Monday, 28 February 2011

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Less is more

Really interesting article on the trend that most larger compaies are simplifying their logo designs.

Another interesting article looking at the simplification of product packaging.

Colour Lovers, interesting website looking at colour.

Design Context Triangulation

"A print based investigation into branding & promo with a focus on limited colour pallets."

- Printing methods and mass production, look at costs of ink and paper, has it impacted on the way designers use colour? litho versus digital?
- Print finishes - foils, embossing, spot varnish/colours etc.
- Methods of promotion, effective formats, no colour promotion?
- High concept identity design, effective use of colour, 1 colour logos versus CMYK, complex spot colour logos, minimalist design
- Colour trends within graphic design. Fluorescents, calm/relaxing, black and white.
- Problems re-producing inks digitally, what can print do that digital can't.

Interesting recent article at Creative Review about Starbuck's recent logo re-design. Reducing the identity down to 1 colour and the design no longer having the name in the logo.

Interesting reading about the new logo at their website:

"From the start, we wanted to recognize and honor the important equities of the iconic Starbucks logo. So we broke down the four main parts of the mark – color, shape, typeface and the Siren. After hundreds of explorations, we found the answer in simplicity. Removing the words from the mark, bringing in the green, and taking the Siren out of her ring. For forty years she’s represented coffee, and now she is the star.

The details came next. The 20-year old logo was built in the early days of AutoTrace and it showed – points everywhere. We improved composition, brought in more sophisticated stroke width and spacing and a smoother line flow. When it came to her – the Siren – we enhanced her form in subtle ways, smoothing her hair, refining her facial features, weighting the scales on her tail to bring the focus to her face. We enlisted the branding firm of Lippincott to help with these refinements, and give us a better global perspective on the entire identity system.

The result is an evolved logo that celebrates the Siren in a much bolder way – it’s more expressive and energetic and still uses the same vibrant green circle that is so well recognized by our customers around the world."

Printed Textiles

As another one of my identities on the way I have been asked to produce an actual identity for a forthcoming graduate at Huddersfield University. She is in the textiles trade and as a graduate is looking to offer her skills to work either in an established textiles agency or as a lone practitioner offering her product a a business. I have written a brief and began looking at some sources of inspiration, I found this identity from Workshop really nice.


Via Typography Served.


Pulp is a book by London based agency KentLyons in collaboration with Generation Press and GF Smith celebrating the process of making paper.

Yearbook Contents & Microsite

I was asked to look at the contents page and the microsite. The imagery that I had used was particularly liked and so based on the one I produced earlier I created a few different ideas that used the same concept.

Showcasing all the students within a neat grid system. I really like the comparative values and the way each one has character is really interesting. I also created a more spaced out version below and which utilized the space a bit more and gave each individual a more exposed placement.

I added a contents bar based upon the designs that heather and emma were working on.

For the design of the microsite I simply took the contents page and reversed the navigation, adding more elements. I really like the exposed element of the design, showcasing the people before/behind the work first exposes them.

To illustrate how the navigation works myself and heather proposed screen shots of the design. So the splash page above leading to the designers menu below. The drop-down menu expands and as you scroll through the names the associating pictures light up blue in-keeping with the colour pallet.

Each persons work is shown in a fairly similar layout to the yearbook itself with the overlaid information bar. Associating test can be shown below with additional contact details and website based upon the designer's preference. A light book tool could be added to show larger images of work that is in thumbnails.

Group Chat Evaluation

After proposing the concept to the group I am feeling it really hard at getting my opinion across. I feel strongly that without and underlying concept hat defines what the design is about we are merely producing something for no reason and the design elements will not work together because of this.

My main concern is the concept, there is none. Forward thinking is not a concept, it bears no relation to the yearbook and the end of the 3 years studying. It cannot easily be illustrated and as a concept it is far too broad.

My second concern is the fact that in-spite that been no concept there have been a number of decisions made that should be made once a concept has been outlined. The concept will drive the design decisions such as the colour, type, format, even the layouts.

I am also concerned about the mimicking of something that has already been produced. In particular the Pulp Book by Generation Press, because of the way the print processes and the format have been replicated in particular the use of a box which could have been designed very differently.

I was also asked to have a look at how much the book would cost. Given there has been talk of producing a box, which again has been brought from no-where. Producing a die-cut box will increase the costs dramatically and with only £2500 to spend the idea of creating a box and print processes will skyrocket the price. I did contact Team impression and gave me an idea of the costs involved a basic litho- print, perfect bound, 120 page book in the dimensions given with an uncoated stock cover and pages is £1500 for 1000. I think is important to note that it was not asked for in the brief, luckily I wanted to contact them anyway and am going to visit them next week.

I feel that to grasp the idea of the yearbook and for everything to work in sync there needs to be a concepts that drives it. I am going to go ahead with my concept expose, but I am currently unsure whether to go on with the collaboration to save what lorenzo spoke to me about the integrity of my work within the collaboration.

Quick Yearbook Ideas: Expose

Working on the year I started thinking about who is was going to be given to and why and suddenly it popped into my head, we are exposing ourselves. Not in a nudist way but in the way we are exposing our creative talents to the industry, so I started to play off this idea and worked from there. I managed to sample some imagery from Getty Images, that communicated the concept well and I started working with the basic layouts and how they themselves could communicate exposed. There are several design ideas that I think would communicate it well.


+ Stock
- Raw/uncoated
- No shine
- See-through?

+ Format
- open - box, gatefold
- Exposed bind/cover

+ Colour
- Limited - Black, white + accent colour
- Tonal ranges of grey/black

+ Typeface
- Stripped down - just words (helvetica)
- No serif details

+ Photos
- Black and White
- Monotone
- Coloured photos of people's work are the exception
- Content - Real photos, actions shots, no cheesy photoshoots, people doing what they do
- Over exposed, blinding flash

+ Logo/Front
- Stripped/exposed
- Emboss, accent colour only
- Images of people on the outside (exposed)