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Brief Published: 28 May 2014

D&AD Award Winners 2014

At this year’s D&AD advertising, branding and design awards in London, a record-breaking number of Black Pencils (awarded to truly ground-breaking work) celebrated socially progressive, ethical and innovative campaigns.

A bumper year saw 52 Yellow Pencils (honouring outstanding work) as well as two White Pencils (for campaigns that affect real and positive change) awarded to work from 17 countries.

Unsurprisingly, Epic Split by Swedish agency Forsman & Bodenfors for Volvo Trucks, starring Belgian actor Jean-Claude Van Damme, was one of the most awarded; as was international skincare brand Dove’s much-publicised Real Beauty Sketches campaign, conceived by Ogilvy & Mather Brazil. In the former, humour, celebrity and skill are combined to make a fairly uninteresting product infinitely sexier. In the latter, emotion and care foster positive attitudes and strong bonds between brand and female consumer.

Elsewhere, Sound of Honda/Ayrton Senna 1989 by Japanese agency Dentsu Tokyo also took home multiple awards, as did OgilvyOne Worldwide, which led the Magic of Flying campaign for UK carrier British Airways, as highlighted in our recent Hi-Tech Advertising report.

Social good was at the core of many award-winning campaigns this year, reflecting a growing trend Stylus first discussed as part of last year’s Cannes Lions reporting – see Advertising With Purpose. Within the White Pencil category at D&AD, two entrants received Black Pencils – the highest honour awarded.

One was awarded to Sweetie by Amsterdam-based agency Lemz, which was praised by the UN for its role in helping children’s charity Terre de Hommes identify more than 1,000 online sexual predators. The other was awarded to UK-based product design consultancy Therefore, which won in the design category for its innovative Gravity Light invention, which uses weight to generate light.

“To see not one, but two Black Pencils awarded to White Pencil category entrants is a significant indicator of the direction the business is moving in,” said Tim Lindsay, chief executive of D&AD. “Across the board, we’ve seen a real desire from our juries to recognise and reward ideas that are original, beautifully executed, and that make a positive difference to people’s lives.”

We published a more in-depth look at the themes and highlights from the wider D&AD Awards 2014 showcase back in April – check it out for more insights and inspiration.