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Yes, But Will it Work on the Street?

A look at some 1998 OBIE competition entries

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Armed with instructions to judge the campaign’s effectiveness "on the street," seven of advertising’s top creative directors critiqued the OAAA’s 1998 OBIE awards entries. For two days, the judges viewed more than 1,200 images submitted for consideration in this year’s competition.

Held annually to recognize creative excellence in out-of-home media, this year’s OBIE contest took place in New York’s Soho Grand Hotel at the end of May. The entries, categorized by media vehicle and category, were scanned onto CD-ROMs prior to the judging. In today’s "Game Boy" and "Play Station" world, the latest technology in keypad voting was employed for the first time in this year’s competition. With the new, computerized method of judging, the entries were first voted "in" or "out" with the push of a button. Those left "in" advanced to the second round of viewing, where judges rated the entries on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being the best. These selections then made it to the OBIE Judging Congress for one last vote. At presstime, the second round of judging had not yet taken place.

Out-of-home advertising continues to gain in popularity and range of usage. Both the design creativity and technology behind out-of-home displays are steadily improving. This makes for some tough OBIE judging. How does one choose between a Picasso and a Winslow Homer? How do you compare two entries that make different, but equally effective impacts?

The following photos depict some of the entries in this year’s contest. Take a moment to judge a few for yourself, and then see the results, which will be announced at the OBIE Show, September 24, at Bridgewater’s, New York.

This painted billboard, entered in the out-of-home beverages category, proves that painted walls continue to be a popular medium for outdoor advertisers.

Pepsi-Cola entered this transit poster in the international out-of-home category.

A bus-shelter advertisement for Target, entered in the retail out-of-home category, illustrates "fashion and housewares."

Entered in the F/X category, this truck, which seems to have literally pulled out all the stops, circulates around the New Zealand airport for Quantas.

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