"Everyone should understand the idea"

Last year, around one hundred young talents took part in the ADC Young Creatives Award in teams of two in order to win a trophy and a place at the Young Lions Competition. The main sponsor and taskmaster was Suva. The competition was looking for communication ideas to protect apprentices from the risk of accidents at work. In a series, Werbewoche presents the four winning teams that will travel to Cannes this year.


With Olivia Gnani (22) and Nora Bertoli (24), the winners of the print category, young Switzerland is also represented by two women in Cannes. We talked to them about the power of good ideas and provocation.


WW: Your subjects show simple facts, implemented with a creative twist: Leisure objects in casts. How did you come up with this idea?
Olivia Gnani: We first did a lot of research on the subject of accidents. So we quickly came to the topic of leisure time and from there to the idea that an accident at work hurts primarily there. If you can no longer work, many people might not find that so bad. But not being able to organize your free time independently after an accident is something else. That's what we wanted to show - that you then miss your leisure activities and, in connection with that, your friends. So we wanted to address the young people directly.
Nora Bertoli: At first, we just wanted to wrap bars and other huge objects in plaster. However, that would have been too elaborate. We then thought about which smaller, distinctive objects we needed so that people would immediately notice that we were dealing with industrial accidents. For example, utensils from extremely dangerous sports were immediately omitted, because the viewer would probably have associated these more with a sports accident. And, of course, the items should be immediately recognizable. If you first have to think about what the object represents in the first place, you've already passed the poster by for a long time.


What exactly works about your subjects?
Olivia Gnani: The idea as a whole is immediately recognizable. You notice at first glance that it is about leisure. The plaster makes it clear that these are objects that you can't use at the moment. We could have shown dusty objects, but that would not have dramatized our message so sharply.
Nora Bertoli: We then still thought long and hard about whether the subjects really work as quickly as we think. For us, of course, the images seemed easy to understand because we had dealt with them. But it's not easy to put yourself in the role of a viewer who is seeing a subject for the first time. We also had an idea with horror posters, for example: For us, these subjects would have worked well. But for most others, a horror movie subject probably wouldn't have made the connection to the work accident so quickly.
Olivia Gnani: Exactly, we would have had to go further lyrically to make the idea work.


What do you generally think of provocative ideas that tend to frighten or even repel?
Nora Bertoli: I think shocker moments like that are actually pretty cool, because they stick in your mind more clearly.
Olivia Gnani: You just have to be careful that they are not an end in themselves, but fit the theme and help the communication idea.
Nora Bertoli: Unless the aim is that an idea is perceived differently or triggers divergent opinions. This is precisely how polarizing posters provide an impetus for discussion. Moreover, more provocative ideas clearly show where one stands, without fear of the reaction or opinion of others. If I can stand behind it, I don't mind being attacked, because I support the product or idea and think it's good.

In general, what do you think makes a good idea?
Olivia Gnani: It's great when you can use advertising to pick up on emotions that people already have and connect them to a topic. In addition, a good idea must be quickly understandable, something new that has not been seen before. Not only people in the creative field should understand the idea, but everyone.
Nora Bertoli: I think it's quite difficult to invent something completely new today; somehow you've seen everything somewhere before. But you can also put together something new from a few good ideas. It's also important that an idea is implemented well - aesthetically, that is. In an emergency, a good implementation helps to make something special even out of an idea that is not so crazy in and of itself. Or you can implement an idea that has already existed in a completely new way. But in general, I trust my gut feeling when it comes to ideas: If something engages me, arouses my interest, makes me laugh, you're usually already on the right track.

Interview: Ursina Maurer

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