The almost finished version of the final show poster for my second years :D
These will be screen printed A2 size by Get a Grip in the Custard Factory
I seem to do my best writing with a coffee in my hand, whilst I’m sat in Starbucks with one I thought I’d pop a little post here. I have often wondered why design related literature costs so much, I mean, books about design are usually twice the price of others, equipment is expensive and design and art related magazines cost double those normal magazines. It perplexes me as to see this, when as a country as a whole Britain rarely recognises the value of good design.
Computer Arts £6 a month…….so affordable……
As a nation we are currently going through the worst recession in the last twenty years, and consistently you see news stories about how we may look a poorer investment than other nations. One thing that is evident is that other countries know how to effectively market and design advertising and paraphernalia that gives the consumer faith, trust and excitement surrounding a brand.
Here in Britain there is a distinct lack of that. We seem to be stuck in our ways somewhat. Brands with a heightened sense of style and art direction are seen by the general public as elitist and ‘posh’ but there are many lessons that our lower priced brands, stores and services that could learn from their ‘elitist’ brethren, to raise their profile and visual standard.
In other nations you can see companies that have taken risks with rebranding or art direction in this unstable climate, opening up their brand to new consumers or geographical locations. Now in Britain we seem to think that if we pay enough it will be good quality, but that isn’t nearly true enough or realistic these days. Companies that are disappearing from our high street did not look at evolving their brand, or if they did they picked a relatively safe method of doing this, well the purpose is to open your consumer base and without drastic change you just end up getting stuck in a rut. Nintendo for example changed their entire company with the wii and they have reaped the fiscal rewards.
Too many british companies have stuck with their old ideas and this is why the lack of prominent British identity is disappearing from the nations view. Companies will seek out design direction from big named consultancies, who are masters in giving the companies what they want, they don’t push ideas and they really don’t rock the boat.
Old Peacocks Shop
Peacocks Rebrand (currently the company is teetering on the brink of extinction)
As you can see with Peacocks, the ‘branding’ may have changed, but it isn’t really much different really, even worse when you realise that inside, apart from the tags, everything is exactly the same. Same clothes, same designs, same customers. You can’t revamp a brand without revamping it in its entirety - the problem with the shop in 2005 (the last time it almost went out of business) was never the logo, but rather the image of the brand. It produced basic clothing, with an old cliental. The revamp to a black colour was meant to bring the younger fashionistas in by their droves - well, the clothes were still aimed at the 30-50+ audience, and if they say any different they are sorely out of touch with other brands such as H&M, Topshop, New Look etc.. The upshot is that they were too afraid to take a risk, and renovate the entire brand, which could have potentially gone the same way, but at least they could say hey had tried!
When you see such a wide variety of young creative designers from all fields being churned out by universities we should be going through a renaissance in British design, instead we are in the same dearth as always. The lack of The want to take a risk is where we are failing, not only as a nation but for designers as well.
It is interesting to see that Dyson announced they were creating new jobs in the papers today, a company that thrives on creative new design, surely that should ring bells with people?
Sir James Dyson - Britain’s creative saviour?
If businesses from the local butcher through to large corporate clients embraced the new wave of British designers more enthusiastically and with a sense of the need for change, then maybe, just maybe we can reclaim that visual identity of Britain and work towards renovating the entire nation.
If not by buying some design related books may just give a huge cash injection for some publishing houses, although at £6 a magazine perhaps they too don’t fully understand their audience…