With the help of DDB & Tribal Amsterdam's Rose Zandvliet, we were able to present an FWA Hero Silver Medal to an amazing SOTD, SOTM and MOTD judge.
It's great also to have the chance to ask Robbin Cenijn for his thoughts...
Please give us a quick bio... where do you live, where do you work, what's your job etc and when did you start judging for FWA?
Currently I work and live in Amsterdam. Wearing out a Wacom as Design Director of DDB & Tribal Amsterdam. I'm judging the Site of the Day since January 2011 and I judged The Mobile section in 2012.
Can you tell us about the presentation of the Hero medal?
Here at DDB & Tribal Amsterdam we have what we call a creative catch-up. Everybody who's working on a project can tell the status of project or show finished work. Someone had intercepted the medal and started to read the letter that went with it out loud. It took a couple of sentences before I realized this letter was addressed to me.
Can you remember the first time to encountered FWA and what were your thoughts at the time?
It would probably be somewhere in 2001. Back when flash was ruling the world. I think it was a link on Ultrashock or flashfocus that led me to TheFWA. The Site of the Day was WM team: http://www.thefwa.com/site/wm-team-v1. Remember that was the time of the killer preloaders and the 3d render blend mode craziness. (2advanced, Cubadust etcetera).
Over the years, which FWA winner has impressed you the most or inspired you the most?
There are 365 sites awarded in a year since 1997?. You (Rob Ford) filled 3 books with the best of the best. Throughout the years I've seen so many sites that inspired me. I can't pick one, that wouldn't do justice to all the different types of projects. I can give you a list of some of my favourites:
Wrangler Europe - Get Your Edge Back:
Nike a better world:
Big Boston Warm-up:
3 DREAMS OF BLACK:
Cadillac ATS vs The World:
Saab - Change Perspective
Welcome to Avalon Class:
Coke Zero Game:
We Choose the Moon:
BBC Life Is:
Get the Glass!:
Range Rover Pulse of the City:
Jordan BCT Low:
Enjoy Your Privacy:
Diesel Spring Summer 13:
The Bravest Man in the Universe:
City Guides by National Geographic:
Newton / Run Better:
DubbelFrisss Love Gun:
Have a Camper Day:
How many FWA wins have you had over the years, either personally or as part of a team and which one do you value the most?
My first one was for iFly Magazine at Born05 and off course the first one is the one I value the most. You will always cherish it but their are other projects that are also special in their own way.
Each project is something you work hard on together with everybody in the team and therefore each of them is special. I remember the first double ( site and mobile) for a “McDonald's - De bekendste burger" or my personal first for Tribal, “Philips -Obsessed with Sound“. Or all the passion, love and hard work we put into “Volkswagen - Hitchhike with a Like”.
We have had amazing projects for Heineken, Philips and McDonald's. And don't forget the recent wins for Adidas and KLM Space brought a lot of recognition across the world.
Over the last 4 year we won 23 FWA's including the People's Choice award last year for “Adidas- Nitrocharge your game”. I think we love them all. And the FWA certificates are spread proudly through the office as proof that we appreciate the recognition.
One side note is that this impressive list of wins is also the result of hard work from our amazing production partners such as MediaMonks, Stink Digital, Unit9 and others.
What are the qualities of a site that make you vote either YES or NO almost immediately?
I'm a designer by heart. So that's the first thing I look at is the design. Is it original, is it unique, does it have something memorable? Then ux. Do I know what to do? Are there any kind of new intuitive interactions? Is their storytelling involved?
Then I look at the idea. Do I think they got the full potential out of it? At last I look at production value, technique, quality of the build and so on. Doesn't mean that these things are important in this order.
As a percentage, how many times do you think you vote YES on submissions?
It really depends on the month, you have peaks in a year with lots of great entries and months of lots of average submissions. 2 out of 10 get a YES vote on average from me, but I always vote for the sites I would love to make.
What do you get out of judging for FWA?
Their are so many ways to be updated with work. But the FWA judging panel is definitely one of them. It keeps me informed. I know a couple of other judges and sometimes we discuss our votes and reasons behind it. It can lead to great discussions and point of views on projects.
If there was something you could change about FWA, what would that be?
There is one thing that theFWA should might reconsider. The difference between a normal SOTD submission and MOTD submission. These days lot’s of projects are build for both.
Any tips for people submitting work to FWA?
Always create a memorable thumbnail that reflects the submission. You would be surprised how many people browse back for references. The description needs to be clear. Often some context to understand the project is really helpful. Also for future reference, add a video!
Did you think the death of Flash would mean the death of FWA?
Never thought that was related. And this article explains it:
If you could have one super power, what would that be?
Finally, tell us a secret about yourself
Sometimes I wake up and I think that pixel fonts are back..