Following his recent stint as a judge at The Drum Scottish Design Awards, we caught up with Hiten Bhatt, Associate Design Director at OgilvyOne, to discuss his views on the design industry.
1) What were you looking for whilst judging at The Drum Scottish design Awards?
Working in a busy advertising agency, I was looking for boldness in the communication of ideas. Don’t be shy, tell people about the great work you do. I’m a fan of concepts expressed through simple & beautiful executions. I was looking for work that has an element of surprise and wit.
2) What are the biggest issues affecting you in the design industry at the moment?
I’d say time is our biggest constraint. Craft takes time and I’m constantly striving to get more time to beautify ideas. Visual culture is moving so fast that the traditional rules of longevity in design have been skewed. A great brand mark can be timeless but a brand look and feel can change frequently. Sometimes style over substance is taking over problem solving.
3) And opportunities in wider business for design?
I feel there are lots of opportunities for integrated agencies in particular. My background is print design and I work in a predominantly digital design environment. The main challenge I face is unifying design across multiple platforms - from press ads and brochures to websites, banners and social posts. I’m excited by data visualisation, there’s a wealth of free data online that brands can use to tell interesting stories. I like the idea of taking something complex and raw and turning it into a digestible piece of communication. I also believe opportunities that allow for collaboration should be embraced. The nature of my work at OgilvyOne involves working with multiple creative/media disciplines on any given brief. I’m constantly learning off people around me, from UX and interactive design to motion graphics and illustration. This approach allows our designers to understand the users needs better and produce higher quality design work.
3) What trends do you think we will see in 2016?
I think 2016 will see a continued return to craft. Digital work is increasingly emulating craft usually reserved for print design. I hope to see interesting typography in digital design work in 2016. Print design is also seeing a renaissance, It’s refreshing to see designers using traditional techniques in a contemporary way.
4) What is some of your favourite work in recent months?
4 Creative have produced some exceptional work this year. The pre launch marketing campaign for ‘Humans’ was lovely. The visual look and feel for pseudo brand Persona Synthetics was so convincing I actually questioned wether the artificial intelligence on the show was real.
The rebrand for Channel 4 led by Jonathan Glazer and Neville Brody has to be my favourite piece of work from recent months. I like how it payed homage to the blocky ident created by Lambie-Nairn but deconstructed it beyond recognition. It was a brave move and the introduction of a new typeface and dark titles refreshed the brand.