Our judges were chosen on their high industry involvement and incredible standard of work. More than half of them have been involved in teaching design in some capacity and understand student limitations, but also know the standard and what to look for. Thanks again to our judges!
Alberto Salván Zulueta, Madrid | Tres Tipos Gráficos
David & Hannah Constantine, Melbourne | Pleasure Projects
Dem Gerolemou, London/Sydney | Ustwo
James Gilchrist & Beth Wilson, Glasgow | Warriors Studio
Johan Debit, Paris | Brand Brothers
Matt Arnold & Tim Kelleher, Christchurch | Sons and Co.
Steven Harrington & Justin Kreitemeyer, Los Angeles | National Forest
Tad Carpenter, Kansas City | Carpenter Collective
Verònica Fuerte, Barcelona | Hey Studio
Will Hudson, London | It’s Nice That
… And here are our 2017 winners in alphabetical order, congrats guys!
James & Beth’s Pick: Solid concepts resolved with strong and effective outputs throughout. Valuable skill set to bring to the studio: solid typography, good conceptual work, good motion graphics and illustration. Professional aesthetic sensibility. Mirror Mirror is a tight project with the full package. The interactivity is well considered and brings it to life. We’re always interested in designers responding to current affairs, so for us this was stand-out.Read interview
Verònica’s pick: Of all the portfolios I saw focused on illustration – Thomas’s is a highlight. It’s strange to find an illustrator where all their styles are good. Obviously he knows the techniques and this helps him to go further and experiment in many styles.Read interview
Verònica’s Pick: In Stefan’s portfolio there is a high quality in innovation and experimental way. I see a very defined style that I think is good, it empowers his work. He needs to improve this way and continue going further.Read interview
Alberto’s Pick: She has a very clean yet strong editorial style, with good composition, very mature text treatment, but also with a very good use of of custom lettering. She also seeks for concept in her projects and focuses a lot on the quality of the content. Nothing is random or just pretty, she makes design with purpose.Read interview
Alberto’s Pick: Samuel is really deep into trends and experimentation but also shows a very versatile portfolio. He takes good care in production process and experiments with print techniques. He also shows good layout composition skills, spontaneous handwritten intervention on designs and a very strong typographic palette. He has a strong character and definitely understands very well the rules of disruptive editorial design.Read interview
Alberto’s Pick: Samantha is all about sophistication, attention to detail, exquisite editorial approach from concept, content, layout, typography, printing, use of materials and binding. She is a classic designer with a a surprisingly mature approach. Shows great sensitivity and respect for the work.
TDK Interview Coming Soon!
James & Beth’s Pick: Refreshingly playful work. We get a good vibe from Nicola and can feel her positivity and personality from her work. She feels like a Warrior! Endearing personal projects Prank Scouts and Bingo Cards are right up our street. Great ideas and playfully executed. Confident use of colour, illustration and a distinctive hands-on style which we think stand out and could be very successful commercially.Read interview
Justin & Steve’s Pick: Nathan has a great understanding of branding and typography design. He’s doing what he loves and it really shows. At National Forest we’re big fans of the ‘Americana Style’ and blue-collar approach to Nathan’s work- his portfolio presents a lot of great branding and we’re looking forward to seeing what he explores next.Read interview
James & Beth’s Pick: Contemporary, energised, fresh work. Ambitious and adventurous with medium and application. Great volume and high quality of work throughout. Interesting exploration of typography across the board and the Workpool project is excellent. We can feel Nam’s genuine hunger for design. We’ve featured Nam’s work annually in our International Poster Exhibition at Graphic Design Festival Scotland for the past few years. The poster included in the 2017 exhibition ‘Big Trouble in Little Europe’ is the perfect example of a poster which needs no typography and no accompanying information to communicate clearly, effectively, pack a punch but still have a hint of intrigue. Great work.Read interview
Matt & Tim’s Pick: It’s exciting to see design that’s rule-bending, energetic and a little barmy. Why? Because it points to new possibilities and a designer who isn’t worried about what silly old judgy people think.Read interview
Matt & Tim’s Pick: It seems overly precocious that a person, like Manuely, has developed such a refined, sophisticated and considered sense of design so early in her career. But she has. So we nod our heads, smile, and clap with admiration.Read interview
Justin & Steve’s Pick: Laura’s work is strong, concise, and well organized. When reviewing portfolios we’ll often notice that the layout and design of the portfolio gets overlooked. Laura’s book shows that she not only cares about the layout of the work being presented, but also the beauty in the work itself.Read interview
Dem’s Pick: Kiera’s work is a fantastic mix of playful and visually striking, with a diverse selection of projects. I was drawn in the by the adventurous exploration into visual communication and the insight into some of the process behind the projects.Read interview
Johan’s pick: Kathleen shows interesting versatility and bravery that I want to salute! She tackles unusual subjects and her work is both controlled and relevant, with a touch of humour. I am sensitive to her storytelling skills through design and illustration and her abstraction.Read interview
Johan’s pick: Lightweight, refreshing and poetic work, combined with impressive illustration work and a beautiful mastery of space. Jing particularly seduced me with her Joy Luck Club lettering, which is a real risk-taking and avoids the current fashion effects.Read interview
Will’s Pick: Consistency of work across digital and print and supported by great photography as well as the design.
TDK Interview Coming Soon!
Johan’s pick: Jenny combines a satyric approach with a search for simplicity that gives her work a mature and intelligent result. She understands the scope of the subjects she is dealing with, digs them out, and transmits a graphic material that seems to be aimed at the right target. Special mention for the handwritten typographies of the AGDA project.Read interview
Hannah & David’s Pick: Jen’s book has experimentation, interest, and yet an aesthetic and structural rigour that really appealed. The ‘Thames River Postman’ concept for the Royal Mail assignment really caught our eye – we’d love to see more!
TDK Interview Coming Soon!
Hannah & David’s Pick: There was a lot of contemporary typography of a certain style, appealing, yes, but fundamentally similar. Gemma’s work goes a step further and as a result stood out to us. It is clearly work that is engaged and interested into current typography experimentation, but so too is it fearless in playing with pastiche and historical type, bringing it bang up to date with colour composition and application.Read interview
Tad’s Pick: From the start I really responded to how the designer presented their work. Very simple, clean and straight forward. The decision to use black only enhanced their bold colors and strong typography choices. Several projects really stood out, but Dominique’s overall strength through-out the book was typography. From the ‘Dreams Archive’ project where we see the type heavily manipulated to the smart type pairings on the “Abbotsford Convent Identity” project, this designers understanding of type far exceeds expectations.Read interview
Dem’s Pick: I found myself drawn to Daragh’s work on both a visual and a conceptual level. Each project seems to explore interesting and important topics while achieving an impressive level of refinement, tied together in a very well presented entry. I’m particularly impressed by the elegant response to the D&AD brief, which communicates a powerful message through an engaging medium.Read interview
Tad’s Pick: I will admit that I am a sucker for strong brand identity work especially when applied to food packaging. This designer’s folio has several successful examples of thoughtful identity systems and creative packaging solutions. Many of the designer’s projects stood out, but the ‘Ancobaleno” chocolate packaging and how it was ultimately presented really took this from a student portfolio to a professional one.Read interview
Will’s pick: Unlike anything else I saw while judging the other portfolios. A fine art practice with a design eye – the compositions and colour palettes work really well.
TDK Interview Coming Soon!
Dem’s Pick: I’m impressed by Artisa’s approach to framing problems, taking a challenge-process-solution approach to describing work helps to contextualise the projects in this entry. It’s also great to see that the users are considered when designing the final solution.Read interview
Tad’s Pick: Many things drew me to Amelie’s work. The strong sense of whimsy, the unexpected color palettes and subtle yet well thought-out conceptual iconography in each piece. But what put this folio over the top for me was the designers willingness to explore and push various styles and mediums with such ease.Read interview
Hannah & David’s Pick: Alfred’s folio demonstrated something of a rarity amongst submissions. That is, the ability to demonstrate high level conceptual thinking, combined with contemporary, high quality aesthetic output. Sharp, unflinchingly current, and extremely interesting.Read interview