To mark its 50th birthday, D&AD is delving into its archive to highlight significant pieces of work that have featured in the awards. We will be publishing one a week. Next up, Bernard Lodge’s classic Doctor Who title sequence
This extraordinary work won a Yellow Pencil in the Advertising and Graphics for Cinema and Television, Television Graphics, category in the 1968 D&AD awards (a year, incidentally, when there were no Black Pencils).
Graphic designer and director Bernard Lodge was originally asked to create a Doctor Who title sequence for the first series in 1963 for which he used a technique called ‘howl-around’. This idea was suggested by associate producer Mervyn Pinfield who had recalled seeing it being used in the 50s by a BBC technician called Ben Palmer. Just as a microphone placed too close to a speaker can result in squealing feedback, pointing a black-and-white video camera at its own monitor can distort the image and produce abstract patterns.
Lodge had been asked to work the show’s title into his opening sequence – luckily, the type itself created interesting abstract patterns when the ‘howl-around’ technique was employed, conveying the required mysterious effect. The version awarded by D&AD and shown here is for the shows starring the second Doctor Who, Patrick Troughton. Lodge incorporated Troughton’s face into the sequence by placing a photograph of the actor’s face in front of the camera, photographing it and then using it in negative.
A great article on the h2g2 wiki here explains all.
And this video provides an overview of all the Doctor Who title sequences over the years
The 1968 annual was designed by Bob Gill with typography by Malcolm Frost.
Read the first post on this series, on Barrie Bates’ 1963 A union, Jack! poster, here
And the second post, on Derek BIrdsall’s covers for Penguin books, here
And the third, on the Go to Work on an Egg ad campaign here
And on the 1966 British Rail identity here
D&AD’s 50-year timeline of landmark work is here
The 50th D&AD Awards are open for entry until the February 1
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