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News > Alumni News > OW Rabia's Advertising Success as she Wins D&AD New Blood Pencil Award!

OW Rabia's Advertising Success as she Wins D&AD New Blood Pencil Award!

25 Aug 2023
Alumni News
OW Rabia and her creative partner Matt with their Pencil Awards.
OW Rabia and her creative partner Matt with their Pencil Awards.

Westholme sends its congratulations to OW Rabia and her creative partner Matt, who have recently won a D&AD New Blood Pencil Award for their Ebay ‘Cut Your Losses’ campaign. D&AD Pencils have been awarded to talented professionals since 1962, with a range of awards, including the Wood Pencil (awarded to Rabia and Matt) to honour the best of the year in advertising, craft, culture and impact. 

Their entry encouraged Gen Z to sell items associated with past hobbies/pursuits they no longer care about through a series of incredible advertising projects. You can see the ‘Cut Your Losses’ entry here.

We recently caught up with Rabia, to celebrate her achievements, and catch up to see what she has been up to since leaving Westholme in 2019... 

What have you been up to since leaving Westholme, how have you been progressing in marketing and advertising since leaving? 

“I left Westholme in 2019 to start my undergrad in Graphic Design at the University of Lincoln. After graduating I decided to stay on an extra year to complete a masters degree in Creative Advertising. It was on the course that I decided I wanted to be an art director and met my creative partner and copywriter Matt. Together we will be starting a placement as a creative team at FCB London.” 

How did you come up with/develop your ‘Cut Your Losses’ campaign?   

“For our D&AD Newblood entry, Matt and I created an advertising campaign that encourages young people to sell the items associated with past hobbies and interests they no longer care about. During the research process we found out that Gen-Z find a new interest or hobby every 3-6 months that fall across a wide range of categories. As they frequently change interests they are always left with items they may never use again that would usually just collect dust. As Ebay allows people to sell almost anything it's the perfect platform to get rid of anything and everything associated with these past interests” 

What do you love most about being in the creative industry? What do you find challenging? 

“The thing I love the most about advertising is being able to work with a partner. It was a weird concept at first, the fact you choose a partner and work together on every brief, attend interviews together and get hired together. But it’s so cool to be able to say I spend most of the day chatting to one of my best mates, coming up with weird ideas for ads and campaigns. The most challenging thing is when you have a creative block. To overcome this I have found it’s good to step away from your work and do something else for a while, like go for a walk or read a book." 

What are your hopes for the future? 

“I’d love to see one of my ideas made in real life. Whilst completing my masters degree, I’ve also been doing part-time graphic design work for my Student Union. Seeing my posters, logos and banners being used in real life is such a surreal feeling and I can’t wait to see my ads being used one day.” 

How was your Westholme experience? Did you always plan to end up in the creative industry? 

“During my time at Westholme, I was always interested in a creative career. My art teachers introduced me to the world of Graphic Design which is what I studied for my undergrad. Whilst at Westholme, I also enjoyed public speaking which has definitely helped with my confidence and pitching skills in the advertising world.” 

Have you got any advice for current students at Westholme? 

“My advice would be to always follow your passions. You're going to hear a bunch of different voices advising you on what to do and offering their own viewpoints. But at the end of the day it's your life and your career, so go for something that you’ll enjoy!” 

We wish Rabia and Matt the best of luck with their future creative projects and look forward to seeing more of their amazing work! 


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