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Posts Categorized: Corporate Identity

10 Beautiful Projects for Packaging Design Inspiration

Posted by & filed under Brand Marketing, Corporate Identity, Typography.

Have you received your copy of Print’s 2015 Regional Design Annual? Surely I don’t have to remind you that it’s the design industry’s most well-respected and sought-after annual? In it, you’ll find 348 of the best American designs of the year, including the beautiful packaging designs you’ll see here courtesy of HOW Magazine:

Brooks Dry Cider

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Hall, Oakland, CA; www.toshhall.com: Tosh Hall (creative director/art director/designer/writer), Luke Dixon (illustrator), Mathew Coluccio, Andy Baron (photographers); Brooks Bennett (client)

Gershwin CD

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Starbucks Global Creative Studio, Seattle; www.starbucks.com: Mike Peck, Jeffrey Fields (creative directors), Jon Cannell (art director), Dana Deininger (designer), Steven Stolder (writer); Starbucks Coffee Company (client)

Krave Jerky for Whole Foods

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Hatch Design, San Francisco; www.hatchsf.com: Joel Templin, Katie Jain (creative directors/art directors), Will Ecke, Eszter Clark, Javier Garcia (designers), Sarah Remington (photographer), Lisa Pemrick (writer); Krave Jerky (client)

Swell Cold Brew Bottle

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pprwrk studio, Kapolei, HI; www.pprwrkstudio.com: Mark Caneso (creative director/art director/designer); Swell Cold Co-op (client)

Frisco City Grainworks Packaging System

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RBMM, Dallas; www.rbmm.com: Jeff Barfoot (creative director), Garrett Owen (art director/designer); Frisco City Grainworks (client)

Xylobags Packaging

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70kft, Dallas; www.70kft.com: Stefan Reddick (creative director/designer), Michael Feavel (art director/designer); Xylobags (client)

Fest Cola Packaging

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CPR and Partners, New Orleans; www.cprandpartners.com: David Caruso, Rocky Russo (creative directors/art directors/designers), Justin Bonura (creative director/writer); Fest Cola (client)

Good Brewing Company Can Design

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Lewis Communications, Birmingham, AL; www.lewiscommunications.com: Roy Burns (creative director/art director/designer), Andrew Thompson (art director/ designer); Good People Brewing Company (client)

Agave Dream

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Hiebing, Madison, WI; www.hiebing.com: Sean Mullen (creative director), Barry Kalpinski (art director/designer), Sandy Geier (writer); Agave Dream (client)

Yokan Packaging

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Yoko Nire Studio; www.yokonire.com: Yoko Nire (creative director/art director/designer), Jason Booher, Katarzyna Gruda (instructors); B.S. Network, Japan (client)

The Pirelli Calendar 2016

Posted by & filed under Brand Marketing, Corporate Identity, Print Advertising.

The special “art item” calendar released by the Italian tire company, Pirelli, each year has a unique twist coming in 2016. Typically filled with photographs of nude or scantily clad women, this year’s editions, shot by V.F. contributing photographer Annie Leibovitz, features 12 studio portraits of women renowned for their work in diverse fields—including comedy, sports, philanthropy, and art. Another notable departure from the Pirelli ‘brand’ is that Leibovitz is the only woman — aside from husband-and-wife duo Inez and Vinoodh, in 2007 — to have photographed the calendar in over 25 years.

Of all the accomplished women featured — Serena Williams; Yao Chen; Patti Smith; Amy Schumer; Yoko Ono; investor Mellody Hobson; Fran Lebowitz; Agnes Gund and her granddaughter; director Ava DuVernay; artist Shirin Neshat; producer Kathleen Kennedy; blogger and actress Tavi Gevinson; model Natalia Vodianova and one of her young children — only Williams and Schumer are shown in their underwear.

Check out the entire project at Pirelli Calendar

Why City Flags May Be the Worst-Designed Thing You’ve Never Noticed

Posted by & filed under Brand Marketing, Corporate Identity, Think Tank.

Roman Mars is obsessed with flags — and after you watch this talk, you might be, too. These ubiquitous symbols of civic pride are often designed, well, pretty terribly. But they don’t have to be. In this surprising and hilarious talk about vexillology — the study of flags — Mars reveals the five basic principles of flag design and shows why he believes they can be applied to just about anything.

–This talk was presented at an official TED conference, and was featured on TED.com

Kicking Off the New Project

Posted by & filed under Brand Marketing, Corporate Identity, Think Tank.

1. Gathering the Brainstorming Team

Before you send out the group invite, sit down and think hard about who belongs in the first meeting and the last. Decide which thinkers are the best for all aspects of the project at hand and keep it light. Too many people bring too much to the table that could clutter and bury the idea that works. We all know the sooner we get the creative edge we need, the project rolls off. This is where that starts.

A good group should consist of three to five creative minds and can definitely expand to near seven and eight when more technical and marketing approaches must be considered for the scope of the project. The goal is to make sure the right people are there so it isn’t a waste of time for anyone.

 

2. Make a Good First Impression

The invitation should consist of a clear mission statement for the project to come. It will briefly outline the agenda. What you don’t want to do is just roll up into the meeting and expect everything to go your way and be completely fine. The brainstorm team may be a very intelligent bunch, but no one wants to walk into a room and not have a single inkling on what this whole gathering is about.

Make sure the invitation is absolutely clear on the objective of the meeting. Ensure you’re synced with your clients. Sometimes a meeting is really just a glorified meet and greet, and sometimes that’s fine. Though keep in mind if you want to make the meeting useful, the agenda must include what you think the first and next steps should be on the project. Plan out whatever it is you need to make it happen.

 

3. Set a Clear Agenda

Once you’ve defined your objectives for the kick-off meeting, work on developing an agenda which allows you to meet those objectives.

When running kick-off meetings we’re trying to answer the basic questions:

  • Why – Why are we doing this project in the first place? What business need does it satisfy? How does this project meet a consumer need?
  • What – What’s the solution? What are we going to do / make?
  • How – How are we going to work together to make the project happen?
  • When – When are we going to do it?
  • Where/Who – Where is the starting point for kicking things off? Who’s going to do what?

 

4. Kickoff with a Pre-Kickoff

This is a two step process. First, and foremost, go over the agenda with the team. Break it down, examine your next steps and outline what you all will handle during the meeting with the client. Designate rolls for discussion topics and make sure the team is fluent in the who, what, where, when and why of the project specifics and the next few steps toward completion.

Lastly, meet up with the client, one-on-one, and explain the agenda and where the team will be directing the client’s project. Our goal is to not blindside the client with information and get a feel for how this will play out. Prepare the client to come to the table with an open mind. Gather feedback, examples, and talking point suggestions from your client and update the agenda as necessary. Follow through with the team after the client is satisfied in the dialogue to come and project at hand. The kickoff will actually be after two or three small gatherings independently with the client and the whole team. The discussion will have already started and the work is half way done.

 

5. Keep It Fluid

The kickoff meeting has finally started and your team and client’s team are all gathered in one room. Keep the meeting going and allow the conversation to organically grow. Above all else, continue spurring the communication to allow the team and client to collaborate and create the winning solution. To help you along definitely prepare and show a presentation deck, handouts, and any visual material the team can prepare that will help bring the discussion to life and carry it forward.

Finally, don’t forget to write a contact report as you go along to capture the focal points of your meeting.

 

Know Canada!

Posted by & filed under Brand Marketing, Corporate Identity, Print Advertising.

No, it’s not the new national anthem. The nation has simply decided to rebrand its international image by showing the world what exactly is Canada. As part of it’s series, “Studio 360,” a radio program hosted by Kurt Andersen and produced by WNYC and PRI, decided to tackle Canada’s image problem, particularly in the U.S., and commissioned Bruce Mau Design to head up the project. BMD has studios in both New York City and Toronto which obviously helped the in solving the problem even though the team working on the project was predominantly relocated Americans.

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“Initially, we had Canadians and Americans participating in it,” says Hunter Tura, the studio’s president and CEO. “At a certain point, we made the decision to ban Canadians from working on it, because we felt that the discussion was bogging down into a number of the clichés we felt we wanted to get past. The idea was to look at the problem in a fresh and clear-eyed way.”

Ultimately, after interviewing many Canadians (including Mark McKinney and Scott Thompson from the comedy-sketch TV show Kids in the Hall and the author and artist Douglas Coupland), BMD came to the conclusion that Canada did not need to be rebranded. In actuality Americans just needed to be educated about Canada. This is where the new ‘brand’ adopted the tagline “Know Canada” (inspired by “You Ottawana get to know us,” a slogan submitted by a “360” listener).

This educational approach called for the jettisoning of Canadian iconography such as beavers, hockey, and the infamous maple leaf. Early on in the exercise, one of the designers drew a Canadian flag, placing a question mark where the maple leaf would be. That turned out to be a breakthrough moment, with the designers deciding to retain the iconic bars of the flag to frame 21st-century symbols of Canadian culture—everything from Arcade Fire and Justin Bieber to socialized health care and Ryan Gosling.

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“By removing the maple leaf and adding imagery, the system became totally flexible,” says Sarah Foelske, the associate creative director who headed the team. “We could speak to politicians. We could speak to creatives. We could speak to so many different things while also staying true to what Canada really was.”

BMD hopes that the Canadian government will be interested in adopting the campaign, now that the materials have been made public at KnowCanada.org, just in time for Canada Day, July 1st. Yes, that’s a real day. Cheers!

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Original article by Belinda Lanks of Co.Design. All photo credits at KnowCanada.org.

No Detail is Too Small

Posted by & filed under Brand Marketing, Corporate Identity, Think Tank.

In any successful organization, a common root to achieving today’s goals is based on a notion that no detail is too small to overlook. When designing for the world the smallest features have the capabilities of making or breaking an idea.

Thumbs Down for the Thumbs Up

Several months ago, Facebook announced the first redesign of their ‘Like’ button that had survived the web and made a large, iconic stamp on the internet. Why? With over 22 billion views a day across millions of websites, Facebook still decided it was time for a brand-leading makeover, according to the new button’s designer, Hugo van Heuven.

Absolutely nothing changed within the functionality of the button, just it’s form. It was deepened to a royal blue and the well established thumbs up icon was replaced with Facebook’s own icon. “The Like button was this light blueish thing that usually fell away,” van Heuven tells Co.Design in a recent article. “We thought we could make it more prominent, look a little bit better, and be more consistent.” Here, van Heuven speaks about consistency and not just with the brand itself, but also across the 7.5 million sites that use it. An interesting point is the ‘new’ blue color and new, reliable pixel dimensions allow for a cleaner corporate brand across the entire internet, ease of use for programmers and designers, and a heightened appeal to like things. This was definitely not a small detail to overlook and by treating it as a large overhaul ended up boosting the corporate brand and message simultaneously.

Go Ahead, Get Stuck and Watch Creativity Burst

Struggling for an idea is definitely not new to anyone in any field of design and development. If anything, it’s the first step towards solving the problem. Adapting to change is also a part of climbing out of a dark place and shine a light on the answer. Like a star gone supernova, the ideas will begin bursting from the core of the hippocampus.

Google+ has been slowly releasing updates and one in particular is the way link posts are viewed. Google also updated Hangouts to display messages similar to other messengers on the market similar to WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. The link posts also resemble the easy-to-read post structure of Facebook. The big ideas here were legibility, simplicity, and simply what works with the intended targets. All internet users tend not to know what they want but do tend to gravitate towards what works when it comes to ease of use and engageability. The answer to Google’s issues of pleasing their users and expanding their audience was simply to bring the features of other social media outlets and unveil similar features with the Google brand. The end user gets what they want (without actually knowing they wanted it) within the intended platform, stimulating the right endorphins to keep the audience using the products.

Did it Change for the Better or Just for Good?

The overall Facebook and Google changes were very small and nothing impacted the entire site directly other than the indirect changes that allow the end users to have a better user experience. The question now: Did anything change for the better or just for good?

We know for a fact that whatever changes has been changed for good. Facebook, Google, Twitter and the myriad of social media sites borrowing from each other and accounting for their audiences’ needs are working for the better. When a change doesn’t work we see changes revert as Facebook has done before as well as slowly rolling out minor changes to eventually create a major, all-around change. In the case of TED, a major site revamp was scheduled for the first time since the site debuted in 2007 and all its users were allowed to dabble with the new design and features for some time before the release.

Ideas aren’t frozen in time. They are living and breathing things, and they continue to evolve after a talk is given. Our speakers have told us they want a way to offer more ideas and resources than fit in an 18-minute talk. And we’ve heard loud and clear from you that you want to be able to dig deeper.

— TED Staff from Introducing the new TED.com

Not only did the design and development teams offer a better video playback experience with a much more clear and organized use of space but addressed a host of questions, comments and concerns from the overall users: Ideas evolve. So must the talk, its page and contents. Mobile and non-mobile users now share a similar experience with crisp audio and video. Not too familiar with English? Access over 100+ languages with auto-scroll transcripts. A user may even monitor his or her actions and influence on each individual post. These were all very extensive additions to TED as well as showing that each minor detail was not small at all. Each was specifically solving a problem that addressed the needs of the target audience. There is no such thing as a small detail. If the smallest change has stimulated more activity, boosted interest to new and old users and expanded the user experience and interface, then the small change was a big success.