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Pann Lim: Crafts as a Way of Life

Co-Founder and Creative Director of Kinetic Singapore, K+, Holycrap.sg and Rubbish Famzine, Pann Lim is something of an industry giant. Over the course of his career, Pann has amassed over 450 industry awards, including Singapore’s highest design accolade — the President’s Design Award in 2013.

Judging numerous awards shows around the globe and credited 25 D&AD credits (including the much coveted Yellow Pencil), it’s fair to say Pann has a pretty good idea of what creative excellence looks like. Ahead of his time as Crafts for Design Jury President, he shares with us the many different reasons why crafts are not just an awards category, they’re a way of life.
30165 - Pann Lim

I’m someone who isn’t very good with words. In fact, I failed my English Language paper nearly 27 years ago! But I found my calling in visual communication. Graphic design is my language, in a manner of speaking. I built a word bank of shapes, type, colours, illustrations, photographs, videos, motion design — graphic elements — to help tell the stories and ideas for my projects.

It takes all these different elements, little bits and pieces of experience and images collected over the years, to create a coherent and beautiful result. To me, creatives/designers who can do this are truly craftsmen. So it’s no surprise that I have always been influenced by craftsmen and their work ethic and passion towards their craft. No matter their discipline, their attention to the smallest of details have always left me breathless and inspired.

Here are some videos that illustrate what craft really means to me.
 

Craft means being obsessed with the details and mindful of the big picture.

手技TEWAZA「箱根寄木細工」Japan Hakone Marquetry

It means being disciplined in whatever we do:

Workers paint letters on the road

To bring an idea to life, craft is indispensable — just like how a score is the backbone of telling a story and creating a world through music:

Ennio Morricone on Kubrick & The Good, The Bad and The Ugly | Channel 4 News

Craft is inseparable from culture. It tells stories about how we are as a people:

Globe Making (1955)

But it’s how we push boundaries that will take us further as creatives and as humans:

Strandbeest Evolution

Because just like how creatives are becoming interdisciplinary, craft exists in any and every media:

Honda - The Other Side - Case Study

It’s what makes me smile and go "I wish I'd done that!"

OK Go – The One Moment – Official Video

Craft is a way of life. 

If you think you have a campaign that deserves a Pencil, enter your work into the D&AD Professional Awards and see if our judges agree. When it comes to awards, nothing matters more.

For more creative inspiration and the opportunity to get up close and personal with the world’s best design and advertising, join us at D&AD Festival.
 

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