Thursday, December 3, 2009
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
To compile the 2009 Year-End Zeitgeist, we studied the aggregation of billions of queries people typed into Google search this year. We use data from multiple sources, including Insights for Search, Google Trends and internal data tools. We also filter out spam and repeat queries to build out lists that best reflect "the spirit of the times." All of the search queries we studied are anonymous—no personal information was used.
Thursday, November 19, 2009
Justin painstakingly constructed these two characters out of aluminum foil & modeling-clay. Both puppets were built with internal controls for facial control. Awesome handicraft work!
Friday, November 13, 2009
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
"A memo went out to one of our clients last week that read more like a text message than a professional letter. You know what it looked like: Every third word was abbreviated, as though it was written on the run, from a cellphone. I was appalled, and could only imagine what the client must think: If we are writing to them in such a casual way, what else is being executed casually?" Read on...
Thursday, October 22, 2009
"As follow up to a post he wrote on his blog about the good old days of advertising, George Parker followed up writing, "Apart from a stroll down memory lane and reminisces about great bars and restaurants, many of which no longer exist, the big question raised was, was the work better, and did we have more fun doing it? Yes, I think the work was better, and I know that will raise a shitstorm from" Read on...
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
"Digital strategist Jordan Julien got us thinking about "synthetic authenticity," the risk large corporations face as they try to engage customers in social media. The problem, Jordan says, is social media tools were built for individual people to interact with each other, but suddenly faceless entities -- big brands with big names -- are entering the space."
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
"You're blogging about your agency. Tweeting about minutia. Pitching transparency to your clients left and right. But how transparent are you, really?
We've been operating under an open book and open management philosophy at our agency for more than a decade, and it's one of the greatest policies that we ever created."
Monday, September 14, 2009
"In the hunt for ROI, too many website owners are tripped up on the false notion solely lowering their “bounce rate” is all that stands between their business model and vast riches. We’ve encountered a lot of clients who place a low bounce rate on a web execution as proxy for success—which it most definitely is not."
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
"The web used to look like a phone book. Now much of it looks like a design portfolio. In fact, it looks like the design portfolio of 20 well-known designers, whose style gets copied again and again by young designers who consider themselves disciples. Distinctions between graphic design and communication design are lost on these designers. As is the distinction between true style, which evolves from the nature of the project, and derivative pastiche, which is grafted onto many projects like a third arm." Read on.
Monday, August 24, 2009
"10. There's going to be a backlash to all this full-time conversation. If there isn't, I'm going to start one. I feel like we're building up to a global event of people going postal. I have a colleague who e-fasts every Sunday. No electronics whatsoever. We should do that. Just like Buy Nothing Day, we should have Twitter-Free Day. Can one of you social media types..."
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
"Great names rarely come from group brainstorming — and almost never if more than five people are in the room. Individual, heads-down thinking is the most fruitful way to create unique, breakthrough names. Start by inundating yourself in the project's objectives, competition, and market situations."...
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Sports brand Puma, luxury brand Gucci and the gurus at Apple all provide notable examples of great brand revitalizations during the 90’s. Read on...
Friday, July 31, 2009
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Monday, July 20, 2009
The Kool-Aid man is back!
"Expanding on last year's “More smiles per gallon” campaign, the new ads focus on Kool-Aid's low price by comparing its drink mix to the higher cost of bottled soda. The ads claim “regular Kool-Aid goes almost three times further than soda,” but of course that is to be expected since soda and Kool-Aid are not the same thing. Despite this, the ads seem to be doing well at time when consumers are cutting back spending on non-essential items like soft drinks."
One of the new TV spots here.
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Thursday, July 2, 2009
Monday, June 29, 2009
Friday, June 5, 2009
Monday, June 1, 2009
Thought I would share this entertaining (and informative) back and forth between a UX designer and American Airlines. The designer wrote an open letter to AA (here), born from frustration, suggesting a rework of the airlines website; going as far as mocking up some of his ideas. The experiment gets interesting when one of AA's own UX designers responds with a well composed explanation (here) of why their site, well, sucks.
Worth the read.
Friday, May 29, 2009
1. A logo doesn’t need to say what a company does
Restaurant logos don’t need to show food, dentist logos don’t need to show teeth, furniture store logos don’t need to show furniture. Just because it’s relevant, doesn’t mean you can’t do better.
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
I think we have a serious problem in our industry.
I believe it generally started when Basecamp became quite successful and 37signals started to talk about their theories on the subject. Their basic mantra was “Don’t quit your day job to build a web app. Build it in your free time and use your day job to pay the bills until your new app brings in enough money to quit your day job.”
I used to agree with this, but now I think I’ve come full circle. Read on...
Friday, May 22, 2009
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Monday, May 18, 2009
Thursday, May 14, 2009
Sweet spot for, phone service? After watching this bit I was expecting to be blown away by some new life changing product or service; but an 800 number? Really? Great work nonetheless.
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Lily's Kitchen (uk) is a new line of "Proper Pet Food". The all natural chow, free from fillers and artificial ingredients, is made with organic, holistically balanced meats and veggies.
Color coding and custom illustration give the new designs a bit of a retro (while at the same time modern) feel, sending a message to it's audience that this is a product you can feel good about feeding your pets.
"Something that says: “The food in this tin is quality” without resorting to pictures of the food or the usual big dog face."
Friday, May 8, 2009
Great work here from Denver's Cactus promoting Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, which “wholesales electricity to the regional utilities who in turn sell directly to consumers”. Excellent photography and art direction. Click here for the series.
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
As these “digital” brand experiences mature to become more individualized, own-able, and even communal, they also inherently become more ephemeral. Packaging, still representing one of the strongest key physical connections to a brand, is becoming increasingly more relevant and powerful in evolving marketing strategies. Read more...
Friday, May 1, 2009
Thursday, April 30, 2009
Check out these 70's era PSA'S promoting "the swine flu shot". Apparently we were on the verge of a pandemic outbreak then too. A bit over dramatic don't you think?
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Why do people believe every number they see? Tonight social media guru David Armano rebroadcast a tweet claiming Razorfish generated $18.8 million in incremental revenue for H&R Block. It's possible; H&R Block takes in about $4 billion annually, so a 0.47% lift from online chatter could happen. Read on...
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Since 1987 Avid has been the leader in video production technology, serving the film and video industry with it's array of products. We use Avid here at Handcrafted, so when the company revamped it's identity, a post announcing the news was a no-brainer.
Designed by someone, the new logo connotes a more contemporary, progressive energy that will help unify the companies offerings - says my opinion. I like the move towards something more iconic and bold and overall, it is a well produced revamp. The only bit that gets me is the negative space between the "v" and the "i". It keeps drawing my eye. Is this bothering anyone else?
Update: Avid contacted us to let us know that "Our press release actually stated that the new logo reflects the "volume up, volume down, play, pause, record and forward" symbols consumers and professionals recognize as fundamental to the digital audio and video solutions they use every day to enable their creativity, and signals a unification of the company's core audio and video offerings."
Thursday, April 23, 2009
Well articulated piece here discussing the importance of well-crafted aesthetics and how many times the basics of color, depth and so on can have a major impact on how viewers digest and or navigate through our designs.
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Monday, April 20, 2009
Next to Papyrus, Copperplate and Impact, Comic Sans tops the list as the typeface designers love to hate. Wildly overused and ghastly misplaced; popular amongst everyone from grade school teachers to company execs, Comic Sans is considered the evil step child of typefaces. Vincent Connare, who originally designed Comic Sans for Microsoft back in the early 90's chimes in on the current movement attempting to abolish all future use of it...
Check out the WSJ article here.
Friday, April 17, 2009
A personal project by Korean designer Ji Lee, the WTC Logo Preservation Project is a collection of identities which include representation of the twin towers. Nicely done...
“World Trade Center buildings are present in thousands of classic New York skyline logos owned by local businesses in the city. They tend to belong to small businesses that are likely to disappear over the years to come. So are their logos and the Twin Towers.
After 9/11, I started to photograph and archive these logos in order to preserve the many different graphic expressions of these important historical buildings.” Ji Lee
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
If you haven't yet heard this story, prepare yourselves. A notable designer by the name of Jon Engle has been accused of stealing his own work. Yep, you heard right. Stockart.com has claimed that Jon stole the creative from their site (which is created via crowd sourcing) and used it to service his clientele. The truth of the matter is that the original work, designed by Jon, and posted on his online portfolio, were blatantly ripped off by the wannabe "designers" that keep sites like these alive. Stockart.com sent Jon a bill for $18,000 and the madness ensued. For the full story and a collection of of Stockart rip-offs click here.
Friday, April 10, 2009
Love this video for Coldplay's Life in Technicolor ii directed by Dougal Wilson. It keeps getting better the longer you watch... Check it out in HD, enjoy.
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Monday, April 6, 2009
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Monday, March 30, 2009
Someone please explain to me how this new spot for Comcast sells cable/internet/voip? Take a look and let me know what you think. All I can see is a blatant ripoff of the Moldy Peaches song "Anyone Else But You" from the Juno soundtrack (listen here); and overall theme of the film. In conjunction with this tv spot, Comcast launched a microsite, here, where you can get stupid ringtones, useless wallpaper and invite Comcast to be your friend on Facebook. Why?, because apparently this sells cable/internet/voip. I would love to see the attempted gauge of ROI on this campaign. "Dream Big" - yeah, uh huh.
Jeesh, that was an awful headline. Here is a glimpse at some more great work produced by Denver's Sukle in promotion of the Tap project. Very well conceived and executed, I wonder how widespread this is and what else is in store. Nice work.
No, Colorado Springs is not for sale, at least that I know of.
Bernard Sandoval of Sandia Advertising and Marketing has come up with a logo and tag line, THE BUCK STOPS HERE, for a local campaign that could help our city out of the economic doldrums.
I have seen Buy Local campaigns in other cities but have no hard evidence that these hometown booster programs actually work. It is worth a shot, I figure.
I know Colorado Springs Utilities uses an ad agency based somewhere in Oklahoma.
The city’s website www.springsgov.com was built by a company out of Oregon.
How many other city or county contracts are with a company outside of El Paso County? What would happen to our city and county tax revenue if all 609,096 residents in the metropolitan statistical area stopped buying anything on the Internet and only purchased goods and services from local companies? Read more...
Friday, March 27, 2009
Thursday, March 26, 2009
A buddy of mine tipped me off to this new spot for Amnesty International last night and it appears to be making it's way around the internets today. If you haven't already seen this, give it a looksie, powerful messaging and awesome motion graphic-ness. From Leo Burnett - Portugal.
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Thursday, March 19, 2009
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
The first annual Denver Artcrank Poster show. Straight out of Minneapolis, and spear headed by my college buddy Josh Wills, this is sure to be a good time. The show will open across four galleries in downtown Denver beginning April 11th. Be sure to check it out! Click on the image for show details.
Spent the weekend in Breckinridge and had a blast. Stayed at a ski-in lodge, which is always great. This was a random snowboarder who posed for the camera with his crazy awesome non-matching gloves.
Overall I'd say the trip it was a success.
Friday, March 13, 2009
A very cool article about doodling. Who would have thought Bill Gates of all people doodled?... probably more of you than I would have guessed. Still cool nonetheless.
I myself had one teacher in Middle school who allowed us to doodle because he knew that it helped some people to take in information and learn. Probably one of my better English Teachers honestly, thanks 'teach.
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Censorship of the press/free speech by oppressive governments around the world is a major issue of concern for the International Society for Human Rights. This campaign sends a message to German journalists and those in the press; bringing the issue to light and persuading them to get involved with the IGFM to help make a difference for their counterparts around globe. Nice work.
— Lao Tzu
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Fun campaign here promoting New York's School of Visual Arts; Playing on the fact that many of us, creative or not, turn to most any writable surface when we have a spark of imagination, or just need to remember that number.
Friday, March 6, 2009
Handcrafted Media picks up an Addy (PPAF) for the multi-panel Pikes Peak Workforce Center brochure. The piece sold local business owners on getting involved and sponsoring the Business and Education Talent Readiness Project (BETR), a program that allows for the education of a new workforce while providing supporting businesses with tax credits and sponsorship opportunities. Handcrafted was responsible for creative from beginning to end including conceptual strategy, design, copywriting, printing.
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
Monday, March 2, 2009
A 911 Turbo is my dream car, but honestly a Carrera would work almost just as well.
Look at those lines! THE LINES!... gorgeous.
*edit* I just realized that wasn't the picture from our mainpage... that picture you can find here.
Apparently General Mills is going back to their vintage packaging for product sold at Target and other select locations. I love this idea, kinda makes me want to go buy a few of these. Now, I wonder if they actually threw-back the actual product? Maybe it's just me but theses cereals seemed to taste so much better back in the day.
Friday, February 27, 2009
Thursday, February 26, 2009
Nice campaign for Mercedes here. Good concept, art direction and execution. Although from a design standpoint, I am not a huge fan of separating the mark from the logotype; it is slightly distracting having the copy, mark and logotype all positioned individually. But well done nonetheless.
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
So Lee and I hit the slopes last Saturday night at Keystone after our little CS4 conference in Denver. It was the first time on my board consistently in 6 years. Tearing down the mountain and riding a handful of rails and boxes sure felt good - reminded me of the good old days when I was invincible and had a surplus of coordination. I snapped a little video and put it together in iMovie. Look out Justin.
Monday, February 23, 2009
Really nice campaign here from DDB Canada for the Greater Vancouver Crime Stoppers.
"The campaign encourages people to report crimes and suspicious behavior, and compellingly reinforces Crime Stoppers’ new positioning, “You remain anonymous, criminals don’t.” “The new campaign will refresh people’s perceptions about Crime Stoppers and reassure people of their anonymity who are still hesitant to contact us with their tips."
I was going through some of my old photos at home last week, I came across this shot I took over the summer. Doesn't do the real thing justice, but I still like it.
Thursday, February 19, 2009
The Creative Director at 160over90 to it upon himself to engage in a mock project with one of these "get an awesome logo online for a buck in less than 24 hours" types of places, i.e. logoworks, logoyes, etc. Needless to say, the process and results, here, were borderline seizure inducing, and at the same time, utterly hysterical. But hey, what do you expect for 50 bucks, right?
I won't get into what I feel is wrong with these sort of groups and their approach, because frankly, I don't have all day to write this post. I can, however, directly relate to this story and cite the true tale of a client who, before they called on us, sourced one of these companies and had an eerily similar experience. When all was said and done they were out of pocket some $400 and had absolutely nothing of value to show for it.
For further reading,
how not to design a logo
ps- I do want to state that the services offered by this lot may suit some companies perfectly, and that's cool. Not every client has the means to invest in a proper identity.
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Fantastic spot for this European audio company. Awesome concept, simple/engaging message, flawless execution. Nice work out of Germany.
Accurate assessment of the new corporate rebrand for Kraft foods here. This logo appears to be a design by committee nightmare; let's add a little bit of Pepsi swoosh, a rainbow explosion, a weak tagline and a touch of overall poor organization. Not good, especially when the previous logo was such an iconic, classic mark, that looked like it actually stood for something.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
I love this talk by Elizabeth Gilbert from this year's TED conference in Monterey. Elizabeth presents a different way of looking at the source of creative inspiration. Very enlightening stuff, give it a listen.
I hadn't been to one of my friend's concerts (Drive-In Massacre) in a while to take pictures. I figured there wasn't a better time to go to a metal show than on Friday the 13th. I also remembered ear plugs this time too (which was a life saver)!
I got a few good pics from the night, this one was my favorite. Not your usual band shot and the colors make me happy.
Power stance'ing all up ins
Monday, February 16, 2009
We have all been there, driving down the road when, for whatever reason, out of anger, concern, curiosity or frustration, we have felt the need to communicate with our fellow drivers. Thanks to this new collection of simple, easy to understand signs, we no longer need to rely on the over-played middle finger, flashing of the lights or honking of the horn. Excellent!