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5 Common Mistakes Package Designers Make

Editor’s note: Packaging design presents its own unique set of challenges to graphic designers that differ from other kinds of print design. Here, we asked Brad Murdoch from Process, a premium packaging manufacturer based in Salt Lake City, to help us identify some common mistakes. Process handles custom packaging and fabrication through its network of overseas manufacturing facilities.

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Day of the Dead – Canadian Style, eh!

Corona Canada is going all out to celebrate the Day of the Dead (Dias de los Muertos), an annual Mexican holiday (November 1 and 2) commemorating the lives of loved ones who have passed away. It has just issued special limited edition designs for its tall-boy cans, further extending its “Live Mas Fina” (Live the good life) campaign launched in March. Toronto-based design agency, Zulu Alpha Kilo, created the concept and design for the marketing promotion, which features artwork inspired by Day of the Dead sugar skull candy treats. Illustrated by Jenny Luong, the decorative skull artwork integrates a line of text that urges people to live life to the fullest.

The Canadian Day of the Dead campaign encompasses more than special packaging. Zulu is promoting the Day of the Dead design in out-of-home and print ads, magazine inserts and on social media. In addition to giving out tear-away posters at select locations across Canada, Corona is staging a social media contest that offers fans the chance to win a numbered, limited edition silkscreened print of the sugar skull posters. The Day of the Dead Corona cans are available in stores across Canada for one month only.

Posted in Advertising, Illustration, Packaging, Posters | Comments (0) | Permalink | del.icio.us

Coven: The Perfect Halloween Drink (for Adults)

At first glance, the packaging for Coven, a new hand-crafted vodka made by Arbutus Distillery in Nanaimo on tiny Vancouver Island in Canada, looks deceptively traditional, fitting right in on retail shelves with the products of large spirit producers. But darkness changes everything.

Asked to develop a product name, brand personality and package design for Arbutus Distillery’s inaugural product, Nanaimo-based agency, Hired Guns Creative, sought to take consumers into the deeper realm of the spirit world. Hired Guns chose the name “Coven” for the Arbutus vodka brand, not only because it was a play on the idea of spirits, but because it suggested gatherings, mystery and a hint of sexual allure. From a design perspective, creative director Richard Hatter also found Coven “a very clean, balanced word that is easy to work with on a graphic level. And, of course, there are the other obvious criteria; it was easy to spell, say, pronounce, read from a distance, and it was available to trademark.”

To bring credibility to this new product in stores, Hired Guns used several traditional indicators of quality: hand-dipped wax, die-cut label, foil and embossing details, and lots of whitespace. What isn’t seen in daylight, however, is a gathering of witches and night creatures made visible through a glow-in-the-dark phosphorescent coating overprinted on the bottle. The text on the back label adds to the haunting impression: “Shrouded in the mist of the West Coast, a timeless rite enchants those who seek a greater spirit. Initiation requires strict dedication to the craft. There is power in numbers, so gather together because when the lights fade, the ritual begins. We’ve been waiting for you.” Drink up and be merry; the spirits are alive.

Posted in Brand Language, Packaging | Comments (0) | Permalink | del.icio.us

Freddy’s Kaleidoscope of Motion Design

The symmetrical patterns and multiple reflections created by a kaleidoscope served as the perfect metaphor for the art of dance and gymnastics – and a means to demonstrate the ease of movement offered by the dance and fitness apparel manufactured by Freddy Wr.UP of Italy. For the making of the video, DLV BBDO Milan collaborated with Abstr^ct:groove production company to build a simulated kaleidoscopic view of performers in motion. Considerable storyboarding preceded actual production. Abstr^ct:groove producer Mauro Mastronicola says, “To understand how to achieve the graphic patterns we wanted, we started by studying small scale models and then we went into CGI simulations. All the effects were obtained in camera without the use of added post-production.”

Not everything happened in camera, however. Abstr^ct:groove designed and built four thaumascopes of different sizes and shapes, the biggest being about 30 feet long with an triangular opening of about 8 feet and the smallest being about 5 feet in length with a square opening of about 2 feet. The Italian National Team of Rhythmic Gymnastic ‘le Farfalle’ was asked to perform the gymnastic movements which were choreographed by their trainer Emanuela Maccarani. Luigi Pane directed the film and Franky B (aka Cryptic Monkey) produced the music.

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Greek EcoNews Intro

Anthimos Xenos in Athens, Greece, produced this animated introduction for the Greek environmental television network, EcoNews. For the 30-second video, Xenos served as art and creative director, motion designer and 3-D animator, and completed the project from start to finish in one month. Music and sound compositing was by Xenakis Lefteris and additional direction by Nikos Tsimouris. In February 2013, Xenos founded his own firm, Darling Creative Motion, in Athens, to focus on TV branding and advertising.

Posted in Motion Graphics, Sustainability, Technology | Comments (0) | Permalink | del.icio.us

Nothing Cheesy About These Ads

These commercials aren’t selling what you think they do. They were created by London-based John Nolan Studio/Robot Factory, which boasts an impressive portfolio of film assignments including “Dr. Who” and “Where the Wild Things Are.” The Nolan’s Cheese and Nolan’s Nuts brands don’t exist, but John Nolan’s animatronic design and FX services do, and the videos show off the firm’s talent and capabilities quite effectively – little wonder that they went viral online. The cheese video came out first, and a nutty variation of the idea followed.

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Posted in Advertising, Humor, Viral Marketing | Comments (0) | Permalink | del.icio.us

OK… Not This…But Close.

This skit by the British comedy team David Mitchell and Robert Webb from Channel 4’s “That Mitchell and Webb Look” sketch show kinda feels like the circular discussions that many of us sometimes have with clients, creative directors and team leaders. OK, not quite like that, but kinda like this. OK, the talk isn’t about fictional heroes, sex or killer sharks, but swap out the sex and killer sharks with marketing lingo and brand positioning and it’s almost identical. Well, not identical, but close. The free-association constructive criticism has the same baffling effect. Maybe not, but you know what I mean. If you don’t feel like that, just ignore this and enjoy the video for what it is. Or not.

Posted in Humor | Comments (0) | Permalink | del.icio.us

Throwback to the Future

How do you grab the attention of jaded creative directors? By arousing their curiosity. In a campaign for Kontor, a dance music label in Germany, Ogilvy Deutschland developed a “Back to Vinyl” direct mail piece that used high-tech gimmickry to promote the new Boris Dlugosch release. Ad agency recipients got a large flat package that contained a vinyl record inside, instead of the usual CD or USB. The vinyl came with instructions to place the record on the printed turntable on the back of the envelope, then activate the QR code with a smart phone. Recipients could listen to the latest Dlugosch track and “move” the needle to play other tracks as well or to contact Kontor via the connect icon. Needless to say, the vinyl promo often became the talk of the office and didn’t get thrown away.

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A Brand That Speaks for Itself

Even though today’s consumers are likely to buy their Coca-Cola in a can, the original contoured bottle shape and bright red color are instantly associated with the beverage in every part of the world. Istanbul-based Ayse Celem Design felt no need to call out the product by name, but let shape and color serve as the brand identity for this promotional calendar for Coca-Cola Turkey.

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Obsessively Funny Addy Promo

Convinced that advertising creatives see everything myopically through the lens of their craft, the Dallas Advertising League chose the theme “Obsession Has Its Place” to promote its Addy Awards in 2012. TM Advertising developed nine hilarious scenarios of singularly focused ad men and women dealing with everyday life situations. Jeremy Bartel of Liberal Media Films directed the videos, Jason Burks directed photography, and Charlie Uniform Tango did the post-production. Here are just two of the videos. To see the rest, go here.

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The Good and Bad Side of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde

Every year the Indianapolis International Film Festival invites local designers and illustrators to create a poster for select movies, which it uses as a build-up to the festival. The posters are then exhibited at the Indy Film Festival and sold as limited edition prints. Lars Lawson served as designer and illustrator for this “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” poster, along with contributing artist Monty Sheldon and Timber Design. Not only did Lawson capture the character’s strange split personality, he managed to draw the typography so that it reads “Dr. Jekyll” from one direction and “Mr. Hyde” when turned upside down.

Posted in Advertising, Illustration, Posters | Comments (0) | Permalink | del.icio.us

Korean Amulet Helmet

In many ancient cultures, traditional patterns are imbued with symbolic meaning that turn the objects on which they appear into amulets believed to bestow powers that protect a person from danger or harm. What better place to add this extra measure of safety than on a bicyclist’s headgear. Korean designers Kim Jungwoo, Kim Yoonsang and Park Eunsug found that the dramatic Sun Ja Mun pattern, a symbol for love, living and luck, was well suited to the cut-out design of a bike helmet, and also appealed to the bike rider’s philosophy of life.

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    • Ziba is an innovation and design consultancy that creates beautiful experiences.

    • San Francisco-based Studio Hinrichs, a multi-disciplinary design firm, annually releases a typographic calendar featuring twelve unique typefaces selected by international members of AGI. The 2014 Typography Calendar is available now.

    • IDEO is an innovation and design firm that uses a human-centered, design-based approach to help organizations in the business, government, education, and social sectors innovate and grow.

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  • Gung Hay Fat Choy!

    Designer/illustrator Craig Frazier commemorated the “Year of the Horse” with this poster.

    Lettering Large

    Monumental typography
    is the latest book on environmental design
    by Steven Heller and Mirko Ilić.

    AIGA InsideOut SF

    Brian Jacobs of Brick Design created this Golden Gate Poster for AIGA InsideOut SF.

    Pretty Pictures

    A beautiful monograph of the work of Canadian artist Marian Bantjes created between 2003–2012.

    Sunbeam Rd. "Breathers"

    Music and graphics by Brick designer Clive Hacker, the new Breathers LP is out in 12” vinyl and digital download.

    Shadow Type

    The latest typographic book by Steve Heller and Louise Fili.

    Puffin Chalk

    "Chalk Queen", Dana Tanamachi, illustrated and hand lettered a series of gorgeous covers for classic stories published by Puffin Books.

    Deceptive Practice

    Showing around the U.S. a documentary that highlights the astounding visual magic of Ricky Jay.

    Boston Marathon Tribute

    The May cover of Boston Magazine, photographed by Mitchell Feinberg, needs no words to explain.

    A 20th Century Look at Environmental Design

    A look at the intimate relationship between graphic design and architecture in the 20th century by Richard Poulin.

    Gung Hay Fat Choy!

    Designer/illustrator Craig Frazier commemorated the “Year of the Snake” with this poster.

    Graphic Art & Design Annual 11–12

    DNP Foundation for Cultural Promotion introduces its latest design annual from Tokyo.

    German Chocolate Packaging

    When you are in Munich visit Cafe Luitpold for fabulous coffee, cake with schlagsahne, and unique chocolate packaging.

    Spark Design Awards Annual

    The release of the first Spark Design Awards Annual is slated for August 25th.

    Primo Angeli’s
    Winning Poster

    This poster by San Francisco-based designer Primo Angeli was named the winner of the 2012 U.S. Olympic Committee poster competition.

    SFMTA Rebrand

    The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency recently unveiled it's new logo, designed by Paul Miller of Method Design.

    Girls Scouts’ 100th Anniversary Stamp

    Just released, this centennial Girl Scout stamp is designed by Craig Frazier.

    100 Ideas That Changed Graphic Design

    One of a new series of books on 100 ideas That Changed Graphic Design, Film, Fashion, and Architecture by Steven Heller and Véronique Vienne. Bravo!

    The Build Network

    The Build Network is a resource for business executives that features a print publication, website, and forum. Its untraditional publication Build focuses big ideas a collection of page stories.

    Vote for Your
    Favorite Park

    Coca-Cola is hosting its 3rd annual "America Is Your Park" campaign, asking Americans to vote for their favorite park. Winning parks will be awarded $100,000.

    Great British
    Fashion Stamps

    This stamp, which features a Vivienne Westwood outfit, is part of a 10 piece set that honors British fashion legends throughout the decades from Paul Smith to Alexander McQueen.

    Another Book…

    Within the proliferation of design books, Stefan Sagmeister's innovative books always bring a wit, intelligence, and just plain fun to the world of design.

    Your Profit
    Is My Fear

    Jean-Benoit Levy, noted Swiss poster designer, created this poster concerning the powerless position an individual has facing the war effort throughout the world.

    Altered Lanscape

    Altered Landscape, a celebration of the Nevada Museum of Art's 80th Anniversary is now on exhibition in Reno, Nevada. A lavish book, designed by Brad Bartlett.

    Vanishing Species Stamp

    This commemorative stamp, featuring an Amur tiger cub, is the latest edition to the USPS campaign to raise funds for vanishing species. It was illustrated by Nancy Stahl.

    Limited Edition 9/11 Poster Available

    Studio Hinrichs has produced a limited edition 9/11 commemorative poster to benefit the NYC Firefighters Brotherhood Foundation.

    Spark Pro Competition

    The 2011 Spark Competition registration runs through September–November and is open to all designers, architects, and industrial designers.

    Happy Birthday Hatch Show Print!

    A Nashville original, Hatch Show Print celebrates its 132nd year as a letterpress shop. They have created posters for America's country and western stars for generations.

    Cheeky Covers

    Bloomberg Businessweek introduces two covers for the Valentines issue on the "Infidelity Economy". Click here to peek at the men's cover.

    Industrial Designer Stamps

    United States Postal Service announces the publication of 12 commemorative stamps on American Industrial Designers in July 2011.

    Happy Lunar
    New Year!

    @issue team wishes everyone a prosperous year.

    @issue

    Back issues (single copies or complete sets) of @issue: Journal of Business and Design are available for sale from Corporate Design Foundation. Contact CDF here.

    365 Typographic Calendar

    The 2011 365 Calendar is now available for the tenth year. For more information, click here.

    American Craft Redesign

    American Craft Magazine, published over the last 70 years by the American Craft Council, boasts a new look and feel in the December/January issue.

    Levi’s
    Water<Less Jeans

    A change in the finishing process let’s Levi’s cut water use by as much as 96% in its new Water<Less jeans line, a total savings of 16 million gallons of water by spring 2011.

    Twitter Cookbook

    Author Maureen Evans condenses over 1,000 recipes – from lemon lentil soup to biscotti – down to 140 characters or less.

    Unique Poster

    35th annual American Indian Film Festival

    “Day of the Dead” Tequila

    Dr. Lemon Tequila in Argentina marks Latin America’s Day of the Dead festivities (November 2) with this advertisement, designed by Plenty in Buenos Aires.

    Logo Licious!

    Peleg Top’s latest book on international logos has just been published; it’s an interesting array of global large and small firms.

    Hand/Eye Magazine

    Hand/Eye describes people, places, products, projects and ideas that bridge the worlds of art and craft, design and development, culture and commerce, and environment and ethics.

    Scout's Honor

    US Postal Service has just released a commemorative stamp celebrating the 100 anniversary of the Boy Scouts in America, designed by Craig Frazier.

    PUBLIC Bikes

    Rob Forbes, founder of Design Within Reach, has launched PUBLIC, a collection of modern bikes and gear for cyclists who want to ride in style.

    TO Watch

    From designer / architect Tokujin Yoshioka comes a sculptural stainless steel watch for Issey Miyake. The hands are interior faces that move independently to tell the time with hour etched on the outer face.

    Ammunition adds HeartBeats
    for Lady Gaga

    This is the latest extension to Beats by Dr. Dre highly successful headphone line. It's both a fashion accessory and a high-end audio product.



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