Young designers to watch in 2015: Johnny Fordham & Suzi Paddison

The D&AD New Blood Academy is the ultimate prize for young creatives. Open to application from the brightest stars at the New Blood Awards & Exhibitions from around the world, the Academy is an intensive two-week industry crash-course designed to springboard new talent into industry jobs and placements.

In this series of interviews, we're going to present some of the ones to watch from this summer's New Blood Academy, supported by WPP. Having previously introduced Aileen Poe and Jack Beveridge, it's now time to meet Jonny Fordham and Suzi Paddison, aka Jonny & Suzi.

  • Course: Creative Advertising BA (Hons)
  • University: Lincoln
  • Achievements: Best in Show New Blood Exhibition, New Blood Academy attendees

Tell us a bit about yourselves…

Jonny Fordham

Jonny Fordham

We are a creative team who met at uni and have been working together since last November. Jonny is the copywriter and Suzi the art director.

Suzi Paddison

Suzi Paddison

We're quite different from each other, but we think that works pretty well. Although it might work a bit better if Suzi didn’t think Captain America was better than Wolverine.

What inspires your work?

In a way almost everything we do/see inspires us. Although that can be a little annoying because people watching has now become a habbit and it can be quite embarrasing when you're caught staring on the tube. But actually loads of things, from movies to stand up comedy and street art to museums. And a game of ping pong or kaponk (Google it) is pretty good when you're stuck.

What's been your personal highlight to date?

Probably winning Best in Show at the exhibition, because we'd never won anything before as a team and it came as a real surprise. We're so used to congratulating our friends for winning things, it felt weird for once being the ones that were congratulated. And it's nice to know that you might actually be alright at what you do.

What's the biggest lesson you learned from this summer?

One big thing we think is to never miss an opportunity to get to know someone because you don't know just how amazing somebody is until you start talking to them. We met so many cool people at the academy and we feel a part of something now. We hope that down the line, if we need their expertise or they need ours then we can all help eachother out.

What’s next for you?

We are currently on placement at Fold7 which is going great, they've got us working on some exciting stuff already. We've got some other placemnts lined up between now and Christmas, but mainly we are still trying to learn as much as we can, absorb everything and have fun everyday.

Finally, we asked the pair to talk us through three recent projects...

01. Rimmel Waterproof Mascara

A humourous approach to advertising Rimmel

A humourous approach to advertising Rimmel

This actually started out as a uni brief. We think that girls want to look good all the time, and with waterproof mascara they can, even when they probably shouldn't. We thought it was important to put a bit of humour into the ad as not many make up brands do this. We really like how it came out and clearly someone else did too because we were awarded best in show at the exhibition.

02. Waterstones & Costa

The campaign plays cleverly on the art of the coffee stain

The campaign plays cleverly on the art of the coffee stain

With this brief we wanted to reinforce the link between great books and great coffee.

The campaign emphasises how well reading and caffeine consumption go together

The campaign emphasises how well reading and caffeine consumption go together

Combining elements from both sides this is where we ended up.

03. Comic

This is more a little side project, than an actual advertising brief. We are both really into comic books and graphic novels so thought it would be cool to be in one. Whenever we have time we try to come up with a few stories, this is just one of a series we have on the go at the minute.

To find out more about the D&AD New Blood programme, visit

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