This is more of a contemporary reference to retro, but nonetheless, they have ‘been and gone’ in terms of their height of fashion on the product market. Some are possibly still around but other food products in this lovely list are obsolete! (Sad face) We thought we would create an obscure post this week because, well, we are kind of random and like to keep our blog littered with lots of interesting gems. Edible matter combined with noteworthy creativity is always fun and so here are DEN’s 5 retro food products of the contemporary age.
Number 1 SUNNY D. (Sunny Delight)
This product had such a massive hype in one huge burst and then all of a sudden evaporated like a cloud of mist. That bright ‘in your face’ branding is just about as vivid as the drink’s actual colour was! That is pretty much the precise reason it was taken off the market…that and its insatiable composition of artificial additives and horrible stuff for kids. (Your tongue would turn yellow…that’s not healthy kids!) Goodbye Sunny D and your bold, stereotypical American branding aimed at children- you had your reign! And it was pretty sunny if you ask us.
POP TARTS. What a product!
Kellog’s Pop Tarts! These mouth-wateringly-gooey breakfast treats are irreplaceable we think (the product, not the branding). They were/still are a taste sensation with ‘Chocotastic’ rating very highly in our list! Pop Tarts are still very much available from all main superstores and much like Sunny D, their packaging is just as eye-catching, animated and child-orientated- the font especially ‘popping.’
Did you know you can even get Pop Tarts delivered to your door on Amazon? Surreal huh? Well if you’re a fan, there’s no stopping ya!
Now who was a huge fan of Nerds? Those eye-popping tiny, candy treats that come in plentiful portions in these little neon boxes! These were and still are, powerful Wonka sweets, but are nowadays, not so easy to track down. They can be found however, in one-off special sweet stores for a bit more than they used to be priced at, but nonetheless, they are still the same old sour goodness! The packaging is such an eyesore, but what do we expect? They represent one of the most animated-expression-causing confections on the market!
The original candy stick sweets! The cylindrical white goodness of Barretts. Looking back they were quite weird and actually not that good come to think of it. but they were all the rage when everyone hit the age range 5-9, costing, around only 20p a pack. The branding itself surprisingly isn’t that exciting really, unless they introduced the special edition packs that were colour/information/image OVERLOAD. Check out Spiderman, Hulk and Wolverine in collaboration with Marvel!
Now here are some of our favourite lunchbox treats from the past- ‘Cartoonies.’ They were circular, chocolate-filled biscuits detailed with some of the favourite famous characters of the time. We have no idea where to get them anymore and they even seem to be playing ‘hard to get’ on the web too. They were the nuts in primary school!
Image found on this Tumblr.
Number 5 has to be PEZ. PEZ sweets, PEZ dispensing towers, PEZ characters, in summary PEZ gimmick galore! Overall it was an ‘experience’ with various complimentary products creating the perfect sweet collection kit and hours of activity. Remember these? Check out the various heads that were available and now, if you’re lucky, you can find them at any big superstores and tug at your mum’s trousers to get you some at the til. It was slim chance but we all tried it anyway.
For more great confectionary findings and news on how to get hold of some for yourself visit CyberCandy.
In line with our recent post on some gorgeous, rare postal stamp designs (perhaps even the BEST stamp collection ever) -some even unreleased, floating around in the creative sea, we decided it would be nice to produce a collaborative blog entry for all you fanatics of the field. This post goes that bit further into the wonderful phenomenon of the postal service and details how valuable it has become up to date. But obviously we have reached a digital age in this contemporary world we live so…what would the world be without the Post Office, eh?
This infographic was produced by a lovely lot called ‘Numbersleuth’; an online organization renowned for exploring the world of numbers and statistics and presenting readers with fascinating facts on well…anything interesting! Infographics are not only fun, but also exceedingly useful and make absorbing key information exciting and simple! So why not first read this intriguing infographic and then explore more of their stuff.
Did you know the stamp most cherished, as a collectors item in the U.S is one that has Elvis Presley’s face splashed all over it? And did you know the most expensive stamp in the U.S is worth nearly a million dollars currently, with its denomination at 24 cents? Crazy huh?!
The last exciting fact that we fancy telling you about before you can learn about them for yourself is that 438,000,000 pieces of mail are processed every day! Phwoar, that’s rather a lot.
Due to a rise in the number of Americans with access to an online mailbox, the future of the postal service is growing bleak. Blame it on the Gmail! Now it may not be about the U.K but it certainly is enlightening. Similarly, like many hard-copy versions of ‘things’ that are becoming digitalized, the postal service is suffering. This is very sad indeed, we think- what will happen to all those stamp designers?! And cute, quirky keep-sakes that are the result of such magnificent, little creations?
What side are you on?
Be sure to check out some more ‘fun with numbers’ on Numbersleuth- they make learning hard facts fun!
Well, I hear you say, ‘ What the heck are Zines?’ The word zine (“zeen” in conversation format) is a lovely little abbreviation for ‘fanzine’ or ‘magazine.’ They are usually a small circulation publication of original self-published work, mass-produced (cheaper than the more glamorous, larger formats) and often stapled in black and white. They’ve got that something extra that normal magazines just don’t have. Read on to discover more…
These little gems are lovely works of sacred art. Keep-sakes if you will. Content usually revolves around the arts, culture and music scene, showcasing extracts of creative work, often hand-produced and then photocopied, for fast duplication. They usually have that extra bit of charm over the larger formats, due to the lack of corporate backing, along with their individual purpose. They don’t get all cocky (filled with an abundance of advertisements like magazines do and get told what to contain). Zines decide who they want to aim at with their unique content and display format.
Below we have gathered an assortment of zines that look rather splendid from various ends of the creative world.
Up first- ‘Journal Doodles.’
This project was created by illustrator Marloes de Vries, featuring hilarious, relatable doodles originally published on her blog. Format: 24 pp printed full colour onto 135 gsm wood free stock, soft cover is 250 gsm, both include a matte finish.
No Thoughts 9:
This a is slick, classic entry, filled with powerful black and white photography. Made by NoThoughts, it is a photobook disguised as a magazine, showcasing photo talent from around the globe. This issue (number 9) is entitled the ‘Music Issue’ and dedicates valuebale page space to 32 different photographers. Format: 60 pages in stark black and white, printed on 70lb laser white paper with an 80lb glossy cover, packaged in a resealable 4mil virgin polyethylene film bag.
The ‘VS Zine’ is the first Manchester-based illustration zine from Foursight.
Some of the big dogs of the Mancunian illustration field were asked to collaborate in order to create an issue of opposing themes. For example one illustrator was given ‘hot,’ the other was designated ‘cold’ and both their entries were printed on reverse pages. Cool huh? It’s like a battle of the arts! They fashioned their best creative ideas hats and came up with this collection of 10 double-sided posters.
Format: Each copy features a screen printed cover and is bound with a simple screw in the corner. A perforation along the top of the image allows for easy extraction and framing. It’s only a tenner to buy so visit Foursight store.
Here are some more of our favourite examples from designpiration.net:
Format: 365 – 120×120 mm, 64 pages, self published zine.
To cap off this lovely week of May we thought we’d discuss postal stamps. Random we know but why the heck not?! There’s imagination behind everything that’s made nowadays. Yes these are the kind you slop onto the right hand corner of your envelopes and hope it has the power to do the rest. Furthermore, this is probably the best stamp collection EVER, because we have specially selected these for their creativity and design value! Keep reading, bearing in mind these are both official and unofficial design entries.
This one is Swiss, from February 2010 and was designed by Celestino Piatti. We chose this one for a rightful blog position for its very charmingly animated animal qualities and the big bulging eyes!
A first class stamp for the 2012 London Olympics. They went on sale October 22nd of 2010 and 2012, and each of the different stamps- representing a variety of the Olympic and Paralympic games- were each designed by their own artist. How lovely!
‘Aquatics’ was created by the infamous Julian Opie. Discover more Olympic stamps on The Telegraph.
These German stamps at one euro a pop celebrate the 150th birthday of Swedish author Selma Lagerlöf with an illustration by the German artist Wilhelm Schulz. This stamp deservingly won a place on this post due to its delicate portrayal of the flight of birds, infused with an abundance of innocence. The delightful pastel colours compliment the youthful subject matter beautifully, whilst the red really makes the stamp POP! There is indeed a little story behind the stamp’s content- the image depicts a scene from one of Lagerlöf’s best known works, a children’s book called The Wonderful Adventures of Nils, published in 1906.
Tidepooler has more musings on German stamps and other sorts!
Now how adorable is this?!
This stamp by Dick Bruna, entitled ‘Violin,’ is from The Netherlands. The designer creates children’s postage stamps on the themes of children and music. It was rightfully stumbled upon on Daily Design Discoveries - it’s so simple yet loveable!
Quirky stamps showing off cool crystals!
Yes, you may have recently seen our Facebook post on a wicked precious crystals and gems poster, but these stamps go the extra mile! They are so funky! Find out more about goodies like this on Design Work Life.
A United Nations stamp entitled ‘UN Dove & Globe’ from 1964.
See more of this kind at Aqua Velvet.
Stamps with unconventional colours! These are bright and bold indeed and designed by Eric R. Mortensen, a Brooklyn-bound illustrator. Check him out If you can’t get enough of his Space Animal stamp series!
What sounds more fun than narrative and graphics in a combined post, eh!? Narrative graphics are little anecdotal creations that generate a chuckle or two and look rather good. It takes intelligent communication via the elements used and a selective choice of what visual devices to use. Read on to learn about the art of portraying messages with concise and effective graphic designs.
Number 1- Just your average chocolate bunny interaction
This entry plays on the notion that Easter bunny chocolates are edible in their entirety. One gets their butt munched, deciding to tell his friend and the other- bless him- get’s his ears removed, so can’t even respond, setting up an illimitable conversation.
Get the Tee from SnorgTees.
Inanimate object feuds…
…that are actually animated in this graphic! Giving the (normally very average) objects a character immediately sets the scene for humour. Secondly, us viewers understand the situation by reading their little facial expressions, seeing their weapons, encouraging us to choose a side. Paper guy is always on the fence, we like him. Anyone for an intense game of rock paper scissors? Again why not get a T shirt from Snorgtees, entitled ‘Mexican Standoff.’
Maths fans this is for you. Who really knows their symbols and giggled at this one? Pi, do be rational and square root of negative one should probably get real.
Pi be Rational can be purchased at Snorgtees.
This is the work of designer Anneke Short based in London, who has made a very literal narrative with her use of graphics. Using type to convey the message is simple, bold and straight to it. And, the message itself is actually quite true. Comic Sans when are you going to stop infecting our design lives with your presence.
See more of her literal amusing stories on Behance.
This is an oxymoron. Full stop. No explanation needed. And no, no one wishes it was true, but please everyone eat your greens they are wonderful for your insides! That’s our moral of the day over with thanks to designer Glenn Jones. He even has a few more of these quirky graphic entries on AND they are available in T Shirt form.
Welcome to irony city. The following graphics pretty much tell it as it is using some of the most globally famous brands, but employing a small name alteration. These are clever!
Do you agree with Swedish designer Viktor Hertz? He deserves some recognition for his honest logos.
As a strange yet applicable subject area we have ventured on to beautiful wrapper paper designs today. Wrapping paper is so underrated and usually the anti-lazy option for regular gift-givers, so we think they deserve some acknowledgement. Someone has spent a lot of time and creative energy churning out lovely ideas to sprawl all over these vast sheets of paper, so here are a few we have selected fitting the criteria they are FAB.
First up some luscious and loveable cats!
“Kittens” Wrapping paper for Hemlock Printers was designed by Marian Bantje. What we really love about this paper design is it’s repetitive kaleidoscopic notion creating a sprawl of feline fun! Perfect for your best friend’s birthday or even putting up on your wall for a striking feature. (Well we think it’s cute enough for that anyway!)
Number 2 is Irish made and very affordable may we add, ‘Little Houses wrapping paper,’ from Rene Mullin. The paper is actually entitled ‘Baille,’ which translates to ‘home’ in English and is available from Etsy.
Maps! Who doesn’t love maps! This is a very original and make-shift wrapping paper for all the budding geographers out there. A map itself is beautifully and thoughtfully crafted entity, so wrap this over your favourite souvenir and you got a super package! If you fancy a purchase, visit Paper Source for several varieties.
At number 4 we declare ‘an eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind.’ Well factually it doesn’t. In fact, it leaves one person with an eyeball left and luckily they will be able to view this gorgeously hand-stamped entry. This wrapping paper is Lova’s World DIY craftwork and comes in al sorts of varieties; from owls to crowns and beyond!
Macaroons and moustaches- two lovely sister prints from Paper Source. Find them in the home wrap section and even get them in gift bag form! Wahey! And while you’re at it check out the Cavillini London Underground wrap, the beer run wrapping and our personal favourite, the Holiday owls.
They also have pixelated wrapping paper, which we fricken adore because it relates to the digital sphere and encapsulates a range of colour. This one’s ideal for the tech geeks and art fanatics.
Lastly we think you should check this out. It’s actually tactile- a gift-wrap with baker’s twine and pom-poms. How adorable! Find it on Anthropologie in the other colour. (Unfortunately this is not longer available to buy, sad face)
This week is animal week. Well, maybe just today, but nonetheless, here are lots of amusing animal image manipulations! Photoshopping fun ensues so if you fancy a giggle today, take a peek at this blog post! We have even captioned them for our mutual entertainment and sometimes have even gone as far as adding a character narrative.
Photo manipulation is the application of image editing techniques to photographs in order to create a deception or illusion. This is commonly via image editing software on computers and results in some fabulous end products, whether professional or comical. (The latter in this case)
Up first it’s ‘Angry Bird’
Gosh this is a frightening fella. It’s best to just let him have your seaside chips, as otherwise you won’t have any ears left. Play it safe with this bird-dog lovechild.
At number two it’s probably the happiest alien bug alive, EVER.
We think it’s a puppy dog, fly mix, with a hint of human happiness. Yes that grin is irreplaceable and yes we do (weirdly) kind of want one…
Meet the demon cloud tiger.
This was specially selected on the basis that it is FAB. The big wild cat’s face combined with a frivolous, thick cloud creates an image full of power, density and viscousness. There should be more climate cat collaborations, they work a treat!
Number 4 is ‘Stealthy but smug- the amphibian with energy.’
This cute canine frog merge is utterly adorable. It looks like it had a great photo shoot in the studio, showing off it’s new found glossy fur, sporting the biggest eyes you’ve ever seen.
Harry. This is Harry. Harry is a super intelligent, sneaky kinda guy, whose passion is recreational board games, but whose secret is using them as his weapon of choice for gambling. On Saturdays he meets a few friends for a whiskey down his favourite local and his preferred garments are his pure white perforated lofas and his left 18 carat wrist watch. Harry’s serious expression says it all; just about keeping it together, yet confident and stern. Chill out Harry mate (but nice jacket by the way).
Syd is a similar character but keeps himself a bit more to himself. He’s peaceful, youthful and loves collecting parka jackets. 3 days a week you’ll find him in London doing some graffiti, but mostly he’s working in GAP and saving up to return to his home land, Zimbabwe. See more from Syd and Harry on Christoph Meyer‘s site. Gorgeous eyes Syd.
Terry, the quater pounder. 100 % real meat with added crunch and all your major food groups.
And last but not least, ‘Anrgy Bird: the sequel.’
The epitome of ’I hate life and I hate myself.’ If you want to know what a hawk-pup looks like, well here it is. Still searching for an easy meal target, but with obvious less ability, this unhappy chap is ready for a showdown.
As a refreshing theme for this week, we decided to venture into the realm of logos. They’re not just any logos, they’re pretty unseen, unusual, great ones involved with branding from around the globe. (And we’re not talking the usual regurgitated mass commercial names either). Read on and check out something new.
These few are some entries from Yuro based in Russia. We particularly like the slick aesthetic and crisp edges of this little gem. When black meets white the world is eternally satisfied. Looking smart!
Chilli pepper pointed shoes? Odd, but brilliant! The colour red admittedly is a favourite, so this immediately caught our attention. We’re not quite sure what this why trying to convey- whether a hot shoe, a possible shoehorn advert (?), a spicy set of heels or just a cute experimentation of opposites, but whatever it is it’s likeable.
Induce Media by Vidu, Brazil, is a tastefully colourful logo indeed. Its transition into the blue turquoise spectrum is particularly smart and the pointed edges are broken up nicely by the smooth curvature of the spinal wave. The seahorse resonates the idea about riding a wave of ideas and obviously they’ve thrown some token red in there. It could’ve been nice to keep it to the ranges of blue we think, but you can’t have it all!
Antipo from Spain have created probably our favourite logo of the set:
The combination of a really successful finish, neat edges, a well-mastered substance to the physical products and the unconventional heart-shape style creates a super duper concise brand image. We adore the simplistic use of cut out that celebrates bright colour and layers! Very modern, very professional but not corporate enough to appear too serious.
‘Assemblism is a small team of consultants based out of New York city. They specialize in recommending technology strategies for better customer experiences.’ They have thus created their own very inspiring, creative and energetic logo and brand image.
Pulling sources from Mondrian’s adoration of harmony and order, line, occasional pastel colour and typography, Assemblism have produced a winner here. Encapsulating hours of work, mind mapping and idea development, they have also cleverly tied in their appreciation for structure and transport networks. Our favourite bit of the scheme is how they have mirrored their name and work ethic throughout the evolution of this project; it is progressive, logical and incorporates building blocks from inspiration along the journey. It’s just like an assembling process!
The Juicy Factory is bursting with zest! What a fabulously dynamic logo.
It celebrates the relationship of elements, scale and two-colour contrast. And also, who doesn’t love fruit?! Well done to the designer Simon Spring based in Canada. The complimentary fruit illustrations in colour and synonymy with the packaging design looks delightful! Overall it portrays the brand product as trustworthy, quality and wholesome. (and kind of reminds us of Dairy Milk chocolate’s branding, don’t you think?)
Today we’re ending on food (well and other stuff). Yay! This food however is graphic, pretty and peachy-keen in its presentation style. Yes this logo and brand appeal is very delicate, illustrative and almost child-like. Their potent use of pastel colour, block shapes and simplistic portrayal of objects really captures the cute combination of minimalism and happiness. Happy by name, happy by nature, Happy Studio in Australia are certainly living up to their title.
The designers say:
‘The designs are an exploration of the objects that surround us, using minimal form and colour. Approaching this like any branding project, we developed a logo, colour palette and visual style that gives each print an instantly recognisable look and feel.’ These designs are even available in a range of purchasable products. Find out more on Behance.net
Missed us? We’ve missed it too! So we’re back on the blogosphere making a come back with searching ‘weird’ things on the web. These aren’t just any weird things, nuh uh! They are particularly suited to our favourite creative sector pulling together all sorts! From obscure fashion statements to seedlings with facial expressions, we hope this blog post tickles your fancy as much as it did us curating it.
As ever we do enjoy a bit of a rant, so below we’ve added a bit of body to the visuals, describing why these findings are so darn interesting!
Playing about with photography is always good fun but this is particularly odd (and striking may we add), because the equilateral triangle is tessellating all over the place; in this case on the face. Reorganising the expressions and therefore characters’ demeanor makes this image evermore intriguing. It does make you stare that bit longer don’t you think? In which case this to us seems like a modern day unconventional family portrait, worshiping the power of 3 sides and tricks of image manipulation!
Oh and here’s another, very much inspired by Glenn Brown with the warping of the human head. This is beyond warping, it is completely transformed and we’re not even sure why! It is however oddly satisfying, suitably achieving a rightful stance on a mantel piece in a semi-creepy, mad inventor’s home, don’t you think? Very painterly and satisfyingly textural.
A blue banana. What more could you want than the complete opposite of normal. Abnormal, effective and that centre slice just oozes ‘phwoar.’ Well, we like it anyway! Pop art it is. Simple and seductive art.
Oh and another weird portrait with a leg as a face and a cute purse as an earring. What does this mean? We don’t know but what lovely locks she has!
Horsin’ around with this entry, is what seems to be a comical vintage Casio advert. (?!) Find out more wacky stuff from Gior Konducta’s blog.
Fashion (faux-pas). Found on Pinterest, a very good place for the best range of design inspiration, check out what we’ve been pinning and liking all over the shop. Anyway, back on topic, a good photomontage is always appreciated, but we’re not quite sure it works with this scale of stark red roses in the centre of a brilliant white shirt. It would look tastier with small scales of the same images positioned on the cuffs and neck points though!
Mickey Mouse what HAVE you been up to? Again discovered on Pinterest, this artwork celebrates the inside of a living body, which is rather marvellous, but featuring one of the most famous characters in the world! As a child directed phenomenon, this. is. totally. weird.
Last but not least this is weird but so very entertaining! The big Evian water craze, featuring a variety of people on a TV advert sporting baby bodies across the same white Tees, dancing about and representing the vitality of life! Watch the full Evian advert if you haven’t already, it is chuckle-worthy! It has a stop motion, staggered video effect. ‘Evian, Live Young’ apparently.
On a more generic tangent today, we are selecting a range of really nice wallpaper designs for your viewing. We don’t mean wallpaper to spice up that dull interior living mode of your communal room; we mean the exciting ‘WOW’ factor wallpaper that litters our desktops or digital screens. Basically anything we find that can be sprawled across a large canvas, tiled, or used to create visual marvel. Imagine some of these as a website backdrop even? Oh yeah!
This is actually the work of Irving Harper who works in paper to create this immaculately beautiful and textural piece. This one is our favourite as there is so much visual interest, but the designer has also created horses, masks, animated characters and mythical creatures. This image would work particularly well as a iPad or tablet’s background wallpaper in full size!
These few were chosen for their superb serene scenery and innovative viewpoints! We do enjoy photography that pushes the limits that bit further and introduces us to a new way of interpreting the world, especially the wonders of the natural and built landscape. They require you to adjust and focus your eyes more in relation to just a simple flat direct viewpoint.
The first is a photo by Joel Tjintjelaar.
Miniature worlds contained in liquid! The intelligent photographer Markus Reugels introduces us to a new way of understanding the science and technical ability of the camera.
‘Using large satellite photos as a backdrop and a high-speed camera he captures the background’s refraction through water drops. The perfectly timed shots result in these spherical representations of the Earth, Moon and Jupiter.’ (thisiscolossal.com)
Pattern crazy is the theme here. In contrast to those gorgeous dream-like panoramas, some of you may prefer the intricate detailing of wonderful graphics, illustrations or repeated units. Here are a few of our recent favourites with regards to this description.
The first entry is iPad Retina Wallpaper on the Behance Network.
Find out how to get your hands on this cute elephant from We Heart It.
These two feline-featuring entries are from Jack Magpie.
Find this perfect pattern on We Heart It.
Objects, stuff, physical things encapsulated in negative space is the next batch. The objects are thus the forefront of these backgrounds, so here are a few spectacles celebrating ‘the thing’ or ‘the form.’
For more information on this first entry, visit the artwork on Behance.
Now we think this idea is ultra cool, going by the name of ‘Things Organised Neatly.‘ There are several works like this on the blog using various objects and scenarios, so go check out some more funky uses of OCD!
Avengers Assemble made from lots of stuff! WK for Target on Allan Peters’ Blog.