McCann Brings Portfolio Night To SA

Portfolio Night Johannesburg


Portfolio Night is a global, annual event where aspiring young advertising copywriters, art directors and designers meet with several renowned advertising creative directors in a fast-paced evening of career-shaping advice, networking, and for some, recruitment offers. The 2013 event takes place in cities across the world on the 22nd of May.


While the event has been running for 11 years internationally, and has grown to be the biggest and best advertising portfolio review and recruitment event in the world, this year will be its first in SA hosted by advertising agency McCann in Johannesburg.


Likened to speed dating, the evening’s format is structured for the next generation of creative hopefuls to present their portfolios to the best in the business on a one-on-one basis, in 15-minute increments.


A huge draw-card for students to participate is the competition named ‘Portfolio Night All Stars’ whereby one student from every city that takes part will be voted on the night as having the best, most interesting portfolio. The winning Joburg student will be flown – at no cost to them – to New York in August for a week of workshops and seminars at the Art Directors Club.


McCann are hoping to facilitate between 100 and 150 students on the night and are expecting about 20 – 30 agencies to take part. Creative Directors confirmed include:


Pierre Odendaal | Chief Creative Officer | McCann Johannesburg

Steve Clayton | Associate Creative Director | McCann Johannesburg

Zac Modirapula | Creative Director | Amacreatives

Theo Ferreira | Executive Creative Director | Aquaonline

Yana Valtchanova | Creative Director | Aqua Online

Marlin Chetty | Creative Director | Brandbar

Sylvester Chauke | Chief Architect | DNA Brand Architects

Brett Morris | Group Executive Creative Director | Draft FCB

James Cloete | Creative Director | Draft FCB

Adam Brandt | Executive Creative Director | Gloo

Annari Leonard | Creative Director | Gloo

Nathan Reddy | Founder | Grid Worldwide Branding and Design

Jonathan Deeb | Executive Creative Director | Havas Worldwide Digital

Mbulelo Nhlapo | Creative Group Head | Ignitive

Xolisa Dyeshana | Executive Creative Director | Joe Public

Roanna Williams | Creative Director | Joe Public

Graeme Jenner | Creative Founding Partner | King James The Second

Shaun van der Hijden | Creative Director | Lime Light SA

Nick Liatos | Creative Partner | M&C Saatchi Abel

Mick Shepard | Creative Partner | M&C Saatchi Abel

Vumile Mavumengwana | Creative Director | M&C Saatchi Abel

Peter Khoury | Executive Creative Director | Metropolitan Republic

George Low | Creative Director | Metropolitan Republic

Festus Masekwameng | Executive Creative Director | Mojo MotherRussia

Kholiwe Sinuma | Art & Design Director | Mojo MotherRussia

Brent Singer | Executive Creative Director | Net#work BBDO

Jenny Glover | Creative Director | Net#work BBDO

Neo Mashigo | Executive Creative Director | Ogilvy Johannesburg

Peter Little | Creative Director | Ogilvy Johannesburg

Tseliso Rangaka | Creative Director | Ogilvy Johannesburg

Dylan McLean | Creative Director | Ogilvy One Worldwide

Louise Hildebrand | Creative Director | Quirk

Matthew Brink | Executive Creative Director | TBWA

Adam Livesey | Executive Creative Director | TBWA

Tom Cullinan | Executive Creative Director | The Jupiter Drawing Room

Glenn Jeffery | Creative Director | Volcano

Damian Armstrong | Executive Creative Director | whatwewant

Rui Alves | Executive Creative Director | Y & R Advertising


There is a selection process for students who wish to participate in Portfolio Night and students who are not part of a school that has entered, can email McCann directly. Students are required to pay R100 each to join the evening thereby demonstrating a commitment towards their creative future. Money raised will cover the cost of the event and will also provide support for disadvantaged candidates.


Registration opens at 5:15 pm on the 22nd of May and the event kicks off at 6pm.

The venue: McCann, 22 Westbrooke Drive , C/o Katherine Street, Sandown, Sandton

Find the schedule for the night and keep up to date at or







  1. Is it purely for students, or can young freelance illustrators apply? 😛

  2. Hi Chris. It says this on the international site:

    “Advertising students, junior copywriters and art directors, interactive writers and art directors, as well as designers with portfolios strongly geared towards advertising are all welcome to attend Portfolio Night. Sorry photographers, illustrators, fine artists, industrial designers, non-advertising focused graphic designers, account services and media people and the like; we love you to bits, but Portfolio Night isn’t for you.”

    But you can contact McCann to find out if it applies to the local event –

  3. For general enquiries please contact Linda Weaver at McCann PR on 011 235 4771 or As this is a non profit generating event we are looking for volunteers to assist with the logistics on the evening and aslo sponosors that would like to make a contribution to this initiative.

  4. Why don’t the agencies present sponsor the event? Seeing as they’re the ones who will reap the most reward out of it.

    and while we’re on the subject, why must the students pay to see the CD’s? that’s like paying for an interview? Surely the likes of big multinationals like McCann and hunts and network can spot the bill on this one?

    just curious.

  5. To respond to “Nice” and the question about why students pay: just to let you know that all over the world students pay a nominal fee to partake in Portfolio Night. Putting it in context, R100 is a couple of drinks on a night out. They’re getting a lot more on the night too, including snacks and drinks, live music, a goodie bag and the chance of winning a trip to New York and opening the doors to a great future! Worth every cent, I’m sure.