Obladee Specialising in graphic design for print, brand identity and web.

Logos in a responsive world

Logos in a responsive world

 

We came across this interesting guide to responsive logo design, it shows some great examples of how brands have adapted to be responsive and efficient in the modern world of branding. It’s interesting how in recent years logos are becoming more simplified and minimal, yet are possibly stronger and more memorable than ever.

http://justcreative.com/2017/01/29/the-designers-guide-to-responsive-logos

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How is design different abroad?

On a recent trip to Iceland with my wife, amongst all of the beautiful scenery and attractions, my geeky creative design brain couldn’t help but study the graphic design surrounding us. It got me thinking, how is graphic design different in other countries and why?

In the UK we are a nation of consumers and I think the advertising and branding we are subjected to reflects that. The majority of this content has been created by huge multi-nationals with huge advertising budgets and massive brand recognition. When I’ve been to other European countries in the past it’s apparent that design is different to the UK, but I’ve always seen the continuity in the larger brands that are present. In Iceland there were far fewer of these international recognisable brands around and several small to medium brands that had established themselves on the sparsely populated island (for example, shops, coffee outlets, tourism companies). I started thinking about these brands and their design identity and how they had a different feel about them. The designs of their logos and advertisements felt foreign to me (despite being written in English!) Why was that? Perhaps because the way of life is slightly different? Or the consumer habits are different to that in the UK? Or perhaps it’s none of these reasons, perhaps it’s just because they were brands I wasn’t aware of before?

Of course there were still plenty of brands around that I did know, the obvious ‘Coca-Cola’ and ‘Pepsi’ for example, along with many other food and drink brands. It was their presence however that got me thinking, that a recognisable brand gives you a sense of comforting familiarity – a thought that I wouldn’t have had if I’d seen any of these logos at home. In fact I probably wouldn’t have even acknowledged that I’d seen them! But when abroad, and surrounded by unknown brands, these logos become a sense of realisation that your not that far from home! (that we all have this connection?)

My conclusion to how design was different in Iceland (Reykjavik) was that consumerism plays a smaller part in their design culture. Despite the place feeling like a mix between the colder areas of North America and some European cities, the presentation of broad design and consumer brands was quite different. Upon exploring different areas of the city however, it was apparent that there was a vibrant art and design scene where craft and photography was particularly popular and good art and design was appreciated by the locals. It’s interesting how we might consider the design industry in countries like Iceland to be behind us in the sense of commercial advertising and branding. Yet, their contemporary art design culture appears to be booming. Perhaps the gap between the two sides of the industry is bigger? Is it better that these things are kept separated?

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How branding is evolving…

How branding is evolving…

The term branding is a million miles from what used to be known as corporate identity. These days organisations need to think far beyond the colours, shapes and style of their identity and delve deeper into the purpose behind a brand. Since the introduction of the internet and social media, to build a great brand it’s essential that you are always evolving, interacting and hold core values in all you do.

Of course it’s important that you have a great logo with an awesome identity to portray this, but this really comes to life when you have a powerful vision behind it all. This is what’s picked up by your customers and what sticks in their heads; it’s what they think about you, what they tell their friends & family and ultimately what makes them come back for more.

Have you recently thought about how your brand is perceived by your current and future customers?

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Merry Christmas from Obladee

Merry Christmas from Obladee

Just a quick note to say Merry Christmas and a big thank you for your custom this year and continued support.

You can take a look through our portfolio to see some of the interesting projects we have worked on throughout 2014 and we have more to share with you soon.

We have an exciting year planned for Obladee and are looking forward to new challenging projects in 2015. On top of this Jon and his wife are expecting their first child in the summer (potentially a future employee!).

Hope you enjoy the festivities and have a happy New Year!

Jon & Dan

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Norway’s New Currency Design

Norway’s New Currency Design

After a competition sponsored by Norges Bank to design Norway’s new currency, the winners have been chosen. Snøhetta for one side of the notes and The Metric System for the other, working together to create both a modern and traditional design.

On the side designed by The Metric System they have maintained a more traditional look, with illustrations of nautical scenes and coastal life from the sea.

Norway Money 12

But in contrast the designs from Snøhetta are what I am really excited about. They look so fresh and new in a sea of dated illustrations of historical figures on most other currencies around the world.

Not only does the notes length increase with each rise in denomination, but the pixels becomes wider to depict the increase in wind speed on these abstract coastline designs. The only thing I would say is it’s a shame they didn’t go with both sides of Snøhetta’s design as they work really well together and would have been even more unique to have photography on a bank note.

Norway Money 1

These notes are due to be circulated in 2017, sounds like a good excuse for a ‘company trip’ to Norway to see these modern designs hands on!

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SAS Scholarship winners 2014

SAS Scholarship winners 2014

Creative agency SAS announced the winners of their annual scholarship award recently, which was set up 3 years ago to highlight work from the students of their local colleges. Each college is given a different brief and the top three entries are awarded a cash prize from £1,000 to £3,000. It shows some really great design and thought provoking ideas and you can see the winners entries here.

My favourites have the be the work of Phoebe Willison and David John Pilkington. Both showing great examples of how design and technology can be used together to help improve our lives and health.

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Phoebe’s project was based around the idea of a personalised medicine based on the patients DNA. She proposed a chip being injected into the patients when they are born which would send useful data to an app, allowing the patient to see their current health condition. The app’s styling is inspired by the film ‘Her’ about a man’s relationship with a futuristic operating system, and would allow professionals to treat the patients more effectively and flag up any potential health risks early on.

The concept brings up many moral issues, could this be a step too far for technology? It has already improved our lives so much, so why stop there? It’s a feasible future for apps and personal devices. These designs demonstrate brilliantly just how the concept could work, bringing it to life for us to fear or fantasise.

 

David produced a piece of design that would attempt to change the supermarket shopping experience with a food labelling scheme to combat the UK’s obesity problem. The idea is a scale from 1-99 that rates food by their nutritional value, from 1 being unhealthy to 99 being the healthiest. These numbers would then be synced with an online platform for you to track your score over time. “Finding healthy food is confusing,” he says. “Things labelled low fat are often high in sugar or salt to compensate, and it seems every week there’s a new diet we’re supposed to follow. I wanted to create a simple, honest system that could be implemented in any supermarket”.

Again, this project shows a great use of technology and demonstrates a very plausible idea. There’s an infinite amount of creative technology sitting there in the palm of hands! It’s ideas like this that harness it and turn it in into useful tools that can improve our lifestyles. What I feel this project really demonstrates well, is just how important good design is to a concept like this. Without the clean, ergonomic and aesthetic design this idea would be lost in the supermarket.

screen_shot_20140516_at_14.11.53_0

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Google.com search redesign

Google.com search redesign

Over at Letter Society, a challenge based design blog, they create concept project briefs and then the eight members all submit competing ideas.

I was particularly interested in the latest one which was ‘Project 9: Google.com Search Redesign‘. Such a hard task to improve on such a simple and iconic design of one of the most viewed pages on the internet, but there are some really good concepts.

The submission from Jake was my favourite as somehow he managed to simplify the page even more than it currently is!

The main thing to note about Google is that now with instant search, as soon as you type one letter into the search bar you are whisked off to the results page, so there is actually no need for the ‘search’ button. With this concept the whole page becomes the search bar and I can see how this would work really well across all platforms such as mobile, tablet and desktop. Also it is only one click away to access your other Google services such as Gmail, YouTube or Google Drive along the bottom instead of the current drop down which requires an additional click.

I did also quite like the colourful concept from Erik, this brings through the company colours and is a lot more playful looking, although I think this may be one step away from the current minimalistic white, and one step towards a Bing.com look!

Find out more about Letter Society: Website | Twitter

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Thank you

Thank you

It has been a great first few weeks at Obladee, we have started work on a couple of exciting new projects and will hopefully share these very soon.

We would like to take this opportunity to say a massive thank you to everyone who has spread the word about us on Facebook, Twitter or even if you did it the old fashioned way of actually talking to somebody in real life (but who does that any more!) we really appreciate it!

If you can’t benefit from our services please continue to pass on the message to anyone that could, from your mate that owns their own company and needs new leaflets to your friends that just got engaged and want some great bespoke invites for their wedding. Simply send them to obladee.co.uk and we will see how we can help and don’t forget to mention that they will get a huge 25% off of our fees until the end of May 2014!

Dan & Jon

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Hello.

Hello.

Hello and welcome to our little corner of the internet. Go grab yourself a lovely cup of tea, get yourself comfortable and take a look around… but watch out; the paint’s still wet in places!

Daffodils are growing, the sun is shining (most of the time) and the animals are all getting a bit frisky. This can only mean one thing; it’s spring! The season of new beginnings. What better time to launch our new outfit into the world?

We have been working on design projects for years now (separately and together) and have now set up our own thing… and that thing is Obladee.

We have experience in several different areas of the creative industry, ranging from company branding, promotional material, web start-ups and everything in between. This means we’re able to offer a wide range of creative projects. Just call us your ‘go to’ guys. If you like.

We’ve combined our various skill sets and knowledge into one. Take a look at our Portfolio to see some examples.

We are excited about our official launch and can’t wait to get started on some new projects, so to celebrate we are offering a massive 25% off until the end of May 2014, so why not get in touch and see how we can help you.

Dan & Jon

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