Great ideas can come from anywhere, but in the creative industries they have been coming from a sliver of the population.
In 2016, D&AD did something concrete about changing that. It created, what is for so many creatives who couldn’t go through the traditional education channel, a life-changing and career-making night school, New Blood Shift.
D&AD’s New Blood Shift is back for a third year. Applications are open for the free 12-week night school, that provides young people without qualifications a leg up into the creative industries
Lisa Williams, who was on the Shift London 2017 programme, stated, “[Shift is] for people like me – without a degree but with a burning desire to create… it opened doors for me and gave me the platform I’d been yearning for… We were pushed to our creative limits, doing things we’d never thought possible.” Following the programme, Lisa went on to a creative placement within the BBC, where she has just won her first pitch.
The programme has been hugely successful and seen wide support from the industry, with last year’s applicants going on to placements and employment with companies including Nike, BBC Creative, Iris and AKQA.
Steve Vranakis, D&AD president and executive creative director of Google Creative Lab, added, “We have a duty as creative practitioners to educate not just young people, but their parents about the viable career opportunities there are in the creative industries. Our sector continues to outperform the wider UK economy and last official figures showed it contributed £92 billion to the UK economy, yet in many households, and working class ones in particular, creativity is seen as a hobby. The Shift programme aims to remedy that. It opens doors and opportunities to amazing creative talent who might not necessarily have known that they can make a living doing what they love. And it leads to a fairer and more diverse industry.”
The artwork for this year’s campaign has been created by the Shift Class of 2017, who came up with the concept, copywrote and art directed all creative assets. Their campaign is based on the concept that talent can be found anywhere.
They write, “Talent doesn’t need a university degree, or A levels. Talent pours our pints, serves our meals and delivers our post. Talent works through the night, and dreams through the day. Talent says the unsayable and makes the unmakeable. Talent is relentless, unwavering and different.”
From the 2017 Shift London programme, 84% of Shifters have entered into paid creative employment (full time roles or placements of 1 month or longer). This compares to 41% of design graduates and just 24% media graduates employed in their sectors after 6 months of graduation. (Source: Telegraph).
Hilary Chittenden, head of New Blood Shift at D&AD, commented, “The strength of the programme has been building year on year. We’re always looking at ways to reach wider audiences. Talent is everywhere, we need to look out of our traditional silos to diversify our industry and create a more level playing field.”
Applications are now open for the Shift London 2018 programme. Details and entry requirements are available here. Applications close on 1 August 2018.