The Start 2023 Winners

Date 2023-10-23

The Start is Design Bridge and Partners’ multidisciplinary entry programme. Our ambition is to give the brightest young talent of today their start in the creative industries via an accelerated year-long programme.

Every year, we bring in a fresh wave of talent across our three core disciplines: Creative, Strategy and Client Leadership. We’ve seen many people from our annual entry programmes grow into incredible designers, client leaders and strategic thinkers - we really love the energy and fresh thinking each new generation brings.

This year, we asked entrants to generate their own unique three-part brief using our Brandomiser, encompassing a Brand, an Issue, and an Audience, which challenged them to produce a captivating and imaginative response.

We were joined by special guest judges who lent their expertise to determine the final Creative Pathway winners. These judges included Ruby Taylor, an Illustrator and Designer, Andrew Footit, Designer, and Craig Black, a Visual Artist known for his distinctive 'Acrylic Fusion' technique.

Now onto our winners of the Creative Pathway, who recently got stuck into some live projects on their placements with us in our Clerkenwell Studio...

First place goes to ‘Overview Effect’ by Max Hain

In response to his bespoke brief: How could NASA take on mental health for career-driven millennials? Max's innovative solution combines an AR experience with a meditation app, focusing on the profound psychological benefits of the 'Overview Effect' - the transformative experience of seeing Earth from space. This project promises to positively impact mental well-being and reshape one's perspective on life and humanity's place on our planet.

The judges said: "Max's work is well-thought-through, with clear insight and great storytelling; we love how his idea democratises such an elite experience for the wellbeing of everyone."

Well done Max!

Second place goes to ‘Thyme to Grow’ by Dean Fox

Congratulations to Dean Fox for his project aimed at inspiring urban communities to contribute to environmental conservation by cultivating their own herbs, fruits, and vegetables. Dean's approach involves reimagining the iconic National Geographic logo through print labels and incorporating it into poster designs to showcase and celebrate everyday gardeners and their green achievements. Dean skilfully makes a serious topic engaging by using light-hearted and witty puns, making this campaign memorable.

The judges said: "Dean's idea really made us smile; real community purpose behind it, incorporating lovely language and popping colour!"


And third place goes to ‘The Door’ by Katie Hewson 

Katie’s concept explores the idea of opening a door in the past to achieve a better future, cleverly incorporating National Geographic's iconic logo into the representation. Katie delves into how National Geographic can educate the local community about climate change through an educational film and lecture series.

The judges said: "We loved the meaning behind this work, demonstrating a great understanding of brand equity with really compelling visual and typographic elements."


Congratulations to all our Creative winners! And a huge thank you to everyone who invested time and effort into their applications. Our teams and judges loved looking through every single one, and are so impressed with the creativity, talent and original thinking demonstrated – entries really do get better every single year.

The judging process for Client Leadership and Strategy Pathways are currently on pause, and we thank everyone for their patience with us. We are planning for the successful 2023 applicants to start the programme in the new year.


For more information on The Start programme, you can check out the 2023 brief here.

Click here to view our open opportunities on our careers page. And keep an eye out for the 2024 brief early next year!

If you have any questions about the programme, please reach out to Holly Nicholas (