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From Music To Mob Wives To Mash Up

From Music To Mob Wives To Mash Up

New York NY

Founded in 1985 as an adult version of MTV, cable tv channel VH1 featured Adult Top 40 style music videos. In more recent days it – like MTV – has had to evolve out of necessity into a mixture of music programming, reality shows (think Mob Wives), awards events, celebrity gossip, and more. To acknowledge this permanent change and signal the evolution in a positive fashion to viewers, New York-based design firm Gretel has designed a new identity that features a plus sign, as well as an extensive on-air package. In an explanatory video, VHI (short, by the way, for Video Hits One) describes the channel today as “the ultimate mash up of music + pop culture + nostalgia.” Gretel has executed projects for the network in the past.
www.gretelny.com

       
Béhar and Nivea Feeling Blue

Béhar and Nivea Feeling Blue

San Francisco CA

Since 1925, Nivea’s blue tin has been the face of the brand and roughly two-thirds of all sales are made at the shelf. Now renowned designer Yves Béhar has developed a new global design language based on the blue tin, touching on product packaging, point-of-sale and advertising. For Béhar and his team at San Francisco’s fuseproject, the blue NIVEA tin wasn’t just the basis of the design “but also a source of inspiration to the designers.” The crème tin is used as a logo, reflected in the rounded contours of the new packaging, and in the reduced blue and white colors of the new design. The round lid, which tilts towards the consumer, embossed with the NIVEA logo, has obvious similarities with tin as well. “Design is important because it adds value to an object’s function,” said Béhar. “I was particularly drawn to this design project by the vast emotional potential of the NIVEA brand and its 100-year heritage.” Sustainability issues also rose to the fore in the project: the new bottle is both lighter and stronger than previous iterations; it uses 15 percent less plastic, and it is shaped to fit tighter on pallets which will significantly reduce wood use and carbon emissions. The design is being gradually introduced into 200-plus countries.
www.beiersdorf.com

       
Bringing the Farm to the City

Bringing the Farm to the City

New York NY

A patchwork of farmlands as seen from the air is at the heart of the Carbone Smolan Agency identity design and consumer campaign for Greenmarket Co. It’s a new initiative from nonprofit GrowNYC, which operates the famed Greenmarket farmers markets in New York City, and will now sell local, quality produce to wholesale distributors. CSA extended the identity to include a season-inspired color palette applied to three additional versions of the logo to reflect spring, summer, autumn and winter. Explains Ken Carbone, Co-Founder and Chief Creative Director at CSA: “The Greenmarket is an iconic New York institution, with 54 markets and counting in all five boroughs. It was our goal to leverage the Greenmarket name and design a logomark and cohesive identity to allow GrowNYC the flexibility to speak to a wide audience, from business owners to consumers.” CSA also developed the naming strategy and worked with the client on the tagline “Mission Driven Food.”
www.carbonesmolan.com/work/greenmarket-co

       
Ambitious Airline Rebrand Faces Turbulence

Ambitious Airline Rebrand Faces Turbulence

Dallas TX

American Airlines takes wing with an ambitious rebranding and marketing campaign called “A New American,” a reference to the new look and a new spirit as the company has emerged from bankruptcy. FutureBrand is responsible for the rebrand, which involved the reimagining of several key graphic elements. Says Virasb Vahidi, American's Chief Commercial Officer: “Our new logo and livery are designed to reflect the passion for progress and the soaring spirit, which is uniquely American. Our core colors – red, white and blue – have been updated to reflect a more vibrant and welcoming spirit. The new tail, with stripes flying proudly, is a bold reflection of American's origin and name.” The logo has created some turbulence since it replaces Massimo Vignelli’s classically clean and simple Helvetica logotype that has served the airline since 1967. Indeed, Vignelli recently told BusinessWeek that the FutureBrand version “has no sense of permanence” and that the replacement for Helvetica “is not as good or as powerful.” (The Vignelli logo was voted among the top ten of all time in this edition’s 50th anniversary reader survey.) FutureBrand officials say that the changes honor the heritage but that “it was time for a new look to better reflect the progress of its multi-year journey towards modernizing the airline and its customer experience.”
www.aa.com/newamerican

       
Chart-Heavy Billboard More Accessible

Chart-Heavy Billboard More Accessible

New York NY

The 1966 Billboard magazine masthead – evoking records and mod 60s colors – has given way to a simpler and more serious look. And the information heavy charts of the mustic industry magazine have been reorganized to make them an easier read. Behind the changes is Pentagram partner Michael Bierut, whose team has created both the new identity and editorial format. The cover logo is entirely in lower-case type, redrawn to emphasize the basic geometry of the word, and the accents of color have been eliminated, at least for the print version. (A color version of the logo is still used for marketing and website materials.) The editorial layout has also been reorganized and restructured. A major part of this effort was remaking the magazine’s ubiquitous and famous charts to be more easily understood. They now appear at a larger scale and across more pages, for example, and appear in “the high-impact black and white of the original Billboard charts.” Bierut and his team worked closely with magazine Creative Director Andrew Horton, Editorial Director Bill Werde and Editor Joe Levy.
new.pentagram.com/2013/01/new-work-billboard

       
Nutrition Drives New McDonald’s Packaging

Nutrition Drives New McDonald’s Packaging

Oak Brook IL

McDonald’s has unveiled new packaging design for all carry-out bags and fountain beverage cups with QR codes. The launch began in the U.S. this winter, and will continue rolling out worldwide throughout the year. A blend of text, illustrations – and the QR code – deliver facts about the brand, and make nutrition information easily accessible from mobile devices. “Our new packaging is designed to engage with customers in relevant ways and celebrate our brand,” said Kevin Newell, McDonald's Chief Brand Officer. “Customers tell us they want to know more about the food they are eating and we want to make that as easy as possible by putting this information right at their fingertips.” In addition to gathering consumer input on these designs, the restaurant chain consulted its Global Advisory Council, a group of independent advisors in the areas of nutrition, public health and fitness. These outside experts emphasized the importance of providing access to nutrition information, and supported using the new packaging to directly connect customers to information about the menu.
www.aboutmcdonalds.com

       
It’s A Jungle Out There

It’s A Jungle Out There

Brooklyn NY

When a dolphin recently became stuck in Brooklyn NY's (famed and infamous) Gowanus Canal, Thomas Wilder of MGMT. Design asked himself what other wild animals have gotten loose in New York City over the years. Research revealed a surprisingly number over the past decade, and Wilder went to work creating a series of “wanted” posters that run the gamut from a ghost dog in Brooklyn to a Bengal Tiger in Harlem. Wilder served as art director, designer and illustrator, and Alicia Cheng and Sarah Gephart provided creative direction.
www.mgmtdesign.com

       
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