The birth of Font Face Meta Serif

FF Meta Serif Homepage Image
It took almost three years and three designers to develope it, but now is here and it has a whole website on its own.

Front page of website immediately announce: “The most influential sans serif of the digital revoulution now has a serif companion: Introducing FF Meta Serif“.

All through the 90’s designer Erik Spiekermann had tried to create a complementary face for his successful FF META. Many times happened that he was asked what could be the best serif match for it and he realized that he just had to create it.

He finally asked collaboration to designers Christian Schwartz and Kris Sowersby.

Development of the new font started both from the original META for the body (which, in its uniqueness, is heavier in the center stroke, while the two end strokes are lighter) and from Antiqua face to take inspiration for serifs.

In website there is the whole thread of eMails exchanged between three designers during the period of creation to present the story of the font, which shows the great love they have for their profession and the great care for details they had all the time.

We can buy both font in various combination of packages, and if we use FF META SERIF in our designs we can also submit our work to be featured (if selected) in the gallery and enter the competition to get a FONTBOOK.

Coca-Cola “brand” new course

Coke Classic Aluminum bottle with new logo
David Butler, who now is vice-president for design, joined Coca-Cola almost five years ago, receiving what he calls “the Post-it Note mandate: We need to do more with design. Go figure it out.” He then had soon written up a 30-page manifesto setting out a design strategy for the company.

Here it is how new Coca-Cola design course started.
With new approach, instead of developing new concept that probably would have never seen light, the design team had to concentrate on problems and issues that could be fixed by design.

How can we make the can feel colder, longer?
It has been from this starting concept that the new aluminum bottle and the new generation of coolers are born.

Aluminum is more modern, less expensive to produce, it has a re-sealable cap, and yes, it gives to customers the perception of being more cold. In addiction, it is manufactured using recycled material and is itself recyclable.
Coca-Cola aims, too, to reinforce brand installing new designed coolers into stores. And for those stores that don’t want to invest in a new one, a set of panels has been created to attach to old cooler to give it the look of the new model.

Coke can before and after redesign

There are few brands in world as famous as Coca-Cola.
However in last decade it really seemed struggling with competitors, everyone fighting to add the more sparks and ribbons and bubbles and splashes and so on to their designs.

Coca-Cola classic brand redesign decided to invert this [messy, in my opinion] tendency and get back to basics.
The redesign of the logo removes all the unnecessary stuff and leaves a clean logotype over a red background.
This update brought Coke’s home the Cannes Lions Design Grand Prix. Good job!

This is the LESS IS MORE I love.

Colour Chart: Reinventing Colour. An event Tate Liverpool

Screenshot of MoMa website of Color Chart Exhibit

Tate Liverpool has announced an upcoming event starting from 29th May to 13th September 2009 addressed to all graphic, fashion and interior designer.
The exhibition Colour Chart: Reinventing Colour, 1950 to Today will show role of color in these main areas of desing from post-war to nowadays.

Taking the commercial colour chart as its point of departure, the exhibition emphasises a radical transformation in the post-War Western art that is characterised by the departure from such notions as originality, uniqueness and authenticity.

Colour Chart celebrates a paradox: the beauty that occurs when contemporary artists assign colour decisions to chance, ready made source, or arbitrary system.

Colour Chart is really the first major exhibition devoted to this pivotal transformation and offers an alternative survey of mid to late twentieth-century art, emphasising the significance of colour as an indicator of shifting conceptions around art, commodity and creativity.

Exhibition has been organized by Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) of New York and will feature more than forty artists, including Ellsworth Kelly, Andy Warhol, Gerhard Richter, Frank Stella, Yves Klein, Richard Serra, John Baldessari, Dan Flavin, Damien Hirst, David Batchelor, Jim Lambie, Angela Bulloch and Cory Archangel.

Colour Chart: Reinventing Colour, 1950 to Today was curated by Ann Temkin, Curator of Painting and Sculpture at The Museum of Modern Art, New York. At Tate Liverpool the exhibition is organised by Christoph Grunenberg, Director, and Sook-Kyung Lee, Exhibitions and Displays Curator.

You can read the complete press release of the presentation of the event HERE
visit Tate GallerY Official Website HERE.

While we’re waiting for this event to happen in Old Europe, we can watch dedicated space (a flash website you can preview in pic) of the exhibit that already took place in New York 2 March to 2 May 2008.
To go to Color Chart MOMA website and preview artist featured click HERE

Designers are Storytellers

Detail of the advertising

Some years ago I made a set of four advertising (I realized both visual and copy) for a branch of a press agency that deals technology and computer gadgets.
They all (but one) were two pages wide and were going to have nationwide diffusion (for those who don’t know I am in Italy).

The reason I am writing about this is that few days ago I was leafing through a technology magazine when it happened, to my great surprise, that I saw one of those old adverts (and to be more exact, the one you can see a detail in the pic above).
As far as I’ve always known all advertising campaign have their life cycle: customer gets attracted and interested in products thanks to the freshness of the message, than desire and acquire (you know … the old good A.I.D.A. formula …).
So, when customer already knows your visual and he is already accustomed to it, your message higly risks to get unnoticed.
I am pretty sure the result of each campaign has always been benchmarked by that company so, if they keep on publishing that advert it can only mean one thing: IT KEEPS ON SELLING.

This whole story inspired me some insights that I want to share in this article.

Creative Freelancer Conference

Event Website Image

It makes one week that Creative Freelancer Conference (an event from HOW MAGAZINE) in Chicago closed its doors.

As its crew itself defines it, it was “the first gathering of its kind, covering marketing, client retention, proposals, contracts, time management, work/life balance … everything the solopreneur needs to know, by creative-business experts who’ve built successful solo careers themselves”.

As stated in the official Website more than 200 creative attended the first edition of this event, where all aspects of a creative business where covered.

If you regret you missed the conference (I do, too, but I’m in Italy, not exactly round the corner after all!) you got to know that now all the resources, links, slides and speeches have been uploaded to the event official BLOG.
This is a real collection of business and creative ideas for solopreneurs that anyone should read!
Let’s only hope this blog will keep on staying alive!

If you want to visit the Creative Freelancer Conference event Website click HERE, while if you want to go to their resurceful blog click HERE.

Web Designers are the New RockStars

Designcharts home image

Strolling around on the web I’ve found a post of Rob McQueen that, opening the post with the quote in subject, taken from (a website that weekly publish the chart of the “coolest” designs of their network), wonders how much of this is is true, stating that now Flash websites are the new standard and since it is finally indexed by search engines the boring era of the html dinosaur is over.


Well…It could be that I’m a dinosaur myself, so I’m scared of exctinction, or it could be that some “webdez” feels too much like rockstars…or just both of two, but I STRONGLY disagree with this point of view!!

I don’t think that Flash could be for the moment (Never say never! the net is too much everchanging!) an absolute standard. It is the only choice for rich, visually and entertaining websites, but if you need an informational website/portal you still need to rely in old good html/xhtml.
Informational websites must stay up-to-date often and with flash to perform an update it is a too much a complicate and time waster task.
IMHO, it has become more a standard, nowadays, the transformation of a personal website in a business blog.
We can see more and more of it each day. A lot of webdesigners that yesterday had a flash website, today open a blog. This is the tendence my eyes are seeing!
With an informational blog you can show better to a possible customer who you are and your expertise.
You can share your thoughts. You can network more.

I simply think Flash and html/xhtml just take different roads, serve different purposes (which doesn’t mean they can’t proficiently work together as well).

And to be honest, it’s not that I have seen so much “flashed” website on top of search engines, in spite of the so much talked about new .swf seachability (that now is not new anymore) I’m still seeing what Rob calls “crappy regular sites”.
God knows why! (Yeah, I’m ironic…) :-)

The Pin-Up Initiative

The home page image is a Website (with a nice graphic design, I have to say) born from from a collaboration between photographers, models, graphic and motion artists. provides a selection of pictures of pin-up and you have to create a design to enter the challenge.
It is not well explained how long each challenge lasts, but as they states everything is growing and subjet to change at the time that I am writing.

They address to all creatives with the aim, they say, to create “works of art to hang over the fireplace”, but it is true indeed that this initiative really is something different, with some fifties years flavour that we all love (don’t we?) and leaves the doors open to a lot of other opportunities.

If you want to give a look to the Website to apply for the challenge or just propose a wallpaper of the month, click HERE

Plenty of News at IStockPhoto!

IStockPhoto tutorial article of this week

Do you know what is? Noo?

Don’t be afraid, I’m here to tell you about it.
First of all it is probably the largest and growing royalty free stock photography website, secondly, it is a HUGE community of creatives where you can:

As I said in subject line, there are a lot of news at IStockPhoto’s.
Let’s see some:

Still here reading? Go to IStockPhoto and watch yourself, you’ll thank me!
(Yes, it was a referral link, but it will do you no harm, I promise) :-)

Download (or request) PANTONE Catalogs

PANTONE color system

If you work in graphic design business you already know PANTONE color guides are a must have in your studio.

On THIS PAGE you can both download and request a printed copy of the 2008 product catalogs.

Extremely brilliant the INSPIRATION catalog, illustrated and colorful.

Each catalog includes an exclusive offer for PantoneDIRECT customers.

HOW International Design Awards

Design Award Logo

One best of the competition will win a FREE trip to the annual HOW Design Conference (international taking place in Boston since 1991), all other winners will have their work featured at the event, receive a $100 discount for the conference along with a nifty certificate.
There are plenty of design categories and you can enter in more than one, just submit a separate entry and payment for each category with 2 well protected samples of your work. NO SLIDES NOR DIGITAL IMAGES.

Deadline is 1st September 2008

You can find details about competition HERE
and download a PDF of the Rules and Entry Form HERE

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