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No. 190: Sweet Sushi Branding, a New Typeface For Every Week, a Playful Identity for Architecture Competitions + More

Hello, and welcome to this week’s Design Diary, a collection of five projects from across the world that have impressed us this week. 

For more along these lines (and so many others) follow along all day, every day on Instagram @AIGAeyeondesignFacebook, and Twitter @AIGAeyeondesign.

DekoRatio Design, Sushiroll branding

DekoRatio Design recently got in touch with us, all the way from Budapest, Hungary, with some very cute branding for Sushiroll, a sushi street food concept in the city. “Our aim was to create a friendly and approachable design that shows another exciting way of eating sushi and might be able to convert some avid sushi haters,” says the studio. “Using parentheses in the logo reminds you of the endless possibilities: you can put almost anything in your rolls. And apart from that, it looks a lot like an actual sushi roll. We also used just a hint of Japanese culture in the typography.” The project photography is by Kevin Campean and Szani Meszaros, with the studio’s graphics led by Zsofia Nagy. Keep rollin’!

Rob McConnell, Hamburgefonts

Assistant professor at Brigham Young University–Hawaii Rob McConnell found himself pondering a way to “flex some creative muscle without getting bogged down in a full project.” He’s arrived at what seems like a fairly hefty way to tackle the conundrum: create a new type design each week, spelling out the letters “hamburgefontsiv.” Those are the first 15 letters most type designers create as they are working on a typeface, from which the rest of the typeface can be extrapolated. The fruits of his labor are on display on hamburgefonts.com, and according to McConnell, the project has allowed him to explore a wide range of styles and push his type design skills into new directions. “I give myself a week to explore the core principles of a font and create at least the 15 letters in uppercase or lowercase,” he says. “After the week ends I move on to another.”

He adds, “I’ve even used this project as a way to introduce the basics of type design and principles of good typography to my students. Even if they never design another typeface after this project, I’ve noticed that they are more attuned to the little design decisions and the details that good typefaces will have.”

If there are any folk out there keen to use the typefaces, the designer says he’ll “happily go back and finish them out to more complete fonts.” So get browsing!

Branding Lowell: A History of Local Design, courtesy of the AIGA Boston Chapter

Mark Van Der Hyde is one of the curators for the exhibition Branding Lowell: A History of Local Design, which opened on March 24 at the Mogan Cultural Center in Lowell. He spoke to AIGA’s Boston chapter about how the project came about, the unique design history of Lowell, Massachusetts, and the “perpetual change” the city endures, which has incidentally brought about a lot of graphic design to support it. “When viewed together, this body of work gives a fresh visual timeline to stand beside the more well known Lowell narratives,” he says.

Alexandre Pietra, designs for The Observatoire des Marchés Publics romands

Some beautifully simple yet oh-so-effective branding work here by Swiss graphic designer Alexandre Piétra for The Observatoire des Marchés Publics romands (Ompr). The company fosters and promotes the organization of architecture and engineering competitions, parallel study mandates, and tenders. As serious as that sounds, Piétra’s designs veer solidly towards the “fun” side of functionality. Her work uses icons as signifiers: “A red smiley indicates a lack of legality or important qualitative deficiencies. An orange smiley indicates qualitative deficiencies. A green smiley indicates a well-organized procedure which allows a fair and healthy competition,” she explains. We love the abstracted logo mark and friendly typeface, used mostly in monochrome then spiced up with flashes of bright red and neon green.

Praline, Fact Liverpool rebrand

Stunning work as per usual from London-based design studio Praline, which has created a new visual identity for Fact (Foundation for Art and Creative Technology) gallery in Liverpool. The new brand strategy, tone of voice, and visual identity aim to emphasize “Fact’s role as one of the major players in the UK’s creative scene with an international reach, anchored by a vibrant building but not limited by its physical location.” The new identity focuses on more image-led communications—“a show don’t tell attitude”—as well as a new logotype that adapts according to the visual content, aiming to underline the role of the gallery as a “place where people, art, and technology meet.” Praline also introduced a new color palette, and a redesigned website by Kitsune Studios is set to launch over the next few months.

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