A Bit of Background


The Shelf Awards were started in 2001 in response to a problem faced by creative graduates – they wanted to show their work to top creative directors but found them difficult to reach independently. To make this often daunting process easier, an evening was organised where the graduates could bring along their work to showcase to specially invited creative directors and other senior creative figures along with highly respected recruitment consultants. To ensure the creative directors and other guests engaged with all of the students, they were asked to score their work. At the end of the evening the best young creatives were awarded a wooden shelf – the idea being they could place future awards on it. Originally conceived as one-off event The Shelf Awards are now in their 12th year.

  • A dedicated evening for graduates to showcase their work and network with the leading creative directors, copywriters and art directors, as well as recruiters and other top industry experts
  • It aims to secure invaluable contacts, work experience and ultimately, full-time employment for the graduates taking part
  • The Shelf Awards are completely free and neither the graduates nor their universities pay to take part
  • The Shelf Awards are run thanks to support from experts and luminaries throughout the creative industry
  • In the last 12 years 130 graduates have got their start in the creative industry through securing countless work placements – many leading to their first full time employment
  • Uniquely the winning graduates are decided on the night by votes cast by guests made up of Creative Directors, Copywriters, Art Directors, Recruiters and other experts from the creative industry
  • In recent years guests have included experts from advertising, integrated and digital agencies including Rapp, AIS, Tequila, Rapier, Lida, Ogilvy, EHS Brann and Dare – some 200 in 2011
  • The winning graduates receive an actual shelf from B&Q on which to stand the awards they will no doubt pick up in the future
  • The Shelf Awards support the best creative graduates and supports the future of our industry

The Shelf Awards  How they work
Entering The Shelf Awards  Important information for students and course leaders
Supporting and attending  How the creative industry can show its support
Feedback  What people say about The Shelf Awards
Masterclasses, mentoring & more  Other ways The Shelf Awards works with universities
Latest news  How to keep in touch with The Shelf Awards
Contact  Drop us a line for more information about taking part or to offer your support