This brave illustration project made a D&AD New Blood judge cry

University of Lincoln creative advertising graduate Tom Watkins reduced a jury member to tears during judging for the D&AD New Blood Awards.

His project, When I'm a Dad, is a highly personal response to a New Blood brief from WeTransfer: envision the person you'll be in 10 years time through illustration.

Watkins illustrated a beautiful children's book to inspire future fathers and launched a website to help grow an online conversation around the project.

"Such a brave, personal and unique take on the brief, with a beautiful sentiment and a maturity that belies the age of the author," said the judges.

We covered the project back in March – you can read more here.

D&AD names five future superstars

New Blood Award entrants respond to real briefs set by real clients, with the resulting work judged by top professional creatives.

This year, the briefs were written by Airbnb, BBC, WWF, Facebook, Nationwide, npower, Pantone, i-D, Monotype, John Lewis, TalkTalk, VICE, WeTransfer and WPP. Here is a selection of the winners…

Black Pencil winners

Tom Watkins

'When I'm a Dad' is an illustrated children's book with rich images and real depth

'When I'm a Dad' is an illustrated children's book with rich images and real depth
  • WeTransfer – When I'm a Dad
  • University of Lincoln
  • Jury Foreperson: Oliver Chapman, Architect

What the jury said: "Such a brave, personal and unique take on the brief, with a beautiful sentiment and a maturity that belies the age of the author. The jury loved the playfulness of the illustration and the craft of the book and animation, with the added fun of the website."

"When I'm a Dad makes a distant life-event something to look forward to, and challenges others to join the conversation. A near-perfect piece all-round, with great execution, real insight and understanding, and completely on brief captures the essence and energy of living colour brilliantly, with richness and depth."

Greg Ormrod, Thomas Worthington

  • Nationwide – How It Should Be

  • School of Communication Arts 2.0
  • Jury Foreman: Ian Acheson, Director at Plan

What the jury said: "This fearless concept is a game-changing aspiration for Nationwide and for the industry. A brave reframing of the role of banks, a real opportunity for Nationwide to stand out and a fantastic way of surfacing the brand's values and bringing them to the here and now."

"An entry to be proud of, with potential revolutionary impact and a simple, clear and hugely relevant idea. Powerful, simple, right, true. If more creatives showed this level of ambition and pushed their clients this far we'd change the world."

Nu Ri Kim, Seunghoon Shin, Yoonshin Kim

  • Pantone – Project Monsoon
  • School of the Art Institute of Chicago
  • Jury Foreperson: Keren House , Creative Director at Aricot Vert Brand Consultants

What the jury said: "So place specific, turning the negative of the grey, wet monsoon into a joyful, powerful positive, the streets literally running with colour."

"A celebration of bad weather that encourages participation, engagement and discovery. This is a great idea very simply presented."

A selection of White Pencil winners

Hilda Cortei

  • Pantone – Colourful Accents
  • Arts University Bournemouth

What the jury said: "A simple and beautiful idea, expertly executed. A celebration of difference and how it can unite not divide us."

See our review of Cortei's work in our highlights from the Arts University Bournemouth graduate show.

Frazer Price, John Trainor, Teddy Souter

  • WWF – Endangered Soles
  • School of Communication Arts 2.0

What the jury said: "A tight, clever solution that takes the WWF to a brand new audience."

You'll find the full list of D&AD New Blood award winners on the D&AD website.

Liked this? Read these...

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

Julia Sagar
Editor-in-chief retail

Julia is editor-in-chief, retail at Future Ltd, where she works in e-commerce across a number of consumer lifestyle brands. A former editor of design website Creative Bloq, she’s also worked on a variety of print titles, and was part of the team that launched consumer tech website TechRadar. She's been writing about art, design and technology for over 15 years.