campaignlive.co.uk, Thursday, 20 September 2012 08:00AM
One of the best speeches in history began: "I am the greatest." The desire to be the best, or be surrounded by it, is within us all. To be defined as the greatest in the creative sphere in the past 50 years is a massive achievement.
At 50, D&AD is honouring the creative visionaries of the past five decades - the ad agency, production company, art director, copywriter, directors, brand, design studio and designer that have received the most D&AD Pencils in the organisation's history.
The awards amount to a tribute to the impact that was made by Collett Dickenson Pearce & Partners on UK advertising. Not only is the agency named as the most-awarded of all time, but two of its alumni, the great art director Neil Godfrey and the equally revered copywriter Tony Brignull, are also acknowledged.
The recognition moves to more contemporary times with Frank Budgen and Tony Kaye's joint greatest director award and Apple's selection as the greatest brand.
The winners have also been celebrated with short video interviews with their contemporaries:PRODUCTION COMPANY: Gorgeous Enterprises
Not only can the people at this shop legitimately use the phone greeting "Hello, Gorgeous", they can now boast the title of the most-awarded production company of all time. Gorgeous, founded by Chris Palmer, Frank Budgen and Paul Rothwell, has also topped The Gunn Report every year from 1999 to 2009. Other directors on the roster include Tom Carty, Nick Broomfield and Peter Thwaites. Standout work includes Budgen's spots for Sony PlayStation, Guinness and Levi's, and Palmer's films for Skoda, T-Mobile and Visa.
Ads produced by Gorgeous Enterprises, directed by Frank Bugden
DIRECTOR (joint): Tony Kaye
Kaye's advice to budding film directors, "wear sunscreen, keep out of jail", is just what you would expect from the maverick director: not what you would expect. The American History X director has promised a return to the UK advertising scene, which can only be a good thing. His brilliance is on display in the ads he directed for Dunlop, Olympus and Volvo, and his style spawned many imitators. He was also behind music videos for Red Hot Chili Peppers, Soul Asylum and Johnny Cash. His latest feature film, Detachment, was released earlier this year.
Ads directed by Tony Kaye
DIRECTOR (joint): Frank Budgen
Budgen's towering stack of awards would suggest that he is one of the few true greats. His work, such as Levi's "twisted", Nike "tag" and Sony PlayStation 2 "mountain", confirms it. Budgen started out as a copywriter at BBDO, moved to M&C Saatchi and then to Boase Massimi Pollitt, where he directed his first ad for John Smith's. He co-founded Gorgeous Enterprises and was voted the Directors Guild of America commercial director of the year in 2007.
COPYWRITER: Tony Brignull
Brignull and Neil Godfrey were considered the most successful creative team in history. Brignull has written some glorious copy for Birds Eye, 100 Pipers, Parker pens, Olympus, Whitbread and many more advertisers that were clever enough to put his brilliant mind to work on their ads.
AD AGENCY: Collett Dickenson Pearce & Partners
If it was founded today, it would probably be called Tree or Wigwam. But, in the 60s, when all you needed above the door were the founders' surnames, this was the ad agency that ruled the planet. And, when it comes to D&AD Awards at least, no-one has stolen its crown since. The most-awarded ad agency of all time produced classic work for Benson & Hedges and Hovis, and was the starting blocks for creative talent who went on to become internationally famous, including Lord David Puttnam, Sir Alan Parker and Sir Frank Lowe.The agency may not be around any more, but its legacy lives on.
Ads created by CDP
DESIGN STUDIO: Apple
The Apple aesthetic has kept people all over the world queuing round the block for years. Its founder, Steve Jobs, will be remembered as a design visionary. The late Apple chairman and chief executive once said: "In most people's vocabularies, design means veneer. It's the fabric of the curtains of the sofa. But, to me, nothing could be further from the meaning of design. Design is the fundamental soul of human-made creation that ends up expressing itself in successive outer layers of the product or service."
The stats speak for themselves. Apple is the world's largest publicly traded company by market capitalisation and the largest technology company in the world by revenue. That is more than Google and Microsoft combined. The brand urged us to "think different" and then showed that you can take over the world by doing just that.
ART DIRECTOR: Neil Godfrey
Godfrey's mantelpiece must have required reinforcements over the years. He has been building his hefty awards collection since 1967, when he worked at DDB. He then moved to Collett Dickenson Pearce & Partners, where he worked with another all-time winner, Tony Brignull. He has created outstanding work for Remington, Birds Eye, Fiat, Dunn & Co, Albany Life and Benson & Hedges, and his style still influences today.
DESIGNER: David Hillman
Hillman is a design icon. In the 70s, he art directed Nova magazine through its most successful period. In the early 80s, having become a partner at Pentagram, he steered the redesign of The Guardian, establishing the title at the forefront of UK publishing design. The award-winning designer founded Studio David Hillman in 2006.
This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk