D&AD is an organisation that, in their own words, has been “inspiring a community of creative thinkers by celebrating and stimulating the finest in design and advertising”. Through support and training, creative talent worldwide is honed, and their New Blood initiative aims to build the next generation of creatives.
Running inspiring training programmes, D&AD aim to inform, educate and inspire those who work in and around the creative industries. They’re perfect for building upon an individuals’ talent, encouraging them to think in new and different ways.
Wednesday evening saw Craig Oldham – a previous Pencil winner (an esteemed D&AD award) and D&AD Trustee – discuss design practice. D&AD President Andy Sandoz took to the stage on Thursday to discuss the merits and impact of technology within creativity. This was particularly insightful, inspiring individuals to consider how to use technology to benefit their brands and customers in the future.
Alongside the evening talks, D&AD held a series of daytime Creative Labs in Manchester city centre. Each of the three workshops offered something completely different: from how to brief your creative team, to finessing creative ideas. However, it was Thursday’s session – Discovering Digital – that I attended, led by Bo Hellberg, Executive Creative Director at both Brave and HeyHuman.
The workshop was very interactive, with multiple team tasks set throughout the day. Starting the session with an overview of the world of digital, Hellberg went into more depth in certain areas, highlighting examples of good digital work. It was then over to us, where we had to pick a brand, and define a goal that would be achieved through digital innovations.
Apps and APIs (Application Programme Interface) were both areas that were covered in more depth. We were tasked with designing an app for our chosen brand, before considering how to include APIs to benefit both the brand, and their customers.
All workshops and evening talks held by D&AD over the week were really inspiring; whilst encouraging attendees to always focus on how their brand offerings can benefit customers. We had a fantastic time, and we’re looking forward to many more future D&AD talks!