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Manhole cover art


This excellent new book from Pentagram in London explores the art of the everyday manhole cover. It can be surprising where inspiration for Graphic Design can come from and this is a great example. A manhole cover is something we walk over everyday and mostly goes totally unnoticed but if you look closely at the detail some amazing forms can be found. I love the way they have used colour to enhance the designs and the beautiful printing technique also helps to reveal the true beauty of the common items.


Gumtree rebrand


Gumtree, the popular classifieds website has undergone a long overdue rebrand, the first since launch. The new logo (second image above) continues with the tree theme but moves to a more modern and fresh design bringing the brand up to date. The finished result shows how important it is for any brand to keep up with modern logo trends to stay appealing to the modern consumer. It also shows how a brand needs to constantly evolve to stay on top. A logo left for 10 years or more will become outdated and eventually leave the path for other brands to take their place resulting in loss of revenue.


Logo Modernism


An excellent new graphic design reference book, hot off the press! A must have for all graphic designers and people with an interest in logos and typography. Compiled by Jens Muller, the book documents the modernist aesthetic in brand marks and logos from the 1940s to the 1980s and will inform and inspire all who take a look.


Dog Rabbit


Dog Rabbit are a brand new animation and illustration collective based in London. They were formed when 12foot6 closed for business. They make excellent films for brands, broadcasts and commercials, specialising in storytelling, illustration and animation. Take some time to check out their website for examples of their superb work for some very well known companies. You won’t be disappointed!  http://dogandrabbit.com/


Heinz advertising


Heinz Tomato Ketchup launches a spring campaign encouraging fans of fresh vegetables to grown their own produce. The ketchup brand invites consumers to grow tomatoes, the key ingredient for the legendary sauce. The Grow Your Own marketing effort includes a special hub on the brand’s Facebook page as well as TV advertising. The campaign reassures consumers that that Heinz Tomato Ketchup is bursting full of tomatoes, and delivers the message that every squeeze of Heinz Tomato Ketchup contains a quarter of one tomato


Coca-Cola launches new packaging in a one brand strategy


Coke has re-designed its packaging to unify all its drinks under one identity. I love the simple, clean and fresh look. The can designs have come a long way in the last ten years from the use of multi-gradients to a flat graphic design which enables direct communication of the brand values and keeps up with modern trends. I have added another photograph to show the can design from the early 2000s which relied on gradients and 3D graphics.


La Chamarilera logo design

Cool new logo symbol design for French Cafe La Chamarilera





I was enjoying Doge memes so much today I decided to make my own during my lunch break! Many fun!



Doge, the meme of 2014, the new lolcats?




This new hilarious meme superimposes broken English written in multi-coloured Comic Sans on to pictures of shiba inus, a small Japanese breed of dog. Finally a legitimate use for Comic Sans!


New logo for the most famous race in France

Nice use of negative space in this identity which is a device to show that the race takes place during the day and the night. Logo still references the F1 logo which has really stood the test of time and was designed by my old boss when he worked at Carter Wong, London.




Victorian Valentine’s Day Card


A great example of an early Victorian ‘ideas based’ design way before the graphic design profession had even been dreamt up!


New Aurora Print business card design

My good friend Phil from Aurora Print has re-designed his business card. The back of the card represents the rolls of foil he feeds into his hot foil machine and the shape of the card also reflects the materials he uses. What a great idea and unique design. Visit his blog at http://auroraprint-uk.blogspot.co.uk/ for more of his amazing work.



Nice new identity for a new literature award

The Folio Prize, unlike some other literary prizes, is open to writers of any nationality, and includes fiction such as horror and sci-fi.

This new Folio Prize logo is striking, confident and very versatile. It was a bold choice by the client that reflects nature of the prize. Its great to see a client put faith in their design team and run with a logo as good as this one!

The work was produced by Sunday design team.


The UK Government is planning to cut-out design subjects from the GCSE curriculum

A letter was handed in to Downing Street yesterday, signed by more than 100 representatives from the worlds of education, art, design, sport and industry, asking for the consultation period on the proposed English Baccalaureate curriculum to be extended.

At the same time a cross-party group of MPs and peers sent an open letter to Education Secretary Michael Gove to protest at the exclusion of creative subjects from the Ebacc syllabus.

Consultation on the English Baccalaureate Certificates closed on 10 December 2012, and the EBCs could be brought in to replace GCSEs by 2017.

The Ebacc system only focuses on English, Maths, Sciences and humanities not giving students a broad approach to education which enables them to choose a career path which suits their skills.

This could have a grave effect on the new talent coming through to the UK creative industries which are well respected throughout the world as leaders in the design field.

Follow @includedesign to show your support for the creative industries!



10 questions to ask before hiring a graphic designer

 1. Have you done this type of work before?
Check their website portfolio to see the types of clients they have dealt with before. If they have worked with successful clients in a similar field then they are likely to produce great work for you.

2. What processes will you use?
What steps and stages are involved in the design? How many revisions? A good designer will be able to roughly guide you through this.

3. How long will it take?
The amount of time a project takes relies on both the designer and client and how well they communicate, but a designer can give you an estimate of time.

4. How much will it cost?
Smaller jobs maybe charged by the hour. Larger jobs usually require an estimate.

5. Who will own the copyright?
Ask if the client or designer retain copyright.

6. Do you understand the purpose of this project?
Many clients will say what they want without explaining why they want it. This leaves the designer in the dark and unable to use their experience to design to their best.

7. Do you get along well with the designer?
It is important to have a good relationship with your designer. This will help the process move along smoothly.

8. Who recommends the designer?
Ask family or friends if they have used this person before. Also read testimonials on their website, if they have posted them, to give you an idea of what customers say about the designer.

9. Who will do the design work on the project?
This is an important question as some designers might outsource the work to others if they are busy and you might miss out on their expertise.

10. What if I’m not happy with the design?
Most good designers will keep working until you are happy but ask this question to make sure.



Lovely new branding design for a financial company from my old employer, Interstate Design, London



Experimental sounds and a fresh approach to radio production

In The Dark is a collaborative project between radio producers and radio enthusiasts. They aim to create a mini-revolution in the way we think about the art of spoken-word radio by lifting it out of its traditional settings and curating it in new and unusual ways.

In the Dark is run by an enthusiastic team of volunteers. Each of their events are lovingly put together in collaboration with some of the best radio producers in Britain and abroad.

The results are well worth a listen.



Design Week reports on the sale of a digital version of the Big Issue

The Big Issue will now be sold in digital format on streets in the North. Customers will buy a card from the vendor, which can then be used to download a digital edition of Big Issue.

The vendor earns 50 per cent of the £2 cover price for each digital sale, which is the same as they get for selling a copy of the physical magazine.

The digital edition does not replace the printed version and they will be sold side-by-side initially.


Penguin book covers through the years on The Guardian website

Excellent post from The Guardian showing some of the finest Penguin book covers from the classic colour bands to illustrations by Banksy and Shepard Fairey. http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/gallery/2012/oct/30/penguin-book-covers-in-pictures



Last day of Ceefax

Today is the very last day Ceefax will be live from the BBC. It started in 1974 and was miles ahead of its time as a percursor to the Internet. The limited bandwidth of the service resulted in a need to low res graphics with high contrast and a very simple design not dissimilar to early computer games. I think the design is almost a classic and has a great retro quality to it but ultimately the service is very dated and its amazing it has lasted this long with competition from online newspapers and blogs with interactive and media savvy services.


Modern classic advertising copy from The Economist now being sold as screen prints

Ad campaign run by The Economist can now be purchased as limited edition screen prints. These iconic ads won multiple awards for their clean, simple design and though-provoking copy. However great the idea, I’m not sure if I’d want to hang one on my walls at home, but none the less they remind me of being stopped in my tracks by the ads when catching the London tube a few years ago. They can be purchased through:- http://soniceditions.com/economist


Excellent example of ‘tone of voice’ used to communicate effectively with customers.

When speaking to your customers, businesses should be very aware of their tone of voice. This is the language and grammar used to speak to customers. Examples include;  friendly, bold, trustworthy and fun but there are many others.

If a business gets the wrong tone of voice potential customers may think your company is irrelevant and they will go elsewhere. Get the tone of voice perfect and this will resonate with your customers driving your business forward.


Designing  the Observer for iPad

Interesting interactive blog from the Guardian detailing how Andy Brockie and the Observer’s creative director Carolyn Roberts went about transferring the print design to a digital format.

Visit:- http://www.guardian.co.uk/mobile/gallery/observer-ipad-edition-design-evolution to see the blog


Photographic manipulation before photoshop – classic faked photographs

For those of you who thought faking it was a modern phenomenon and are in New York, check this out.
Faking It: Manipulated Photography Before Photoshop is at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York from 11th October


Lovely graphic design alphabet created by Fuchsia Macaree. Each letter represents a word from another language that does not translate to English and therefore must be displayed in graphic form

Google glass: Is this the future?

Google’s latest prototype augmented reality eye-wear. It appears to work as though your visual world is the desktop of your phone for any manner of pop-up windows displaying information which interacts with the environment. Will this become mainstream or just for a few super-geeks, time will tell. When I saw the video of this technology in action I understood how my Grandparents feel when they are trying to use a computer for the first time.  Just blown away and thinking how uneasy I am with this interference with my life. But it sure is some very neat and cutting-edge technology and design and worth writing about in this blog.



Bored at work on a Monday afternoon? Fancy some #Retro #Olympic #Fun?

Brought to you from The Guardian, this great little reminder of the early days of gaming will get

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