Thoughts | Andy Kirk - Design Strategy Director

Encouraging the Future

Share

As part of fostering new talent, 1HQ has built some great relationships with design colleges, taking a roadshow out to them to tell them all about life in our studios, reviewing folios and setting new briefs. Our team occasionally mentor students too and we’d like to share some of the standout work from a couple of students who’ve benefited from this recently.

Ethan Brown and Ben Chamberlain are in their first year of the BA (Hons) Graphic Design course at Norwich University of the Arts. Their entry ‘Not Just Open, But Equal’ is a D&AD New Blood Awards winner for the 2018 JCDecaux Brief.

They both talk animatedly about their work:

“We’d chosen equality as a motivating area for a brief to promote ‘The Bigger Issue’, working with our NUA tutors. The feedback was so positive and it was shown across the University as a great example of Year One work.

Soon after this initial success, our tutor Gill Johnson made us aware of the D&AD New Blood brief that mirrored our original objectives. She encouraged us to build on our thinking for an entry.

We decided to send the project to Andy Kirk, Design Strategy Director at 1HQ. We wanted the advantage of an outsider’s view, someone who would have a different outlook and a professional, real world point of view. His feedback was positive, but he also offered a very honest and constructive critique on areas he felt could be improved. This insight highlighted the weaknesses that we should work on.

Based on his comments and with constant feedback from Gill, we developed ‘Not Just Open, But Equal’ to promote the #LondonIsOpen campaign.

The end result was one we were very happy with. It was pure, communicated clearly and answered the brief perfectly.”

Andy has mentored students from other colleges, including Brunel University. He is a firm believer that mentoring is about helping students to see that there might be other dimensions to consider but it shouldn’t be about total reinvention. It is important to help the mentee be open to totally honest and objective criticism.

We spoke to Andy about working with Ethan and Ben on the #LondonIsOpen campaign:

“The guys had found a lovely hook with the ‘equals’ sign and the work was highly polished. The flaw was that it was technically proficient (such high quality from First Year’s) but it was all a little bit cold, so I suggested bringing real people into it and also showing how the sign could work as a bigger campaign.

I think it was also important to adapt the soundtrack which was brilliant, but totally at odds with the spirit of the idea (a version of Power, they removed the lyrics 21st Century Schizoid Man). They added their magic and it won a D&AD Pencil, which is fantastic. I wish my feedback could do that every single time!”

Ethan and Ben commented:

“It made such a difference to us that Andy took the time to do this, it’s such amazing support and so valuable to us and our hard work and attention to detail paid off!”

You can view the winning entry ‘Not Just Open, But Equal’ on the D&D website.

Share
Enjoy your thought pieces like this by subscribing to our 'cue' magazine