Adding the Spark for the D&AD Awards 2017

The client

Since 1962 D&AD has been celebrating and nurturing creative talent worldwide through their annual Professional Awards. Recognised globally as the ultimate creative accolade, the D&AD Awards are entered and attended by the best from around the world.

The award itself – the iconic Pencil – has become known as the shining symbol of the very highest creative achievement.

The D&AD Awards brief

To design and deliver a new, stimulating format for the award ceremony, proving fresh and creative thinking that will create an emotive experience for each and every delegate.

SomeBrightSpark were commissioned to design and deliver creative content and other visual aspects for the event experience. For our long-term partners, Hawthorn, this would be the 3rd consecutive year of providing and managing the professional technical equipment such as staging, lighting and AV.

‘It was amazing to work with the team at SomeBrightSpark again. We’ve been working collaboratively for over 10 years and by doing so, we’re able to combine our knowledge to create unique and memorable experiences. Phil Whetter, Dan Rogers and Mat Bartram from SBS really drove the project alongside us from the initial pitch to final delivery. Their expertise allowed us to do what we do best and work on the tech whilst collaboratively delivering a magnificent creative technical package.’

James Hunter, Project Director, Hawthorn.

Our approach

Inspired by the art-deco venue – the Troxy – and the iconic pencil award, we took the approach of reflecting and mirroring these visual aesthetics across the venue.

To create a focal point for the event we surrounded the stage with four giant LED screens to display HD synced content, providing the perfect visual backdrop for proceedings.

We were just left with the mission of assembling all of the content for the event which included visuals for the opening ceremony, and over 700 individual profile stings for each of the winners.

The challenge

In previous years the D&AD Award ceremony took place two months after the shortlisters were announced at the D&AD Festival (the precursor event). This year the two events were just two days apart meaning that submission videos had to be found from an archive containing over 27,000 videos, each requiring meticulous editing – all within just 72 hours.

‘We had 13 editors and producers working around the clock which pushed our creativity to limit. We couldn’t have done it without coffee’.

Mat, our Design Director

How we defined the D&AD Awards

Because of our digital experience and knowledge we were able to produce a range of content including animations and videos, designed specifically for our abstract screen configuration. The result was an impressive, immersive experience and worked seamlessly with the rest of the event’s production.

‘This year was our first experience of working with SomeBrightSpark in collaboration with Hawthorn. We’re celebrating another fantastic year of the D&AD Awards having called upon SomeBrightSpark’s creative talent to create a new and impactful show format for how the winning work was displayed. The patience, dedication and professionalism of the team has meant that it’s been more than a pleasure to work with SomeBrightSpark. I’m already looking forward to planning the next event with the team.’ 

Michelle Fischer, Senior Events Manager at D&AD