December 30, 2009
Can we get more people to throw their rubbish in the bin by making it fun to do so?
Simple yet creative idea!
December 22, 2009
December 9, 2009
October 8, 2009
I’ve never really been into chairs and stuff, but I realised I could easily become obsessed with them for they have an unique aesthetic.
the bag worm chair
charles chairs by peter shire for modernica
fade out chair by nendo
quba chair by and then design
contour chair by bodo sperlein
bold chair by game big
the copenhagen chair by alvaro uribe
duporet by poor design
magnus opus by charlie davidson
shelter chair by philip edis
March 29, 2009
Titanic Ice Cube Tray
Includes 4 titanics and 4 icebergs; invite over the titanic crew for the perfect recipe and tell them to drive safely.
AK Bullet Ice Cube Trays
Reveal the naughty James Bond in you and invite your friends over for a dangerous taste.
Frozen Smiles Ice Cube Tray
Serve the drinks, flavored with ice shaped like grandma’s teeth, make sure your camera is nearby to document your guests gag reflex. 🙂
Alphabetic Ice Cube Tray
Use alphabetic ice cube tray to insert a personalized subtle message in each glass of drink you serve. This could be fun.
Ice Invaders Ice Cube Tray
From the fridge into the drinks and the invasion expands into your guest’s internals.
Bone Chillers Ice Cube Tray
Chill your guests to the bone with this ice cube tray.
Ice Kebabs Ice Cube Tray
To bring in a turkish style of chill into your drinks.
Golfball Ice Cube Tray
An old school style fun way to “hit it off” with friends.
Guitar Ice Cube Tray
An original way to rock&roll a party, just drop one of these into your drink and give it a stir.
Jewels Ice Cube Tray
We drink up with diamonds in the glass for an expensive taste!
Fossiliced Ice Cube Tray
What is better than these segments of dino fossils to bring in a Ice Age taste to your party?
Pi Symbol Ice Cube Tray
Drink up with this pi symbol shaped ice cube and try how far can you go recalling the number of pi.
Tetris Ice Cube Tray
Already too old to play tetris, well then you’re old enough e to drink up with tetris shaped ice cubes.
Snowflake Ice Cube Tray
Icy taste will make you miss winter.
Cat-dog Ice Cube Tray
Now you can put cats and dogs together for a wild shake.
Fishbone Ice Cube Tray,
A chill that freezes fish to the bone.
Lego Ice Cube Tray
Remember how lego pleased you in your childhood memories whilst you play grown-up drinking games.
Homer Simpson Ice Cube Tray
Sounds fun to share a beer with Homer Simpson.
Yellow Submarine Ice Cube Tray
Ever wished you were the yellow submarine from the Beatles song and dove into a glass of whiskey?
Ice Princess Ice Cube Tray
Are you in for the royal treatment?
Strawberry Ice Cube Tray
Are you willing to dip a strawberry into everything?
Tipsy Toes Ice Cube Tray
Ladies, leave your man at home and gather at a friends house for a girls-night-in theme. And you’ll have high-heel shaped ice cubes of plastic which does not dilute your drink. What a treat!
Penis and Balls Ice Cube Tray
Feel free to slip in a dirty joke or two.
Cool Shooters Ice Cube Tray
Have a shot from this “cool” shot glass made of ice.
March 26, 2009
H4-E1-Y4! Not a single day passes without me digging up a cool design; being thrilled and jealous enormously. Ladies and gentlemen, check out these Scrabble pillows by Stephen Reed Industrial Design. Imagine a pillow fight with these little typographic babies!
To see more of Stephen Reed Industrial Designs please visit: http://www.stephenreed.net
March 16, 2009
I’ve been searching through the web for -in my view- the most creative direct marketing examples of “how to get the message across”. It all started with me coming across a few creative business cards and developed as I became obsessed with collecting them. As my obsession grew wilder, the variety of my collection widened, leaving me no other chance but to categorize them generally under “great examples of direct marketing”. I’ve downloaded loads of examples, eliminating as I proceeded; once through with downloading I compared and contrasted what I’ve got and eliminated them once again so that I’ve got the juice of it. So, this is what I’ve come up with and found it worthy enough to present you; I hope that you’ll find these as influential I think they are. Tell me what you think!
“I SHUT MY EYES AND ALL THE WORLD DROPS DEAD”: OR DOES IT SING INSIDE MY HEAD WHEN TUNED BY A SKILLFUL ADVERTISER?
March 14, 2009
This paper will argue how challenging it has become for the marketers to grasp the attention of the target customer and turn their blank gaze into the look of a spectator. For the marketing industry is increasingly more complex to dish out a product/idea serving it on a golden plate, having polished it with exclusivity, secrecy, entertainment, subliminality and tricksterism. The daily experience of a human being has become a bombardment of images; that attempt to capture the attention of the individual. In this context it takes more and more shock value and guerrilla advertising tactics within a heavy loaded visual culture to dazzle with creativity and originality the viewer. More and more has to be done by the marketers in order to stick out of the hullabaloo of the advertisement sector which has lost its sparkle over time.
Considering the reign of visuality in a world conquered by television, internet, photographs, video cameras and use of ambient space; one cannot deny that greatest number of audience can be reached through the visual channels of communication. Since the “megaphones” of visuality is agreed upon, the art of building up a visual message should be mastered; calculating the sociological and psychological aspects and foreseeing the consequences. In the 21th century, the persuasion and the manipulation of people into buying a significant product or taking action in a particular way requires much more innovative thinking than placing ads on the traditional visual channels.
This paper will analyze, compare and contrast some examples of the usage of visual language in several advertisement campaigns which have broken the traditional guidelines and resulted in extraordinary outcomes. These experimental campaigns have set new standards and therefore opened a new chapter for the advertisement sector where everything is possible.
Keywords: Visual channels of communication, bombardment of images, me-too campaigns, capturing attention, innovative thinking, shock value, guerrilla advertising
RAZZLE-DAZZLE FOR BEGINNERS
A shift from the textual world to the visual world was first signified in 1820’s with the invention of the camera obscura and the pinhole camera. In the modern world this was considered as a step onto new grounds since the homo-sapiens painted on the walls of cave Lascaux and Michelangelo painted on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. The resemblance of the reality had become much more convincing and the human experience more visualized than ever before; in other words, “world-as-a-text has been replaced by world-as-a-picture”1 after all.
“The centrality of vision and the visual world in producing meanings, establishing and maintaining aesthetic values, gender stereotypes and power relations within culture”2 along with creating pleasure and displeasure, inspiring contemporary style and boosting consumption summarizes the modern tendency of the industrial society of 21th century. For “beauty is in eyes of the beholder”, such an emphasis on the visuality requires the ability to internalize and decode visual information from its audience. This habit does not come with nature but nurture and builds up like a snowball rolling down the hill as we learn to see and link ever faster. To spectate and to read an image both enriches our visual experience and challenges our visual literacy; proving the impossibility of explaining everything through textuality. However, in means of searching for explanations, the visual arena itself is not very reliable either. In a world where “seeing is more than believing”3, we no longer can rely on what we see because visual material can easily be manipulated causing continuous distortions in the meaning.
Living in such a crowded world which has surrendered to the merciless chaos of competition – survival of the fittest – one must lead a continuous struggle in order not to bite the dust. Since “modern life takes place onscreen”4 as suggested by Nicholas Mirzoeff it is our viewpoint together with innovative thinking that brings forth creativity and differentiates our offer above all the me-too style products or services.
This act of “showbiz” was firstly written on by Frank Baum, America’s best-known writer of children’s books of the time, “in his work The Show Window, which after 1900 evolved into The Merchandise Record and Show Window, then into Display World in the 1920’s, and finally into today’s Visual Merchandising”5. Focused on the sweeter part of capitalism; promoting consumption through continuous razzle-dazzle, the time to advertise is considered to be all the time. To advertise all the time and to advertise everything, as a legendary adman of the 20th century Elbert Hubbert defended passionately in 1911; “Everybody should advertise while they are alive. The man who does not advertise is a dead one, whether he knows it or not. Life is too short for you to hide away mantled in your own modesty.”6
The advertisement business is greedy for attention and is the last place on earth where you would search for modesty; yet it would not be so tempting any other way. It is the profession of never-ending masquerade, handles all the glamour and the razzle-dazzle of the visualized world; by revealing a little and concealing a little lures the consumers into its web just like the Sirens do with the desperate sailors.
ADVERTISING, SHOCK VALUE AND GREAT IDEAS
“In the Guerilla marketing, the focus changes from the volume of advertising to the impact of the message”7 as explained in The Guerilla Marketing Handbook by Jay Levinson and Seth Godin. It is all about the benefits of the customer according to which everything is shaped around. Aware of the positioning concept, the Guerrilla method avoids challenging the market leader as a daredevil would, but repositions him instead for its own advantage. This smart method of advertising mesmerizes its audience when tuned by a skillful advertiser; has the effect of a slap and then you turn the other cheek for more.
When it comes to grim competition and the rules of survival of the fittest apply, companies may not hesitate to reveal to public how “fiercely competitive” they actually are. For example, in this billboard advertisement of SGIC, an Australian insurance company, the advertising agency has decided to add extra shock value to boost SGIC’s sales rather than just coming up with a plain poster. Pretending to place “Sascha from the customer services” within the display of the billboard a playful mood is achieved while stressing how much SGIC takes its business seriously. In this way SGIC has been differentiated from the other insurance companies whom offer the same service; only, in a boring and soon-to-be-forgotten way.
The study of semiotics, which is originated by the Swiss linguistic analyst Ferdinand Saussure, is an examination of how the language works through its usage of the “key principles of the sign, the signifier and the signified”8 and the blood within the veins of the advertisement sector. Advantages of the semiotics are most emphasized in simple and minimalistic advertisement designs. For instance in this poster for Hut Weber company two man, whom can be easily recognizable worldwide, are depicted; Adolf Hitler on the left and Charlie Chaplin on the right. The tagline “It’s the hat” promotes that it takes a hat to differentiate disaster from laughter, and not just any hat but a Hut Weber hat as the logo of the brand reminds us in a subtle way.
Speaking of subtlety, a bold way to advertise has to be mentioned as well; this commercial for Amstel, the beer of Netherlands, is the result of a bold idea to place a huge billboard in a crowded section of the country. The billboard is used to expose a map of the area and the bars that sell Amstel within a few miles range are marked on it with the brand logo. Then, the classic “You Are Here” point is circled in the middle of the map; followed by the witty question “But Why” framed in red. In this way, the billboard gains interactive quality since it proposes a question and instantly the audience begins to search for an answer either consciously or unconsciously. They wonder why actually they are there, when they could have been in one of the bars that are spotted on the map, having a beer; and once again not just any beer but an Amstel. Moreover, since that billboard is flashed there 7/24, another message that is communicated through it is “the time to drink Amstel is all the time”; by shouting out “You are here, but why?” in every direction.
An example to a guerrilla attack for the attention of the target market would be this billboard prompted up on a busy street, lacking any kind of explanation or brand logo. Nothing hinted to prove that this billboard served as an advertisement; therefore the audience had every reason to consider it as what it seemed to be, the ultimate revenge of a scorned wife. As the advertisement company had predicted, curiosity killed the cat, through the channel of the “word of mouth” news spread out at astonishing rate and soon everybody had heard of this billboard. It was discussed between friends, on news, reality shows, featured on blogs and websites; however the advertisement agency took its time to reveal the truth about the billboard. By revealing a little and concealing a little, the truth about this billboard turned into a masterpiece of a show of striptease; gathering the attention on it like a magnet. Soon, to everybody’s surprise, the billboard turned out to be an attempt of Court TV to create a buzz about the upcoming second season of its Parco P.I. series; depicting a real-life detective, Vinnie Parco, who specializes in cases of adulterers. “For a tiny budget, the team achieved nationwide coverage, and the campaign was a Promo Lion at Cannes”9; all thanks to the curiosity of the public and the word of mouth spreading process.
The Guerrilla Girls, promoting themselves with the tagline “re-inventing the “f” word – feminism”10 have been the subject of plenty of media coverage. In their website they define themselves as “a bunch of anonymous females who take the names of dead women artists as pseudonyms and appear in public wearing gorilla masks.”11 They have produced books, posters, stickers and organized protests against sexism and racism. The secrecy element of the advertising concept is taken advantage of by the Guerrilla Girls; their concealment of their identities with the use of gorilla masks has attracted the attention of public, provided them media coverage, forced focus on the protested issues rather than the identities and introduced the “could be anyone, could be anywhere” concept.
Another example of a “great idea” would be the advertisement of an environmentalist organization of Hong Kong, called “Friends of the Earth”. This organization has attempted to visualize the invisible, laying parallel to TELECOMWORLDWIRE’s project design of “mobile pigeons to monitor air pollution”. In the billboard that they have rented, Friends of the Earth has posted – what seems to be – a blank poster. However, as the days passed by, the image and the message on the billboard became more and more visible and readable; that was because the message and the image were printed in sticky white letters and air pollution colored these sticky areas grey. In this way, they had let the air pollution “speak for itself”, almost literally. This advertisement campaign was especially interesting for it made the invisible, visible; succeeded in attracting attention and resulted in surprised gazes of the pedestrians and drivers slowing down to examine it as they passed by.
In conclusion, how challenging it has become for the marketers to succeed in grasping the attention is obvious; is the invisible which has become visible. The question is; can they achieve their aim by being able to differentiate themselves from the bombardment of images that are exposed on our minds? Through innovative thinking and the usage of countless marketing techniques, they surely can. It is the continuous razzle-dazzle and glamorous atmosphere created by extraordinary admen which sticks to our minds, and at the end of the day it is the idea and the product the buy and is the ad that we glorify and love.
March 12, 2009
Stumbling along with a cup of morning coffee is a great pleasure yet what is better is to come across something like this, to fix the perfect coffee for me. I came across this brilliant mug design in a site called http://ffffound.com and I want one for myself A.S.A.P!
I couldn’t really get how the site opperates, however I continuously clicked on some thumbnails according to my interest and as I sank deeper and deeper into this network I downloaded several works. I couldn’t re-find them since the site is complicated, and that is sadly why I can’t give any credits to the artist. Surely I’ll be using ffffound.com as an inspirational site from now on along with others.