Six students celebrate national design success

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A selection of the winning designs

Industry award wins for graphic design and adverting undergraduates

Six University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) students have won creative awards at the ‘Oscars’ of the design industry.

The undergraduates beat off stiff competition from thousands of fellow students to receive ‘coloured pencils’ at the prestigious D&AD (Design and Art Direction) New Blood Awards 2020.

The awards, which are open to budding designers around the world, recognise outstanding work in the areas of design and advertising.

I was ecstatic when I found out I’d won a D&AD Award as it’s such a prestigious competition for young designers

Winners receive either a Wood, Graphite, Yellow, White or Black Pencil trophy. The four graphic designers and two advertising students, who worked on a joint project, won a Graphite and four Wood awards.

Graphic designer Hannah Gurney was awarded a Graphite Pencil for her creation around M-WAY, a new bike scheme for Manchester focused on giving pride back to the city.

Twenty-three-year old Hannah, who originates from Northern Ireland but now lives in Manchester, spent five months working on her project and has won a placement at a design studio as well as a trophy. She said: “I was over the moon to find out I’d won a Graphite Pencil, it still feels a little surreal even now.”

Ellie Spickett, from Preston, won a Wooden Pencil. Her winning work was an art direction piece, telling the time via the sun to indicate ‘Martini Time’. The 22-year-old final year student, who is a former Our Lady’s Catholic High School and Cardinal Newman College pupil, commented: “I was ecstatic when I found out I’d won a D&AD Award as it’s such a prestigious competition for young designers.”

Wooden Pencil winner David Shorrock, from Longton, responded to the creative brief of designing a fun and convenient food delivery experience for Generation Z with his Save Our Stomachs project. His idea allows users who have a hangover, unexpected flat gathering or an all-night study session to send a distress signal to their nearest Burger King outlet.

The former Hutton Grammar School and Runshaw College student, 21, said: “It's something I’ve wanted since college and I used to walk past the wall of previous D&AD winners every day in University and that always motivated me so to finally receive an award is fantastic, I’m incredibly content and looking forward to the future.”

Second Year Agatha Blazey, from Norwich, was also awarded a Wooden Pencil, a year ahead of most other winners. The 21-year-old, whose winning design was for a Rome based bike hire scheme called Roam Bikes, added: “I’m absolutely amazed, I couldn’t believe it! I’m so grateful the course gave the second years the chance to work on these creative briefs.”

Advertising students Meiling Yu and Xuebing Liu also collected a Wooden Pencil for their Lego creation. The duo’s Lego by Nature design was created to encourage teenagers to use their old childhood Lego bricks to build nests and feeders for birds and insects to sustain urban wildlife.

As well as the Pencils, several students were also awarded Ones to Watch Awards by D&AD New Blood Judges at the event. They were: Emma Barber, Chunbo Wang, Ran Duan, Sophie Gwilt, YuKun Li and Daniel Nelson.

It is believed only six other universities across the world have gained more D&AD nominations that UCLan in the past decade.

All of the students’ winning campaigns can be found on the D&AD website.

Rachel Atkinson | 22 July 2020