As you leaf admiringly through the following pages, you could be
forgiven for thinking that the UK poster medium is on pretty good
creative form right now.
There is, indeed, some very fine work on show here. Congratulations to
those who are responsible for this, the cream of our industry's
But I think it's fair to say that our jury thought it was a worryingly
thin layer of cream this year - with an awful lot of skimmed milk
lurking just below the surface.
"A disappointing entry."
"Well below average."
"Nothing to get really excited about." "Even the Golds are 9 carat,
rather than 24."
These were the remarks going round the table during our two days of
There were a couple of categories where we felt hard-pushed to make any
award at all.
I was left wondering whether our industry had collectively abandoned the
basic ground rules for creating a great poster.
What had happened to qualities such as clarity, impact and
Where was the intelligent and powerful headline writing? Why did so many
of the entries seem to strive for the absolute maximum of pug-ugliness -
with a striking degree of success in many cases?
But this was to ignore the most worrying question of all: why weren't
there any great new ideas around?
It's mildly depressing when you realise that both this year's Gold
winners are a direct continuation of a campaign first conceived back in
Certainly, I never thought that work for The Economist would one day
leave me feeling more like The Pessimist.
On a more positive note, my thanks to the jury for their dedicated and
consistently fair-minded appraisal of more than 1,400 entries.
That, at least, is one advertising craft I've rarely seen in better
Jeremy Carr, COPYWRITER - ABBOTT MEAD VICKERS BBDO
Nigel Mansell, MANAGING DIRECTOR - CONCORD
Jim Hytner, MARKETING AND COMMERCIAL DIRECTOR - ITV
(DIRECTOR OF MARKETING, CHANNEL 5 AT TIME OF JUDGING)
Roger Kennedy, HEAD OF TYPOGRAPHY - SAATCHI & SAATCHI
Clive Pickering, CREATIVE DIRECTOR - BARTLE BOGLE HEGARTY
(SENIOR COPYWRITER, BMP DDB AT TIME OF JUDGING)
Kevin Brown, PARTNER - SOUL
Paul Belford, CREATIVE DIRECTOR - OGILVY & MATHER
Tony McTear, ART DIRECTOR - BARTLE BOGLE HEGARTY
Adrian Holmes, CHIEF CREATIVE OFFICER - LOWE LINTAS & PARTNERS WORLDWIDE
(CHAIRMAN OF THE JUDGES)
Robert Campbell, CREATIVE DIRECTOR - RAINEY KELLY CAMPBELL ROALFE/Y&R
Nick Bell, EXECUTIVE CREATIVE DIRECTOR - LEO BURNETT