3 pro tips for nailing a design brief

In the runup to D&AD's special live Pencil Panel, we get some expert answers to some common queries.

D&AD has a major global organisation that exists to promote excellence in design and advertising everywhere through educational programmes and rewarding great work through its various awards.

It’s just under two months until entries are due in for the 2015 New Blood Awards and this Wednesday, D&AD is hosting a special live Pencil Panel, where leading industry experts from the worlds of advertising, digital and design will be on hand to answer queries specifically about this year's challenges.

Got a burning question about your brief? Have a killer concept, but not sure how to present it? Ask the Pencil Panel. This is your chance to pick the brains of people at the top of their game who are primed to give you their professional perspective.

You've until Wednesday to get your questions in but ahead of then, we sat down with the expert panellists to get a taste of what's to come...

01. How do you approach ideation?

Pencil Panel

Ian Wharton

"My favourite trick for a good ideation session is to follow these three simple rules: 1. It must be a small multi-disciplinary team. 2. Make it clear there are no stupid answers. 3. Assign a time-limit."

Ian Wharton is group creative director at the global ideas and innovation company AKQA

02. What's a good source for inspiration?

Pencil Panel

Julia Woollams

"When I’m working at my desk and online, I find Designboom and Pinterest particularly inspiring. When I'm out and about everything is inspiration, and when starting a new project, immersing myself in the subject is my source of inspiration."

Julia Woollams is a senior designer at johnson banks design.

Pencil Panel

Kath Tudball

"A Google image search is always my first port of call when working on new briefs, it's the ultra quick way to look at all the obvious and clichéd things associated with a particular subject – but it can also lead you off on interesting and unexpected tangents as you explore different keywords.

"Away from the desk I'd say keep your eyes open, always look around (and up, people don’t look up enough), remember to be curious – but also take time to stare into space. Ideas can hit you at any moment.

Kath Tudball is a senior designer at johnson banks design.

03. How do you approach copywriting?

Pencil Panel

Craig Oldham

"The secret to good copywriting is saying what you mean and meaning what you say would be my advice on writing. And, well, everything."

Craig Oldham is co-founder of The Oldham Goddard Experience.

The Pencil Panel takes place this Wednesday 11 February from 4:30pm GMT and will be live-streamed around the world. To send in your questions, visit http://www.dandad.org/en/new-blood-pencil-panel-2015

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