netherlands, and Leo Burnett Beirut...


The winners of this year's Epica Awards were announced last night at a ceremony held in Amsterdam. There were big wins for BBDO New York, Leo Burnett Toronto, Publicis Conseil, 72andSunny Netherlands, and Leo Burnett Beirut...

The Epica Awards is the only advertising and design awards programme judged solely by journalists. This year's judging was held in Amsterdam, with journos from around the world flying in to offer their views on the year's top work. Five Grand Prix awards were given this year, with two pieces of work in the Digital and Integrated category receiving the top gong.

Epica has an increasingly global outlook, with the Grand Prix awards given to agencies in five different countries, across three continents. In total, agencies from 74 countries submitted work this year.

Now, onto the winners...

The Film Grand Prix was awarded to BBDO New York for The Boy Who Beeped, an emotional film that forms part of a series from the agency for GE. The ad fought off stiff competition from Harvey Nichols and Heineken, among others, to take the top prize in this coveted category.

The Outdoor Grand Prix went to Publicis Conseil in France for its elegant poster campaign to announce the reopening of Paris Zoo.

For the Press Grand Prix, the award went to Leo Burnett Beirut for its clever campaign for Virgin, which aims to highlight the injustice of music piracy by pointing out just out hard it is to write a hit song, using clever and entertaining infographics.

The first of the two Grand Prix awards in the Digital and Integrated category went to the juggernaut that is the Always Like A Girl film, which asks us to reassess our use of the expression 'like a girl' and turn it into something empowering rather than critical (while also selling some sanitary products along the way).

The final Grand Prix of this year's Epica Awards went to Night Walk in Marseilles, a project created by Google and 72andSunny Netherlands, which offers users a chance to walk the streets of the French city by night on their mobile, tablet or online, discovering many delights along the way. The case study film above explains the project in more detail.

Alongside the Grand Prix awardees, other big winners on the night included adam&eveDDB, which won Agency of the Year after picking up 30 awards across all the categories, including 15 golds. Network of the Year went to Leo Burnett, which won 92 awards in total, including 26 golds. And finally, Heineken was given the Brand Tribute Award, a new award for this year, in recognition of the brand's commitment to creating creative and innovative work.

In addition to the Grand Prix winners, lots of great work received golds, silvers and bronze awards at this year's Epicas. To view all of this work, go to the Epica Awards website, here.

CR December: The Photography Annual Fri, 21 Nov 2014 10:48:00 +0000 Creative Review

December's CR is a double issue and features our Photography Annual, 80-pages of the best in editorial, advertising, fashion, stock and personal work...


December's CR is a double issue and features our Photography Annual; 80-pages of the best in editorial, advertising, fashion, stock and personal work...

This year's Photography Annual (in association with Precision Printing) includes some fantastic imagery from a wide range of experienced practitioners and relative newcomers. We launched the special issue last night at the Design Museum and were able to celebrate the achievements of those whose work is featured in its pages and the seven projects which were judged Best in Book. Congratulations to all.

Flip the issue over, and up front in the regular CR half we look at how Precision Printing worked to produce this year's Photography Annual cover; take a look at the best of this year's Christmas ads; and look at the Barry Island climbing wall which doubles as an art installation. We also have Bagpuss as we 'almost' new him.

In the columns, Daniel Benneworth-Gray struggles to cope with two new demanding clients in his life – a poorly wife and child; while in Logo Log, Michael Evamy explores the power of punctuation in branding – on the back of the NSPCC's recent logo redesign.

Kicking off our main features, Patrick Burgoyne talks to designer Vince Frost about his new self-helf book, Design Your Life. In it Frost explains how the same design principles which work for clients can be applied to making our personal lives better.


Patrick also investigates the social and political challenges that our ageing populations pose to Western economies – and looks at the opportunities that might arise, too.

Eliza Williams examines a year in which native advertising established itself as a controversial presence in our media landscape...

...and in using materials that change colour in the wind – or even react to brain activity – Rachael Steven talks to The Unseen, an 'exploration house' effortlessly combining art and chemistry.

French graphic designer and illustrator Jean Jullien is much in-demand at the moment and Mark Sinclair talks to him about his work to date as he leaves his adopted home of London for New York.


Five years ago, Sophie Ebrand swapped life as an advertising account manager for that of a professional photographer – and she's never looked back. Eliza Williams meets her.

In Crit, Jean Grogan attends a Paris conference on the work of type designer, artist and ad man Roger Excoffon, whose work is enjoying something of a revival at the moment...

... and Craig Oldham is also conference bound – to Manchester's People's History Museum for an event dedicated to the history of the political poster in Britain.

Finally, Paul Belford celebrates a type-only poster designed by the late Alan Fletcher which proves that working counter-intuitively can pay off in a big way.

New designs from Inkahoots, Snask, The Partners & more Thu, 20 Nov 2014 17:29:00 +0000 Rachael Steven

Our latest pick of new graphics work includes an open-source identity for an exhibition in Brisbane, branding for global education initiative #UpForSchool and a contemporary new logo for the Swedish Handicraft Association...


Our latest pick of new graphics work includes an open-source identity for an exhibition in Brisbane, branding for global education initiative #UpForSchool and a contemporary new logo for the Swedish Handicraft Association...

Burst Open

Brisbane creative collective Inkahoots has created what it claims may be the first ever augmented, performative, open-source  identity for Burst Open, an open-source design exhibition at Brisbane's Gallery Artisan.

To create the identity, Inkahoots invited people around the world to create a typographic 'O' and a statement about open-source design. Fragments of the various 'O's were then used to create the exhibition logo (below), while images and text were used to make an interactive animation projected onto a window in the gallery.

The animation is controlled by movement: 'O's morph in response to visitors rotating their arms and tracing an 'O' in the air while raising arms pauses the film, displaying the name and location of the creator of that 'O' and their statement about open source design. (The posture participants begin with when tracing the arc of the letter is also the semaphore symbol for 'O'). As well as forming part of the exhibition, it's a great way to encourage people inside:


Exhibition graphics and signage (shown top and below) feature materials and processes commonly used in open-source design, such as plywood, acrylic and etching:

And Inkahoots' Jason Grant says the collective identity offers "an expanded collective engagement with the exhibition's themes. It resists the smothering ideology of 'branding' while allowing for visual manifestations of identity that incorporate time, space and the body. And it's fun!" he says.


#UpForSchool is a new campaign launched by Sarah Brown’s education initiative A World At School, which aims to put pressure on world leaders to deliver on an agreed Millennium Development Goal to provide every child in the world with access to education by 2015. The campaign invites members of the public to pledge their support in person or via an online petition, and is hoping to collect 24 million signatures.

Brand consultancy The Partners devised the campaign name and identity, which has so far been applied to t-shirts, badges, stickers, posters, banners and a film promoting Up For School. The identity is based around an image of a schoolbook pointing upwards, with a colour palette inspired by children's textbooks.

"The #UpForSchool brand is an energetic, inspiring identity, and part of the increasing trend for charities to step away from emotional appeals to frame their brand and mission in a bold, affirmative manner. By creating a positive buzz that invites participation rather than financial donation, the #UpForSchool brand provides a platform for the millions of young people to connect and make their voices heard," explains The Partners.

The name is also designed to be used as a call to action, such as 'Sign Up For School' and 'Stand Up For School', as shown in the clip below:


Swedish Handicraft Societies

Malmo studio Snask was recently tasked with designing a new logo and identity for the Association of Swedish Handicraft Societies, a not-for-profit group which aims to promote and preserve traditional craft. The association recently celebrated its centenary and in 2013, decided to group its various activities - from educational programmes to retail shops - under one name.

"With over 17,000 members, 22 regional offices and eight retail shops they had a big challenge to gather everything under one brand," says creative director Fredrik Öst.

Instead of opting for a hand-drawn or traditional logo, Snask designed a flexible 3D 'H' that can be constructed using any combination of materials. The yellow and blue colour palette provides a nod to Sweden's national flag, but is coupled with black, white and grey for a more contemporary feel.

"We changed the associations of Swedish Handicraft from old butter knifes and knitting into everything made by hand, thus creating something modern but with a rich history of knowledge and experience," adds Öst.

The identity has also been applied to a range of merchandise and Snask has created some colourful graphic patterns for use on tote bags, wrapping paper and packaging:


The Wellcome Collection - The Institute of Sexology

The Wellcome Collection's new exhibition, The Institute of Sexology, claims to be the first UK show uniting the research and work of pioneers in the study of sex, from Sigmund Freud and Alfred Kinsey to German sexologist Magnus Hirschfeld (who also founded one of the first organisations promoting the rights of sexual minorities).

The exhibition runs until September 2015 and aims to chart how sex has been observed and analysed from the 19th century to the present day through a brilliantly bizarre collection of objects spanning art, science, film and photography. Artefacts include erotic prints and pottery, sex manuals and studies into the sexual behaviour of animals, as well as campaigns launched to promote safe sex during the Aids pandemic.

The exhibition graphics were art directed by John Morgan Studio and are suitably clinical, with bold white type and warnings of "material of a sexual nature". To promote the show, The Wellcome Collection has also installed large scale questionnaires in Shoreditch, which invite passers-by to tick boxes indicating their sexual preferences, while a teaser released online provides a playful glimpse of the content on display. Objects are also showcased in a hardback book (designed in-house and overseen by John Morgan), which features the same bold type alongside suggestive imagery.

Images via The Wellcome Collection


The Institute of Chartered Engineers Benevolent Fund

London studio Powell Allen has rebranded the Institute of Civil Engineers Benevolent Fund, which provides financial advice and support for ICE members and their families. The system is based around a yellow speech bubble, also designed to look like a hard hat, which is used to highlight the various services the Fund offers.

"[The Benevolent Fund] does great work but this wasn’t reaching or being recognised by enough people. We created a brand to make the organisation more approachable, understandable and relevant," says creative director Christoper Allen. The Fund's new website launched last week, and the identity has also been applied to a range of information packs alongside black and white illustrations. It's a simple but effective system, providing the Fund with a much clearer and stronger tone of voice.


30 years of Carter Wong

To celebrate its 30th anniversary this year, London design studio Carter Wong has released a charming pocket sized book, 30 memorable years, showcasing some of its finest work to date. The book includes a look at work for Walls, Ortmans Young, Formula 1 and Twinings - as well as a glimpse of Carter Wong's first job sheet:

It's a lovely reminder of some great projects and a charming way to celebrate the studio's milestone. You can also read more about the studio's work in our November issue (shown below), in which we talk to founders Phil Carter and Phil Wong and managing director Sarah Turner about combining craft with great ideas...

Words of the Umbrella Movement Thu, 20 Nov 2014 16:46:00 +0000 Yan Kallen

In a city where the majority of writing is finger scribbled on the screen of a smartphone, Hong Kong's Umbrella Movement has developed into an unexpected platform for handwriting and handmade typography.


"No to Pre-selected Candidates" banner on a back-lit bus shelter advertising. Unintentionally combining the written banner with the calligraphic artwork of a property development artwork.

In a city where the majority of writing is finger scribbled on the screen of a smartphone, Hong Kong's Umbrella Movement has developed into an unexpected platform for handwriting and handmade typography.




Collection of handwritten and handmade words from






Throughout the occupied areas, students and protesters have created and put up a large amount of visually striking handmade banners and signs to express themselves.

A four character sign saying "In the light of honesty" becomes part of a barricade in Harcourt Village, Admiralty

Vertical arrangement unique to Asian languages, seen on banners hanging on a bridge that leads to the government headquarters, above the protest area. Harcourt Village, Admiralty

The spirit of Chinese calligraphy or 'shu-fa'; which literally means "the way of writing", is an outlet to practice self-discipline and concentration, and to articulate thoughts and emotions with brush strokes. With or without aesthetic considerations, the written words of the Umbrella Movement have undeniably shown qualities of calligraphy and typography design, and can definitely be appreciated as such.


A banner written in retro style asking protesters to patron the small shops and businesses that may be affected by the protests. Lower Nathan Village, Mong Kok

The occupied streets or "villages" as some called them, have grown into a place where anyone can freely express their words and share them publicly. As they express their political views, cheer on and encourage fellow protesters, and write banters to mock government officials, these calligraphy and typography designs currently hanging in the streets have inadvertently become one of the icons of Hong Kong's Umbrella Movement.


3D letters "Add Oil", a Chinese figure of speech meaning to "give effort" "to stay strong" or "Add Fuel". - Harcourt Village, Admiralty.


Calligraphy poetry on the top of a tram stop, the tram stop is also shelter for protesters staying overnight. - Causeway Bay, Hong Kong


A banner with the words "Civil Disobedience" laying on an area of dead bushes that was trampled on the day the police fired teargas at protesters. - Harcourt Village, Admiralty


Calligraphy written on umbrellas. - Harcourt Village, Admiralty


The large word "bath" labels a shower station for protesters built by the students. -Harcourt Village, Admiralty.


Banner created with found materials. Harcourt Village, Admiralty

Yan Kallen is a visual artist from Hong Kong. See more at



The Times to screen Unquiet Film during Homeland ad break Thu, 20 Nov 2014 14:53:00 +0000 Rachael Steven

The Times has bought an entire ad break on Channel 4 during Homeland this weekend to screen a short from its Unquiet Films series, documenting the kidnapping and return of foreign correspondent Anthony Loyd and photographer Jack Hill in Syria in May this year.


The Times has bought an entire ad break on Channel 4 during Homeland this weekend to screen a short from its Unquiet Films series, documenting the kidnapping and return of foreign correspondent Anthony Loyd and photographer Jack Hill in Syria in May this year.

Bearing Witness airs on Sunday, November 23 and is the first of The Times' Unquiet Films to be broadcast on TV. Launched in June, the series a collaboration between News UK, ad agency Grey London and production company Betsy Works explores the historical and cultural impact of The Times and Sunday Times and the work of editors, journalists and contributors past and present.

The six-minute film features interviews with Loyd and Hill, who discuss their terrifying experience of being shot and abducted by a rebel group while reporting on barrel bombings in Aleppo. It also reflects on the role of war correspondents today, the importance of professional reporting in an era of citizen journalism and the training that photographers and writers must undergo before travelling to war zones.

Other films in the series, released on YouTube and via the Forever Unquiet website, include a look at the paper's history of investigative journalism, one on its typeface Times New Roman and another on the work of political cartoonist Peter Brookes (read our previous blog posts on the series here and here).

By partnering with Channel 4, The Times will ensure the film reaches a wider audience - it has only been viewed around 2,000 times on YouTube since its release, despite being a great piece of film - and Channel 4 says viewers will be able to interact with it through a microsite promoting subscriptions to the newspaper.

In a statement announcing the ad break takeover, Nick Stringer, chief creative officer at News UK, said: "Bearing Witness tells a powerful story, full of insight into the dangers journalists face in their endeavours to report the truth from hostile environments around the world ... Broadcasting this short film on Channel 4 in the Homeland slot is the perfect alignment of contextual relevance, brand fit and the reach of our target audience [described by Channel 4 as "upmarket and highly engaged"].

Homeland will be broadcast on Channel 4 at 9pm (GMT) on Sunday, November 23. See more Unquiet Films here.