I‘ve just got back from AdFest, the regional creative awards show and conference held annually in Thailand. I have been fortunate enough to be invited for the last 11 years and it never fails to recharge my batteries. The reason for this is the number of young creatives who attend from around the region. This demographic compared to other shows is quite noticeble. Then there is the sheer amount of work entered and put on display. The venue in Thailand, the Pattaya Exhibition and Conference Hall (PEACH) is well suited to the needs of AdFest with a huge hall, smaller halls to runs film loops, and rooms for press conferences and VIPs. Above all, there is room for yards and yards of hanging advertisements.
The young delegates from all around the region spend hours studying and discussing each entry. Not for them the delights of the Pattaya night life which I confess I enjoyed in my younger days, this is a serious time for this dedicated crowd. I cannot help but admire them. One could not pull show off like this without the co-operation of top professionals who are prepared to spend three or more days locked in rooms viewing and marking entries. Of course, it is not just this show that manages to get highly-regarded and busy creative directors to give up time to serve on juries. We should be grateful that they are so willing to help the new generation. As someone who has such people judge the AdAsia creative shows and witnessed them in action, I can vouch how humble and nice most of them are. I am shortly flying off to London to interview some of the judges at the D&AD show and I am sure they will be equally pleasant.