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BA (Hons) Graphic Design students G Sarieva and C Wells pose for a photo with the D&AD President at the 2024 D&AD New Blood Awards.

Wins across the board for AUB at 2024 D&AD New Blood Awards


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BA (Hons) Graphic Design and BA (Hons) Visual Communication students from Arts University Bournemouth (AUB) are celebrating wins across the board following this year’s D&AD New Blood Awards at Protein Studios Shoreditch, London.

Judged by the industry's top creatives, the D&AD New Blood Awards, which took place on 4 July, are open to advertising, design, digital and marketing students, recent graduates and emerging creatives worldwide.

The D&AD Pencils are not just trophies; the Wood, Graphite, Yellow, White and Black Pencils are a fast-track to career kudos. All Pencil winners get a guaranteed place in the D&AD Annual, an invite to the New Blood Awards Ceremony, a D&AD Pencil per team, and the chance to apply for WPP New Blood Academy.

Three AUB Graphic Design students took home Pencils – Gergana Sarieva, Phoebe Hart, and Conrad Wells were delighted to receive the Wood Pencil for their project IMAX Feeling, for the IMAX live brief, fighting off stiff competition to get onto a shortlist of the best work submitted for each brief.

“Working as a team on a real brief for IMAX was an invaluable experience in itself," says Gergana. "It’s as close to real working conditions that we’ll get while we’re studying. We worked together and then split jobs amongst the team depending on who had what strengths and skill sets.”

“Phoebe and I worked on the storytelling skills, the writing, the mock-ups, the brand world, and then Conrad took over creating the final video, piecing it all together. Working as a team was easy; we were all really passionate about the project. It was our baby and we wanted to make sure we did the best we could.”

Phoebe comments, “We chose the IMAX brief because it was a bit more challenging. As a team of three we wanted a lot of work to do and this brief had a lot of deliverables for us. They wanted a whole new brand identity: new logos, a new website, navigation system, an ident, and an umbrella system for all their sub-brands to live under."

Conrad adds, “We were all thrilled to walk away with a Wood Pencil at the D&AD New Blood 2024 Pencil Awards. We all worked really hard on this project, and it means a lot that our work’s been recognised here.”

In addition, Klaudia Ptasinka and Karla Noren scooped the prestigious Graphite Pencil Award, which means they hit the three judging criteria – a good idea, well executed, and relevant to the brief – while their fellow student Duc Anh Le was awarded a Wood Pencil Award for their project, IMAX Expansion as well as the D&AD Portfolio prize.

Students from AUB’s BA (Hons) Visual Communication course also won a Wood Pencil Award for their project Iris. A collaboration from Hannah Lacey, Oliver Monger, Alfie Shaw, and Hopper Miller, Iris was in response to a live brief from advertising agency, 21 GRAMS.

“Iris is the watchful eye to keep Gen Z from doom scrolling," Hannah explains. "Using humour to confront Gen Z, the Iris app works to mitigate myopia via prompts to get off devices, reducing screen time and eye strain. Iris uses API technology to activate notifications when the user is on social media, sending brutally honest notifications to remind them to stop scrolling.”

The coveted Best of Show at D&AD went to BA (Hons) Visual Communication student Maddie Cope for her project, Out of Pocket.

Meanwhile, AUB's BA (Hons) Graphic Design was awarded the Best Stand for Sustainability by D&AD and Adobe for sustainable project content across their show, demonstrating circular systems thinking and responsible consideration given to use of finite resources and support for ecological, human and economic health and vitality.

BA (Hons) Graphic Design Course Leader Marion Morrison says, “The sustainability award meant a lot to us; it recognises the ethos and values that underpin our Graphic Design course, with the evidence for embedded SDGs being explicit in our approach and in every project.

“This has been a fantastic year for our students at D&AD; it’s wonderful to see their work being recognised and valued in these real-life, live brief scenarios. This recognition will go a long way for each of them in the competitive hiring environment.”

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