Anagrama is a design studio in Mexico that I am constantly in awe of and is definitely among my favourites anywhere in the world. It really feels like they have pattern, colour, branding and interior design super powers! I love this identity system created for Micheline, a stationery boutique in Mexico. Keeping in mind the company’s catalogues were brightly coloured and their work is often similarly hued, Anagrama created a brand focused on striking black and white pattern and texture. A perfect mix of creating a unique voice for Micheline yet still allowing their work and colourful creations for clients to take centre stage. And how gorgeous is their workspace? What an amazing mix of black, white, colour, pattern and texture.
British talent Rob Ryan is one of my very favourite artists. What he creates out of paper, meticulously cutting intricate shapes, is truly phenomenal. On top of all that creativity, Rob has an amazing gift for beautifully poetic words. I plan to feature Rob Ryan in a future post devoted to his work but I couldn’t resist sharing his Royal Wedding commemorative plate design for William and Kate’s big day. What a welcome change from the wedding-cliche riddled commemorative designs I have seen around. I love how the traditional British lion and unicorn fuse seamlessly with Rob’s whimsical design and trademark birds/flowers. The gorgeous blue, white and gold accents are elegant, modern and so very British. As always, I particularly love Rob’s words as they are a perfect reminder of what all the hoopla should really boil down to at the end of the day:
“The Crown and the Throne and the lions and the unicorns & the bowing & scraping and all the Palaces and the privileges are worth nothing if you will not spend every day of your life with me until I die. April 29th 2011″
To say I am a Douglas Coupland fan would be a rather large understatement. He is one of my true design heros and I plan to do a special post on Douglas under my colour hero feature in the next bit. Although his Digital Orca sculpture outside of the Vancouver Convention Centre has been in place for 10 months or so, it still continues to dazzle and inspire me. For a city where marine life plays at the foot of our urban core while technology, innovation and video games grow as vital industries, it is simply poetic to create an orca out of pixels. We are, after all, a city where nature and urban life overlap but fuse together in harmony. Digital Orca has quickly become one of my favourite pieces of art. If I win the lottery tomorrow, I will see to it that Douglas Coupland designs many more sculptures in Vancouver!
I like the words written on the plaque beside the sculpture: “The digital orca sculpture breaks down a 3D Orca whale into cubic pixels – making a familiar symbol of the West Coast become something unexpected and new. This use of natural imagery modified by technology bridges the past to the future. It speaks to the people and activities that created Vancouver’s thriving harbour culture, while addressing the massive changes reshaping the BC economy. The sculpture’s metal construction and lighting components evoke the daily moods of the harbour and the diversity of those who work here.”
I don’t know if you have been in the market for hosiery lately but it isn’t exactly an area of packaging design that screams inspiration. I think that all changes with these designs for Nordstrom. The photography is sharp and I love how the typography plays off the type of stockings inside. Perhaps this could be the spark that lights the hosiery design world on fire? Fingers crossed…
I feel like 98% of shower curtains are really unattractive. It’s as if bad patterns go to die in the shower curtain sector! Perhaps Ty had the same feeling when they created the brilliant DIY Shower Curtain. Using a breathable, high-density polyethylene and permanent market, you can create the shower curtain of your dreams. Words, illustrations, patterns, sports stats – the options are endless. Now your bathroom can have a custom piece of design!
This illustration by the super talented Spanish illustrator Pablo Amargo made me laugh. Pablo’s work is always clever, smart and wonderfully designed. I don’t think I will look at cows the same way again!
Love these black and white paper art letters by French designer Jerome Corgier. It always feels like each letter of the alphabet has its own personality so it is nice to see that captured in the very different designs and typefaces used. My only wish is to see these beautiful works of art photographed on white. It feels like the coloured gradient backgrounds are distracting from the contrast and strength of pure black and white. That being said, I love the intricacy and depth of Jerome’s letters and you can view the whole alphabet here.
It’s amazing how colour-blocking can turn ordinary objects into fantastic photo subjects. Love this styling and photography by Gothenburg-based design studio Kontor Kontur. I would like most of the colourful office supplies featured!
This Universal Wrapping Paper isn’t just attractive, it contains a fantastic idea. Using the concept of a word puzzle, it allows the user to customize the paper for any required holiday. Such a brilliant idea by Fabio Milito and Francesca Guidotti. I can only imagine the colour co-ordinated pens that could be used on this handsome black and white paper.
I really like this project by Estudio Ibán Ramón titled “We Love Geometry”. The set consists of nine cards with unique geometrical renditions of the numbers one through nine. The cards fold out into posters and we discover that the numbers are part of a larger design. I like how this project works on two levels and features such bold black and white geometry and typography. Love how each number is given its own personality!
The Toronto Zoo used their beloved polar bears to lead an ad campaign and, rather than simply show photos of the animals, they decided to focus on polar bears’ ability to completely disappear into their snowy native environment (except for black noses and eyes of course). In addition to a television campaign featuring a white screen and black features, The Toronto Zoo created this ingenious colouring book and puzzle. I just love that the colouring book features only six crayons – arctic white, frost white, igloo white, polar white and snowball white (a.k.a. the colours of polar bear camouflage!) The whole campaign is so clever. I imagine this colour book would really expand the imagination of children while also highlighting something amazing about polar bears and their habitat. All of that being said, I am not sure if I would be able to stick to those white crayons for very long!
This is such a brilliant movie poster for “Coffee and Cigarettes” by Viktor Hertz. I love how the ampersand is the bold focal point with simple but strong details that suggest the title features – cigarette filter lines and a coffee cup in the negative space of the bottom ampersand loop. Most modern movie posters feature glossy photos of movie stars or animations so this clever, typography-focused poster is a refreshing change I would love to see explored more often.