“Talent doesn’t need a university degree.” That’s the organising principle behind the D&AD’s New Blood Shift programme, which each year sees a class of around 20 – all from outside the traditional routes into the creative industries – embark on a 12-week course. During it they respond to creative briefs and last night’s event at D&AD HQ showcased their work.
It was inspiring work, and it should give pause for thought to any creative agencies that still limit their recruitment to traditional channels. “The argument for Shift is commercial,” announced Tim Lindsay. “Homogenized industries produce homogenized solutions”
He’s right of course, and also right to point out that. although this fact is acknowledged by agencies, still our sector is less diverse than it was two or three decades ago.
Later some of the class took to the stage to share their experiences with us – it was Leanne, who’d moved from Bicester to train in dance before spotting the programme, who hit on one of the main reasons for this puzzling lack of diversity.
“This programme has been great,” she said. “It’s given me an opportunity to learn about an industry I didn’t know existed.” It’s this lack of awareness that our sector needs to tackle and it’s one of the reasons why the D&AD in general, and New Blood in particular is so important.
She did conclude with some better news: “‘What surprised me was how people were a lot nicer than I’d expected they would be.” Well, that’s a start at least…
People were a lot nicer than i imagined