Tell, don’t sell.

Since Christmas, I’ve been working on D&AD’s #MakeYourMark New Blood Award 2014 alongside other modules. As it’s a competition brief, I’ve been reluctant to share any work, development or otherwise on my blog. The brief is:

Share your own personal story. But don’t tell us what you think we want to hear. Explain who you are, your values, your identity, your purpose… your truth. This is telling, not selling.

  • Know who you are
  • Communicate it

You should use this opportunity to showcase your creative talent in the execution of your story.
Once you know what you want to say, impress us with how you say, show and present it.

We understand that your story is a work in progress, it’s still being written. We’re interested in your journey to date, a suggestion of what’s to come. Get people excited about your “To be continued…”.

I initially struggled to think of a story worth telling and know how exactly I stand out from the crowd. It’s considerably easier to sell a product/service than it is to sell yourself. It requires a large amount of self-analysis but also analysis by close friends and family. It does feel like you’re under the spotlight but that’s the part and parcel of the brief. Overall it’s been an interesting experience, resulting in a great insight about myself and the kind of person I am and aspire to be.

So I’ve now written a script that I think is suitable and fits the brief and I’m in the process of filming around the city of Manchester, UK. I will edit this into a video that I hope will be a strong contender in the competition. Finger crossed.

Here are some initial brainstorms and free hand lettering that I did to get the ball rolling. I used quotes that specifically relate back to me and my aspirations. Do you have any favourite quotes that inspire you? Share in the comments below 🙂

Scan-to-Me from 2014-02-18 150518-page-002Scan-to-Me from 2014-02-18 150518-page-003 Scan-to-Me from 2014-02-18 150518-page-010Scan-to-Me from 2014-02-18 150518-page-0041Scan-to-Me from 2014-02-18 150518-page-005Scan-to-Me from 2014-02-18 150518-page-006  Scan-to-Me from 2014-02-18 150518-page-008Scan-to-Me from 2014-02-18 150518-page-009  Scan-to-Me from 2014-02-18 150518-page-011Scan-to-Me from 2014-02-18 150518-page-007 



Unfortunately this is me to a T. I’ve perfected the art of doing ‘All The Work While Crying’.



Advertising, Creativity

A wonderfully silly stunt by Red Stripe.

Here’s a pretty awesome stunt by Red Stripe.

Make Music in the Corner Shop

A sort of musical flash-mob with products and props instead of people, Make Music in the Corner Shop turned the whole venue into one big musical instrument for a weekend, with performances triggered when an unsuspecting punter pulled a can of the Jamaican brew from the shelf…

The shop, Best Supermarket, was radically transformed overnight from a typical neighbourhood store selling everyday goods to an all-singing, all-dancing musical masterpiece by Red Stripe lager beer for their Make Music in the Corner Shop project which brought a little slice of Jamaica to the UK for one day only.

Products on the shelves and items left scattered around the store became the most unlikely of instruments, triggered into performance when a customer chose a Red Stripe from the coller. The unsuspecting shoppers were serenaded with the tune  “A Message to You Rudy” by Jamaican musician.

The video was created by U.K.-based agency KK Outlet alongside Stinkdigital director  Greg Brunkalla and creative technologists Hirsch & Mann on the project.

It’s a brilliant idea and very well executed. The brand stands for Island living, the no frills, laid-back lifestyle of the Caribbean and this stunt perfectly expresses this.

I particularly love that the brand ‘went the whole hog’ and done it in a real shop with real people. There’s nothing more depressing than an actor pretending to be a surprised member of the public.

“As the making of video below demonstrates, there was no fakery involved. Each ‘instrument’ was individually wired up and placed on the shelves in order to blend in with the rest of the items in the shop, and all the sounds heard are created by instruments made from typical corner shop products.”

See behind the scenes here:



Cardboard Chaos

I’m currently working on a live brief for Benchthat’s inspiring me both professionally and personally.

The company started out in Manchester in 1989 and has now grown to be a global brand.  To revamp the brand, they returned to their roots and opened a new look concept store and gallery. Based in the heart of Manchester’s Northern Quarter, the space  gives ‘something back to the community that nurtured it’. The Self Made gallery downstairs provides a blank canvas for the talented people of Manchester, where they can collaborate, mingle and showcase their work.

After my initial pitch to the people behind Bench, I browsed Self Made’s latest exhibition ‘All in the Wrist’.


This second Bench Self Made Gallery exhibition is a collaboration of independent artists who are hoping to open your imagination to some rather creative techniques.

It was curated by Moot,  a local artist and curator whose work is already on a wall in the concept store. His work mixes illustration with graffiti and street art and this tendency can be seen running through the range of artists and works in the exhibition.

The exhibition showcases a range of styles, from illustration, sculpture and graffiti, all brought together by the medium of cardboard. The ‘collection of cardboard chaos‘ is created by diverse artists such as  Tasha Whittle,  Lottie Smith, TJ “KREK” Dolan,and Tea One.

I found it incredibly inspiring and thought-provoking. Cardboard as a medium is not popular so it was interesting to see the broad range of outcomes. It has encouraged me to keep my personal style and technique open; this will unlock my creativity and thought process.

My favourite was this quirky, remote-controlled cardboard owl by Tasha Whittle:


The exhibition runs from 15th November through 8th December so do try to check it out if you’re in the area.




  •  Interview with Moot about the exhibition here.