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Scottish Design Awards chairman's address: Glenn Tutssel


By The Drum Team, Editorial

February 6, 2012 | 3 min read

With the Scottish Design Awards currently open for entries, Glenn Tutssel, executive creative director of The Brand Union and chairman of this year's judging panel, explains what he will be looking for from this year's entries.


When you are asked to judge awards such as the Scottish Design Awards there is a always a question as to the standard required. These awards will be compared to other awards in the UK and international awards. Let me put the record straight, there is only one standard that I look for in any awards and that is creative excellence based on the big idea beautifully crafted.

The only way that you can judge creativity is by comparing the result against what you were asked to do, that of course is against the creative brief. I will chair these awards and ask my jury to look for excellence in problem solving, art direction, typography, writing, craftsmanship and design. I will ask them to be fair, rigorous, inquisitive but most of all exacting. There will not be a second standard.

Enter only your best work, be honest is it good enough, will the jurors think “I wish I'd done that because it's so stunning?"

Big Ideas stand out; if you have to explain it with hundreds of words then it's not a big idea. A brief explanation of your concept is helpful but brevity rules as jurors will have to look at numerous pieces in a short space of time.

Stating the obvious, but make sure your work is entered into the right category.

The images you show will polarise opinion so make sure they represent the project, less clutter, more impact.

Don't try and pre guess what you think the judges will like or dislike. All work will be discussed thoroughly and every one of the jury's views and opinions will be heard and considered.

Look at the winning work from other design awards and understand why they've won. Different juries will have different views but winners tend to be consistent.

The Scottish Design Awards are an important part of the creative calendar. They are the reward for great work judged by your peers and admired by your competitors. They are significant for Scotland but vital to the fabric of British Design and signals that design is not exclusive to the London scene as it has been for many years.

The design industry is going through a massive change because of the rapid changing pace driven by technology. This has both a positive and negative effect. Positive because the advantage of speed and the flexibility of how and where you can work and negative because we are loosing some of our craft skills and not concentrating on big ideas but style.

The real value of design in the future as it is today is the big idea, problem solving through creativity. The work we do in the future will be in collaboration with other skills but the value will in our ideas.

Good luck,

Glenn Tutssel

The deadline to enter the Scottish Design Awards is 5pm on 9 March. For more information contact Lyndsay Wilson on 0141 559 6063 or email


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