London, September 26, 2023: Today sees the launch of the 61st D&AD Annual, a free digital resource showcasing all shortlisted and winning work of 2023. This year’s Annual features interviews with winners and industry leaders exploring major cultural themes; curations of the Judges favourite work and their opinions on the most talked-about entries; and letters from D&AD CEO Jo Jackson and the 2022/23 D&AD President, Richard Brim. In this edition, D&AD goes even more in-depth than ever before with an Annual Trend Report providing an analytical observation of today’s global creative industry.
Behind the Work interviews offer an insight into how the work was made, from the inside story on the development of Vogue Brazil’s award-winning Typeface; to Muskrat Magazine and BBDO Canada casting culturally sensitive projects and preserving the past by rewriting Pocohontas. D&AD Voices provides broader context and perspectives on key ideas in this year’s winning work, such as how AI is raising new and age-old questions about photography, how brands and advertisers are responding to consumer climate anxiety, and perspectives on colour theory, branding ubiquity, healthcare design, and more.
The D&AD Annual continues to serve as the ultimate educational and inspirational resource for both emerging and established creatives. The recent digitalisation of the Annual means the latest editions have been widely accessible, reaching over 200,000 users.
The Annual is free to access to all and is now available to view via the D&AD website here
D&AD Annual Trend Report
WIth 300+ world-leading designers, advertising experts and skilled creatives casting their eye over a record number of more than 12,000 entries from 70+ countries, D&AD is in a unique position to truly understand the industry today. Created with The Thought Partnership, the Trend Report examines emerging themes that dominated the D&AD Pencil winners in 2023. It distils the catalogue of insights gathered from the jury rooms, as well as the impact of wider cultural and societal shifts in the world at large.
Shaped by shifts in the wider world and pointing towards what’s coming next, six trends are unpacked in the report: Joyful Surrealism, Open-Source Casting, Ownable Iconicity, Augmentation For All, Preserving the Past, and Pay It Forward. There is also a look at how AI is developing a presence at the Awards, and predictions on how it will develop in the creative industry.
Joyful Surrealism explores creative work that surprises and thrills, transporting audiences to unexpected worlds with engaging, surreal concepts. This was demonstrated in Black Pencil-winning work ‘Pharrell Williams – Cash In Cash Out’, a music video pushing the creative boundaries of Video Production with a realistic fantasy world created entirely through CGI. This trend shows that if you tap into awe and joy you will reach consumers seeking escape, and creating
goose-bump-inducing effects will engage audiences.
Open-Source Casting is the trend for casting real people. Presenting authentic and socially inclusive depictions of society reflects anti-perfection in an imperfect world. Pencil-winning work tore down societal barriers to inclusivity. Lacoste knows its community is not defined by demographics; it’s formed of diverse social groups and subcultures. “Unexpected Encounters” by BETC Paris drew on this with an authentic and bold campaign shot by Irish Photographer Ronan Gallagher. The refreshing use of casting brings strangers, from infants to octogenarians, to meet in surprising moments, united by a piece of clothing bearing the iconic Lacoste crocodile emblem. Overall findings are clear that the ‘TikTokification’ of social media means audiences now expect real-life, unfiltered content.
Future Focus – AI. In 2023, the possibilities and limitations of artificial intelligence as a creative co-pilot were entertained. ‘Coca-Cola Masterpiece’ took home a Yellow Pencil and two Graphite
Pencils for its groundbreaking application of AI, with a two-minute fizzy film explosion set in a gallery where Andy Warhol’s 1962 artwork Large Coca-Cola comes to life. Although not yet widespread, the Jury predicts that AI will be a dominating trend next year. If 2023 was the year of experimentation, 2024 will be the year of refined sophistication.
Read the full D&AD Annual Trend Report here.
The report will be presented by D&AD Awards Director Donal Keenan at an open networking event at D&AD, 64 Cheshire Street, London E2 6EH on Tue, 10 Oct 2023 18:00 – 21:00 BST.
Register for a free ticket here.
D&AD Annual 2023 Content:
Behind the work
- Product design that transforms congenital heart disease into music
- How people of Native American heritage rewrote Pocahontas to tell the real story
- The online tailoring service that gives disabled people fashion options
- The digital platform that generates commerce for Black-owned businesses every day
- Empowering indigenous Australians and allies with a brand celebrating Blak excellence
- Inside the campaign that leverages male behavioural psychology to combat violence against women
- The producer behind Native Sportscasters on casting culturally sensitive projects
- The cheeky charity influencer campaign challenging big brands to donate
- How ancient Chinese craftsmanship informs the art direction and typography for a cultural heritage site
- How Pharrell’s Cash In Cash Out music video had audiences wondering how they did it
- How to stop worrying and learn to love AI, according to the team behind Coca-Cola’s ‘Masterpiece’
- How Studio Drama broke the type design rulebook for Vogue Brasil
- How a designer and copywriter used a lack of space to their advantage
- Will sneaker consumers embrace the circular economy?
- Collaborators Iyama Design and Kamoi Kakoshi on how design can expand a product’s potential
- How this Japanese studio transformed a 2D poster into an emotive feat of 3D graphic design
- How The Last Photo uses a critical insight about suicide to land an emotional message of support
- FCB Africa shares how they reached a youth audience with a whole new language and rebrand
- Inside the campaign helping Ukrainians to ‘backup’ their cultural heritage
- DDB Paris champions defeat in its retelling of 24 Hours of Le Mans
- How AI raises new as well as age-old questions about ‘documentary’ photography
- What the creative industry needs to know about neurodivergence
- Why the creative industry needs to redefine ‘good’ for a more sustainable future
- How brands and advertisers are responding to consumer climate anxiety
- Why creative excellence is only as good as the diversity of perspectives judging it
- Colour theory: How colour in creativity is pivotal to making us feel
- How creativity in product design and public communication in healthcare is key to achieving a defining social mission of our age
- How our creativity must move us beyond ‘Love is Love’
- Familiarity breeds contentment: How brand ubiquity trumps standing out
- Looking to the past: From ancient history to retro references, historical influences in design in the 2023 D&AD Awards