Hello, and welcome to this week’s Design Diary, a collection of five projects from across the world that have impressed us this week.
Who says insurance can’t be playful? Most of us TBH, but not Mario Dzurila, creative director of Berlin-based studio Startling Brands, who just led the rebrand of online Scandinavian insurance company Safetown. “The company approached us with the task of developing an identity system aimed at providing a high degree of flexibility to communicate this strategy across multiple marketing channels,” says Dzurila. “We’ve based the identity system on Scandinavian traffic signage and have constructed the logotype in a way that it resembles a semaphore. The green light awards those who drive carefully, while the red light serves as a warning to those whose bad driving will affect their insurance premiums.” The semaphore constructed from three stacked “o” letters “creates possibilities for witty typography-based copywriting,” he adds.
Wieden+Kennedy London designer Adam Hunt can’t have been doing too much sleeping lately: in his spare time, he’s cobbled together a rather gorgeous new magazine billed as “an experimental space where no one can, or will, tell you ‘no’.” Entitled This Way Up, the magazine is a print-only “creative hunger and lifestyle magazine exploring the curiosity, desire, and fulfillment of self-initiated projects in creative culture.”
The first issue comes as a limited edition of 100 copies and explores the themes of happiness and love. Features include “sage advice” from Eike König, a discussion of gender and the female gaze with fashion photographer Maisie Willoughby, and a look at “why Iggy Pop’s stomach makes for a great flag” with Ines Cox and Ward Heirwegh. Friend of EoD and all-round-superdude Karl Toomey also makes an appearance.
“It’s not TWU’s intention to only promote the big names who already feature heavily in online and print media,” says Hunt, “but to speak with contributors which are intentionally mixed—only held together by the fact they produce inspiring and captivating work—with no discrimination against gender, age, location, creative discipline, or experience.”
Shoutout to our Honolulu chapter for a superb piece on their chapter site detailing their approach to documenting Hawaiian design history, an under-told and fascinating story. The gang has been busy creating Hawaii Design Documentary, a film that aims to “record, recognize and celebrate our roots as an industry; to educate emerging designers about the community they are joining; to preserve it for posterity and to share with the greater community; and to emphasize the importance of maintaining a strong community.”
The chapter is still very much in the market for photos, documents, or stories to contribute to their telling of Hawaii’s design history. If you have anything you think might fit the bill, shoot an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Two plucky young guns known only as Daniel and Casper recently got in touch with their brilliant new platform idea, BeFrank, created—they say—because they “wanted to give something to the design community.”
The chaps explain: “Our ambition is to redefine feedback as we know it. We want to put an end to the ‘good job, plz check out my portfolio’ self-promotion mentality and create a space where designers can exchange real, constructive feedback. A space where creatives can get honest opinions to avoid getting stuck and improve themselves.”
One of the best things about this digital feedback platform for designers is that “frank” takes the form of none other than Frank Zappa (a very cute illustrated version, obviously). Aside from that psychedelic weirdo legend, the platform offers one-to-one commenting for designers to “get the second opinion they need, regardless of time and place or how many colleagues or designer friends they have available to support them.” What an excellent idea.
Animation agency Trunk has unveiled a series of witty little shorts for the Financial Times, promoting the paper’s “Lunch with the FT” series of interviews with various prominent figures in a restaurant, publishing the order and receipt along with the conversation. Directed by duo Alasdair + Jock, each animated teaser reveals subtle clues about the feature through illustration by Jock Mooney and selected quotes. Four animations were created in total, featuring “slebs including Charlie Brooker and Alma Deutscher.”
“Large established media houses have a massive mine of data which remains essentially untapped,” says producer Richard Barnett. “The Financial Times has articles stretching back over 100 years. These teasers demonstrate how archives can be made relevant to the contemporary media conversation. Whether interviews, opinion pieces, or historical articles, as history repeats itself, they often become more relevant with time. By creating visual introductions to published interviews, a wider audience can be captured than could have been achieved by text alone.”