Hello, and welcome to this week’s Design Diary, a collection of five projects from across the world that have impressed us this week.
Phwoar! Here’s a lovely looking mag if ever we’ve seen one, in the shape of the latest edition of German-based Slanted, this time coming all the way from Athens. The team visited the Greek city during the arts festival Documenta, which this year expanded from it’s original location in Kassal, Germany. “Athens, in parallel to Kassel, offered the perfect canvas: differences between rich and poor, between Germany and Greece, but also between different cultures in Europe, facing crisis, boundaries, and displacement,” says the Slanted team. “All the designers [we] met though talked very positively about the event, bringing back art and life to Athens, suffering from draconian cuts in culture budgets.”
The issue focuses on Athens-based designers, and features more prominent local designers like Michalis Katzourakis, Bend, The Birthdays Design, Blaqk, Bob Studio, Dylsectic, G Design Studio, Irini Gonou, Luminous Design Group, MAMA Silkscreen, MNP, Parachute, StudioJugi, Typical Organization, Urban Calligraphy, and Ifigenia Vasiliou; as well as “young, wild creatives who are creating exciting voices in their own right.”
Our pals over at AIGA Boston recently published a very interesting piece timed presciently around the season of heavy drinking, looking at the ins and outs of designing for ale. The story sees writer Sarah Croughwell speak with beer lover and industrial designer Carly Hagins of Toast Studio about her work with Harpoon, and more recently with Castle Island Brewing. “The craft beer movement was born in Boston. From Boston Beer Company to Harpoon there are dozens, if not hundreds, of breweries across the state,” Croughwell points out.
“You might have noticed in the aisles of your local grocery store—how amazing the packaging from craft beer has gotten. At AIGA Boston we LOVE craft beer. We wanted to know what that process is like from the liquid design of Mystic Brewery to the experiments going on at Nightshift, what makes good beer packaging? No two breweries are the same and we got to explore what makes a few Massachusetts breweries tick.” The full article is up on the chapter site.
For once, dog-eared is a good thing. We can’t believe it’s taken us eight issues to sniff out London-based mag Dog Ear, but as fashionably late as we are on this one, we’re glad we made it to the party in the end. Espousing writing that is far more succinct and free of mixed metaphors than that last sentence, Dog Ear collects written and illustrated submissions and prints every three months. After that, it’s on to a gorgeously guerrilla approach to distribution: you’ll find Dog Ear “lurking in libraries and bookshops, or nestled between pages of other magazines.” Eyes peeled!
What really IS true love? It’s a big question, and one that’s frankly just as likely to be answered by two animated frogs as anyone. London animation studio Animade’s latest self-iniated Croak, then, tackles the big “L” word question (love, not lesbians, this time) with a pair of amphibians hopping about from desert to rainforest. The film was directed and animated by Frida Ek, with creative direction from Ed Barrett and Tom Judd, and was made using Animate CC and After Effects..
As hilarious as it is cute, there’s a charming surprise ending that raises as many questions as it answers.
New York-based branding and design agency Ultravirgo recently rebranded The Parkinson’s Foundation—a new charity formed from a merger of National Parkinson Foundation, which had focused on improving care, and Parkinson’s Disease Foundation, which was known for research. “This new entity needed to unite both organizations with a new brand, leveraging the long history of each while signaling a new approach,” says Ultravirgo.
The new designs are based around the proposition “Real Progress. Together” and communicated publicly through the tagline “Better Lives. Together,” using custom imagery that shows real individuals from the Parkinson’s community such as doctors, caregivers, donors, and people living with Parkinson’s—united by a single bright blue color that symbolizes optimism. “The logo is specifically designed to serve as a platform for community expression,” says the agency, “offering an open space for individuals to handwrite their own messages to personalize materials.”
If for some unfathomable reason you’re still hunting out gift ideas, even after our total blockbuster of a gift guide), here’s one final idea before it’s all too late in the shape of MagShuffle, a new mix and match magazine subscription service. Sadly only UK based (for now), the service lets readers choose their titles each month from an ever-changing list of around 140 indies, such as Little White Lies, The Gentlewoman and Fantastic Man.
The service was founded by Christo Hall, London-based founder and editor of online arts and culture story aggregator Cureditor; so this move into physical curation and print seems like a logical next step.