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D&AD has launched its seventeen briefs for the 2021 New Blood Awards. It has also announced the inaugural New Blood Shots, a series of quick-fire New Blood briefs set over six weeks which respond to the disruptions to creative education and employment as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
The New Blood Awards has championed, educated and inspired creatives from all walks of life as they enter the workforce since 1980. This year’s briefs have been set by major brands such as The Walt Disney Company, Penguin, Spotify, the BBC, Audible, Burger King, Spotify, Tesco, Xbox & Rare and span disciplines such as game design, experiential, advertising, branding and typography. They are all designed to provide aspiring creatives with experience working on client briefs. Entrants will also have the chance to show off their work and have it judged by leading practitioners as well as offering themselves the chance of winning a Pencil and a place in the D&AD New Blood Academy.
In an effort to make the awards as accessible as possible there are no formal education requirements and the eligibility criteria surrounding age for entry was removed in 2019, meaning anyone aged 18 or over without significant paid creative experience can enter and make a start on their creative career. D&AD also curates an online library of portfolio tips, bold ideas and the very best in creative design work to provide additional educational resources and inspiration for prospective entrants.
The briefs can be downloaded now from the D&AD website, with entries opening in January 2021 and closing in March 2021. The winners will be revealed shortly after and receive a prestigious New Blood Pencil, as well as a place in the D&AD New Blood Academy, a creative boot camp where participants learn skills and insights from the best in the business to help kick-start creative careers.
D&AD’s New Blood Shots responds to the downturn in employment due to Covid which has resulted in more talented young people searching for jobs and, in turn, ways to stand out. Its series of quick-fire briefs will be set over six weeks with accompanying short courses to give emerging creatives a faster way to impress creative employers, learn new skills and expand their portfolios. New Blood Shots offers emerging creatives a way to show their skills and land a paid commission or employment. The briefs will be announced later this year and throughout 2021, with further information about the collaborative partners coming shortly on the D&AD website.
Paul Drake, foundations director at D&AD, commented, “This year’s creative cohort will face more barriers upon entering the industry than ever before. The pandemic has completely shifted the way our sector works and valuable opportunities to connect and network with creative practitioners have been lost. The New Blood Awards have always existed to bridge the gap between education and the industry at large, a gap which is all the more important to fill during these incredibly difficult times. Through the briefs, we aim to give emerging talent a platform through which to stand out and impress the industry, alongside a taste of what the industry is really like.”
Naresh Ramchandani, D&AD president, added, “It’s tough for someone looking to break into the creative world right now, but new voices are needed more than ever. We created New Blood Shots to help tackle some of the challenges brought about by coronavirus and reassure this year’s creative cohort that the industry is still there to support them. We’re all looking forward to seeing the daring and surprising ways this year’s talent respond to the briefs.”
Both the New Blood Awards and New Blood Shots are open to any new and emerging creatives aged 18 or over without significant experience in a paid creative role. More information on eligibility, how to enter and download the briefs, can be found on the D&AD website.