With regards to the ‘free-pitching’ debate, my opinion is that it is the design industry’s fault. For example, recently Matalan asked 15 groups to do creative work. This is incredibly desperate of the consultancies. Matalan isn’t on my wish list, but if Nike approached us and said there were four groups in the pot, that would be worth thinking about. As a rule, we don’t pitch. We stand strong and tall, and tell ’em where to stick it – and so should everyone else.
As for design awards, they create glamour, business, and allow you to be smug. Every UK design group has an award to its name – so what? Awards are based on current trends and are judged by consensus of what is known, but originality can’t be judged, because it has not yet had committee approval. The art is to be true to yourself and original.
We don’t do pitches or enter mediocre awards, because our clients are extremely happy with our originality and quiet existence.
Matt Davies, Creative, Rhubarb Associates, Cheshire, WA15 8SX