Slick motion reel update by Spanish Borja Holke Rezola better known as Holke79.
For those of you who missed it. Semi-Permanent came to Melbourne last week bringing with them a plethora of interesting and awesome speakers including:
Jessica Hishce, Nicholas Felton, Seb Lester, Julian Frost, Moffitt&Moffitt, Studio Hunt&Co, Ant Keogh, Glendyn Ivyn, Lilli Waters Nicole Reed, Magdalena Wosinska, Ben Briand, and Miso – Stanislava Pinchuk
The conference took place over two days at Melbourne Conference and Exhibition Centre, a good venue to facilitate a big audience but unfortunately located in one of the least inspiring areas of the Melbourne CBD. With a set of 7 speakers per day presenting for 45 minutes each the schedule was quite tight and unfortunately left little to no time of Q&A’s at the end of each talk. The speakers came from a range of backgrounds from designers, art directors, illustrators to film makers and photographers. As there was no particular theme set for the conference, the talks were focused on giving deeper insight into the speakers work, methods and journeys.
Here are some of our highlights from the two daysMoffitt&Moffitt
Kicking off day one was creative twins Andrew&Mark from Moffitt&Moffitt (Sydney) who are also responsible for the rebrand of Semi-Permanent. Starting off with photos of the brothers as kids in their Mickey Mouse outfits, they took us on a journey through the ups and downs of their life and work together. The twins captivated the audience with cocky silliness and insights into their highly polished work, which ranged from photographing 6 metre flames in someones questionable garage for an album cover to pushing the boundaries of briefs with clients such as global company GE (see project here). The part that most resonated with us was their “Success of Failure” story. It started out as a story about a fashion magazine with the generic name Girls&Boys targeted at “trendsetters” using big 3D letters “because it was cool” until they realised how, as they put it, “self indulgent and shit” it was. They threw the giant 3D letters off their balcony the same night and started from scratch. Their solution became highly acclaimed music magazine Demo which grew from the idea of capturing a a video clip on paper covering emerging Australian artists. The key thing they took away from this experience was that the best type of self promotion is to promote someone else, and to always start with the question: how can we help?Julian Frost
Definitely the highlight of day one (if not the whole conference) was Julian Frost: animator, illustrator and director behind the hugely successful Dumb Ways To Die animation for Metro Trains Melbourne. Julian enjoys drawing silly characters and if his illustrations result in a chuckle he is very happy. His black humour and wit comes through in his work, as well as in his presentation, giving the audience a giggle more than a few times throughout his speech. He gave us a crash course in how to make an animation funny and how he uses Tom Hanks’ ”what’s fun about that?” line from the film Big to test this. He also took us through the process of creating the Dumb Ways to Die animation from sketching characters through to creating the smartphone game. Frost gives credit to the client for taking “a giant leap of faith” and almost completely staying out of the project for most of the time – their only feedback in the end was to make the deaths of the characters hit by trains more violent.
He also told us that when Dumb Ways to Die took off on YouTube his brain overloaded and he promptly got a cold. Dumb Ways to Die picked up more awards than anyone ever at Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity this year and has, according to Frost, been viewed for over 273 years on YouTube (I’m sure you’ve seen it by now but here’s the link anyway). Some examples of Frost’s other work are below.Nicholas Felton
San Franciscan Nicholas Felton (one of the lead designers of the Facebook timeline and creator of Daytum.com) wrapped up day one telling us about the process of creating his hugely popular personal Annual Reports. The man is a genius, and the amount of effort and detail he goes into to create these explicit infographics of his life is mind boggling – almost too much to take in on a Friday afternoon. Felton describes the Annual Reports as stories expressed in numbers, and he says that numbers play a big role in how we communicate today, and should be considered as tool to use along side typography and imagery.Hunt&Co
Thomas Williams from Hunt&Co (Melbourne) kicks off day two of the conference. Thomas is the man behind internationally loved publication Process Journal and Made. He told us about growing up on a vineyard and failing art class. He revealed some of his early work as a designer and how back then he thought he was pretty awesome… but later realised he wasn’t. As he was challenged with working within the boundaries of normal office hours he eventually decided to start his own studio. The very humble beginnings of Hunt&Co seemed to have been a mixture of playing XBox in his underpants and working really fucking hard as he puts it. Engaging throughout his presentation, Williams was well considered and well structured, and probably involved the most amount of swear words – something he told us he almost regretted having included since another acclaimed speaker had said the night prior that this was un professional. We thought it was absolutely appropriate. He also gave us some well written and spoken words to take with us and share including “Leonardo DiCaprio does not make bad movies. Ever” and “Don’t do a lot and achieve nothing” and eventually parting with the words…Jessica Hische
Who better to wrap up a conference the Jessica Hische? Seriously. She was everything we thought she would be… and more. Master of improvisation and a seasoned speaker she engaged us with little anecdotes and even cross referenced the presentations of the previous speakers as she went. Amongst other things she spoke about her wedding invite and website and how it had been bagged out on a news site as the most hipster invite anyone’s ever made. She didn’t deny it wasn’t (we think it’s stunning, check it out here.) She also gave insight to the process and research that went into designing the Penguin book series. By the end of her presentation she had won everyone over with her charm and probably made sure everyone was coming to the after party. As a finishing touch to the talk she surprised everyone by showing a polished version of photographer Magdalena Wosinska’s logotype (who spoke previous day) that she had whipped up overnight! This was in no way meant as a slight, she was only offering her professional help and I think Magdalena and Jessica will for sure become great ladybro’s as a result. For anyone who is interested in lettering she also an excellent class up on skillshare!
Tim from The Allotment got in touch to tell us about their recent rebranding and campaign for The Donkey Sanctuary – taking them from a tired charity fund raising scheme to “a memorable experience that creates lasting relationships”. The campaign aims to create a strong emotional connection by portraying the adopted donkey as “part of the family”.
An free app called ‘Memory Maker’ was created, allowing users to drop a donkey into any shot and send them to friends and family.
The Allotment says that unlike with many other animal adoption schemes, Donkey Sanctuary donors often create real relationships with their chosen donkeys, and participate in their lives. The consultancy developed the central idea of a ‘lifetime of memories’, which aims to position the donkey as a ‘cherished family member’. The adoption pack was redesigned as a picture-frame box while all the donkeys available for adoption were photographed by Jonathan Oakes.
For more information on this project, read more here
To mark their 10th anniversery, brand consultancy Heavenly have refreshed their own brand identity, along with a shiny new website which houses an updated portfolio of ‘honest’ and ‘sexy’ work.
A very clever way to dress up your key chain—variouskeytags.com.
“Various Keytags is an online store for design-minded people who enjoy organization, happiness, and fun. It was born out of a sense of humor and the sheer necessity of finding a simple key tag that isn’t too fussy. They give us constant joy; they are useful; they make great gifts; and we have been astonished by the overwhelmingly positive response to them by so many different people! So much so that we decided to make an entire website dedicated solely to Various Keytags. We hope you enjoy them, and be careful… They are a bit addictive.” —Various Projects
Context is going to change how you work as a designer!
Live Surface have been working hard on this revolutionary new Mac application. Using the design tools you already know you’ll create stunning photorealistic onscreen mockups in no time. Context links with Illustrator to allow you to see your concepts realised side-by-side, while you work.
The apps Live View window floats over Illustrator, providing a preview of your design concept in real-time. Live Surface have also developed a what they call Live Inks. These swatches replace your flat artwork with photorealistic inks and print finishes such as metallic foils, fluorescent colours and blind embossing. You can even control the lighting, reflections, emboss depth and transparency in realtime!
Over the years Live surface have been building a solid image library of surfaces to apply your graphics onto. In context this library is even more extensive and easier to browse and download. Anything from billboards to boxes, stationery to vehicles, Context has them all.
Give Context a shot with their free trial for one month. After that you can access the entire library of surfaces for only 9 USD a month (less with yearly and group plans).
I always like to see some nice football related creative out there. Quite like this film for the UEFA Youth League. It’s a collaboration between FiveFootSix and the Armoury. Simple idea, nicely executed.
The book is a collection of categorised animal logos and symbols from around the globe. Containing 266 logos from some of the world’s greatest designers and companies including; Total Identity, Lance Wyman, Build, Stockholm Design Lab, Minale Tattersfield, Stefan Kanchev, Kari Piippo Oy and many more.
Available directly at Counter-print for only £7.50. Get it bought!
Beautiful and interesting work from London based photographer Tina Hillier.
Inside Out SF is a curated exhibition and silent auction of original posters by some of the most influential SF Bay Area and international creatives, revealing their personal impressions of San Francisco.
Seriously, the list of contributors involved is nothing short of mouth-watering, here’s a sneak peek of just a few to wet our whistle.
New website, projects and showreel by London based brand design agency, KentLyons.
Firmalt is a multidisciplinary design studio from Monterrey, Mexico. They provide unique creative solutions that develop and position brands, creating strong visual concepts that communicate clear ideas, add value, and differentiate from the competition. Firmalt has been around for exactly one year, they started operations in October 2012.
How would you describe your design style and aesthetic?
In short, we like to think our style is clean and refreshing. The longer answer would be that we try to keep our style in constant evolution, which is a challenge. Since each project has its own aesthetic and inspiration, we get different results. Sometimes it is impeccably clean and refined, other times quirky and erratic. All in all, high quality is what we want our design to represent. Precise in the details, smart in the execution.
Where do you get inspiration from?
Everything. Although it might seem like a dumb answer, allow us an explanation. We draw our main inspiration from our clients. We like to hear all about their company; their work process, products, service, and anything else relevant. We take all that information, and find a story that weaves it all together. This story can take us anywhere. Be it vintage butcher shops, extinct legal tender, or simple point to point connections, we get inspired from all kinds of things. These stories give us a clear inspiration, and are what tie all the individual elements within the brand together. With this process we are able to create brands with substance that represent a clear message and/or idea. Also, we like the Swiss.
Monterrey is a very relevant city design-wise, there has been an important movement happening in the past decade and a rise in design studios and an overall quality. Firmalt is part of this new generation of design studios, how do you feel about the context that enabled this?
Monterrey is the third largest city in Mexico. A beautiful industrial city, it has the largest number of schools, institutes, and universities per capita in the country. The result is well educated and highly motivated individuals, which leads to a city of entrepreneurs. These new businesses compete in a market that is mature, and the margin for differentiation slim. This is where this new generation of design studios come in. By providing intelligent design services, these entrepreneurs can compete and position themselves in the mind of the consumer, and effectively compete against larger and more established organizations.
Chris Dent has updated his portfolio. Off the back of
His hand drawn work captures cityscapes and architectural shapes in a really charming and original perspective
The five day course, starting on Monday 28 October, 2013, has been formulated with graphic designers in mind and aims to demystify the web development process, teaching those looking to ‘up-skill’ how to create their own tailored websites.
With Manchester now boasting a vibrant tech scene, this will be the first time Steer, currently rated as one of the best places to learn how to code in the UK, has hosted a course outside of London.
Requests for digital work are on the increase and being able to code is now an essential skill for any independent designer or agency looking to take complete ownership over a project.
Steer CEO and Co-founder, Amelia Humfress, commented:
“Great technology education is essential to those looking to boost their offering to potential clients. If you are unable to provide a full digital service, you run the risk of losing out on business, so learning how to code is an excellent way for savvy designers to grow their revenue.
“The course is also relevant to those who often work with developers, especially project managers for in-house or agency advertising and marketing teams. A wider understanding of coding and web development can aid client communication, which in turn, can help with budgets and issues such as the over-running of projects.
“We decided to bring our first ever course outside of London to Manchester because of the amount of potential in the area, especially in graphic design. As well as being incredibly welcoming to start-ups, the city also has a special connection to our company, as it is home to my Co-founder, Rik Lomas, who is originally from Ashtonunder-Lyne.
“Teaching more people to code will help support the continuing growth of Manchester’s business community.”
TechHub Manchester’s Co-founder, Doug Ward, believes there has never been a better time to learn to code, adding: “If you’re thinking about increasing your business offering, now is the time to future-proof your skills.
“Manchester will one day become a top five European start-up destination and we’re really happy that Steer has brought this exciting course to the North West.”
The course will run from 28 October to 1 November 2013 and will cost £1,500 (including VAT).
Design store Editions of 100 has updated with a sharp new site and some lovely new prints. The aim behind the project is to provide invited artists with an outlet for showing non-commercial work.
The operator at the controls of the outfit is the industrious FFF contributor Daniel Freytag (of Freytag Anderson) and as he puts it:
It’s basically a place to have a play around with ideas and make them available to the general public
‘Less is More’ (shown above) is an exclusive print by none other than build, which has been co-published with the inimitable Process Journal. The design was created for the cover of Edition 9 in response to the edition’s title. Comprising of a technical Set Square and traditional T-square, facing opposite ways, the illustration is a conceptual interpretation of the universal symbols of ‘less and more’.
Snake + Mask are by the Italian design duo Think Work Observe. Founded in 2011 by Piero Di Biase and Alberto Moreu, they were invited by Editions of 100 to contribute and the result is a pair of beautiful geometric designs:
As a little bonus there are also some iPhone5 homescreens for folk to download for free. At the moment they can be downloaded via a ‘Pay with a tweet’ link on the homepage (text inside the red dot). All in all it’s looking better than ever and there are several new prints in the works so it’s certainly one to keep an eye on.
Don’t be fooled by the ping pong shot though, Dan is much better off behind the camera on that front!
Credit to Shaun Woods for the excellent site build.