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Hurry Ruins Saints As Well As Artists

Posted: July 8th, 2013 | Author: behanceteam | Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off

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One of the dangers of being a creative professional—someone whose job requires constantly churning out creative work—is that it’s easy to become numb to the beauty of creativity. What was once a blessing can start to feel like a curse.

In our new 99U book, Todd Henry of the Accidental Creative makes a compelling case for the “Act of Unnecessary Creation,” which essentially means taking time out of your day (or your week) to slow down and focus on creative side projects as a healthy counterpoint to client work.

Henry believes that Unnecessary Creation protects your mental mojo and develops your creative voice:

You and I are not machines, and no matter how efficient we become at delivering brilliant work, we need regular reminders of our capacity to contribute something unique. We need to stay in touch with the intrinsic desire to strive for the “next” that has driven progress throughout the ages.

The twentieth-century mystic Thomas Merton wrote, “There can be an intense egoism in following everybody else. People are in a hurry to magnify themselves by imitating what is popular—and too lazy to think of anything better. Hurry ruins saints as well as artists. They want quick success, and they are in such a haste to get it that they cannot take time to be true to themselves. And when the madness is upon them, they argue that their very haste is a species of integrity.”

Merton elegantly articulates how the pressure of the create-on-demand world can cause us to look sideways at our peers and competitors instead of looking ahead. The process of discovering and refining your voice takes time. Unnecessary Creation grants you the space to discover your unique aptitudes and passions through a process of trial, error, and play that won’t often be afforded to you otherwise. Initiating a project with no parameters and no expectations from others also forces you to stay self-aware while learning to listen to and follow your intuition.

How do you find time to slow down and listen to your creative voice?


M&C Saatchi’s illustrated campaign launches youth charity

Posted: July 8th, 2013 | Author: Anna Richardson Taylor | Filed under: Advertising, Graphic Design, Illustration | Comments Off

M&C Saatchi has created a striking campaign for new mental health charity MindFull, with an animated commercial from th1ng.

The new charity was launched by The BeatBullying Group on July 5 and gives 11 to 17-year-olds immediate access to online professional counselling and advice.

The 30-second TV and cinema ad, directed by th1ng's Will Barras and Shay Hamias, visualises some of the anxieties that young people can experience - such as depression, anger, body image problems and loss of control. The visceral film features an animated head that morphs through different scenarios representing some of those emotions.

The ad draws on feedback from the charity's target audience on how young people feel when something is worrying them, and the accompanying press and online campaign builds on this theme.

For the print ads, M&C Saatchi commissioned more than 40 artists and illustrators, including Barras, Finger Industries, James Joyce and Sam Brookes, to interpret what 'having a full mind' can mean (see some of them below).

by Will Barras

by James Joyce

by Sam Brookes

The agency decided to convey the campaign through animation, due of the medium's visual impact, according to Orlando Warner, associate creative director at M&C Saatchi. "The reason we went for an animated/illustrative approach is because it's a visually interesting way to bring to life the emotions we feel," he says. "Animation allowed us to be more metaphorical about feelings."

According to the original brief to the contributing artists (see more of their artwork below), the head shape is the main visual property of the campaign, and MindFull hopes it will grow into a strong brand cue for the charity, to be used across all its communications.

By Denis Carrier

By Amy Harris

By Karlie McCulloch

By Stuart Whitton

The full collection of illustrations will be shown at an exhibition coinciding with World Mental Health Day on October 10. Funds from an accompanying silent auction of the work will go towards MindFull.

Credits:
Agency: M&C Saatchi
Copywriter/Art Director: Orlando Warner and Joe Miller
Production company: th1ng
Directors: Will Barras and Shay Hamias
Design Direction: Will Barras, Shay Hamais & Yui Hamagashira
Producer: Milana Karaica

Buy the current print issue of CR, or subscribe, here

The July issue of Creative Review is a type special, with features on the Hamilton Wood Type Museum, the new Whitney identity and the resurgence of type-only design. Plus the Logo Lounge Trend Report, how Ideas Foundation is encouraging diversity in advertising and more

 


NSPCC asks parents to talk PANTS

Posted: July 8th, 2013 | Author: Rachael Steven | Filed under: Advertising | Comments Off

Reader Poll: Are Open Offices A Good Thing For Productivity?

Posted: July 8th, 2013 | Author: behanceteam | Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off

A few weeks ago we published Adam Alter’s detailed rundown of how companies like Pixar and Google encourage collaboration. One of the primary means was to create an “open office” where walls were scarce and employees could run into one another by chance, increasing collaboration.

Many comments lamented this trend, suggesting that the “closed” or traditional office layout was better for creativity.  Businessweek even hopped on the bandwagon with a profile of how Google tries to carve out a variety of different spaces.

So we ask you, which do you prefer: An open office? Or one where each employee has their own private space? Something in between?


LCC: Graphic and Media Design degree show

Posted: July 8th, 2013 | Author: Mark Sinclair | Filed under: Graphic Design, Illustration, Photography, Type / Typography | Comments Off

The London College of Communication's vast Graphic and Media Design show incorporated graphics, illustration, advertising and typography – not to mention plenty of experimental projects along the way. Here's a selection of some of the great work that was exhibited...

I really liked Claudine O'Sullivan's vibrant series of portraits of a fox which were made, somewhat surprisingly, in coloured pencil.

This close-up detail is from an intricate illustrated piece entitled The Victoria and Albert (1%), by Lizzy Holbrook.

Both of Nic Morley's series of overprinted faces and masked cyclists were great. (Cyclist image from Morley's LCC page. More here.)

Juliana Futter's Archetypal Images series combined screenprints alongside ceramic pieces. I liked this simple red door, which appeared to open out of the page above the pink hands. The images in the series are taken from dreams and, in some cases, nightmares. More work on her LCC page; and a great portfolio at julianafutter.tumblr.com.

These distorted prints were really interesting – but alas, I couldn't see a name displayed alongside them. If anyone can help identify them, please let me know in the comments below (and I'll amend). and were designed by Nadine Tropschuh.

I liked this Industrial Wonders series of prints by Daksheeta Pattni. "The use of shapes and line represent the construction and engineering element of these great feats," she writes.

And here's Pattni's lovely Animal Alphabet print.

Part of an interesting range of pieces on show by Oliver Binnian were these sections from his interpretation of the William Wordsworth poem, Helvellyn – about the mountain in the Lake District.

Working from the results of a Royal Institute survey about children's career choices, Susan Yan Mach's digital illustration injected some fun into the process. Her sketchbook was also particularly impressive (spread shown).

Two prints by Lawrence Slater captured New York and Paris with some nice details (burgers, wine, respectively).

Using cut-up Polaroids and other photos, Sarah Dimech created some great collages in her Doe Family Series.

While Simon Phan made good use of the large wall next to the animation screen – and displayed three other Flower Girls from his series nearby.

Destroy – Innocents in Prison was an impressive installation of six photographs and a range of ceramic shoes by Ana Garcia Segura. The shoes apparently correspond to the number of 'innocents' held in a particular prison, as documented in the photographs.

I also liked the perverse humour in Blaise Chatelain's photography series Vain Acts of Rebellion, where, in a kind of shadow self-portrait, the photographer is shown stealing someone else's sunlight.

Chatelain also presented a series of 'Do Not Touch' signs, liberated from various galleries and museums.

The Design for Advertising room had some interesting work on show, too. I liked these Pain Sounds posters for the charity Mind, which used lyrics from songs by, as above, Laura Marling and Tears For Fears. By Magdelena Andrzejewska.

Chelsea Sheridan's Print Kit was also really well produced: everything you need to get some screenprinting done, apparently.

And Sharon Wong's installation Because I Am a Girl was also impressive. It was created for a Plan UK campaign that seeks to help create equal opportunities in education for young women around the world.

I thought this Expressionist Film Festival poster was really strong., but can't recall who it was by – if anyone can help, again, please let me know in the comments and I'll add in a credit. It's by Assia Faheem.

 

Heading into the Typo/Graphics room things took an experimental, at times surrealist, turn. Among the really strong type work on show, I liked Jack Gardiner's work for the Transparent Theatre, a temporary scaffold theatre structure which is home to a run of events organised by the Royal Court Theatre in London. More here.

And while tricky to photograph, this Vertigo typeface by Stina Ovaskainen uses 'gravity' as a starting point (a course brief, I think) and respresents the act of falling, apparently.

I also really enjoyed Vinzenz Hoelzl's Shrinking Liverpool project, housed in a rusty metal slipcase. It is an attempt to create a new identity for the city. (Interior shot from Hoelzl's LCC page, here.)

I also liked the quality of these prints made to promote the new collaborative graphic design and typography practice, workplace, set up by graduates David Bate and Ed Hawkins. The prints make use of the typeface, Percy Display Bold, which is inspired by the aesthetics of handmade signage.

Claudia Chan's work for an ISTD Student Competition brief resulted in an identity for a Museum of the Circus. I really liked the Grand Opening poster. (Group shot from Chan's page on the work, here.)

Finally, I was really drawn to Arianna Tilche's project on museums, entitled 1753 - 2011. Tilche built two cabinets, which each contained samples of the materials used to construct the British Museum and the new White Cube gallery – the change in materials portraying the evolution of the cultural space over this period of time. (Images taken from Tilche's website.)

This was such a large show that the above selection is only a brief taster – so be sure to have a look through the LCC's Graphics and Media 2013 exhibition site at lccgraphics2013.com and, in particular, the great work from the decidedly experimental wings of the Typo/Graphics pathway and also the Information Design, which was closed when I visited and so isn't covered above.

Buy the current print issue of CR, or subscribe, here

The July issue of Creative Review is a type special, with features on the Hamilton Wood Type Museum, the new Whitney identity and the resurgence of type-only design. Plus the Logo Lounge Trend Report, how Ideas Foundation is encouraging diversity in advertising and more


Burton Kramer Film

Posted: July 8th, 2013 | Author: Antonio Carusone | Filed under: corporate, Design, Grid Systems, identity, International Typographic Style, system | Comments Off

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Flexible identity systems: all played out?

Posted: July 8th, 2013 | Author: Michael Johnson | Filed under: Graphic Design | Comments Off

Once, identity systems were fixed, consistent and rigidly policed. So-called 'flexible' identities have changed all that, as Michael Johnson documents here. But, he asks, have they too now reached the end of the line?

About six years ago a crucial presentation was looming for a new client. The proposed solution wasn't your average ‘stick-it-in-the-corner' type of identity. It flexed. It changed. It mutated, ever so slightly.

In order to push the point home, we began to collect many examples, from the noughties and before, to both show precedent and illustrate that finally, identity design was starting to loosen it shackles. Logos were coming loose from their ‘moorings' in the corner of ads, brochures and websites. Schemes were being proposed where entire design ‘toolkits' were in almost total and constant flux.

It seemed clear to us: the old rules of static, immovable logos were looking long in the tooth and flexibility finally seemed genuinely possible.

But it wasn't always like this. Print designers had long envied the ability of TV designers (such as this famous Chermayeff and Geismar scheme for WGBH from 1973) to create endlessly changing interpretations of their logos.

 

Holland Fest identity, Studio Dumbar, 1987

 

Whilst the innovations of Studio Dumbar in their ‘staged photography' period in the 80s were dramatic and ahead of their time, persuading a non-Dutch, non-arts organisation to do anything as remotely groundbreaking seemed way, way off.

 

Schemes such as the original, 1982, Parc de La Villette solution by Grapus seemed powerful in their original state, but then weren't carried through across the constituent parts of the organisation.

 

Then there were two breakthroughs - firstly a radical scheme for the NAI (Netherlands Architecture Institute) by Bruce Mau in 1993 suggested not one but many distorted, out of focus logos as a solution that allowed for flexibility and experimentation.

 

And then later in the 90s a newly popular search engine would regularly distort, morph and radically rejig its logo to celebrate birthdays and special occasions, happily flying in the face of the convention that logos must never change shape or position or any of that stuff.

And let's not forget Tomato's Connected Identity for Sony from 2000 (above) where, using an interactive kiosk (remember them?) users could input a word into a graphic system which would then produce a 1.5 second animation inserted into the end of current Sony TV ads in Japan.

Soon after the Tate's museum network would take the NAI's lead and suggest an ever-changing logo for its ever-changing displays (courtesy of Wolff Olins), and two more schemes would establish the geometric basis for much of the rest of the decade.

 


The 2001 Rotterdam city of culture scheme by Mevis en Van Deursen (above) led with an ever-changing palette of geometric shapes, and the Walker Art Center developed an extensive toolkit of bars, stripes and chevrons to identify itself with.

Walker Art Center identity, Andrew Blauvelt and Chad Kloepfer, 2005


Not to be outdone, TV design took the notion of the ‘static logo that changes' even further with the suggestion of geometry in constant motion, such as Tomato's scheme for TV Asahi and More Four by Spin.

 

Another constant trend has been the ‘logo as container' device, one we can trace back as far as Allied International Designers' Priba identity in 1973 (above). [And (as Josh points out in the comments below) an idea taken up with gusto by MTV in 1981 (see our post here and a  history of the logo by one of its designers here)]

But it took container schemes such as the National History Museum (by Hat-Trick, 2004) and Wolff Olins' NYC to really popularize the approach - an idea that continues to be regularly recycled half a decade later.

 

Eventually the Aol scheme of 2009 (also by Wolff Olins) took this to its inevitable conclusion and turned this inside out with an ‘invisible' logo made visible only by a huge palette of images that appearing behind it.


In parallel, more complex organisations began to realise that their multi-part, multi-functional roots didn't need to be submerged under monolithic identity systems.

This influential 2005 scheme for The New School in New York by Siegel + Gale allowed the various colleges to retain their verbal independence whilst establishing a cohesive whole.

 

Other schemes used simple shapes or even 3D. In Philadelphia the Pew Center adopted our scheme of multiple overlapping squares for their whole and 7 parts to shape-shift between states for the centre's different audiences and needs.

 

Another trend has been the use of frames, and framing devices. Steff Geissbühler used one for Toledo Museum of Art in 2000, but this 2007 scheme for Ringling College by SamataMason that frames multiple states of different collages really seemed to get the bandwagon rolling.

Several years later, OCAD University began using a series of open black squares, through which we see the work of the students, courtesy of Bruce Mau Design.

 

As recently as 2011, the black framing device has re-appeared, now for the Al Riwaq exhibition space in Doha by Landor Dubai.

The quest for something ever-changing now seems relentless. In 2004 Brooklyn Museum introduced a modulating series of Bs (from 2x4), and in 2011 the MIT Media Lab unveiled ever-shifting cubes of light, created in collaboration between E Roon Kang and TheGreenEyl.

 

 

 

A 2010 scheme for Nordkyn from Oslo's Neue Design Studio produced a new logo for every application with data based on the feed from the Norwegian Meteorological Office.

 

 

Throw in the possibilities of on-line and digital and the solutions do seem legitimately endless, most notably shown by Karsten Schmidt's design for the Decode exhibition at the V&A, that was then made open source on a website for other digital artists to take, interpret and re-upload.

 

 

As recently as last month the quest for complete flexibility was demonstrated again in Experimental Jetset's new scheme for the Whitney museum that utilises a ‘dynamic' W that can change its form to meet the requirements of any size or shape of space (read CR's piece on it here).

Where flexible identity goes from here is anyone's guess. Perhaps the likes of Decode and Aol are actually the end of the line - when the mutations have reached an infinite level, where else can you go? Perhaps identity design will revert to where it started: simple monochrome logos anchored back into corners. Perhaps. Now this flexible genie is out of the bottle, it's going to take a while to cork it again...


Michael Johnson, creative director, johnson banks

This theme is examined in more detail in a new chapter of the recently published second edition of Problem Solved, Phaidon Press 2012

 

UPDATE: We'd like to add one more flexible identity to Michael's list – Precedent's work for the Leeds College of Music which was launched in June this year. The studio worked with Karsten Schmidt (see above) to create a tool which would visualise music for use in graphic applications. The system allows staff and students to create their own visual identity by inputting their music. See here

 

Buy the current print issue of CR, or subscribe, here

The July issue of Creative Review is a type special, with features on the Hamilton Wood Type Museum, the new Whitney identity and the resurgence of type-only design. Plus the Logo Lounge Trend Report, how Ideas Foundation is encouraging diversity in advertising and more


How To Prepare For A Salary Negotiation: A Check List

Posted: July 8th, 2013 | Author: behanceteam | Filed under: Money | Comments Off
We would never buy a house without first inspecting every nook and cranny. We’d never buy a new car without comparing similar models. But when it comes to negotiating our salaries, why do many of us just cross our fingers hope for the best?

Like buying a house or a car, our yearly salary has a massive impact on our financial well-being. As we’ve covered before, even a small raise in the beginning of your career can have outsized impacts for your life-time earnings. Yet we’re never taught how to negotiate.

“This is an opportunity to make thousands of dollars within a few minutes, you have to take advantage,” says Jim Hopkinson author of Salary Tutor: Learn the Salary Negotiation Secrets No One Ever Taught You. Come prepared, he says, and you put yourself leaps and bounds ahead of other candidates. We asked Hopkinson how creatives can be ready for the negotiating table:

1. Get in the right mindset.

If you’ve never negotiated before (or your last negotiation went poorly) it’s likely you have some preconceived notions about negotiations being adversarial or awkward. Instead, view the negotiation as a discussion and a partnership. When negotiating you need to aim for a “friendly but assertive” mindset that is often unnatural. Remember that you’re not being a nuisance, you’re taking control of your financial future, an admirable and necessary aspect of being a professional.

If you’ve gotten far enough to receive a job offer or raise, the company (or client) has already invested lots of time and mental energy in you and a little negotiation is not going to make them rescind their offer.

“They’re offering you the money and a job so it may appear that they hold all the cards, but you are offering stuff in return, too. You’re going to put in your expertise and bring your experience and work ethic to the table,” says Hopkinson.

2. Research a salary range.

Before you negotiate your salary, you need to have an objective measurement of what you’re worth on the open market. By providing facts and figures backed up by research you replace “I think I’m worth…” with “Someone in my position typically makes between $35,000 and $40,000.” The former is subjective and easily shot down, the latter is objective and encourages both sides to arrive at a fair number together.

“It shows you’re not pulling numbers out of thin air,” says Hopkinson. “Then it’s not you against me, we’re working together to make something that works for the both of us.”

To get a realistic number there are several resources at your disposal:

  • The Department of Labor Statistics – The U.S. Federal government has comprehensive studies of widely held jobs organized by location.
  • Glassdoor – Features salaries by company and, as a bonus, reviews of the interview process of select organizations.
  • Salary.com – Enter in a job title and location and Salary.com will give you a range. Useful for negotiations to determine what the “top performers” are making in your field.
  • LinkedIn job listings – Many LinkedIn listings have salary information. If you have a premium account you can even sort jobs by salary range in the sidebar.
  • Your network – Before the negotiation, shoot emails to anyone you know who hires in your industry: “I’m applying for position X at a company in Chicago. My research tells me that the common range is $40,000-$50,000, does that sound right to you? If you were to hire someone for this, what would the range be?”

Remember to research comparable job titles and companies. One company’s “community manager” is another’s “customer service associate.”

3. Show your accomplishments.

If the negotiation is for a raise, rather than a new job, you should have materials that help demonstrate your value to the organization. Depending on your field, these can be projects pushed forward, a portfolio of work completed, or clients landed. Highlight ways you made and saved the company money. It’s likely that you are one of many employees at your company, so a little refresher on your contributions can place all of your great work at the forefront your employer’s mind.

This can be anything from printed materials to an actual presentation. “I’ve had clients that did a little bit of everything and were able to show [using research] that if her company had to hire for her four different roles, it would cost them another $150,000 a year,” says Hopkinson. “So it’s planting that seed and the person she was negotiating with was probably thinking, ‘Oh God, I hope she doesn’t leave because it would be a nightmare.’”

4. Come ready to discuss more than money.

Numbers are only one side of the equation. You may offer a salary range and discover that the company can’t budge. In this case you can be willing to negotiate more than money. If you’re stonewalled on the salary, you can also discuss:

  • Accelerated review schedule
  • Additional vacation
  • Conferences you’d like to attend (or other educational opportunities)
  • Relocation fees
  • An altered bonus structure

Hopkinson recalls one client who was told her salary couldn’t improve because salaries were standardized across the company. She pressed for more. “They came back and said, ‘We’ll give you a one-time bonus in January 2014, we’ll double the bonuses that we give you quarterly, and we’ll pay you for two months to live in the corporate housing for free when you move here.’”

The dollars for these perks often come out of different budgets than your salary. Teach yourself the phrase “are there any other compensation elements that we can discuss?”

“The main goal for you,” says Hopkinson, “is to be able to walk out of the room and say I was prepared and I did everything I could.”

5. Remember a few key phrases.

The best way to get good at negotiation is to know your numbers cold and then practice with a friend who takes different approaches each time you role play. To help deflect some common negotiation enders, you should teach yourself the following phrases and strategies before your meeting.

One of the cardinal rules of negotiation is that you should never be the first to name a number (read more rules of negotiation here). Sometimes, the other party will pressure you to come clean with what you make so they can adjust their offer accordingly. Deflect this with any of the below phrases.

“My current employment contract does not allow me to reveal that information, what kind of range did you have in mind?”

“As you know, it’s a really small industry that we’re in and I’m pretty sure my current employer wouldn’t be too happy if I was revealing what they’re paying over there, so let me ask you what kind of range did you have in mind?”

“You have much more information about this job than I do.”

“What’s in your budget?”

People are naturally conditioned to fill silences. When being made an offer, don’t feel compelled to answer right away. Remember: you’re in control of the conversation. Let any offers breathe and oftentimes, you’ll be on the offensive without saying a word as the other party rushes to fill the dead air.

Them: “What if we gave you a 6 percent bump in pay?”

You: “I see… [silence]”

Them: “…and an additional two vacation days”

When you present your salary, always do so in a range and mention that you’d like to be in the upper part of said range (provided you can back up that you are successful at your role). Never name a specific number as you could be “anchoring” the number lower than if you had waited.

“I hope to be in the upper end of that range. Is that something you can do?”

And lastly, whenever you offer a number, always back it with facts that you’ve pulled from reliable sources.

“Based on my research…”

How about you?

Have you successfully negotiated your salary or raise? What specific actions did you take?


Graphic Design: Museum of London to launch exhibition of Radio Times’ archive

Posted: July 8th, 2013 | Author: Maisie Skidmore | Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off

List

Young’uns might well think the Radio Times is but another mere listings magazine that sits on their Gran’s coffee table – one to read with your feet up on the pouf while dunking your custard cream for an irresponsible third time. But over the years this well-read and highly-esteemed publication has become something of a British institution, so, to celebrate its 90th birthday, the Museum of London will be exhibiting magazines, clips, broadcast artefacts and original photography and artwork from their archive.

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Art: Ana Montiel wows us with her explorations of pattern in ongoing series

Posted: July 8th, 2013 | Author: Rob Alderson | Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off

List

It seems strange that we haven’t featured Ana Montiel on the site before but there’s no time like the present to rectify this curious oversight. The Spanish-born, London-based artist and designer has several strings to her bow and has produced both commissioned and personal work of the very highest standard. But perhaps the best introduction to her is Visual Mantras, an ongoing series in which she has “explored repetitive drawing as a meditation itself and has developed a series of absorbing and richly coloured geometries that bring up the cyclical rhythm of life.”

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