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GDUSA Newsletter

JUNE 2014

 
A PENDULUM SWINGS IN TWO DIRECTIONS

The new edition of GDUSA magazine goes into the mail and live online soon. It has a theme — a pendulum swings in two directions. Example one: our 51st Anniversary Print Design survey reveals a sense among designers that the “pendulum has swung too far from print communications” and that, in the digital clutter, print is making a modest comeback because it can be fresh, surprising, special. Example two: in his annual LogoLounge trends report, Bill Gardner observes that mobile screens are forcing designers to make tiny logos that are simple, flat and plain. However, he detects a growing backlash toward symbols that feel “real” and “human-made” and escape the “digital tide.” He says: “And so the pendulum starts to swing back.” Example three: the beautiful Pantone color forecast notes that, in response to social change, designers are “fascinated with the past,” and color directions are inspired by “books, artisan crafts, photography, retro architecture…” I wish we were smart enough to have orchestrated all this, but I, for one, did not see it coming.

— Gordon Kaye, editorial@gdusa.com

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VALICENTI: CHICAGO DESIGN ALIVE

CHGO DSGN [Chicago Design], a major exhibition of Recent Object and Graphic Design by 100+ of the city’s leading designers, opened last week and runs through November 2 at the Chicago Cultural Center. The exhibition is curated by the needs-no-introduction Rick Valicenti, with displays designed by Tim Parsons, Associate Professor of Designed Objects at the School of the Art Institute. “Chicago design is alive once again and on display for the world to see,” Valicenti says. “Almost a century ago, Chicago designers were at the epicenter of print. A few years later, Chicago was home to the New Bauhaus, and in the 70’s our designers championed international modernism. Today’s designers are reverberating with inspiration from storied times as they amplify Chicago design’s future.” SEE MORE >


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RONALD DRESSES FOR SUCCESS

As the old-saying goes: clothes makes the spokesclown. Taking a bigger role in McDonald's social media channels, Ronald McDonald is dressing for success with two au courant outfits. His mission is to promote the new “Fun Makes Great Things Happen” campaign, a role that calls for the clown’s first wardrobe upgrade since 2005. Tony-winning theatrical designer Ann Hould-Ward (“Sunday In The Park WIth George” and “Beauty and the Beast”) gets creative credits. Comments David Zlotnik, McDonald’s Director of Global Marketing: “We’ve been working on his new clothes for probably close to two years.” LEARN MORE >

   

 

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TWO LIFETIMES OF ACHIEVEMENT

Ivan Chermayeff (L) and Tom Geismar are being honored, individually and together, for lifetimes of achievement. The recognition comes as part of the National Design awards, conceived in 2000 by the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum to celebrate enduring accomplishments in American design. The two men are founding partners of what is now known as Chermayeff & Geismar & Haviv, a firm behind many iconic trademarks and a pioneer in the modern movement of idea-driven design across branding, exhibitions, print and motion graphics. Among the identities they have created: Chase Manhattan Bank, Mobil Oil, Showtime, NYU, PBS, and National Geographic. The two men were awarded the AIGA Medal for 1979 and, recently, GDUSA readers ranked the firm Number 2 all time in our 50th Anniversary poll. The formal presentation takes place at an October gala; others honored at that time will include Office and Etsy. READ MORE >


VSA CAPTAINS LUXURY CAMPAIGN

Oftentimes when luxury yacht purchasers think style, they think European. But the new Sea Ray L-Class brand is pointedly American. Chicago’s VSA Partners helped position the brand at the intersection of substance and classic American style, initiating a comprehensive brand strategy and activation program. “Inspired Luxury” is the theme running through print and digital ads, direct marketing, brochures, website, and brand video. Explains Stratton Cherouny, Associate Partner, at the design firm: “You only get one chance to get it right with an addressable market as idiosyncratic and demanding as this ... Our final recommendations and the notion of ‘Inspired Luxury’ can be traced directly to the community of like-minded yacht buyers who never stop aspiring and continually expect the best from themselves and their yachts.” VSA executed a brand expression program for the Sea Ray parent brand back in 2012. SEE MORE >

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GDUSA 51ST ANNIVERSARY AWARDS COMPETITION IS OPEN THROUGH JUNE 20

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Graphic Design USA’s 51st annual design competition for the creativity community is open for entries to June 20. The American Graphic Design Awards welcomes everyone in the community: design firms and ad agencies, corporate and non-profit inhouse designers, government and educational institutions, media and publishing companies, and more. The awards program honors outstanding new work of all kinds from print to interactive and all points in between. In 2014, there are 24 categories that run the gamut from traditional designer staples such as brochures and branding to robust areas such as package and web design to emerging giants such as infographics, apps and video design. Last year's competition generated roughly 9,000 entries from 48 states and territories.
 
LEARN MORE >

 

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SAG-AFTRA ACTS ON NEW IDENTITY

SAG-AFTRA has a new identity and logo, developed in partnership with Siegel+Gale. The organization was formed in 2012 by uniting the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists. The logo depicts a figure standing in a forward-looking pose, reaching skyward and is accompanied by a new logotype. The National Board voted by supermajority to approve and implement the union’s new brand at its spring meeting in Los Angeles. “SAG-AFTRA champions the talent whose craft entertains and informs the world,” says Jason Cieslak, President, Pacific Rim of Siegel+Gale. “The new identity enables the organization to move forward with a stronger, unified visual expression.” LEARN MORE >

   

 

BOTTLES TAP NORDIC HERITAGE

Safari Sundays has completed a premium range of limited edition bottles for the Carlsberg Group to be primarily sold at high-end bars, nightclubs and restaurants. The firm was asked to focus the design on the trademark Carlsberg hop leaf as well as the beer’s Danish heritage. They looked to Nordic landscapes and industrial design as their inspiration and translated these scenes onto the green Carlsberg bottles. The solution plays with both transparent versus opaque spaces as well as matte versus high gloss contrasts. LEARN MORE >

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XPEDX: FREE SWATCHBOOKS AND SAMPLES FOR ENDURANCE

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To obtain high-quality print results, designers and clients need reliable products from a trusted source that can perform. Endurance is a leading print media brand, distributed exclusively by xpedx, North America’s largest paper and graphics distributor, that delivers a high level of quality, performance and reliability. GDUSA readers are welcome to a swatchbook or sample pack of any and all of the offerings: Endurance Printing Paper, Endurance Digital, Endurance Recycled and Endurance Board.
 
REQUEST NOW >

TESSER MAKES OVENS THE HERO

When Auntie Anne’s wanted to reimagine its store design, they invited Tesser into its kitchen — literally. Designers from the San Francisco-based firm spent time in stores, the test kitchen in Lancaster PA, and sat with company founder “Auntie” Anne Beiler. Out of the process came an homage to the company’s roots — spotlighting the baked fresh from scratch handcrafted soft pretzels, and using the color palette, materials and art to evoke a sense of stepping into a traditional country kitchen. To reinforce the “baked fresh throughout the day” theme, the design makes a hero out of the ovens, which are adorned with copper finishes and positioned as a focal point. Tré Musco is president and chief creative officer at Tesser. Young-Sun Kim was design director on the project.The first prototype store is being tested now. LEARN MORE >

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DRY HUMOR FOR SWIM CAMPAIGN

Colle & McVoy’s campaign for USA Swimming is meant to inspire more kids to take up the sport and make it easier for parents to find clubs, pools and support. The elements highlight the fun aspects of swimming with a new logo, playful imagery and taglines. Public service announcements are running nationally on television and online, and a new website (SwimToday.org) provides online tools for parents to help locate swim clubs and local pools in their communities. Creatively designed swim club kits with posters (shown above) are being distributed around the country to help spread the word as well. SEE MORE >

 

NEENAH SPONSORS NEW DIGITAL PRINT COVER CONTEST

Digital printing is the fastest growing segment of the print world and vital to the future of graphic design. To give designers an opportunity to learn more about digital printing, to become more familiar with papers that enhance digitally printed projects — and to showcase your creativity — GDUSA presents the 2014 Digital Print Cover Contest. Neenah, with its rich variety of digital papers, will cover your entry fee so that it is free for you to enter as many cover designs as you wish. The winning designs will appear as a digitally printed cover-tip in the Sept/Oct 2014 edition of GDUSA magazine, and there’ll be lots more opportunities for exposure.
 
LEARN MORE >
 
SEE THE PAPERS >

 

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HALIFAX HAS NEW IDENTITY, EH?

Halifax, the capital city of Nova Scotia, has a new logo. “The goal of this branding project was to articulate a single rallying cry that will help us put our best foot forward and show the world what a great place our region is to live, work, visit and invest,” says Mayor Mike Savage. “We now have a brand that is both current and aspirational, and I’m excited for Halifax to share its new face with the world.” A slogan to go with the new look is “Be Bold.” City officials say it shows Halifax as “dynamic, optimistic and, ultimately, bold in its approach to welcoming visitors, newcomers and business investment.” Revolve Branding developed the new look after talking with some 20,000 citizens. The firm recommended branding the metropolis simply “Halifax” — not use the formal nomenclature Halifax Regional Municipality — but officials say the legal name will not change. SEE MORE >

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‘BRANDEMONIUM’ BREAKS OUT

Walz Tetrick Advertising has created a trade advertising campaign for 4INFO, a mobile tech company, that elevates agency media buyers, corporate brand managers and retail marketers to the likes of MVPs at the Super Bowl ‒ capturing them at the moment when news breaks about a successful mobile ad campaign. The ads showcase epic celebrations that a mobile ad buying “victory” deserves. Walz Tetrick Creative Director Jeff Chase and team made up words to describe the “advertacular” event leading to “brandemonium” or a spontaneous “retailabration!” LEARN MORE >

 

POLL: WHERE FREELANCERS WOULD HAPPILY GIVE UP THE FREELANCE LIFE

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Working Not Working, which places top creatives in freelance jobs, recently conducted a survey asking freelancers “to choose the one place that would get them to give up the freelance life.” Nearly 200 agencies, brands, studios, networks, magazines, publishers, blue chippers and startups were mentioned, but Working Not Working identified 46 as the most popular. Interestingly, despite the fact that the Working Not Working freelance community skews heavily toward ad agency art directors and copywriters, the organizations noted were diverse — including top design firms like Pentagram, Sagmeister & Walsh, and Wolf Olins, as well as inhouse departments such as Apple, Google, HBO and The New Yorker.
 
LEARN MORE >

 

CSR TAKES READERS ON JOURNEY

Vornado Realty Trust is a prominent Real Estate Investment Trusts with a commitment to sustainability. Odgis + Company used the company’s sustainability report to showcase how its properties are operated and managed in accordance with “efficient, earth-friendly innovative practices.” The report — From the Ground Up — is of evocative of organic growth, as Janet Odgis and team show how Vornado's sustainability efforts inhabit the physical structures of its properties from the foundation to the rooftop, and take the reader on a journey from the sub-basement to the roof. LEARN MORE >

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LOWERCASE LOGO RAISES TOURISM

Minneapolis-based design and branding agency, Little, has developed the new identity for Explore Minnesota Tourism, the state’s tourism promotion office. Says John Edman, director, Explore Minnesota Tourism. “Like our great state, the look is inviting and progressive, yet humble and grounded." Adds Little Associate Creative Director Ian Davies: “For this project, we deliberately chose lowercase letters with soft, rounded edges to reference the state’s welcoming charm and easygoing spirit.” SEE MORE >

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POPPING FROM MARKET TO SHELVES

Elements, the Branford CT-based design firm recently executed this project for Dague Popcorn. To make the jump from farmer’s markets to store shelves, Elements designed new labels for the family owned company but retained the refillable glass jars for which they are known. Elements President and Creative Director Amy Graver writes: “The new labels are being printed locally. In the meantime, if you can’t wait to get your hands on some of this fabulous popcorn, you can pick some up in their Etsy shop. Don’t say I didn’t warn you though!” READ MORE >


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BREWERY TAKES THE HIGH GROUND

Young & Laramore recently completed a solid rebrand for Indiana’s Upland Brewing Co., including new packaging for several of the number two brewery in Indiana’s most popular beers. The goal, says the agency is simple: “to capture the quality, culture and spirit that make Upland — and its community — unique. The hand-crafted nature of the beer is reflected in the extensive use of hand-lettered type and illustrations, whether in the distinctive hills logo, or in the packaging and related materials.” The program also includes signage, marketing materials and collateral. SEE MORE >


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GREY LADY IS READY TO PLAY

A slightly tweaked version of The New York Times classic logo has been developed by branding consultancy Work-Order for the newspaper’s new video hub. In essence the "T" in the Times Old English font to incorporate a digital play button. The rectangle and diamond in the Old English "T" lose their Gothic connectors, and the diamond changes into a triangle, subtly suggesting that the newspaper has become more digitally focused and forward-thinking. SEE MORE >

 
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Take Five! Career Tips From The Creative Group

COUNTEROFFERS: AN OFFER YOU CAN REFUSE?

While some employees are working for the weekend, many executives are working on the weekend. Sixty-two percent of advertising and marketing executives surveyed by The Creative Group said they bring work home at least one weekend per month, with 12 percent reporting they do it every weekend. Here are five tips to avoid working weekends:

1. Prioritize. Take 10 minutes at the start of each day to assign a one-to-three “urgency rating” for each item on your to-do list. Tackle top-rated tasks as soon as possible and postpone or delegate items with less urgency.

2. Empower Employees. Performing certain tasks yourself may initially be quicker than explaining them to someone else. But time spent training staff now can reduce your workload later and improve the overall skill set of your team.

3. Rethink Meetings. Take a close look at any standing or upcoming meetings and ask yourself if there are enough agenda items to merit a gathering.

4. Schedule Personal Time. Block time on your calendar to relax or pursue outside interests on weekends. Hobbies can feed your creativity, increase your happiness and provide extra motivation when you’re back in the office.

5. Seek Help. If overtime is constant, consider bringing in freelancers to help ease the workload for you and your team.

For more tips, visit the TCG Blog
blog.creativegroup.com/infographic-should-you-accept-a-counter-offer

The Creative Group specializes in placing a range of highly skilled interactive, design and marketing professionals with a variety of firms. For more information, please visit creativegroup.com

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