Friday, August 31, 2007 - One in a Million Campaign

"Following on from the successful Results for Real life campaign, Yell briefed AKQA to develop concepts that would bring to life the benefits of the product.

The result was an integrated campaign under the slogan ‘Find Your One in a Million’. Targetting office workers, the concepts were designed to follow people through their working day.

The key insight behind the campaign was that people are not just searching functionally for a business or a service; what they are looking for is a specific result that will answer a very specific need. Its not just any old restaurant, its the restaurant that is perfect for that first date or for that reunion dinner. As such, the practical benefits of using Yell can be portrayed in a warm, emotive fashion that garners brand affection over and above the literal service that Yell provides" (Creative Showcase).

View full campaign here

Posted this campaign as I think it is a great example of maximising the use of digital media and the possibilities the Internet has to reach audiences in new ways. Although all the elements of the campaign are simple in terms of their function, visual execution and idea, because the concept has been successfully executed in several different ways, each of which suit the individual variation, it works together well. Good example as to how a simple interactive element can encourage the user to interact with the brand/product/service there and then, not having to click on a link or remember to go back later.

Stella Artois

Agency: Lowe, London, UK
Executive Creative Director: Ed Morris
Copywriter: Peter Reid
Art Directors: Carl Broadhurst, Lovisa Almgren
Illustrator: Aesthetic Apparatus
Typographer: Dave Towers

Came across this campaign for Stella Artois and was struck by the change in tone of voice and brand projection, but can't find any more about the campaign. Stella Artois had started to get some negative brand associations and in the drinks market, is perhaps not 'the drink of the moment'; its therefore interesting to see the approach the brand has adopted here going back to the historical roots of the brand in a hope to banish the associations with drunken violence and loutish behaviour. Im not quite sure how the visualisation of the concept will work as it is so far from mainstream alcholic advertisements but an interesting example of repositioning a well-known brand.

Ugly Betty

Witty but incredibly simple idea I spotted to advertise the TV show Ugly Betty. A good example of where medium/execution perfectly suit and add to the concept.

CVV Suicide Prevention

Agency: Leo Burnett, São Paulo
Creative director: Ruy Lindenberg
Art director: Ricardo Toledo / Andre Gola
Copy: Carla Cancellara / Digão Senra

Interestingly executed concept to raise the profile of CVV, a social organisation dedicated to help people to help themselves to prevent suicide. The unusual use of cut outs attracts attention and with a simple line of copy ' Help Yourself' the message is clearly communicated. The campaign seems to of pitched itself at exactly the right tone of voice to both create a sense of the desperation people feel in such situations and the hope an organisation like CVV can offer - the large white empty space and the simple silhouettes in positions that create a sense of desperation and of hope, by reaching out for help, are effective in communicating the role of the CVV.

Thursday, August 30, 2007


An interactive light installations that explore the possibilities of an interactive relationship between movement and light. The first project, Mes-Etoiles, is a photo-sensitive interactive wall that responds to the presence of people and displays feedback as a light projection. Created by French studio BarraganStudio, the interactive wall allows the user to 'paint' with the light.

A while ago this would have been seen as relatively revolutionary however there have been numerous similar interactive projects. So not the most innovative of concepts, but the potential for interaction between human being and man-made technology has once again been acknowledged and projects such as this need to be seen as a starting point.

Akzidenz Grotesk - Tobias Battenberg

Video projection project I came across from German artist Tobias Battenberg. The project uses the typeface Akzidenz Grotesk projected across various urban scenes - aesthetically the project is beautifully executed and the projections have an almost enchanting ambience about them. However, my German isnt good enough to understand the concept/idea behind the work!


Creativity is a monthly magazine specialising in all things creative in advertising and design. It is an invaluable resource for design students, providing a showcase of the best ideas within the industry and the people behind the work; Creativity also covers the creative process from concept through to execution offering an insight into the thinking behind campaigns.

The website, Creativity-Online, provides an excellent regular coverage of the latest tv commercials, viral campaigns, interactive campaigns and brand development etc - a good site to be aware of and a way of keeping up to date with the industry.

National Design Awards 07

I first came across this rather engaging book cover from Chip Kidd, later discovering it to be one of the Pulitzer Book Prize Winners this year and helped Kidd to claim the Communications Award at the National Design Awards. It's a great example as to how the thoughtful design of a book cover can both communicate clearly the type/topic of the book whilst creating intrigue.

"Kidd’s distinctive design approach does not adhere to a particular style but is rather guided by the content of each book and the discovery of surprising images and relationships that compel the reader to look inside". The site Good Is Dead exhibits more of his work.

V&A 150

In June this year, the V&A Museum celebrates it's 15oth birthday and to commemorate the occasion the V&A invited 150 leading designers, architects, photographers, fashion designers and artists to contribute a page to an anniversary album. What particularly interested me about this 'project' was the way each invited contributor responded so differently to the brief as such, with the work including writing, photography, illustration, storyboarding, collage, typography to name a few; it is an inspiring collection of work that demonstrates the power of the creative process and the nature of ideas - from the initial single concept of the V&A Museum reaching 150 years old, 150 people have found 150 different ways to commemorate, respond to and record this event.

To view the slideshow click here

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Marian Bantjes

Marian Bantjes - graphic designer with a concentration on typography, book setting and production. Her work includes clients such as Pentagram, Print, Wired, Stefan Sagmeister, Houghton-Mifflin and The New York Times Magazine.

Her work appealed to me due to it's intricate and decorative nature - typography can be an incredibley striking visual and I like the way Bantjes has explored this through work that not only communicates a message but creates an aesthetically beautiful piece. I think part of the success of Bantjes work lies within her ability to build the typography into the composition so it becomes a vital elements that both enhances and compliments the other elements.

Some of my favourite examples below.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007


A recent exhibition from the Campana's brothers that explores the clash between natural and man-made materials. Transplastic 'tells a fictional story: in a world made of plastic and synthetic matter, a fertile ground is laid for transgenic creations. Natural fibres recover the plastic as in an immunological response: nature grows from the plastic and overpowers it. (DesignBoom). As with much of the Campana's brothers work, the pieces explore the stark contrast between natural and man-made, textured and smooth surfaces, organic and industrial shapes etc. By working with contrasting materials, the transplastic project has both produced some aesthetically beautiful outcomes and demonstrated how natural and man-made components can work with each other successfully.

Fiodor Sumkin

Fiodor Sumkin is an illustrator based in Amsterdam whose portfolio includes some lovely hand-drawn illustrations and expressive typography - it's interesting to see how Sumkin has worked with illustration and typography together, merging one with the other to create expressive outcomes. The energy and character he inserts into his typography particularly appeals to me and the fact that it remains hand-drawn when so many designers have now turned to digital means.

Monday, August 20, 2007

The Economist

Two more examples of advertisements for The Economist. It's good to see a slightly varied approach to their recognisable witty copy-based concepts but that still works just as effectively. What struck me most about these two examples is how if the concept is spot on, clear and simple, how fewer elements you need to communicate a message.

Penguin: Escape Into A Book

"Escape into a book"

Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi, Singapore
Executive Creative Director: Andy Greenaway
Art Director: Richard Copping
Copywriters: Jagdish Ramakrishnan, Roger Makak
Photographer: Teo Studio/Corbis
Retouching: Kendrick Wong

Interesting advertising campaign from Penguin books shown in Japan. The campaign caught my eye as an alternate way to advertise books to today's consumer who lives a hectic, fast-paced life with little time to spare. Many people simply use the excuse they haven't the time to read so Penguin have positioned themselves, and their books, as an escape for those times in the day when you have to wait and have ten minutes to spare.

I found the art direction interesting here but question it's effectiveness - the shots are visually interesting and have a clear line of communication, 'these people are bored and waiting' but is the first thing you, as the audience notice, the book?

Will Perrens

Portfolio site I came across for London based designer Will Perrens displaying some interesting and fresh typography work.
Example above was for Brighton University's Fashion Degree Show - I liked the fact Perrens has taken the staple material of the subject - fabric and used this to create a unique typeface. The three-dimensional textural interest this adds to the publication's front cover is intriguing and suitable for the creativity and flair a graduate Fashion degree show would display.

Interesting typography project that used thin tape and a rectangle structure to create the characters. Although the typeface is visually interesting as a typeface, I found Perrens application within a project for a CD music album even more effective; I liked the approach he had taken to incorporate the structure of each character from horizontal and vertical pieces of tape into the design itself - click here to see project.

The typeface below 'Drift' won Will Perrens a D&AD "New Blood' Award in '04. I particularly like the individual nature of each character and the fact each letter feels hand-drawn and spontaneous yet the characters also compliment each other as a complete typeface family. The attention to detail here is, what I think, makes it an eye-catching typeface.

'Cradle to Cradle' Design

In relation to the growing topic of designing sustainably, one approach designers can take is to consider the complete lifecycle of the final product when approaching a problem. By considering not only the design process from research and concept to final execution, but the complete process, often refered to as 'cradle to grave' from the initial raw materials right through to how the product is disposed of at the end of it's 'life', the designer can ensure he/she has a much more positive impact on the planet. Furthermore, the design industries are beginning to approach designs with a 'cradle to cradle' lifecycle, meaning the designer considers how the product can be reused/recycled as something else to continue it's 'life'.

Two such quirky attempts from Dutch design company Atelier Bom Design , illustrate the 'cradle to cradle' approach in use. The first example uses recycled billboards to create bird houses for the garden; I like the fact the billboard and bird house having nothing in common yet one has been used to make the other - by using the old billboards, the designer has created a far more unusual, eye-catching bird house that couldn't been achieved with plywood.

The lampshades (above) have taken recycling in it's most literal sense by using old books to create handcrafted lights that are both environmentally friendly and aesthetically appealing.

Both these examples illustrate how approaching projects using 'cradle to cradle' principles can encourage creative outcomes. By adopting this new way of 'thinking' designers are not limiting their options, but opening up new avenues to explore particularly in terms of materials and form/function.