Design for Rail – the story of the Railfreight identity

Britain’s railways of the 1980s were a mess, figuratively and physically. Grimy trains streamed in and out of depots, through under-invested stations and between industries just about grappling with the new global economy in which they found themselves. To many, including British Rail’s clients, things were not looking good.

But the grime and dirt of the freight sector masked the fact that this was the most profitable part of BR. The goods business had seen a resurgence: the Railfreight sector had been reorganised into specialised subsectors including Distribution, Coal, Petroleum, Metals and Construction, and each was showing growth.

Two previous BR identity projects had not helped the outward image of freight. The BR Corporate Design Guidelines (the subject of a meticulous reprint by designer Wallace Henning and funded by Kickstarter) enforced strict rules of colour, type, imagery and logos to a degree never seen before on a transport network. It, along with a comprehensive investment in systems and process, helped unite BR’s motley collection of stations, stock and assets as a single entity.

Insignia in use as part of Roundel’s 1987 identity for Railfreight

It led to the painting of all locomotives in BR blue, with yellow warning-panel ends, almost without exception. Every size and shape of loco went that way; even the three steam engines run by BR on the Vale of Rheidol Railway in Wales had the BR-blue and white double arrows slapped on the side. But it stamped out individuality and also the pride in the mechanical iron horses that hauled the trains and that were once so cared for by depot staff.

A second rebranding, for the Railfreight division carve-out in 1982, led to all locos allocated for these services to be painted dark grey, with yellow ends and red stripe. The greyness was explicitly there to hide the dirt; there was no need to wash these hulking beasts any more. With greyness and with tiredness the strong regional and local identities that were important to rail workers had also begun to dry up.

Photograph by Lee Funnell

BR had to convince industry that its approach and its teams were not grubby steam-age dinosaurs (even if some of its locomotives were) and that they were a force to be reckoned with against the rising tide of road haulage. Privatisation was being mooted in Westminster, and BR knew that it had to sharpen up in a commercial world as the world around it moved. Similarly, within, there was a need to galvanise the workforce, but there didn’t seem to be a plan.

Mike Denny, formerly Creative Director of Roundel Design and self-confessed railway enthusiast, explained how the brief came about.

“We’d had a call to work on a small livery project for a Class 37 [a medium-sized BR freight locomotive],” he says. “But it became quite clear that this needed to work as something bigger; more widespread. The team at the BR Architecture & Design Division told us that we were pushing on an open door – so we effectively wrote our own brief.”

The Roundel team mooted a couple of creative approaches including what Denny tantalisingly refers to as a “bit of a Dan Dare style” route, but rapidly landed the now-iconic theme.

“We realised we could keep it simple, but layer it,” he says. “You’ve got British Rail at the top of the identity. You know it’s British Rail – it had to be – it was the only operator! We did give a nod by using their Rail Alphabet typeface to provide consistency with the passenger trains, too.

“Next down is the operating division, so you’ve got the locos and wagons painted in our triple-grey for Railfreight. You didn’t need to have the word ‘Railfreight’ plastered over it – we had confidence that people could tell them apart by colour from the passenger locos at speed. Next we divided it by subsector of operation by using squadron-style marking, then by depot, and then finally the locomotive number, or quite often, name. That gave a really personal feeling.”

Photograph by Lee Funnell

The subsector squadron marks were inspired by air force markings – particularly those from the Polish Air Force – as Roundel and the team at BR realised the need to bring teams together under manageable and identifiable groups.

Each of the final six squadron marks in blue or red with yellow, incorporating a stylised ‘F’, were designed with paint and scraperboard and tested in large formats. The squadron concept was perfect – the antithesis of the grubby past – bright battle shields showing a confident and optimistic future. It was immediately obvious that these worked at a distance on locomotives crossing the country and up close on print ephemera, buildings and uniforms.

Squadron mark as part of Roundel’s 1987 identity for Railfreight, complete with stylised ‘F’

Next were the depot plates; the badges of honour. Produced in bright chromium they reflected the allocation of each locomotive and gave staff both ownership and their own local identity again.

A masterstroke was getting each depot team to nominate their preferred icon which was then styled by Roundel, avoiding a top-down implementation that may well have fallen on deaf ears. The icons were installed not just on locos – which now rewarded a good clean – but throughout stationery, notice boards, depot signs and even mugs.










It should be noted that the love for this identity was not universal; to some died-in-the-wool rail enthusiasts or to staff who had seen many of the diesel locomotives since the 1950s having new heraldry emblazoned on the side of them there was a reckoning that they looked a bit odd.

Some pointed out that quite often a loco diagrammed for a coal train might end up working a long line of petrol tankers, thus rendering the squadron mark incongruous to the casual observer. But those were tiny operational issues – what mattered was the overall effect.

And it worked: business customer feedback was overwhelmingly positive, staff almost entirely welcomed it and Railfreight won FT and BBC awards for cultural change.

It was with a little sadness therefore that this postmodern identity lasted but a few years, when it was replaced by the incoming corporate tide of UK rail privatisation. Depot and sector allegiances disappeared; a new world had dawned. New liveries, new logos, new identities.

So, more than 30 years on, to the exhibition at the D&AD today. This surprising but welcome retrospective came about after one of the ex-Roundel team (now Creative Director of SEA Design), Bryan Edmondson, was pleased to read an article cheerleading the graphic design success of the old identity about eighteen months ago.

Photograph by Lee Funnell

He convinced Mike Denny and a raft of ex-Roundel colleagues that now, three decades after the identity was launched, was the time for a retrospective and contributions from all of both artifacts and memories came flooding in.

Perhaps the nostalgia cycle has swung in because those involved are now reaching professional maturity, perhaps it’s because there’s a renewed interest in rail transport in current affairs, or perhaps there’s a resurgent interest in corporate identities that represent organisations that were centralised and integrated.

Photograph by Lee Funnell

Design for Rail is located in the D&AD Exhibition room, a large basement space in Shoreditch. The SEA Design team has clearly laboured love on this: previously hand-drawn symbols have been recreated and printed large across pillars and wall panels.

Huge bright replicas of the subsector identities stretch around the room and freight train imagery from the quite extraordinary night-time calendar photoshoots (all taken on working railway lines, occupied for a night by crews and then up-lit in the most remarkable ways) are projected on a large screen.

Photograph by Lee Funnell

Four display cases of objects show the breadth of the identity as implemented. One contains the introductory letters from the BR client at the time plus some elements of printed guidelines and ephemera. Other cases display chromium depot plates and layout guides for applying the identity to various locomotive types. A lavishly printed exhibition catalogue accompanies the displays, containing some exquisitely produced artwork.

Photograph by Lee Funnell

This is an exhibition created by a brilliant design team with much affection, but it does lack significant interpretation of the objects assembled for display as a museum exhibition might. A little more interpretation of these objects in location would help tease out of some of the fascinating stories behind them, rather than let them stand by themselves.

To dig deeper – for example to find out more of the great role that Jane Priestman and Colin Driver played as clients at British Rail, how the photographs were staged, the processes that the Roundel team used to get to the identity or the practicalities of how the identity was implemented – will benefit any visitor looking up online afterwards.

Overall Design for Rail is a greatly appreciated retrospective; a deserved elevation of an underestimated British brand identity, a welcome reveal to a wider audience beyond design rail enthusiasts who have enjoyed it for so long, and well worth a visit.

Tim Dunn is a transport historian and broadcaster (see @MrTimDunn). Design for Rail is on show at D&AD, 64 Cheshire Street, London E2 6EH until February 26 and is curated by SEA. See designforrail.co.uk

The post Design for Rail – the story of the Railfreight identity appeared first on Creative Review.

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Isokon Plus: refreshing a classic British furniture brand

Molly and Jack Pritchard founded design practice Isokon in the 1930s with the aim of bringing European Modernism to Britain. The pair’s first landmark project was the Lawn Road Flats in Hampstead – a pioneering development that was far ahead of its time.

Designed by architect Wells Coates, it was the first residential building in Britain to be made chiefly from reinforced concrete and resembled an ocean liner with its curved white exterior and deck-like balconies.

Each of its 32 flats came kitted out with minimal plywood furniture – marketing brochures promised that occupants needed to add just “an armchair, a rug and a picture” – and early residents included Agatha Christie and Bauhaus founder Walter Gropius.

Isokon later focused on making furniture and recruited some of the leading figures of the Bauhaus school of design. Gropius was appointed Controller of Design in 1935, Marcel Breuer created plywood nesting tables and chairs for the brand and László Moholy-Nagy designed its logo: a Futura word mark alongside an image of a plywood chair base.

Isokon Plus’s original word mark was designed by Bauhaus teacher László Moholy-Nagy

The company ceased production in the 1940s after plywood became difficult to obtain during World War Two but Pritchard later licensed a London furniture company to make some of its most popular products. 

Chris McCourt took over the Isokon name in 1982 and launched Isokon Plus. The company makes historic Isokon products from a two-storey workshop in Hackney and has created new pieces with leading London designers including Barber & Osgerby and Michael Sodeau. It also works on bespoke commercial interiors – recent commissions include a Spiritland bar in Mayfair and a new Carhartt store in King’s Cross. 

This week Isokon Plus launched a new identity system created by London studio dn&co. The studio has designed a new website and printed communications for the brand and has redrawn Isokon 1930s word mark.

The identity is designed to appeal to customers who might shop at the likes of Hay or Skandium as well as potential commercial clients. It also aims to educate people about Isokon’s fascinating history as well as its collaborations with contemporary designers and the fact that products are still made by hand in London.

Isokon Plus’s new word mark

A ‘+’ symbol now appears after the Isokon brand name – the company had been using the word ‘plus’ but dn&co designer Ed Hawkins says this “looked a little crude typographically”.

“We gave them a + icon because it’s more universal,” he adds. “It also puts the focus back on the Isokon brand and highlights this notion of collaboration.”

The word mark looks much the same as it did in 1936 but letters have been redrawn digitally to create a more uniform logo. “It was a great bit of lettering but we needed to introduce a little more rigidity in the way it was aligned,” says dn&co Creative Director Patrick Eley. “Now the forms can line up in a much stronger and more graphic way.”

The brand’s signature colour – a bright shade of orange – appears in the word mark and as an accent colour in communications. dn&co was keen to avoid creating anything that felt too retro. Hawkins says the company’s previous branding featured black-and-white images and “swathes of orange” but this has been replaced with a neutral palette and a more restrained use of colour.

Isokon Plus’s previous branding featured black-and-white imagery and “swathes of orange”
Isokon Plus’s new branding features a more restrained use of orange and a neutral colour palette

Gill Sans (Isokon Plus’s secondary typeface) has been replaced with Moderat – a geometric sans serif with some distinctive touches. “We wanted a typeface that felt crafted – one that would work well with the word mark but not be too characterful because the mark is already quite unique,” says Eley.

“The key was not to do something too similar to other brands in the same field. Ercol uses lower case Gill for its identity and I think there needs to be some space between the two brands,” he adds. 

Hawkins says Moderat was also chosen for its character: joints on letters such as the crossbar on t’s reminded the creative team of woodworking joints and Eley says it offered a more “expressive” alternative to something “cold and monolinear and Helvetica-natured”.

Isokon Plus look books are printed on a mix of uncoated sugar paper and high gloss stock for images – Eley says the contrasting textures aim to reflect the tactile nature of the company’s products and its attention to detail. Business cards are also printed on textured card. “Everything is quite considered and aims to reflect that level of detail and quality but also a kind of understated aesthetic,” adds Hawkins.

Isokon Plus’s look book combines uncoated sugar paper and high gloss photographs. Eley says this was more affordable than creating a high gloss brochure and aims to reflect the tactile nature of products

Editorial photographer Sam Bush captured people making products at Isokon Plus’s workshop in Hackney for the ‘Stories’ and ‘About Us’ sections of the brand’s new website.

Architectural photographer Rory Gardiner photographed products in domestic and commercial settings for the online shop and look books. His images were shot on film and aim to capture the distinguishing lines, angles and details in Isokon Plus’s products.

“One thing we really pushed them on was the value of photography,” says Eley.  “[Isokon Plus] needed to invest in really good photography and show people what it’s like to live with their pieces and do it in a way that is going to talk to different audiences. They don’t just want to talk to individual customers on their website but manufacturers and people who can buy their furniture for larger commercial jobs. We knew the way to do that was by using photography in a lifestyle way but also in a way that was architecturally sensitive,” he explains.

Isokon Plus’s new website was built by Seb Brown at dn&co
The website features photography by Rory Gardiner

dn&co also redesigned invoices and order notifications to feel more polished.  “They don’t have shops and they don’t tend to sell through other suppliers … so a lot of their sales come through their own website. Building a more beautiful e-commerce experience has been really key,” says Eley.

“They’re a company that needs to look careful and considerate and I think that comes across in these things. If the buying process is a little shaky [for example with badly designed invoices or emails] then you can deal with it, but if it’s well designed, it gives you that level of unspoken confidence in the brand and that’s really important,” he adds.

Photography by Rory Gardiner

“We called them out of the blue. No presentation to start with – just a ‘we’d love to work with you and think you could do a lot more”

dn&co was appointed to refresh Isokon Plus’s branding after approaching the company around two years ago. “We had known about the brand for a long time … but I don’t think enough people know about them and we thought there was a real opportunity there to help make them better known,” explains Eley.

“We called them out of the blue. No presentation to start with – just a ‘we’d love to work with you and think you could do a lot more’,” he adds. “When we first [met] with them we went with a few things to talk around but [these were] more strategic than creative. We listened and asked a lot of questions before designing anything.”

With so many companies replacing distinctive logos with simplified sans designs it’s a pleasant surprise to see Isokon Plus retain its distinctive word mark. Hawkins says dn&co was keen to avoid “throwing the baby out with the bathwater” and instead wanted to “retain something truly characterful” while bringing the brand’s identity up to date.

The chair symbol does not appear in Isokon Plus’s new communications – it may be incorporated as a pattern in the future but Eley says the brand wanted to be known for more than its plywood designs.

The new website has a similar look and feel to websites for upmarket furniture stores and Scandi brands such as Hay – and Eley says this was intentional. “We wanted the website to be able to stand alongside contemporary lifestyle furniture brands like Hay and not feel out of place. It couldn’t look the poor cousin [but] it was important that it had its own look and feel.”

The Isokon Plus logo also appears at varying sizes on packaging

This distinction is achieved through a bold word mark and a use of orange which he says offers a contrast to other brands’ “sensitive but often un-opinionated designs”. The end result is an identity that is mindful of the past but avoids looking retro or pastiche – and has been created on a modest budget. The branding is much more contemporary but still maintains a nod to the brand’s Bauhaus roots and its fascinating past.

Offering some advice for other designers working with heritage brands, Eley adds: “It’s about making sure you’re doing what’s appropriate [for the brand] and the needs of the company you’re working for…. Having a sensitivity is important I think – but also knowing that you don’t have to hold on to everything.”

The post Isokon Plus: refreshing a classic British furniture brand appeared first on Creative Review.

Source: http://ift.tt/1KjyLUn

Isokon Plus: refreshing a classic British furniture brand

Molly and Jack Pritchard founded design practice Isokon in the 1930s with the aim of bringing European Modernism to Britain. The pair’s first landmark project was the Lawn Road Flats in Hampstead – a pioneering development that was far ahead of its time.

Designed by architect Wells Coates, it was the first residential building in Britain to be made chiefly from reinforced concrete and resembled an ocean liner with its curved white exterior and deck-like balconies.

Each of its 32 flats came kitted out with minimal plywood furniture – marketing brochures promised that occupants needed to add just “an armchair, a rug and a picture” – and early residents included Agatha Christie and Bauhaus founder Walter Gropius.

Isokon later focused on making furniture and recruited some of the leading figures of the Bauhaus school of design. Gropius was appointed Controller of Design in 1935, Marcel Breuer created plywood nesting tables and chairs for the brand and László Moholy-Nagy designed its logo: a Futura word mark alongside an image of a plywood chair base.

Isokon Plus’s original word mark was designed by Bauhaus teacher László Moholy-Nagy

The company ceased production in the 1940s after plywood became difficult to obtain during World War Two but Pritchard later licensed a London furniture company to make some of its most popular products. 

Chris McCourt took over the Isokon name in 1982 and launched Isokon Plus. The company makes historic Isokon products from a two-storey workshop in Hackney and has created new pieces with leading London designers including Barber & Osgerby and Michael Sodeau. It also works on bespoke commercial interiors – recent commissions include a Spiritland bar in Mayfair and a new Carhartt store in King’s Cross. 

This week Isokon Plus launched a new identity system created by London studio dn&co. The studio has designed a new website and printed communications for the brand and has redrawn Isokon 1930s word mark.

The identity is designed to appeal to customers who might shop at the likes of Hay or Skandium as well as potential commercial clients. It also aims to educate people about Isokon’s fascinating history as well as its collaborations with contemporary designers and the fact that products are still made by hand in London.

Isokon Plus’s new word mark

A ‘+’ symbol now appears after the Isokon brand name – the company had been using the word ‘plus’ but dn&co designer Ed Hawkins says this “looked a little crude typographically”.

“We gave them a + icon because it’s more universal,” he adds. “It also puts the focus back on the Isokon brand and highlights this notion of collaboration.”

The word mark looks much the same as it did in 1936 but letters have been redrawn digitally to create a more uniform logo. “It was a great bit of lettering but we needed to introduce a little more rigidity in the way it was aligned,” says dn&co Creative Director Patrick Eley. “Now the forms can line up in a much stronger and more graphic way.”

The brand’s signature colour – a bright shade of orange – appears in the word mark and as an accent colour in communications. dn&co was keen to avoid creating anything that felt too retro. Hawkins says the company’s previous branding featured black-and-white images and “swathes of orange” but this has been replaced with a neutral palette and a more restrained use of colour.

Isokon Plus’s previous branding featured black-and-white imagery and “swathes of orange”
Isokon Plus’s new branding features a more restrained use of orange and a neutral colour palette

Gill Sans (Isokon Plus’s secondary typeface) has been replaced with Moderat – a geometric sans serif with some distinctive touches. “We wanted a typeface that felt crafted – one that would work well with the word mark but not be too characterful because the mark is already quite unique,” says Eley.

“The key was not to do something too similar to other brands in the same field. Ercol uses lower case Gill for its identity and I think there needs to be some space between the two brands,” he adds. 

Hawkins says Moderat was also chosen for its character: joints on letters such as the crossbar on t’s reminded the creative team of woodworking joints and Eley says it offered a more “expressive” alternative to something “cold and monolinear and Helvetica-natured”.

Isokon Plus look books are printed on a mix of uncoated sugar paper and high gloss stock for images – Eley says the contrasting textures aim to reflect the tactile nature of the company’s products and its attention to detail. Business cards are also printed on textured card. “Everything is quite considered and aims to reflect that level of detail and quality but also a kind of understated aesthetic,” adds Hawkins.

Isokon Plus’s look book combines uncoated sugar paper and high gloss photographs. Eley says this was more affordable than creating a high gloss brochure and aims to reflect the tactile nature of products

Editorial photographer Sam Bush captured people making products at Isokon Plus’s workshop in Hackney for the ‘Stories’ and ‘About Us’ sections of the brand’s new website.

Architectural photographer Rory Gardiner photographed products in domestic and commercial settings for the online shop and look books. His images were shot on film and aim to capture the distinguishing lines, angles and details in Isokon Plus’s products.

“One thing we really pushed them on was the value of photography,” says Eley.  “[Isokon Plus] needed to invest in really good photography and show people what it’s like to live with their pieces and do it in a way that is going to talk to different audiences. They don’t just want to talk to individual customers on their website but manufacturers and people who can buy their furniture for larger commercial jobs. We knew the way to do that was by using photography in a lifestyle way but also in a way that was architecturally sensitive,” he explains.

Isokon Plus’s new website was built by Seb Brown at dn&co
The website features photography by Rory Gardiner

dn&co also redesigned invoices and order notifications to feel more polished.  “They don’t have shops and they don’t tend to sell through other suppliers … so a lot of their sales come through their own website. Building a more beautiful e-commerce experience has been really key,” says Eley.

“They’re a company that needs to look careful and considerate and I think that comes across in these things. If the buying process is a little shaky [for example with badly designed invoices or emails] then you can deal with it, but if it’s well designed, it gives you that level of unspoken confidence in the brand and that’s really important,” he adds.

Photography by Rory Gardiner

“We called them out of the blue. No presentation to start with – just a ‘we’d love to work with you and think you could do a lot more”

dn&co was appointed to refresh Isokon Plus’s branding after approaching the company around two years ago. “We had known about the brand for a long time … but I don’t think enough people know about them and we thought there was a real opportunity there to help make them better known,” explains Eley.

“We called them out of the blue. No presentation to start with – just a ‘we’d love to work with you and think you could do a lot more’,” he adds. “When we first [met] with them we went with a few things to talk around but [these were] more strategic than creative. We listened and asked a lot of questions before designing anything.”

With so many companies replacing distinctive logos with simplified sans designs it’s a pleasant surprise to see Isokon Plus retain its distinctive word mark. Hawkins says dn&co was keen to avoid “throwing the baby out with the bathwater” and instead wanted to “retain something truly characterful” while bringing the brand’s identity up to date.

The chair symbol does not appear in Isokon Plus’s new communications – it may be incorporated as a pattern in the future but Eley says the brand wanted to be known for more than its plywood designs.

The new website has a similar look and feel to websites for upmarket furniture stores and Scandi brands such as Hay – and Eley says this was intentional. “We wanted the website to be able to stand alongside contemporary lifestyle furniture brands like Hay and not feel out of place. It couldn’t look the poor cousin [but] it was important that it had its own look and feel.”

The Isokon Plus logo also appears at varying sizes on packaging

This distinction is achieved through a bold word mark and a use of orange which he says offers a contrast to other brands’ “sensitive but often un-opinionated designs”. The end result is an identity that is mindful of the past but avoids looking retro or pastiche – and has been created on a modest budget. The branding is much more contemporary but still maintains a nod to the brand’s Bauhaus roots and its fascinating past.

Offering some advice for other designers working with heritage brands, Eley adds: “It’s about making sure you’re doing what’s appropriate [for the brand] and the needs of the company you’re working for…. Having a sensitivity is important I think – but also knowing that you don’t have to hold on to everything.”

The post Isokon Plus: refreshing a classic British furniture brand appeared first on Creative Review.

Source: http://ift.tt/1KjyLUn

Isokon Plus: refreshing a classic British furniture brand

Molly and Jack Pritchard founded design practice Isokon in the 1930s with the aim of bringing European Modernism to Britain. The pair’s first landmark project was the Lawn Road Flats in Hampstead – a pioneering development that was far ahead of its time.

Designed by architect Wells Coates, it was the first residential building in Britain to be made chiefly from reinforced concrete and resembled an ocean liner with its curved white exterior and deck-like balconies.

Each of its 32 flats came kitted out with minimal plywood furniture – marketing brochures promised that occupants needed to add just “an armchair, a rug and a picture” – and early residents included Agatha Christie and Bauhaus founder Walter Gropius.

Isokon later focused on making furniture and recruited some of the leading figures of the Bauhaus school of design. Gropius was appointed Controller of Design in 1935, Marcel Breuer created plywood nesting tables and chairs for the brand and László Moholy-Nagy designed its logo: a Futura word mark alongside an image of a plywood chair base.

Isokon Plus’s original word mark was designed by Bauhaus teacher László Moholy-Nagy

The company ceased production in the 1940s after plywood became difficult to obtain during World War Two but Pritchard later licensed a London furniture company to make some of its most popular products. 

Chris McCourt took over the Isokon name in 1982 and launched Isokon Plus. The company makes historic Isokon products from a two-storey workshop in Hackney and has created new pieces with leading London designers including Barber & Osgerby and Michael Sodeau. It also works on bespoke commercial interiors – recent commissions include a Spiritland bar in Mayfair and a new Carhartt store in King’s Cross. 

This week Isokon Plus launched a new identity system created by London studio dn&co. The studio has designed a new website and printed communications for the brand and has redrawn Isokon 1930s word mark.

The identity is designed to appeal to customers who might shop at the likes of Hay or Skandium as well as potential commercial clients. It also aims to educate people about Isokon’s fascinating history as well as its collaborations with contemporary designers and the fact that products are still made by hand in London.

Isokon Plus’s new word mark

A ‘+’ symbol now appears after the Isokon brand name – the company had been using the word ‘plus’ but dn&co designer Ed Hawkins says this “looked a little crude typographically”.

“We gave them a + icon because it’s more universal,” he adds. “It also puts the focus back on the Isokon brand and highlights this notion of collaboration.”

The word mark looks much the same as it did in 1936 but letters have been redrawn digitally to create a more uniform logo. “It was a great bit of lettering but we needed to introduce a little more rigidity in the way it was aligned,” says dn&co Creative Director Patrick Eley. “Now the forms can line up in a much stronger and more graphic way.”

The brand’s signature colour – a bright shade of orange – appears in the word mark and as an accent colour in communications. dn&co was keen to avoid creating anything that felt too retro. Hawkins says the company’s previous branding featured black-and-white images and “swathes of orange” but this has been replaced with a neutral palette and a more restrained use of colour.

Isokon Plus’s previous branding featured black-and-white imagery and “swathes of orange”
Isokon Plus’s new branding features a more restrained use of orange and a neutral colour palette

Gill Sans (Isokon Plus’s secondary typeface) has been replaced with Moderat – a geometric sans serif with some distinctive touches. “We wanted a typeface that felt crafted – one that would work well with the word mark but not be too characterful because the mark is already quite unique,” says Eley.

“The key was not to do something too similar to other brands in the same field. Ercol uses lower case Gill for its identity and I think there needs to be some space between the two brands,” he adds. 

Hawkins says Moderat was also chosen for its character: joints on letters such as the crossbar on t’s reminded the creative team of woodworking joints and Eley says it offered a more “expressive” alternative to something “cold and monolinear and Helvetica-natured”.

Isokon Plus look books are printed on a mix of uncoated sugar paper and high gloss stock for images – Eley says the contrasting textures aim to reflect the tactile nature of the company’s products and its attention to detail. Business cards are also printed on textured card. “Everything is quite considered and aims to reflect that level of detail and quality but also a kind of understated aesthetic,” adds Hawkins.

Isokon Plus’s look book combines uncoated sugar paper and high gloss photographs. Eley says this was more affordable than creating a high gloss brochure and aims to reflect the tactile nature of products

Editorial photographer Sam Bush captured people making products at Isokon Plus’s workshop in Hackney for the ‘Stories’ and ‘About Us’ sections of the brand’s new website.

Architectural photographer Rory Gardiner photographed products in domestic and commercial settings for the online shop and look books. His images were shot on film and aim to capture the distinguishing lines, angles and details in Isokon Plus’s products.

“One thing we really pushed them on was the value of photography,” says Eley.  “[Isokon Plus] needed to invest in really good photography and show people what it’s like to live with their pieces and do it in a way that is going to talk to different audiences. They don’t just want to talk to individual customers on their website but manufacturers and people who can buy their furniture for larger commercial jobs. We knew the way to do that was by using photography in a lifestyle way but also in a way that was architecturally sensitive,” he explains.

Isokon Plus’s new website was built by Seb Brown at dn&co
The website features photography by Rory Gardiner

dn&co also redesigned invoices and order notifications to feel more polished.  “They don’t have shops and they don’t tend to sell through other suppliers … so a lot of their sales come through their own website. Building a more beautiful e-commerce experience has been really key,” says Eley.

“They’re a company that needs to look careful and considerate and I think that comes across in these things. If the buying process is a little shaky [for example with badly designed invoices or emails] then you can deal with it, but if it’s well designed, it gives you that level of unspoken confidence in the brand and that’s really important,” he adds.

Photography by Rory Gardiner

“We called them out of the blue. No presentation to start with – just a ‘we’d love to work with you and think you could do a lot more”

dn&co was appointed to refresh Isokon Plus’s branding after approaching the company around two years ago. “We had known about the brand for a long time … but I don’t think enough people know about them and we thought there was a real opportunity there to help make them better known,” explains Eley.

“We called them out of the blue. No presentation to start with – just a ‘we’d love to work with you and think you could do a lot more’,” he adds. “When we first [met] with them we went with a few things to talk around but [these were] more strategic than creative. We listened and asked a lot of questions before designing anything.”

With so many companies replacing distinctive logos with simplified sans designs it’s a pleasant surprise to see Isokon Plus retain its distinctive word mark. Hawkins says dn&co was keen to avoid “throwing the baby out with the bathwater” and instead wanted to “retain something truly characterful” while bringing the brand’s identity up to date.

The chair symbol does not appear in Isokon Plus’s new communications – it may be incorporated as a pattern in the future but Eley says the brand wanted to be known for more than its plywood designs.

The new website has a similar look and feel to websites for upmarket furniture stores and Scandi brands such as Hay – and Eley says this was intentional. “We wanted the website to be able to stand alongside contemporary lifestyle furniture brands like Hay and not feel out of place. It couldn’t look the poor cousin [but] it was important that it had its own look and feel.”

The Isokon Plus logo also appears at varying sizes on packaging

This distinction is achieved through a bold word mark and a use of orange which he says offers a contrast to other brands’ “sensitive but often un-opinionated designs”. The end result is an identity that is mindful of the past but avoids looking retro or pastiche – and has been created on a modest budget. The branding is much more contemporary but still maintains a nod to the brand’s Bauhaus roots and its fascinating past.

Offering some advice for other designers working with heritage brands, Eley adds: “It’s about making sure you’re doing what’s appropriate [for the brand] and the needs of the company you’re working for…. Having a sensitivity is important I think – but also knowing that you don’t have to hold on to everything.”

The post Isokon Plus: refreshing a classic British furniture brand appeared first on Creative Review.

Source: http://ift.tt/1KjyLUn

Isokon Plus: refreshing a classic British furniture brand

Molly and Jack Pritchard founded design practice Isokon in the 1930s with the aim of bringing European Modernism to Britain. The pair’s first landmark project was the Lawn Road Flats in Hampstead – a pioneering development that was far ahead of its time.

Designed by architect Wells Coates, it was the first residential building in Britain to be made chiefly from reinforced concrete and resembled an ocean liner with its curved white exterior and deck-like balconies.

Each of its 32 flats came kitted out with minimal plywood furniture – marketing brochures promised that occupants needed to add just “an armchair, a rug and a picture” – and early residents included Agatha Christie and Bauhaus founder Walter Gropius.

Isokon later focused on making furniture and recruited some of the leading figures of the Bauhaus school of design. Gropius was appointed Controller of Design in 1935, Marcel Breuer created plywood nesting tables and chairs for the brand and László Moholy-Nagy designed its logo: a Futura word mark alongside an image of a plywood chair base.

Isokon Plus’s original word mark was designed by Bauhaus teacher László Moholy-Nagy

The company ceased production in the 1940s after plywood became difficult to obtain during World War Two but Pritchard later licensed a London furniture company to make some of its most popular products. 

Chris McCourt took over the Isokon name in 1982 and launched Isokon Plus. The company makes historic Isokon products from a two-storey workshop in Hackney and has created new pieces with leading London designers including Barber & Osgerby and Michael Sodeau. It also works on bespoke commercial interiors – recent commissions include a Spiritland bar in Mayfair and a new Carhartt store in King’s Cross. 

This week Isokon Plus launched a new identity system created by London studio dn&co. The studio has designed a new website and printed communications for the brand and has redrawn Isokon 1930s word mark.

The identity is designed to appeal to customers who might shop at the likes of Hay or Skandium as well as potential commercial clients. It also aims to educate people about Isokon’s fascinating history as well as its collaborations with contemporary designers and the fact that products are still made by hand in London.

Isokon Plus’s new word mark

A ‘+’ symbol now appears after the Isokon brand name – the company had been using the word ‘plus’ but dn&co designer Ed Hawkins says this “looked a little crude typographically”.

“We gave them a + icon because it’s more universal,” he adds. “It also puts the focus back on the Isokon brand and highlights this notion of collaboration.”

The word mark looks much the same as it did in 1936 but letters have been redrawn digitally to create a more uniform logo. “It was a great bit of lettering but we needed to introduce a little more rigidity in the way it was aligned,” says dn&co Creative Director Patrick Eley. “Now the forms can line up in a much stronger and more graphic way.”

The brand’s signature colour – a bright shade of orange – appears in the word mark and as an accent colour in communications. dn&co was keen to avoid creating anything that felt too retro. Hawkins says the company’s previous branding featured black-and-white images and “swathes of orange” but this has been replaced with a neutral palette and a more restrained use of colour.

Isokon Plus’s previous branding featured black-and-white imagery and “swathes of orange”
Isokon Plus’s new branding features a more restrained use of orange and a neutral colour palette

Gill Sans (Isokon Plus’s secondary typeface) has been replaced with Moderat – a geometric sans serif with some distinctive touches. “We wanted a typeface that felt crafted – one that would work well with the word mark but not be too characterful because the mark is already quite unique,” says Eley.

“The key was not to do something too similar to other brands in the same field. Ercol uses lower case Gill for its identity and I think there needs to be some space between the two brands,” he adds. 

Hawkins says Moderat was also chosen for its character: joints on letters such as the crossbar on t’s reminded the creative team of woodworking joints and Eley says it offered a more “expressive” alternative to something “cold and monolinear and Helvetica-natured”.

Isokon Plus look books are printed on a mix of uncoated sugar paper and high gloss stock for images – Eley says the contrasting textures aim to reflect the tactile nature of the company’s products and its attention to detail. Business cards are also printed on textured card. “Everything is quite considered and aims to reflect that level of detail and quality but also a kind of understated aesthetic,” adds Hawkins.

Isokon Plus’s look book combines uncoated sugar paper and high gloss photographs. Eley says this was more affordable than creating a high gloss brochure and aims to reflect the tactile nature of products

Editorial photographer Sam Bush captured people making products at Isokon Plus’s workshop in Hackney for the ‘Stories’ and ‘About Us’ sections of the brand’s new website.

Architectural photographer Rory Gardiner photographed products in domestic and commercial settings for the online shop and look books. His images were shot on film and aim to capture the distinguishing lines, angles and details in Isokon Plus’s products.

“One thing we really pushed them on was the value of photography,” says Eley.  “[Isokon Plus] needed to invest in really good photography and show people what it’s like to live with their pieces and do it in a way that is going to talk to different audiences. They don’t just want to talk to individual customers on their website but manufacturers and people who can buy their furniture for larger commercial jobs. We knew the way to do that was by using photography in a lifestyle way but also in a way that was architecturally sensitive,” he explains.

Isokon Plus’s new website
The website features photography by Rory Gardiner

dn&co also redesigned invoices and order notifications to feel more polished.  “They don’t have shops and they don’t tend to sell through other suppliers … so a lot of their sales come through their own website. Building a more beautiful e-commerce experience has been really key,” says Eley.

“They’re a company that needs to look careful and considerate and I think that comes across in these things. If the buying process is a little shaky [for example with badly designed invoices or emails] then you can deal with it, but if it’s well designed, it gives you that level of unspoken confidence in the brand and that’s really important,” he adds.

Photography by Rory Gardiner

“We called them out of the blue. No presentation to start with – just a ‘we’d love to work with you and think you could do a lot more”

dn&co was appointed to refresh Isokon Plus’s branding after approaching the company around two years ago. “We had known about the brand for a long time … but I don’t think enough people know about them and we thought there was a real opportunity there to help make them better known,” explains Eley.

“We called them out of the blue. No presentation to start with – just a ‘we’d love to work with you and think you could do a lot more’,” he adds. “When we first [met] with them we went with a few things to talk around but [these were] more strategic than creative. We listened and asked a lot of questions before designing anything.”

With so many companies replacing distinctive logos with simplified sans designs it’s a pleasant surprise to see Isokon Plus retain its distinctive word mark. Hawkins says dn&co was keen to avoid “throwing the baby out with the bathwater” and instead wanted to “retain something truly characterful” while bringing it up to date.

The chair symbol does not appear in Isokon Plus’s new communications – it may be incorporated as a pattern in the future but Eley says the brand wanted to be known for more than its plywood designs.

The new website has a similar look and feel to websites for upmarket furniture stores and Scandi brands such as Hay – and Eley says this was intentional. “We wanted the website to be able to stand alongside contemporary lifestyle furniture brands like Hay and not feel out of place. It couldn’t look the poor cousin [but] it was important that it had its own look and feel.”

The Isokon Plus logo also appears at varying sizes on packaging

This distinction is achieved through a bold word mark and a use of orange which he says offers a contrast to other brands’ “sensitive but often un-opinionated designs”. The end result is an identity that is mindful of the past but avoids looking retro or pastiche – and has been created on a modest budget. The branding is much more contemporary but still maintains a nod to the brand’s Bauhaus roots and its fascinating past.

Offering some advice for other designers working with heritage brands, Eley adds: “It’s about making sure you’re doing what’s appropriate [for the brand] and the needs of the company you’re working for…. Having a sensitivity is important I think – but also knowing that you don’t have to hold on to everything.”

The post Isokon Plus: refreshing a classic British furniture brand appeared first on Creative Review.

Source: http://ift.tt/1KjyLUn

Isokon Plus: refreshing a classic British furniture brand

Molly and Jack Pritchard founded design practice Isokon in the 1930s with the aim of bringing European Modernism to Britain. The pair’s first landmark project was the Lawn Road Flats in Hampstead – a pioneering development that was far ahead of its time.

Designed by architect Wells Coates, it was the first residential building in Britain to be made chiefly from reinforced concrete and resembled an ocean liner with its curved white exterior and deck-like balconies.

Each of its 32 flats came kitted out with minimal plywood furniture – marketing brochures promised that occupants needed to add just “an armchair, a rug and a picture” – and early residents included Agatha Christie and Bauhaus founder Walter Gropius.

Isokon later focused on making furniture and recruited some of the leading figures of the Bauhaus school of design. Gropius was appointed Controller of Design in 1935, Marcel Breuer created plywood nesting tables and chairs for the brand and László Moholy-Nagy designed its logo: a Futura word mark alongside an image of a plywood chair base.

Isokon Plus’s original word mark was designed by Bauhaus teacher László Moholy-Nagy

The company ceased production in the 1940s after plywood became difficult to obtain during World War Two but Pritchard later licensed a London furniture company to make some of its most popular products. 

Chris McCourt took over the Isokon name in 1982 and launched Isokon Plus. The company makes historic Isokon products from a two-storey workshop in Hackney and has created new pieces with leading London designers including Barber & Osgerby and Michael Sodeau. It also works on bespoke commercial interiors – recent commissions include a Spiritland bar in Mayfair and a new Carhartt store in King’s Cross. 

This week Isokon Plus launched a new identity system created by London studio dn&co. The studio has designed a new website and printed communications for the brand and has redrawn Isokon 1930s word mark.

The identity is designed to appeal to customers who might shop at the likes of Hay or Skandium as well as potential commercial clients. It also aims to educate people about Isokon’s fascinating history as well as its collaborations with contemporary designers and the fact that products are still made by hand in London.

Isokon Plus’s new word mark

A ‘+’ symbol now appears after the Isokon brand name – the company had been using the word ‘plus’ but dn&co designer Ed Hawkins says this “looked a little crude typographically”.

“We gave them a + icon because it’s more universal,” he adds. “It also puts the focus back on the Isokon brand and highlights this notion of collaboration.”

The word mark looks much the same as it did in 1936 but letters have been redrawn digitally to create a more uniform logo. “It was a great bit of lettering but we needed to introduce a little more rigidity in the way it was aligned,” says dn&co Creative Director Patrick Eley. “Now the forms can line up in a much stronger and more graphic way.”

The brand’s signature colour – a bright shade of orange – appears in the word mark and as an accent colour in communications. dn&co was keen to avoid creating anything that felt too retro. Hawkins says the company’s previous branding featured black-and-white images and “swathes of orange” but this has been replaced with a neutral palette and a more restrained use of colour.

Isokon Plus’s previous branding featured black-and-white imagery and “swathes of orange”
Isokon Plus’s new branding features a more restrained use of orange and a neutral colour palette

Gill Sans (Isokon Plus’s secondary typeface) has been replaced with Moderat – a geometric sans serif with some distinctive touches. “We wanted a typeface that felt crafted – one that would work well with the word mark but not be too characterful because the mark is already quite unique,” says Eley.

“The key was not to do something too similar to other brands in the same field. Ercol uses lower case Gill for its identity and I think there needs to be some space between the two brands,” he adds. 

Hawkins says Moderat was also chosen for its character: joints on letters such as the crossbar on t’s reminded the creative team of woodworking joints and Eley says it offered a more “expressive” alternative to something “cold and monolinear and Helvetica-natured”.

Isokon Plus look books are printed on a mix of uncoated sugar paper and high gloss stock for images – Eley says the contrasting textures aim to reflect the tactile nature of the company’s products and its attention to detail. Business cards are also printed on textured card. “Everything is quite considered and aims to reflect that level of detail and quality but also a kind of understated aesthetic,” adds Hawkins.

Isokon Plus’s look book combines uncoated sugar paper and high gloss photographs. Eley says this was more affordable than creating a high gloss brochure and aims to reflect the tactile nature of products

Editorial photographer Sam Bush captured people making products at Isokon Plus’s workshop in Hackney for the ‘Stories’ and ‘About Us’ sections of the brand’s new website.

Architectural photographer Rory Gardiner photographed products in domestic and commercial settings for the online shop and look books. His images were shot on film and aim to capture the distinguishing lines, angles and details in Isokon Plus’s products.

“One thing we really pushed them on was the value of photography,” says Eley.  “[Isokon Plus] needed to invest in really good photography and show people what it’s like to live with their pieces and do it in a way that is going to talk to different audiences. They don’t just want to talk to individual customers on their website but manufacturers and people who can buy their furniture for larger commercial jobs. We knew the way to do that was by using photography in a lifestyle way but also in a way that was architecturally sensitive,” he explains.

Isokon Plus’s new website
The website features photography by Rory Gardiner

dn&co also redesigned invoices and order notifications to feel more polished.  “They don’t have shops and they don’t tend to sell through other suppliers … so a lot of their sales come through their own website. Building a more beautiful e-commerce experience has been really key,” says Eley.

“They’re a company that needs to look careful and considerate and I think that comes across in these things. If the buying process is a little shaky [for example with badly designed invoices or emails] then you can deal with it, but if it’s well designed, it gives you that level of unspoken confidence in the brand and that’s really important,” he adds.

Photography by Rory Gardiner

“We called them out of the blue. No presentation to start with – just a ‘we’d love to work with you and think you could do a lot more”

dn&co was appointed to refresh Isokon Plus’s branding after approaching the company around two years ago. “We had known about the brand for a long time … but I don’t think enough people know about them and we thought there was a real opportunity there to help make them better known,” explains Eley.

“We called them out of the blue. No presentation to start with – just a ‘we’d love to work with you and think you could do a lot more’,” he adds. “When we first [met] with them we went with a few things to talk around but [these were] more strategic than creative. We listened and asked a lot of questions before designing anything.”

With so many companies replacing distinctive logos with simplified sans designs it’s a pleasant surprise to see Isokon Plus retain its distinctive word mark. Hawkins says dn&co was keen to avoid “throwing the baby out with the bathwater” and instead wanted to “retain something truly characterful” while bringing it up to date.

The chair symbol does not appear in Isokon Plus’s new communications – it may be incorporated as a pattern in the future but Eley says the brand wanted to be known for more than its plywood designs.

The new website has a similar look and feel to websites for upmarket furniture stores and Scandi brands such as Hay – and Eley says this was intentional. “We wanted the website to be able to stand alongside contemporary lifestyle furniture brands like Hay and not feel out of place. It couldn’t look the poor cousin [but] it was important that it had its own look and feel.”

The Isokon Plus logo also appears at varying sizes on packaging

This distinction is achieved through a bold word mark and a use of orange which he says offers a contrast to other brands’ “sensitive but often un-opinionated designs”. The end result is an identity that is mindful of the past but avoids looking retro or pastiche – and has been created on a modest budget. The branding is much more contemporary but still maintains a nod to the brand’s Bauhaus roots and its fascinating past.

Offering some advice for other designers working with heritage brands, Eley adds: “It’s about making sure you’re doing what’s appropriate [for the brand] and the needs of the company you’re working for…. Having a sensitivity is important I think – but also knowing that you don’t have to hold on to everything.”

The post Isokon Plus: refreshing a classic British furniture brand appeared first on Creative Review.

Source: http://ift.tt/1KjyLUn

How creative leaders can rebuild trust in the age of #MeToo

Image: iStock/CSA Archive

“An Implosion of Trust” was the ominous headline that kicked off the start of 2017, as the findings from Edelman’s annual survey showed, for the first time, that public trust in all the major institutions (business, government, media and NGOs) had fallen.  With Edelman’s latest barometer showing trust to still be in the red in more than two-thirds of the countries surveyed and plummeting in the US, the outlook for 2018 doesn’t look a whole lot better. Sadly, in this ‘post truth’ era, where world leaders openly lie, the media is ‘fake’ and businesses routinely put profits ahead of ethics, it’s not exactly news that trust is at an all-time low.

As Edelman explains in its latest findings, we entrust these institutions with important aspects of our lives, so we need to believe they will act with integrity and in our best interests, “Trust, therefore, is at the heart of an individual’s relationship with an institution and, by association, its leadership.” And it’s the role of leadership here that’s key. One recent study of 2,500 of the world’s largest companies showed that, “CEO dismissals for ethical lapses have increased by a whopping 36 per cent over the past five years”, including bribery, sexual indiscretions and fraud. This is not because those in charge are suddenly behaving much worse than before but because businesses in the information age, and by default those in charge of them, are coming under much closer scrutiny and greater pressure from customers, investors and staff, to live up to their ideals. Additionally, thanks to the permanence of the internet and the amplification of social media, scandals are no longer so easily swept under the carpet.  Against this backdrop, it’s not entirely surprising that according to the latest data, building trust surpasses developing high-quality products and services as the number one job for CEOs.

Of course, it’s not just the moral and social cost of unethical behaviour in business that is so problematic – the corresponding collapse of trust leads to real business costs as employees disengage and customers walk. Uber’s recent upheaval is a great case in point: former Uber engineer Susan Fowler’s now historic blog post, sparked a crisis of trust in the organisation because she exposed the company culture of ‘growth at any cost’. As we now know, that tone for the business was set from the top.

Leaders’ standards of behaviour and the values they live and breathe set the tone and tenor for the rest of the business, more than any published code of conduct.

When you look at the issues that are currently facing the creative industries – from the abysmal track-records for talent diversity, to gender pay gaps, to the endemic tolerance of sexual harassment in the workplace – we are potentially facing our own crisis of trust, which those in charge have to rapidly address.  In a recent study, it was shown that 86% of Millennials consider it a main priority to work for a business that conducts itself responsibly and ethically. As Millennials will make up 75% of the workforce by 2025, we can ill-afford a lack of clarity around our ethical standards, our codes of accepted behaviour and the processes by which these are maintained.

However, it’s not rigidly implemented policy that will make the real difference: the ability of businesses to build and maintain the trust of staff, shareholders and clients alike ultimately stems from leadership. Be under no illusion, leaders shape culture. Their standards of behaviour and the values they live and breathe set the tone and tenor for the rest of the business, more than any published code of conduct. So if you run a team or a business, then these guiding principles can help to build sustainable trust in a tough climate:

Walk the talk
In business, trust is built not just on the quality of what you deliver but in how you deliver it. As the perception of trust often hinges on values and behaviour, your company values should express what matters most to the organisation about the way you do business. Therefore, having really clear, shared values for accepted and expected organisational behaviour, that are embodied by everyone in the business, from the top down, is key. Hiring, appraising and rewarding against the behaviours and attitudes that demonstrate the company’s values, are great ways of ensuring that your team strives to live up to the ideals of the business. But a nicely crafted set of values means nothing if they aren’t rooted in the reality of the leaders’ collective behaviours. Be in no doubt that your team scrutinises everything you do for clues as to what is acceptable or even desirable behaviour. When it comes to values, actions speak far louder than words, so if what you do isn’t aligned with what you say, then trust will erode and your team will quickly learn the real values that matter in your business.

As a leader, it’s often what you don’t do that is as telling as what you do do … so quiet compliance, or turning a blind eye speaks volumes about what you are prepared to let people get away with

Take a stand

“Silence is now deeply dangerous – a tax on truth”
Richard Edelman

What the Uber example shows, is that it’s not just how leaders behave themselves that can build or destroy trust – it’s also how they deal with issues as they arise. Unfortunately, as a leader, it’s often what you don’t do that is as telling as what you do do …so quiet compliance, or turning a blind eye speaks volumes about what you are prepared to let people get away with – or maybe even condone as a leader. When it comes to ethical matters or conduct issues, not taking action is as good as tacit approval. So have appropriate protocols in place for responding and dealing quickly with conduct issues and be transparent about facing up to wider problems in your organisation, with shared plans for how the business will address them. As the saying goes, ‘a principle is not a principle, until it costs you’ – and one of the fastest ways to build trust is by standing up for what you believe is right and acting with integrity, even in the toughest of circumstances.

Create an open culture
Based on the theories of economist, Albert Hirschman, employees really have only three choices when confronted with unethical or inappropriate behaviour: ‘exit’ (vote with your feet), ‘voice’ (stay put and complain), or ‘loyalty’ (keep quiet and hope the problem goes away). Sadly, it would seem that ‘exit’ and ‘loyalty’ all too often feel like the only viable options, given the fear of the potential reprisals for speaking out. What the #MeToo movement has done so effectively, is to start laying the much-needed ground work for it being OK to ‘voice’ in the workplace – to be able to stand up for yourself and others and to expose problems in the business, without fear of recrimination or retribution.

We need our businesses to be safe and inspiring havens in which we are encouraged and supported to do our best work

For those in charge, building trust is critical to creating an environment in which it’s OK to ‘voice’. This is as much about creating a transparent culture, in which it’s OK to give mutual feedback and in which everyone’s opinions are encouraged, respected and heard – as it is about having the appropriate forums and processes in place to enable people to safely raise issues or complaints. In doing both you will create the cultural conditions that act as a deterrent, whilst providing the support mechanisms for swiftly dealing within any breaches. So ask yourself this – how does my business currently make it safe to ‘voice’ both openly and discreetly? If you can’t answer that question, you have urgent work to do.

Right now we need our businesses leaders, more than ever, to be the torch-bearers for progress and strong ethics, at a time when our global leaders come up wanting. And we need our businesses to be safe and inspiring havens in which we are encouraged and supported to do our best work. But this requires our organisations to be built on trust and if you’re in charge, this starts – or stops – with you. As Seth Godin says, “Earn trust, earn trust, earn trust. Then you can worry about the rest.”

Tanya Livesey is a Leadership Coach to leaders of high profile creative businesses (noordinary.life) and Global Head of Creative Talent for The Talent Business (thetalentbusiness.com), the world leader in executive search for creative businesses, advising some of the most celebrated CCOs and ECDs on their careers strategy

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How I got here: Edel Rodriguez

Edel Rodriguez was one of the most eagerly anticipated speakers at this year’s Design Indaba festival. He was introduced to a live audience of 1800 delegates, by Pentagram’s Michael Bierut, who said that Rodriguez’ genius lay in “taking things we’re watching in the news, and turning them into brilliant, precise, indelible moments of social commentary.” In his talk Rodriguez discussed growing up in Cuba, the power of the internet and of course, Trump.

On his early childhood I grew up in a beautiful shithole, in a small town in Cuba, and in this town I learnt everything I know about taking care of your neighbours and being nice to people. All my neighbours were black kids or mixed raced kids and I was pretty much the only white kid on the block. It was from this – the fact that when I became sick it would be these people that helped me get better – that I developed my love for diverse cultures.

Rodriguez speaking on the Design Indaba 2018 stage, behind is an image of him as a child in Cuba

Learning from Cuban film posters One of the biggest influences on my work was Cuban film posters. Foreign posters for films were not allowed in the country, so the posters used to advertise the films would be made locally by Cuban designers. A lot of the simple designs and colours of the Cuban posters come from the fact that we had limited colours, the places printing them had only two or three colours usually. So in a four or five month period sometimes every single poster that came out of that factory would be of those same few colours. Cuba became very adept at being able to do a lot with very little.



Being influenced by the military The next big influence was political posters which would be plastered along the streets. The messaging on these was quite severe [the word muerte (death) was on a lot of them].  As a child these sorts of things and the military protests had a big influence on me. If you’re in the US you may go to fancy dress parties dressed as Mickey Mouse, but I used to wear my uncle’s military uniforms.

Leaving Cuba and landing in Miami My father [who was a photographer, loved music and to host parties] was very counter-revolutionary. In the 1980s the government in Cuba was pretty violent. Groups of people would be sent to people’s homes to shame them and beat them up [if they weren’t sympathisers]. Eventually Castro passed a law which allowed everyone who wanted to leave the country, to leave. My father decided we should leave the country along with my mother and about 20 other family members.

Rodriguez’s childhood home in Cuba

We were kept in a camp called the Mosquito for a while, which should tell you something about the condition it was in. There was a lot of violence and conditions were pretty bad, but eventually we got a place on a boat. The boats were filled with a few families but also with prisoners, prostitutes, basically other people who the government was sending out of the country.

The families, like ours were taken to houses when we landed in Miami, Florida. We were welcomed into the country. Overnight, I went from being surrounded by graphics of the Cuban revolution to being surrounded by images of American pop culture. These images, along with those of American advertising all became mixed up in my mind. I became obsessed with rock ‘n’ roll, we switched from Salsa parties in Cuba to rock ’n’ roll parties. We would decorate drum sets, and would have themed parties where we’d decorate the place with artwork for bands like KISS.



Above: Some of the recent Der Spiegel covers by Rodriguez. The magazine, he says, is more open to “taking it just a little bit further.” 

Moving to New York and working as an illustrator After school I went to New York to attend university [Pratt Institute, Brooklyn] and I became involved in the university newspaper. I’ve been in New York since and have a studio in New York City, where I do sculptures, installations, graphics, posters, paintings, and more.

I have done about 60 to 70 different posters for Broadway shows, operas and for different theatres. Another big part of my work is magazine covers, I think I’ve done about a 150 different magazine covers in my career so far.

People think that the anti-Trump work is the main thing I do, but actually it’s sort of a side project that seems to have gotten a lot of attention. Most of my work at the moment is definitely political, but not all of it is about Trump – like illustrations for magazine articles and advertising work that uses some of my characters.

My graphic style Usually what I try to do with my images is create something very strong, graphic and something that will get your attention whether it’s on a large poster or small postage stamp. I want you to get something out of it as soon as possible; I make images that can be understood by someone with a PhD degree as well as someone like my grandfather who does not speak English.

Communication Arts cover by Edel Rodriguez

Discovering the power of the magazine cover The first time I realised the power of the cover of a magazine was when I made the Communication Arts Cover in 2006. It was a special story about Cuban design and I created this idea of how Cuba was changing and becoming more commercial and at the same time America was trying to create a rebel aesthetic. This cover created a lot of controversy online, and it ended up in Cuba. People were hiding it in bags and sharing it with each other, because it was illegal in Cuba.

Cover art for Newsweek magazine, “What Silicon Valley Thinks of Women”. Art director – Grace Lee (Priest & Grace)

The other really controversial cover I created was about sexual harassment. Half of the women who saw it hated it because they thought I was re-victimizing them and the other half were supportive. It created a really big conversation on the internet, on The Today Show – where it was thrown in the trash on live TV.



Above: Rodriguez created the images above in response to the ISIS crisis in 2013, and these sort of images went viral making him an internet sensation. 

Making art for the internet By 2013 I started following the issue with ISIS and I started making illustrations in response. I started putting them on the internet and they started going viral. I started seeing people taking selfies with beheadings for example and responded to that, and the images were pretty harsh. I responded to other things like the bucket challenge, and I thought it was preposterous that people were wasting so much water over this and so much of their life. I think all my friends stopped posting videos of the bucket challenge after this.

Creating illustrations for social media I feel like I know how social media works, and I don’t think I had to adapt my style too much to create art for social media – [I was already creating imagery that seemed to work in many different sizes and formats]. In some cases, like with the ISIS imagery I created, a lot of it is simple forms on white backgrounds which seem to work well for social media. But it started with just wanting to work with a simple colour scheme, and it just happened to work really well on social media. Then I learnt from what works and did more of it.


Above: After seeing his work online Times magazine got in touch with Rodriguez asking his to do the cover, when they were running a story called Melthdown, which predicted a failure of the Trump campaign. This was followed up by Total Meltdown.

How Social Media has shaped magazine covers Having worked with magazines in the past I used to sometimes get frustrated that the stuff I wanted to get published would not get published because it was too controversial. Sometimes I didn’t want my work to be toned down in order for it to be published. I decided to do more ‘out there’ things with social media hoping that magazines would catch up to it. And I feel like I’ve been able to do that.

My whole feed is filled with people I work with like editors and art directors, and I wanted to get in their heads that it’s OK to go this far with imagery. Hoping they’d see what I was doing on social media and become OK with taking a more risks with covers. This eventually happened.

The illustration used on this cover of Der Spiegel, Feb 2017, was originally published by Rodriguez on his Twitter feed. The magazine got in touch with him after seeing it online, asking if they could use the image on their cover.

The galvanising power of political imagery I don’t know if political art has the power to change minds. But I wouldn’t be doing it if I didn’t deep down believe it had the power to change at least one or two minds. I think there are a lot of different things it can do.

It can galvanise people that feel a certain way. You may feel alone and crazy for believing something or having a certain political ideology, but my work is there to remind you that your opinion is shared. It also reminds people of stuff that matters, like “yes he did say the word shithole”. I get a lot of people sending me messages thanking me for saying what was on their mind. They didn’t know how to express it, and by creating art they can identify with I am giving them a weapon. They can take it and share it with other people, make them excited to go out there and protest. I think it’s very important to protest, and to see that it’s real middle class Americans that share your view, not just some crazy left wing college kids.

Above: Before the Women’s Marches Rodriguez shared his work online, and gave the public permission to print or copy his illustrations to use during the protests. He doesn’t mind sharing his work, he says, because you can’t expect an army to fight without weapons. 

I think the work I do is creating a record for the future. Even if things don’t go our way politically, there will be people in the future who look back and at least know that there was an opposition and will know what we believed. It’s also important to show the rest of the world that we feel this way. It’s embarrassing to see what America has become, so I was us to show people outside of the states that all of us are not crazy.

Cover for TIME magazine, Hate in America, August 2017

On America and being American What the United States means to the rest of the world is being threatened by a single man, and I wanted to keep making work that showed that the United States in still a place where you can speak your mind. The US is still a place where an immigrant can go and say what he wants, and that’s what my father told me what the country was about.

Some of Rodriguez’s artwork on display at Design Indaba 2018

@edelrodriguezdesignindaba.com 

The post How I got here: Edel Rodriguez appeared first on Creative Review.

Source: http://ift.tt/1KjyLUn

How I got here: Edel Rodriguez

Edel Rodriguez was one of the most eagerly anticipated speakers at this year’s Design Indaba festival. He was introduced to a live audience of 1800 delegates, by Pentagram’s Michael Bierut, who said that Rodriguez’ genius lay in “taking things we’re watching in the news, and turning them into brilliant, precise, indelible moments of social commentary.” In his talk Rodriguez discussed growing up in Cuba, the power of the internet and of course, Trump.

On his early childhood I grew up in a beautiful shithole, in a small town in Cuba, and in this town I learnt everything I know about taking care of your neighbours and being nice to people. All my neighbours were black kids or mixed raced kids and I was pretty much the only white kid on the block. It was from this – the fact that when I became sick it would be these people that helped me get better – that I developed my love for diverse cultures.

Rodriguez speaking on the Design Indaba 2018 stage, behind is an image of him as a child in Cuba

Learning from Cuban film posters One of the biggest influences on my work was Cuban film posters. Foreign posters for films were not allowed in the country, so the posters used to advertise the films would be made locally by Cuban designers. A lot of the simple designs and colours of the Cuban posters come from the fact that we had limited colours, the places printing them had only two or three colours usually. So in a four or five month period sometimes every single poster that came out of that factory would be of those same few colours. Cuba became very adept at being able to do a lot with very little.



Being influenced by the military The next big influence was political posters which would be plastered along the streets. The messaging on these was quite severe [the word muerte (death) was on a lot of them].  As a child these sorts of things and the military protests had a big influence on me. If you’re in the US you may go to fancy dress parties dressed as Mickey Mouse, but I used to wear my uncle’s military uniforms.

Leaving Cuba and landing in Miami My father [who was a photographer, loved music and to host parties] was very counter-revolutionary. In the 1980s the government in Cuba was pretty violent. Groups of people would be sent to people’s homes to shame them and beat them up [if they weren’t sympathisers]. Eventually Castro passed a law which allowed everyone who wanted to leave the country, to leave. My father decided we should leave the country along with my mother and about 20 other family members.

Rodriguez’s childhood home in Cuba

We were kept in a camp called the Mosquito for a while, which should tell you something about the condition it was in. There was a lot of violence and conditions were pretty bad, but eventually we got a place on a boat. The boats were filled with a few families but also with prisoners, prostitutes, basically other people who the government was sending out of the country.

The families, like ours were taken to houses when we landed in Miami, Florida. We were welcomed into the country. Overnight, I went from being surrounded by graphics of the Cuban revolution to being surrounded by images of American pop culture. These images, along with those of American advertising all became mixed up in my mind. I became obsessed with rock ‘n’ roll, we switched from Salsa parties in Cuba to rock ’n’ roll parties. We would decorate drum sets, and would have themed parties where we’d decorate the place with artwork for bands like KISS.



Above: Some of the recent Der Spiegel covers by Rodriguez. The magazine, he says, is more open to “taking it just a little bit further.” 

Moving to New York and working as an illustrator After school I went to New York to attend university [Pratt Institute, Brooklyn] and I became involved in the university newspaper. I’ve been in New York since and have a studio in New York City, where I do sculptures, installations, graphics, posters, paintings, and more.

I have done about 60 to 70 different posters for Broadway shows, operas and for different theatres. Another big part of my work is magazine covers, I think I’ve done about a 150 different magazine covers in my career so far.

People think that the anti-Trump work is the main thing I do, but actually it’s sort of a side project that seems to have gotten a lot of attention. Most of my work at the moment is definitely political, but not all of it is about Trump – like illustrations for magazine articles and advertising work that uses some of my characters.

My graphic style Usually what I try to do with my images is create something very strong, graphic and something that will get your attention whether it’s on a large poster or small postage stamp. I want you to get something out of it as soon as possible; I make images that can be understood by someone with a PhD degree as well as someone like my grandfather who does not speak English.

Communication Arts cover by Edel Rodriguez

Discovering the power of the magazine cover The first time I realised the power of the cover of a magazine was when I made the Communication Arts Cover in 2006. It was a special story about Cuban design and I created this idea of how Cuba was changing and becoming more commercial and at the same time America was trying to create a rebel aesthetic. This cover created a lot of controversy online, and it ended up in Cuba. People were hiding it in bags and sharing it with each other, because it was illegal in Cuba.

Cover art for Newsweek magazine, “What Silicon Valley Thinks of Women”. Art director – Grace Lee (Priest & Grace)

The other really controversial cover I created was about sexual harassment. Half of the women who saw it hated it because they thought I was re-victimizing them and the other half were supportive. It created a really big conversation on the internet, on The Today Show – where it was thrown in the trash on live TV.



Above: Rodriguez created the images above in response to the ISIS crisis in 2013, and these sort of images went viral making him an internet sensation. 

Making art for the internet By 2013 I started following the issue with ISIS and I started making illustrations in response. I started putting them on the internet and they started going viral. I started seeing people taking selfies with beheadings for example and responded to that, and the images were pretty harsh. I responded to other things like the bucket challenge, and I thought it was preposterous that people were wasting so much water over this and so much of their life. I think all my friends stopped posting videos of the bucket challenge after this.

Creating illustrations for social media I feel like I know how social media works, and I don’t think I had to adapt my style too much to create art for social media – [I was already creating imagery that seemed to work in many different sizes and formats]. In some cases, like with the ISIS imagery I created, a lot of it is simple forms on white backgrounds which seem to work well for social media. But it started with just wanting to work with a simple colour scheme, and it just happened to work really well on social media. Then I learnt from what works and did more of it.


Above: After seeing his work online Times magazine got in touch with Rodriguez asking his to do the cover, when they were running a story called Melthdown, which predicted a failure of the Trump campaign. This was followed up by Total Meltdown.

How Social Media has shaped magazine covers Having worked with magazines in the past I used to sometimes get frustrated that the stuff I wanted to get published would not get published because it was too controversial. Sometimes I didn’t want my work to be toned down in order for it to be published. I decided to do more ‘out there’ things with social media hoping that magazines would catch up to it. And I feel like I’ve been able to do that.

My whole feed is filled with people I work with like editors and art directors, and I wanted to get in their heads that it’s OK to go this far with imagery. Hoping they’d see what I was doing on social media and become OK with taking a more risks with covers. This eventually happened.

The illustration used on this cover of Der Spiegel, Feb 2017, was originally published by Rodriguez on his Twitter feed. The magazine got in touch with him after seeing it online, asking if they could use the image on their cover.

The galvanising power of political imagery I don’t know if political art has the power to change minds. But I wouldn’t be doing it if I didn’t deep down believe it had the power to change at least one or two minds. I think there are a lot of different things it can do.

It can galvanise people that feel a certain way. You may feel alone and crazy for believing something or having a certain political ideology, but my work is there to remind you that your opinion is shared. It also reminds people of stuff that matters, like “yes he did say the word shithole”. I get a lot of people sending me messages thanking me for saying what was on their mind. They didn’t know how to express it, and by creating art they can identify with I am giving them a weapon. They can take it and share it with other people, make them excited to go out there and protest. I think it’s very important to protest, and to see that it’s real middle class Americans that share your view, not just some crazy left wing college kids.

Above: Before the Women’s Marches Rodriguez shared his work online, and gave the public permission to print or copy his illustrations to use during the protests. He doesn’t mind sharing his work, he says, because you can’t expect an army to fight without weapons. 

I think the work I do is creating a record for the future. Even if things don’t go our way politically, there will be people in the future who look back and at least know that there was an opposition and will know what we believed. It’s also important to show the rest of the world that we feel this way. It’s embarrassing to see what America has become, so I was us to show people outside of the states that all of us are not crazy.

Cover for TIME magazine, Hate in America, August 2017

On America and being American What the United States means to the rest of the world is being threatened by a single man, and I wanted to keep making work that showed that the United States in still a place where you can speak your mind. The US is still a place where an immigrant can go and say what he wants, and that’s what my father told me what the country was about.

Some of Rodriguez’s artwork on display at Design Indaba 2018

@edelrodriguezdesignindaba.com 

The post How I got here: Edel Rodriguez appeared first on Creative Review.

Source: http://ift.tt/1KjyLUn

How I got here: Edel Rodriguez

Edel Rodriguez was one of the most eagerly anticipated speakers at this year’s Design Indaba festival. He was introduced to a live audience of 1800 delegates, by Pentagram’s Michael Bierut, who said that Rodriguez’ genius lay in “taking things we’re watching in the news, and turning them into brilliant, precise, indelible moments of social commentary.” In his talk Rodriguez discussed growing up in Cuba, the power of the internet and of course, Trump.

On his early childhood I grew up in a beautiful shithole, in a small town in Cuba, and in this town I learnt everything I know about taking care of your neighbours and being nice to people. All my neighbours were black kids or mixed raced kids and I was pretty much the only white kid on the block. It was from this – the fact that when I became sick it would be these people that helped me get better – that I developed my love for diverse cultures.

Rodriguez speaking on the Design Indaba 2018 stage, behind is an image of him as a child in Cuba

Learning from Cuban film posters One of the biggest influences on my work was Cuban film posters. Foreign posters for films were not allowed in the country, so the posters used to advertise the films would be made locally by Cuban designers. A lot of the simple designs and colours of the Cuban posters come from the fact that we had limited colours, the places printing them had only two or three colours usually. So in a four or five month period sometimes every single poster that came out of that factory would be of those same few colours. Cuba became very adept at being able to do a lot with very little.



Being influenced by the military The next big influence was political posters which would be plastered along the streets. The messaging on these was quite severe [the word muerte (death) was on a lot of them].  As a child these sorts of things and the military protests had a big influence on me. If you’re in the US you may go to fancy dress parties dressed as Mickey Mouse, but I used to wear my uncle’s military uniforms.

Leaving Cuba and landing in Miami My father [who was a photographer, loved music and to host parties] was very counter-revolutionary. In the 1980s the government in Cuba was pretty violent. Groups of people would be sent to people’s homes to shame them and beat them up [if they weren’t sympathisers]. Eventually Castro passed a law which allowed everyone who wanted to leave the country, to leave. My father decided we should leave the country along with my mother and about 20 other family members.

Rodriguez’s childhood home in Cuba

We were kept in a camp called the Mosquito for a while, which should tell you something about the condition it was in. There was a lot of violence and conditions were pretty bad, but eventually we got a place on a boat. The boats were filled with a few families but also with prisoners, prostitutes, basically other people who the government was sending out of the country.

The families, like ours were taken to houses when we landed in Miami, Florida. We were welcomed into the country. Overnight, I went from being surrounded by graphics of the Cuban revolution to being surrounded by images of American pop culture. These images, along with those of American advertising all became mixed up in my mind. I became obsessed with rock ‘n’ roll, we switched from Salsa parties in Cuba to rock ’n’ roll parties. We would decorate drum sets, and would have themed parties where we’d decorate the place with artwork for bands like KISS.



Above: Some of the recent Der Spiegel covers by Rodriguez. The magazine, he says, is more open to “taking it just a little bit further.” 

Moving to New York and working as an illustrator After school I went to New York to attend university [Pratt Institute, Brooklyn] and I became involved in the university newspaper. I’ve been in New York since and have a studio in New York City, where I do sculptures, installations, graphics, posters, paintings, and more.

I have done about 60 to 70 different posters for Broadway shows, operas and for different theatres. Another big part of my work is magazine covers, I think I’ve done about a 150 different magazine covers in my career so far.

People think that the anti-Trump work is the main thing I do, but actually it’s sort of a side project that seems to have gotten a lot of attention. Most of my work at the moment is definitely political, but not all of it is about Trump – like illustrations for magazine articles and advertising work that uses some of my characters.

My graphic style Usually what I try to do with my images is create something very strong, graphic and something that will get your attention whether it’s on a large poster or small postage stamp. I want you to get something out of it as soon as possible; I make images that can be understood by someone with a PhD degree as well as someone like my grandfather who does not speak English.

Communication Arts cover by Edel Rodriguez

Discovering the power of the magazine cover The first time I realised the power of the cover of a magazine was when I made the Communication Arts Cover in 2006. It was a special story about Cuban design and I created this idea of how Cuba was changing and becoming more commercial and at the same time America was trying to create a rebel aesthetic. This cover created a lot of controversy online, and it ended up in Cuba. People were hiding it in bags and sharing it with each other, because it was illegal in Cuba.

Cover art for Newsweek magazine, “What Silicon Valley Thinks of Women”. Art director – Grace Lee (Priest & Grace)

The other really controversial cover I created was about sexual harassment. Half of the women who saw it hated it because they thought I was re-victimizing them and the other half were supportive. It created a really big conversation on the internet, on The Today Show – where it was thrown in the trash on live TV.



Above: Rodriguez created the images above in response to the ISIS crisis in 2013, and these sort of images went viral making him an internet sensation. 

Making art for the internet By 2013 I started following the issue with ISIS and I started making illustrations in response. I started putting them on the internet and they started going viral. I started seeing people taking selfies with beheadings for example and responded to that, and the images were pretty harsh. I responded to other things like the bucket challenge, and I thought it was preposterous that people were wasting so much water over this and so much of their life. I think all my friends stopped posting videos of the bucket challenge after this.

Creating illustrations for social media I feel like I know how social media works, and I don’t think I had to adapt my style too much to create art for social media – [I was already creating imagery that seemed to work in many different sizes and formats]. In some cases, like with the ISIS imagery I created, a lot of it is simple forms on white backgrounds which seem to work well for social media. But it started with just wanting to work with a simple colour scheme, and it just happened to work really well on social media. Then I learnt from what works and did more of it.


Above: After seeing his work online Times magazine got in touch with Rodriguez asking his to do the cover, when they were running a story called Melthdown, which predicted a failure of the Trump campaign. This was followed up by Total Meltdown.

How Social Media has shaped magazine covers Having worked with magazines in the past I used to sometimes get frustrated that the stuff I wanted to get published would not get published because it was too controversial. Sometimes I didn’t want my work to be toned down in order for it to be published. I decided to do more ‘out there’ things with social media hoping that magazines would catch up to it. And I feel like I’ve been able to do that.

My whole feed is filled with people I work with like editors and art directors, and I wanted to get in their heads that it’s OK to go this far with imagery. Hoping they’d see what I was doing on social media and become OK with taking a more risks with covers. This eventually happened.

The illustration used on this cover of Der Spiegel, Feb 2017, was originally published by Rodriguez on his Twitter feed. The magazine got in touch with him after seeing it online, asking if they could use the image on their cover.

The galvanising power of political imagery I don’t know if political art has the power to change minds. But I wouldn’t be doing it if I didn’t deep down believe it had the power to change at least one or two minds. I think there are a lot of different things it can do.

It can galvanise people that feel a certain way. You may feel alone and crazy for believing something or having a certain political ideology, but my work is there to remind you that your opinion is shared. It also reminds people of stuff that matters, like “yes he did say the word shithole”. I get a lot of people sending me messages thanking me for saying what was on their mind. They didn’t know how to express it, and by creating art they can identify with I am giving them a weapon. They can take it and share it with other people, make them excited to go out there and protest. I think it’s very important to protest, and to see that it’s real middle class Americans that share your view, not just some crazy left wing college kids.

Above: Before the Women’s Marches Rodriguez shared his work online, and gave the public permission to print or copy his illustrations to use during the protests. He doesn’t mind sharing his work, he says, because you can’t expect an army to fight without weapons. 

I think the work I do is creating a record for the future. Even if things don’t go our way politically, there will be people in the future who look back and at least know that there was an opposition and will know what we believed. It’s also important to show the rest of the world that we feel this way. It’s embarrassing to see what America has become, so I was us to show people outside of the states that all of us are not crazy.

Cover for TIME magazine, Hate in America, August 2017

On America and being American What the United States means to the rest of the world is being threatened by a single man, and I wanted to keep making work that showed that the United States in still a place where you can speak your mind. The US is still a place where an immigrant can go and say what he wants, and that’s what my father told me what the country was about.

Some of Rodriguez’s artwork on display at Design Indaba 2018

@edelrodriguezdesignindaba.com 

The post How I got here: Edel Rodriguez appeared first on Creative Review.

Source: http://ift.tt/1KjyLUn