Daylight Creative is a spinoff of The Spinoff

12 months ago by

While 2020 was undoubtedly challenging there were beacons of light and lots of silver linings to emerge from the darkness. One such beacon was the amazing and imperative work Toby Morris and Dr Siouxsie Wiles created for The Spinoff.

During the early stages of the pandemic, Dr Siouxsie Wiles, an acclaimed science communicator, collaborated with comic artist Toby Morris to publish a series of short, informative, effective and extremely shareable graphics around COVID-19. They caught the attention of the World Health Organisation who contracted The Spinoff to produce similar graphics for an international audience, an arrangement that is still ongoing.

On the back of this commission, and with the World Health Organisation as a foundational client. The Spinoff Group announced the founding of Daylight Creative, an editorial content studio that takes the lessons The Spinoff has learnt as a creative digital publisher and makes them available to brands, NGOs and agencies around New Zealand and across the world.

Daylight collaborate with purpose-driven organisations on work with power – and a point of view.


When The Spinoff launched in 2014, a founding principle was the understanding that in the social web era, all organisations are publishers – but most struggle to know exactly what that means. The Spinoff sees itself as a digital magazine, a place that values tone of voice and creativity of approach, uses multimedia storytelling techniques and prizes strong visual aesthetics.

It’s this approach that has culminated in the founding of Daylight Creative.

Left-right: Simon Day, Julia Arnott-Neenee, Duncan Grieve, Alba-the-dog, Toby Morris, Lee Lowndes (PHOTO: HŌHUA KURENE)

The new offer has grown from The Spinoff’s original commercial team. The World Health Organization, collaboration, initially compromising brief animations, has since swelled to encompass data visualisations, short-form documentary, editorial writing, social content and much more, all translated into dozens of languages and receiving millions of impressions from around the world. The Spinoff’s work for the WHO was moving and meaningful, quickly attracting other clients, including the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, Flick Energy, Vodafone and Kiwibank.

Duncan Greive, founder and CEO of The Spinoff Group, says the evolution of The Spinoff’s commercial arm into Daylight Creative reflects the radical changes seen in the marketing, advertising and communications industries. “Over the past decade or so, social media, streaming, smartphones and a huge splintering of audience behaviour has rendered mass culture largely obsolete,” he says.

“This creates huge opportunity and equally large risk for organisations that fail to grapple with this complexity. We believe the scope, ambition and capability of Daylight is ready for the challenges of communication in the digital age.”

Daylight Creative is very deliberately a studio, not an agency, creating work according to specific briefs from clients and molding the resources required around that brief. It specialises in editorial forms – accessible writing, podcasts, social video and tiles, data visualisation, documentary film, illustration and animation.

“With editorial storytelling in our DNA, we approach each opportunity with fresh eyes, creating everything from podcast series to data-visualisations to short animations, according to what we feel best fits the brief.
We know that there is infinite content at our fingertips at all times, and we have to earn the audience’s attention anew each time. That’s why we think deeply about what we create, where it will sit and who it is for.”

Daylight Creative is led by GM Lee Lowndes, former group business director at Colenso BBDO, who brings experience with The Monkeys in Australia and AMV BBDO in London. She works alongside Julia Arnott-Neenee, former global social strategy lead at HP in California and founder of the social enterprise PeopleForPeople. They work with Toby Morris, creative director of The Spinoff Group, Simon Day, Editorial Director, and a team of account directors, illustrators, designers and writers to create beautiful, accessible and striking work for organisations at any scale.


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