All Posts in art director

June 21, 2016

Single Mingle | The Big Match

Join the Young Creative Council and for the opportunity to find your next creative doubles partner (art director or copywriter) at D&AD's New Blood.

We're taking over their Soap Box event space in the Truman Brewery on Wednesday 6th July – bright and early from 11am – for our Wimbledon themed singles match.

Students, grads and juniors (if you're not working) can swing by for your chance to get 5 minute rallies with loads of potential teammates – think speed dating, but with portfolios – and take your first steps into advertising as a team.

Check out our Facebook Page to see all the action from our previous Single Mingles, they’re less daunting than you think.

Spaces limited. Ticket price refunded on attendance. Any questions, catch us on Twitter.

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May 24, 2016

Break through the noise, that’s what you’ll be paid for

It’s getting to that time of year where if you’re an advertising student, you’re probably thinking: “Shiiiit, I best get myself one of those placements.” By now you’ve Googled the words ‘Creative Advertising Placements’. Been on the IPA’s website (you know who they are, right?). And filled out a perfectly thought out application form for BBH’s Barn (hopefully you didn’t miss the deadline). If this is all you’ve done, or dare I say less, it’s time to pull that finger out of your arse, and start using it to scratch your forehead, whilst you think about how you’re going to make yourself stand out.

Be your own brand

Hey you. Creative type. You’re about to enter the world of communications and branding, so for starters, you need to brand yourself. You don’t have to make a campaign about yourself (or maybe you do), but in order to stand out from the rest of your mates and other ad schools, it’s time to stop thinking like everyone else.

What are you going to be known by? ‘Tom and Ben’ or ‘Vikki and Hollie’? How many people do you know called Tom or Ben? Will your name be remembered? Probably not. Unless of course, you’re so brilliant that you’ve already won 10 awards.

Why not do something a little different? Creative team Newby and Wells did, by using their domain name in a unique way: //

But if you’re going to call yourself something wacky, don’t do it if it doesn’t stand for anything. Giving yourself a parody agency name like ‘we are Falcon’, ‘Starchy and Starchy’ or ‘BB8’ may seem amusing, but will it get you remembered? Not if you don’t do anything to back it up.

What I haven’t seen yet, is a team who have changed their names to something unique and original by deed poll, so there’s one option. Or maybe you could get married and be known by your shared surname, there’s another option.

Your website is your digital canvas. Your front door to the world. Your “how you doin?”. Simply putting your brand logos in square boxes isn’t really enough any more. You’re up against some serious competition. As creatives, we’re told to think outside of the box, so why have you made it 150px by 150px?

Use your art directional knowledge and create your own style that you’re proud of. Your website represents you, make it great. That doesn’t mean that everything needs to be mocked up, when you get into a crit, they may hate your idea and tell you to start again. Don’t waste valuable hours polishing marmite turds, unless those turds are the product of Latvian space traveling, Eurovision winning alpacas. The internet sure loves alpacas.


Get noticed

So you’ve got a book, made a website and you’re looking for crits. But before you can get a crit, your first challenge is to get past the agency gatekeeper and receive a response from the person in charge of placements. You and every other ad student graduating this year... you may be waiting a while. Time to think about a way to skip that queue. What’s going to get you first in line? Maybe you’ll win an award, maybe you won’t. Then what?

Your portfolio shouldn’t just be about amazingly executed print ads, it should be full of big ideas that get people talking. Creating PR ideas will be part of your job role, so doing something that gets public intrigue before you’re even hired is certainly a good start. If you’re thinking about doing a stunt, don’t just do one for the sake of doing something different, and whatever you do, don’t post your favourite Creative Director a picture of your feet, accompanied with the message: “I’m trying to get my foot in the door.” That CD no longer likes you, and you didn’t even get the chance to say hello.

When I was a student, I was told about creative team Callum & Marc (now employed at BBH) who got their first placement through their Megabus Book. It was this idea that got me thinking about what I was going to do to get noticed. After a bit of thinking, I realised that the well known creative award the Cannes Lion, wasn’t actually a whole lion, it was only half a lion. So I created the back half as a new award for Cannes 2015, The Cannes Lion Arse Award. I sent it to Campaign magazine and tweeted about it like crazy, and ended up going with my creative partner to Cannes after receiving a number of placement offers. My university tutors didn’t understand the idea and were nervous about us putting it in our book, which goes to show, your tutors aren’t always right. Follow your instinct.

Antonia Jackson cannes lions

So you make ads, what else?

Agencies are looking for T shaped creatives, multi-faceted bi-lingual freaks of nature, or something like that. So take photos of your leftovers , illustrate awkward boner moments, blog about Phil Jones’ face, code, make short films, play the trombone, write slam poetry or paint using only the force of gravity.

If you have a skill, try incorporating this into a proactive idea. Make that art series featuring Kim Kardashian. Design that new product that cures man flu. Think about the take out. Do you want it to go viral? Do you want a journalist to write about it? Or do you just want it to be respected in the ad world? Whatever it is, make sure you’re getting it in front of the right people.

Think about what’ll interest the person who’s going to give you your first placement. They want to see that you’re hardworking, proactive, and good at problem solving. So maybe start there. Find a problem and solve it well. Really well. Look for insights, find a solution, and get it talked about. If you can get a stranger to share your content, then you’re on the right track. Social media should be your best friend. It’s your platform to communicate with the industry, use your Twitter profile like a CV. Cover it with your interests, post your work, follow Creative Directors and recruiters, partake in @oneminutebriefs, and hashtag strategically so the right people find it.

One minute briefs

And for god’s sake, Tweet at your favourite CD’s and be brave, ask them for a crit. The worst that can happen is they won’t reply. If they don’t, message them again with something different until they do.

Everyone’s making noise. Make yours ultrasonic.

April 27, 2016 - Comments Off on New Blood Shift

Are you aged 18-26 bursting full of creativity, but don't have a degree?

D&AD have a super awesome new opportunity that might just be right up your street. They're launching a night school for 15 young things who aren't in the creative industries but should be! Do you blog, write funny tweets, doodle, code, or something else that's weird and wonderfully original? It won't interfere with your work, but it will get you geared up to get into the creative industries.

Know someone this is perfect for... TELL THEM.

Check out all the info here: //

Deadline to apply: June 1st.



April 19, 2016 - Comments Off on Single Mingle | May 2016

Have you been longing for the chance to share your lovingly handcrafted ideas with someone else?


Are you a lonely copywriter looking for your ideal art director? Or an art director looking for the perfect wordsmith? We’ve got a night that’s the perfect chance to find that special someone, for the hours of 9 to 5.

On Wednesday 4 May, we’ll be taking over Iris and kitting it out to help you search for your special someone. Our speed dating format means you get to meet plenty of potential matches. But don’t worry, this isn’t about personalities, or a fashion show. This is a meeting of roles. Art directors one side. Writers the other.

Sceptical? Don’t be. Previous events have seen teams formed that are now plying their trade throughout London and even further afield. And if you want to get a feel for it, you can check out the photos from our last Single Mingle.

Want in? Grab one of our refundable tickets now.

This is event is sponsored by Iris Potential. The creative grad scheme for Campaign’s Agency of the Year, Iris.

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This is event is sponsored by Iris Potential. The creative grad scheme for Campaign’s Agency of the Year, Iris.

Poster by Seb Hepplewhite @ YCC

Note: This is a graduate to junior level only event for wannabe creative teams. Soz.

April 13, 2015 - Comments Off on Ready To Graduate?

There are about 6 weeks to go until you finish university and head into the ad industry. But are you ready for what really lays ahead? Has uni really prepped you for what happens next? Here are a few things that I’ve discovered along the way.

ready to graduate-01

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September 10, 2014 - Comments Off on 100 Ways to Create a Great Ad – Tim Collins: The Review

There have been a million times when I am concepting with my partner and she’s trawling through the internets wealth of blogs and an hour later will return with a wide scope of ideas. I then panic and think I’m shit at my job because it isn’t working as well for me. Like a child trying to copy in class, I sideways glance at her sheets upon sheets of notes while I look down at my measly few scribbles. It turns out I just need a bit more structure to my thinking. I read A Technique for Producing Ideas, and whilst it was short and sweet, the layout and visuals weren’t exactly inspiring but with 100 Ways to Create a Great Ad, I may have found the sweet spot.


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March 4, 2014 - Comments Off on Salary Survey 2014: The Results

Ok, the results are finally in. Let’s first begin by admitting what an eye-opener this entire research project has been for us... Yikes. We created an anonymous survey to lift the lid on the current salary situation in Advertising.

The idea came from a little post that Ben Kay (ITIABTWC) wrote a couple of years back and when we realised some indescrepancies in the ballparks given by the Major Players Salary survey in 2013/2014. Granted, they did have some 1500 entries but this is across all disciplines and with a little bit of luck our specialist cross-section should give a more accurate report. Here's our original post (if you want to catch-up).

All in all we received nigh on 350 entries in just over one month, although we finished with a total of 329 entries after weeding out some cheeky production, accounts and strategy entries. In our survey we have included both freelance and fulltime, from placement to senior levels and across Art Directors, Copywriters & the hybrid ‘Creatives’ amongst you.

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December 10, 2013 - Comments Off on Earth Hour X Pentagram Brief

Do The Green Thing and WWF are teaming up to bring you 29 posters from world famous creatives that inspire a more sustainable lifestyle (see last years collection). This is all in the countdown to Earth Hour and this is your chance to be number 30.

If you are between 16-25 years old and from any creative background, all you need to do is fill a poster template with something that you think will help the planet. Whether that is an innovative product, a great piece of writing or a slammin' bit of graphic design. If you win you get to have a mentoring session at the very very swanky Pentagram to finesse your poster! Not bad.

Get behind this fantastic cause and get those cogs turning by 13th January 2014. Get the full brief and submit your work.

November 25, 2013 - Comments Off on What are you worth to your agency?

Do you sometimes feel like you're out of your depth when talking about money to agencies or recruiters? Are you curious about the industry standard and where you fit in the mix?

How much should I be asking for if I go freelance? How much should I be expecting for my first job? What does a Midweight Art Director earn? Aren't we all just making it up anyway?

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November 8, 2013 - Comments Off on SINGLE MINGLE: CREATIVE SPEED DATING

The Young Creative Council, Single Creatives and Gemini Search present:

The Single Mingle returns to the Nelly Dean pub in Soho on the 21st November from 7-11pm and this time it’s a little different. To make sure you get to network and check out all the talented other halves (copywriters and art directors) that currently on the market we’ve created a speed-dating event.

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