Friday 11 December 2009

Brown Paper...

I was sent this card by a friend, and noticed how similar it was to the types of materials that I have been working with. The brown paper background is a printed image, rather than actual paper. The letters are printed in matt and metallic and some are cut out. If my designs were going to be produced for commercial purposes, it is likely that the background would be changed for a digital image, which then had to colour printed onto it.
- M&S

Saturday 5 December 2009

Business Cards...

I have looked at some existing business cards for a bit of inspiration for the one I need to design. Most of the good business cards out there are clever or quirky in some way (these are usually the ones designers have themselves), but I need to design something that is clear, contains the correct information and ties in with the branding for the rest of the company. I found the majority of these designs listed in this web article; The Coolest Business Cards, which shows lots of interesting and quite unusual cards...

1. Retro Microphone
This is a really clever business card idea, but it does look a little bit like a comb. However, when you read the text it is quite clear, but there is limited information space on this type of card.

2. Stick Man
I love this - very simple and lo-fi but it makes an impact. The design is appropriate for the job it represents but something similar probably wouldn't be suitable for Cake&Co.

3. Pantone
Obviously suitable for a designer. It feels a little done, the actual design is very low key and easy. The use of an existing paper product and sticking something to it is quite interesting, but I think that it presents a much less corporate image.

4. Envelope
This it very interesting; the patch is representative of the companies logo, and is an extra something to have and think about. The envelope is quite lovely, and it looks like a lot of thought has gone into how the brand is represented.

5. Label
The idea of designing a business card that represents your business is sort of cool and clever, but also a little tacky. In a way it is sort of obvious and unimaginative.

6. Orange
Very clean and simple design. The overall design is quite eye catching, and it feels very fresh. This is also a simple printed design, rather than having something else attached to it - which would be expensive to produce.

7. Seed Packet
This business card is spot on. The job is represented very clearly and cleverly. I think that a card like this is very appropriate
for certain types of business, but sometimes a business card just needs to be a business card - especially if you need quite a lot of them produced.

8. Google
This is obviously for a designer of some form. It is a good idea, but really says nothing about the person, job or type of work they do.

9. Paulabirdy
This is a lovely illustrated card, and quite appropriate for the job. The simplicity, but slightly personal touch is great because it creates a more friendly feeling toward to the person it is given to.

10. Parks
The leaves are very appropriate, the colours are also suitable, but the inclusion of blue makes it a bit more interesting and breaks a stereotypical idea of using green for environment based industry. The quirky illustrative element brings across a warmer and more friendly feel to the brand.

11. Viewzi
A see through card - totally appropriate for the phrase they are using on the card, it makes sense.

12. Speciality Catering
This is a bright and engaging card. The contact information is comprehensive and clear. The illustrations are a little bit clip art-esq but the striped background and use of expressive type gives the card a very friendly overall feel. The impression I get is of business that is new, and not corporate in any way.

13. Stamp
Having a stamp made and using random bits of paper to print it onto. Totally appropriate for a environmentally friendly company, but the impression is less corporate. I have seen this type of "card" idea several times now, and I think that it could become overused, and used for inappropriate businesses that just think its a clever idea, but don't see the representations that go with it.

14. Jungeshachtel
This is quirky - the middle section is like a zip/perforation that you have to open to reveal the contact details. I have no idea what type of business it represents, but my guess would be a designer. The idea is clever, but I am not sure that it says much about the person/business themselves.

Clever idea, but the bit mark is not believable. If you are going to do something like this then it should look right. It looks like the chefs hat has been replicated and cut out - the concept however is a strong idea.

16. Rhythm Kitchen
This is bright and colourful, though it only uses two colours. This is a smart move for producing business cards that are effective but cheap. The impression is of a fun and vibrant brand and people that are friendly and engaging to work with.

Thursday 3 December 2009

What goes on the back?...

I have looked at the reverses of several cosmetics to discover the information that is included on them. There are somethings that have to be there by law, and others that are just good sense! I have highlighted the main items on the labels I have found, below...

Wednesday 2 December 2009

Loyalty Cards...

I have been asked to design a loyalty card that fits in with the overall branding for Cake&Co. I have looked for existing loyalty cards that you get in places like Nero or Costa, though they seem few and far between. The majority are very simple, printed on both sides, and generally just have some form of image that is stamped or crossed off to indicate that a beverage has been purchased. These images are the examples that I was able to find...

1. Nero
This is the first thing that springs to mind when I think of a loyalty card (maybe I buy too much coffee from Nero?). The design is very simple, the images that are crossed off are views of empty cups from above, which is quite clever. The colours are specifically taken from the branding, and are complementary, so the design works quite well. The design is one sided, the back is usually reserved for advertising a new product.

2. ?
No idea where this loyalty card is for, but it is quite nice. The design feels very christmassy, but the overall layout is quite suitable. The squares are very clear, and can easily be shown to be crossed off. 20 seems like a lot of coffees to buy to get something free! The design looks very large, probably excessively so as the design could be double sided.

3. Costa
This design is quite interesting - the squares are very plain, and a little boring. The design on the front is friendly and inviting. The colours are nicely complementary, and the text stand out. Overall this design is endearing and engaging.

4. Xpress
This design is pretty awful. There is no real explanation as to what the card is for and overall it is a pretty dull design. I think that it is probably for a one off, and quite low quality coffee shop.

5. Harbourside Coffee
This design is a little over the top. There is space for advertising, the logo is quite large and on both sides. I think that all together there is a bit too much going on here, the design could be much lower key and less cluttered.

6. Food Secret
This seems to be more of a voucher than a card, but never mind. The design is actually quite good - the circles are contained within a sort of speech bubble, which is friendly and speaks on a more personal level. I get the impression that this may not be a chain of coffee shops, but a stand alone shop that takes care with it's advertising and branding. The colour is minimal (probably just one colour and the stock) which is a cheap, but effective way of producing a simple piece of brand product.