By Patxi Elizalde
Post D&AD feels
It has now been almost exactly 24 hours since I submitted my first D&AD New Blood entry, and it’s very difficult to describe how it feels to finally be done. Partly because my brain feels a bit like mushy peas, but also because I felt many things I hadn’t before. However, the blood flow in my head has started up again, so I will try.
D&AD was a very unique experience for me (in part because of my very sad birthday the day before deadline lol). Despite devoting every waking hour of the last seven months of my life developing advertising campaigns for briefs, I had never experienced anything like this one before. This was no ordinary brief at all. This brief was sent to the world. And everyone in the world was responding to it… or at least that’s what it felt like.
Not only was there the challenge of trying to come up with a super sticky idea that no one else in the world could possibly dream up, but trying to execute that idea into a single 2-minute video was by far the most difficult part. Throughout the planning stages, I had daydreams of creating vivid animations that would not only express our idea in a compelling way, but properly portray the riveting art and culture that exists within the Caribbean. However, after tireless days and nights I realized this was easier said than done.
I now understand why Marc always says that D&AD is the turning point in the year where the quality of work finally starts to reach its potential. I guess there’s a benefit to being thrown in the deep end and prodded with a stick till you finally manage to make it to the stairs. I certainly felt like that this week. But it worked, it truly worked.
Despite my hardships, at the end of the day I learned more than I ever thought imaginable through the process. Hell, a week before we started executing, I probably only knew how to use 3 or 4 Adobe Illustrator tools and had absolutely no prior knowledge of After Effects. Yet, I submitted an entire 2-minute film which I illustrated and animated myself in its entirety working off of self-taught programs. While for some this may seem mundane, I consider it a major accomplishment in my budding creative career.
After seeing all the other incredible submissions today (seriously so proud of everyone, there was some amazing stuff on the screen today), I came to the realization that my work for Bacardi was definitely not the strongest of the group (and I’m speaking solely in visual terms. My copywriter for the campaign, the great Alfie, put together a stellar script and had some great lines). HOWEVER, funnily enough, I felt strangely okay with that. This is not to say that I’m okay with being mediocre or complacent at all. Besides the fact that it’s out of my hands now, I also know that I truly put my heart and soul into this project, and I’m proud of myself for pushing through the hardships and creating something out of absolutely nothing. I am so grateful for all the knowledge I have gained from this experience and the confidence I gained as an illustrator and soon-to-be ad man. I came into this course a fuckin analyst…and, well, look at me now! I’m making cool shit! To get a job! What a dream…what a dream.
Pencil or no pencil, I learned an incredible amount about advertising, adobe and most importantly myself. With this new toolkit under my belt and a newfound confidence, I’m so excited to take on the next big project…lookin’ at you Cannes 😉
The copy scores 64.6 in the Flesch Reading Ease test