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D&AD Awards 2008

D&AD Awards 2008


The call for entries for the 2008 D&AD Awards is under way.

Historically, these cross-disciplinary creative awards have been very supportive of magazines. When the Awards first started in the sixties titles like Nova and the Sunday Times Magazine regularly featured as winners. Later that support faded but over the past few years the D&AD team have been working to attract editorial designers to enter again.

How? First, by setting up a dedicated Magazine and Newspaper Design category in 2006 (previously they were lumped in with Books, and I know from personal experience of judging the grouped category that magazines were largely overlooked at the expense of the more glamorous-looking and time-consuming book entries). In 2006 and 2007 the new dedicated category saw an increased number of magazine and newspaper entries and several high-profile winners, ranging from The Guardian newspaper to small independent Draft (I listed the 2007 winners in a previous post).

Second, as with all awards programmes, juries can only judge what has been entered, and it's frustrating to find how many strong editorial projects ignore the D&AD Awards. There aren't that many awards focusing on editorial design. So following feedback from last year's judges, D&AD have dealt with one of the possible factors that has prevented some from entering the Magazine and Newspaper category: the cost of entering. This year the fee has been reduced from £120 to £80 per item, with the specific aim of attracting more entries from smaller publications. And if you enter before November 14 you will save another 10%.

If that's not enough to persuade you to enter, there are two further points to mention. The D&AD judging process is by far the most fair and rigorous I've encountered, involving multiple rounds of private voting by a group of specialists, this year headed by i-D founder and all-round magazine hero Terry Jones.

And finally, even if you don't make the cut for a Yellow or Black Pencil, your magazine could make it into the D&AD Annual. This book has been published annually since 1963 and acts as a creative record of each year. Why not give your magazine the chance to be included in the 2008 edition?

(And finally, finally, I should just mention for the sake of transparency that I recently joined the D&AD Executive Committee, but have been ranting about entering the Awards since long before then).

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