BEST OF THE BEST AWARDS: Best Use of Photography

It all started with the death of Princess Diana, according to Alison Jackson. "The whole country mourned, yet they didn't know her. People were mourning the loss of her images because the images of Diana were more interesting than she was."

Jackson, who is a fine artist, worked with lookalikes to create a photo of Diana and Dodi doting on their imaginary lovechild. The next was an image of Charles and Camilla kissing in front of Diana. The work continued, always photographing lookalikes of people in the public eye: Monica Lewinsky and Bill Clinton, Milosevic sipping Champagne with world leaders, Jeffrey Archer picking out cards in a phone box.

The ongoing series, entitled "Mental Images", is designed to challenge our obsession with imagery and celebrity. As Jackson puts it: "People are aware that images don't tell the truth, but they're so seductive you want to believe them."

Mother picked up on Jackson's work and her portfolio came out when the agency was looking to revive the Schweppes mixer brand. It perfectly complemented the brand's long-standing strapline of 'Schh ... you know who", while injecting a fresh new meaning into it.

So what was it like working with the agency? Jackson is generous in her praise: "I've had a lovely experience with Mother. Kim (Gehrig) and Caroline (Pay) are fantastic to work with and make it really good fun. I was offered a lot of ad campaigns before this, which I didn't do because I was nervous about doing commercial work. But what I like about Schweppes is that everything fits with the thinking behind my concept. It's a great marriage of concept and product."

Jackson is also keen to emphasise that the integrity of the concept - the A-list characters seem authentic but they're not - has remained.

The production company Arden Sutherland-Dodd also played a big role.

"They were fantastic to work with," Jackson says. "Paul Arden has been a huge supporter and collector of my photos for many years." She has many strings to her bow. At 38, she has just won her first Bafta for a pilot that she produced and she has four solo exhibitions to her name, as well as several group exhibitions. Her first New York group exhibition takes place next year. She studied fine art photography as an MA at the Royal College of Art and writes and lectures.

Bartle Bogle Hegarty's John Hegarty comments: "The Schweppes campaign demonstrated the best example of application of photography to the idea. The Jackson pictures were unique in making you think those people were real when they're not. That was a real coup."

An honourable mention goes to Nick Georghiou, who shot the highly acclaimed work for Land Rover with Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe/Y&R, which won the gold at the Campaign Poster Awards. Another honourable mention is awarded to Trevor Ray Hart who worked with Saatchi & Saatchi on the Cannes Grand Prix-winning Club 18-30 campaign. And Andrew Douglas also wins a mention for his work on, among others, Saatchis' work for the Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Shortlist: Ian Berry, Frank Budgen, Richard Burbridge, Andrew Douglas, Nick Georghiou, David Gill, Laurence Haskell, Jonathan Knowles, Dave McKean, Trevor Ray Hart, Mejor Samrai, Steen Sundland.

ALISON JACKSON - Photographer


Schweppes "Blair": Campaign Press (gold, commendation); Creative Circle

(bronze); D&AD (silver nomination)

Schweppes "Archer": Campaign Press (2 golds, 2 silvers, 2

commendations); Creative Circle (silver, 4 bronzes); D&AD (silver


Schweppes "Camilla": Campaign Press (gold); Creative Circle (silver, 2

bronzes); D&AD (silver nomination)

Schweppes "Sven": Campaign Press (gold); Creative Circle (bronze); D&AD

(silver nomination)


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