Yellow pencil awards

BNU Creative Advertising students win global recognition and make the shortlist for leading creative industry awards – ‘D&AD New Blood’

five pencil awards

Four students from Buckinghamshire New University’s BA Hons Creative Advertising course have won the prestigious Wooden Pencil award in one of the best respected recognition programmes for new talent in the creative industry - the D&AD (Design & Art Directors) New Blood Awards.

The awards are a global competition for emerging creatives across advertising, design, illustration, animation, UX/UI and game design. ‘New Blood’ typically receives entries from around 60 countries each year from nearly 6000 entrants including students, graduates, and aspiring creatives.

Entrants are invited to submit solutions to real life briefs provided by major organisations and brands such as Unilever, Heinz and Google. As the D&AD state on their awards website “New Blood is all about real briefs, set by real clients, judged by the industry's top creatives. They represent an opportunity to land a job in the creative industry by getting a head start while still at university.”

The four BNU students worked on two separate briefs; Yasmin Mather, 22, from Beaconsfield, delivered a campaign to inspire Gen Z to resell their items on eBay and Luc Lewis, 26 from London, Pablo Padina, 22, from Jerez Nicolas Tissera, 21, from Barcelona, worked as a team to create a TV ad that would re-position William Lawson whisky to appeal to the ‘unconventional’ drinker.

The student’s work was judged by a high-profile panel of experts from across the creative sector, a process that in the past has not only recognised new talent but also helped to kick start careers in advertising and design too. The D&AD pencil making for a great addition to any creative’s portfolio.  

Only a select few entrants are awarded a Wooden Pencil, a prize shaped quite literally like a large pencil that is only given to those who win a spot on the hard-fought shortlist for the D&AD New Blood Grand Finals, due to be held on 6th July in London.

As Andy Imrie, Senior Lecturer and course lead for the BA Hons in Creative Advertising at BNU explains The Creative Advertising course at BNU has a rich heritage of success in the D&AD awards, perhaps because we do lots of work on real life briefs such as those set by the awards as part of our course curriculum. This not only helps our students enormously in this competition, but also prepares them for their future studies, industrial / agency placements and careers too.  

He continues “We are extremely proud of all 4 students who have won wooden pencils this year and are looking forward to hearing how they fare in the final on 6th July. But, for now, we hope they take a moment to enjoy celebrating their success, because they are an inspiration to us all.”

Luc Lewis said “Winning felt unreal a rush of excitement that overwhelmed the rest of my day. I'm also incredibly grateful for Nico and Pablo. Calling them and sharing the news of our win will forever be one of the happiest moments of my life. Nothing compares to the joy of a shared victory. The next day, Nico and I celebrated by attending the D&AD Festival, no longer as students but as established creatives.”

Yasmin Mather said “To this day, I'm still in disbelief that I have won this award. The sensation is so surreal, and I'm still trying to wrap my head around it. It’s been incredibly rewarding, giving me more confidence in my work”

In addition to their own ‘pencil’ trophy, each winner of a Pencil level will receive a bespoke winner’s package likely to include mentoring, access to D&AD learning tools and more. The final results will be announced at the D&AD awards in July.

More details about Creative Advertising at BNU can be found here

More details about the D&AD awards can be found here