Edward Johnston was the man behind the legendary typeface decorating London’s Underground. Distinctive, bold, legible, and those little diamonds that dot the i’s are the reason I chose to design a type specimen book for this widely used, and under-appreciated typeface.
Focussing around the narrative of a journey, while still disclosing the necessary information for the designer permitted creative freedom on a huge scale. I chose for the document to fold three times when closed, replicating the effect given by the unobtrusive entrances of the stations, that when explored, reveal a much larger environment. Through the implementation of the freely available TFL brand guides, I was able to design around the exact colours of tube, creating a publication that was distinctly on-brand.
By displaying all forms of the P22 Type Foundry owned font, the glory of the design is emphasised only by typographic forms and a not quite so serious tone.
Luxury Italian paper manufacturer Fedrigoni regularly publish student competitions. In 2014 they set a brief for students and graduates to produce a desk calendar that encapsulates their Woodstock paper range. This special paper contains wood fibres and is made from recycled wood pulp.
Continuing the wood theme of the paper range, I drew inspiration from the basis of all paper, the tree. Similarly to a tree, a calendar changes throughout the year. Through research into dendrology and ascertaining the age of a tree through the number of its rings, I considered that this could be a viable way of presenting the date information for a calendar.
The solution devised, is a circular calendar that emulates the various rings of a tree, with each month being represented by a different coloured paper and weight from the Woodstock range. Designed as a crack in the wood, once a month is over the ring can be simply slotted out and and recycled. By also using eco-friendly typefaces that minimise ink use and using black ink only, the green ethos behind the range is maintained throughout the production.
Tailor Made is a fictional Savile Row tailor. Priding itself on it’s 150th anniversary of trading, the business, owned by Charles son of it’s founder Chadwick Tailor, is going from strength to strength in it’s second century. The shop prides itself on the finest products, expert craftsmanship, and the good old fashioned service it provides to all of its clients. To emphasise the executive service that they provide, their brand needed to be keeping.
As with any well dressed client that walks out the doors of Tailor Made is aware, the secret to looking sharp is keeping clean and balancing out their outfits. It’s this sharpness and balance that I took forth when creating the identity for the tailors. By literally dressing the typeface, the logo becomes a personified metaphor, that clearly demonstrates the business and it’s identity.
Through the emphasis on a smart and classic brand style, Tailor Made where made aware of various branding techniques and processes that could enhance the display of their brand and merchandise. These included a custom wax seal, spot-gloss business cards and embossing for the leather goods sold by the company.
Uppercuts are a new brand of scissors whose blades have been scientifically engineered to never go blunt. Through extensive research and development, they are specifically designed to cut through the toughest of materials.
To create an identity for these scissors, the basis was placed upon the simple game of rock, Paper, Scissors. In reality, likewise in the game, rock beats scissors. Uppercuts however turns this on it’s head. With these scissors, you beat rock; lots of them! Using this as a point of reference, the logo created displays Uppercuts about to cut through a mountain. The visuals of strength and power are carried through to the brand typeface, Futura, which is solely designed on sharp geometric shapes.
By focussing around design elements that appear as cutting lines, the use of dashes for separations and edges is deeply implemented into the branding materials. Piercing colours such as ice blues, lime greens and hot pinks are other visual treatments that keep the brand looking distinctive and sharp.
Kinetic typography is an engaging way of animating words around a spoken word or song. Popularised by ‘Lyric Videos’ on the internet, the aim is to replicate a narrative using only typographic elements. This is achieved by software such as Adobe After Effects.
Upon choosing the narrative from Pharaoh Monch’s track Assassins, the one minute narration by Idris Elba felt a seemingly dark and interesting spoken word that I wanted to visually represent. Through the use of dark shapes and imagery, the thoughts and statements being spoken conjure visuals from The Matrix or similar. By crafting a typographic animation that built a picture, but kept the users engaged (and in sync) with the narration, the objective to not overuse a particular animation was achieved. Creating shapes with type relevant to the current phrase being dictated adds a visual depth to what would otherwise be a a solely aural experience.
Using a bold and assertive typeface combined with the mix of dark and moody colours in the animation adds a level to the design that further involves the viewer in the experience.
KM Group is a multimedia company based in Kent, operating in news and entertainment broadcasts through newspapers, radio stations and online. Their radio division KMFM launched KMFM Extra as a digital-only service for a younger audience of pop chart listeners. They ran a competition at Canterbury College for a logo design for their new station.
I focussed upon the fact that design for a pop culture market has fashions. One of these being the use of ligatures in writing and the joint up continuation of text. In addition to the symbolism of unity and tightness, each letter in the word ‘Extra’, when written in the KMFM signature typeface, is ripe for being connected. When letters join up, they become symbols, or custom shapes in their own right. It’s these connections that make a cluster of letters more interesting.
By targeting a younger audience with peculiar shapes and a somewhat trendy cutout design, the logo demonstrates the importance upon hitting a target market when conducting design decisions.
For this project I was asked to craft and advertisement for a well-known brand in a particular art movement’s style. I chose to illustrate the worlds favourite soft drink Coca-Cola in a psychedelic style. The connection between the two arose when I investigated the companies ethos behind their best selling drink. Picking up on words like ‘Euphoric’ and ‘Energy’, I decided that the 60’s culture of fun, love & peace was the way to go.
By incorporating typically funky shapes and colours into the design, the aim was to iterate Coke’s widely used slogan ‘Open Happiness’. This was achieved through creating a Coke Bottle, with all it’s distinctive lines and shapes, out of nothing but the letters of the word ‘Happiness’. This visualisation of their slogan then sees a rainbow pouring out the top of the bottle and filling the world around, quite literally opening happiness. With funky shapes and colours being used in addition the typical chunky lettering of the 1960s, the fusing together of a 21st century brand and a historic art movement proved a success.
Through encapsulating the Coca-Cola style and successfully appropriating it to suit another medium, a connection between new and old was created. It is testament to the fact that well-known brands can be transferrable through various styles as well as different mediums.
Canterbury College is one of the largest Further Education colleges in the South East of England. This project involved working on a new logo for the institution. Being one of Kent’s largest education centres, the need to develop a consistent and recognisable brand was imperative.
The solution for the design arose from research and development found in the landscape of Canterbury. Like their preexisting design, it focusses on the historic Canterbury Cross, synonymous with buildings and businesses in the area. The design features an abstraction of the typical shape and creates birds from the space created by the arms of the cross. The emphasis is then placed on the largest bird flying forwards and upwards. This logo lends itself towards connotations of success and diversity within the student populous.
Through a simple use of typography and an emphasis placed on the central location of Canterbury, this logo demonstrates how symbolic designs and shapes can be abstracted to create a representative design that is both contextually and conceptually strong.
Ctrl was designed to describe the power of control in certain situations. The book focusses on control and its impact on the surrounding community. Exploring interpretations of control and stating the hard facts behind trust, commitment and power.
Through analysis of psychological and sociological contexts through which a sense of power can be attained, the book explores the ever increasing reliance and desire to assert cultural dominance.
By illustrating the topics explored, each article spanning a double page clearly demonstrates the article in both a literal and visual form. The result is an engaging design whereby readers are eager to continue to the next article.
How often have you had an abysmal cup of tea? This fun little animation was designed to teach those unfamiliar, the correct way of making tea.
The design emphasises on creating a harmony between the mixture of ingredients that are required for the perfect cup of tea. By following through each process, each item is added in a different way that is deliberately and definitively literal. An accompanying list of items also appears in down the side, useful for reference. Through the use of engaging colours, the ability to produce a creative and innovative set of instructions is apparent.
By approaching the subject of making a perfect cuppa in a friendly and engaging way, in addition to the upbeat music and visuals, the aim was to create a piece of motion graphics that was engaging and positive.
Little White Lies
Film review magazine Little White Lies ran a competition for a student designer to create a illustrated for a box office film. With their distinct style for each cover depicting a portrait of the main character in the featured film review, the necessity to keep the design consistent with their other designs was important.
By taking the portrait of Gary Oldman from Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, the imagery needed to be dark, moody and sharp. I chose to stick to the cold British greens that the colour of the film is cast with. I also communicated the stern emotions and powerful storyline through the sharp edges. The layers are representative of the changing storyline and the changes and definition they add to the progress of the film. As with the film, the glasses worn by Oldman play an important metaphor, frequently used as a tool to remind the audience of his age and intellect.
To produce an illustrative piece with such free reign on the design and choice of style allowed me to create a design that encapsulates the feelings behind the film. To make a design something deeper than just a literal representation allowed the scope for a creative and innovative design solution.
To be an awesome photographer takes a real talent. To set apart from all the others in a saturated market takes a good and constant identity and style. My good friend Shaun Staunton is a superb photographer, but his existing branding (or lack thereof) for his company Aztonish, really let him down.
Upon tackling the brief, I was informed on how he didn’t want to fall to the clichés that many photographers do; that is, to plaster their logo and big copyright signs over their work. The aim for the Aztonish branding was a muted style that really lets the work speak for itself. The logo features subtle inspirations drawn from photographic elements such as framing as well as incorporating a camera into the typography. The brand tone is set with warm colours and a formally centred aligned design.
As important to Aztonish as its incredible photographs is the friendly and personal service it provides. By communicating this through a deeply integrated identity, the entire business is brought together resulting in a united and professional front for all its marketing material.
Organ & Keyboard Cavalcade
Design is often constricted by the budget of a client. During the redesign of the Organ & Keyboard Cavalcade Magazine, my goal was to alter only the layout, proving that it can make significant improvements on the tone and style of an otherwise bland publication.
When undertaking this redesign, I made sure to keep within the existing limitations of the existing magazine. Standard A4 page size, 80GSM laminate and only monochrome printing (bar adverts & covers). By designing within these parameters, my aim was to reappropriate the endless reams of articles into a far more visually appealing and engaging narrative.
Through the use of both white space and negatives the aim to keep the readership (60+) involved with the same articles from their favourite authors was maintained. Various improvements on the design to aid the senior readers in the magazine were also implemented. These included changes to the minimum point size of the type (10pt+), clearer and larger images with bigger captions, and visual signifiers that sign the beginning, end or continuation of an article.