This year the Museum of Gdynia celebrated the Night of the Museums with a presentation of the city’s special brand of modernism. We had the pleasure of designing and illustrating an activity card for the participants. It gave us the rare joy of drawing buildings and playing with modernism-inspired typography. We showed you sketches when we were working on them but today we have the final product to share.
The card is double-sided and folds into a map-like shape, with an actual map on the back. Each part presents one characteristic building and suggests tasks to work on, such as drawing, comparing facades or filling in a crossword puzzle.
As you may imagine, we had a lot of fun with the buildings, and just as much with the illustrations of people in their old-fashioned outfits (Gdynia was built at the beginning of the 20th century and is rather proud of its relatively fresh legacy).
These days Gdynia has a nicely modernized train station (it used to be pretty horrific a few years ago) and during renovations they discovered quite charming mosaics, which look something like this:
Obviously, this was another part that we quite enjoyed illustrating.
And the fun model of the building made of laser-engraved wooden board is courtesy of Architektura+ foundation, who were responsible for many aspects of the whole event.
As more of dog persons we started a while ago our project on famous pets in 8 bit with dogs. But the time has come to pay tribute to famous felines. Though less numerous than dogs, the group includes many illustrious characters that grin, love lasagna, chase small creatures and are altogether loveable.
All the cats are signed at the bottom of the poster and at the bottom of this post. You can also buy a print here and here, should you be so inclined.
Here’s the list of the featured felines: 01 Catbert / Dilbert / cat 02 Tom / Tom & Jerry / cat 03 Heathcliff & Sonja / Heathcliff / cats 04 Felix / Felix the Cat / cat 05 Hello Kitty / Hello Kitty / cat 06 Puss in Boots / Puss in Boots / cat 07 Nyan Cat / YouTube / cat 08 Cowardly Lion / The Wizard of Oz / lion 09 Cheshire Cat / Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland / cat 10 Eek / Eek! The Cat / cat 11 Mr. Jinks / Pixie & Dixie / cat 12 Tigger / Winnie-the-Pooh / tiger 13 Garfield / Garfield / cat 14 Aslan / The Chronicles of Narnia / lion 15 Battle Cat (Cringer) / He-Man and the Masters of the Universe / tiger 16 Sylvester / Looney Tunes / cat 17 Pink Panther / The Pink Panther / pink panther 18 Hobbes / Calvin & Hobbes / tiger 19 The Cat / The Cat in the Hat / cat 20 Top Cat | Fancy-Fancy | Benny the Ball | Brain | Choo-Choo | Spook / Top Cat / cats 21 Mufasa & Simba / The Lion King / lions 22 Bagheera / The Jungle Book / black panther 23 Azrael / The Smurfs / cat 24 Figaro / Pinocchio / cat 25 Schrödinger’s cat / quantum physics / 50% alive cat
A while ago we had a pleasure of designing a PhD publication analyzing the development of old districts in Gdańsk. This is a very technical study, full of maps, graphs and subject interviews – in other words, precisely the kind of challenge we enjoy designing.
We chose to work with a serif typeface, because it was less obvious than a sans-serif and because we felt it would make the technical subject matter more reader-friendly. Because of the budget constraints only some pages are full color. In a book so full of various kinds of data layout needs to help organize it clearly. We used a broadened left margin for navigational purposes where all the chapter, figure, footer numbers etc. are aligned. Sometimes it took a bit of typesetting magic but in the end we feel it worked well.
(Cover photo by the author.)
As the format is relatively small, sometimes it took some ingenuity to fit all the data onto pages.
Designing maps: a special kind of fun.
To celebrate another Oscar ceremony we would like to share with you a series of posters that we designed for a pre-ceremony movie viewing party. The party is held in an old movie theater that each year gets decorated with thematic posters for one evening of Oscar-related fun.
We chose to combine illustrations from famous movie posters with a few statistics about the award ceremony. We had to scratch our heads a little to come up with enough recognizable posters for movies that got at least a nomination (it surprised us, actually, that it wasn’t so easy) but in the end managed to gather a nice collection. Then we drew geometricized versions of Clark Gable, Uma Thurman and company (and had a lot of fun doing that).
(The original poster titles are at the bottom of the post, if you want to try to guess them on your own first.)
A series of posters with statistics:
The original posters in the theater.
You probably figured it out on your own, but the movies whose posters inspired us are the following: Pulp Fiction, Gone with the Wind, Cabaret, Singin’ in the Rain, High Noon, Forrest Gump, Dirty Dancing, Braveheart, The Graduate, Pretty Woman.
The project was made for Podpunkt studio.
This year we didn’t do as many calendars as some years but here’s one we did design (well, at least the cover). It is for a company that specializes in special print effects, such as varnishes, hot stamping etc. and the calendar had to reflect that. When you need to show a few special effects, it’s best not to add an overwhelming design to it. We opted for a simple, classic ornament in a limited color palette: blacks, white and silver with the company’s brand orange.
The calendar comes in a simple envelope of thick paper, which repeats the pattern but without the refining printing techniques. The cover itself, however, has all the frills you could hope for (or, well, some of them). It’s printed on a metalized silver paper, which poses certain challenges in print preparation: you need to print white onto it and black will look different, depending on whether it’s on white or directly on silver (we made use of this, as the pattern uses two blacks). Some elements are left silver. Finally, the whole things is covered with satin coating and the dot elements are spot-coated so that they become raised to touch: the tactile effect is actually quite nice but you have to trust us on that.
Well, call us old-fashioned but designing for print, especially when you can raise the budget with all the special effects, does have a very special appeal for us.
The Submariner Compendium is a project we did for sPro from Berlin. It is a result of international studies of the sustainable use of the resources of the Baltic Sea sponsored by the EU. The publication is directed at European politicians who should be encouraged to promote such solutions for the future of the sea.
The studies were conducted by institutions from many EU countries, including Germany, Scandinavian countries and Poland. The Compendium is divided into chapters, each devoted to one kind of resource, such as mussels, microalgae, sustainable fish farming, blue biotechnology and others. The publication needed to be accessible but also well-organized and present the huge amount of data in an orderly way.
We decided to introduce color coding: each chapter has its lead color and the colors are arranged in a spectrum, which can be seen in the contents page. Additionally, the whole book uses a shade of cyan that is both vivid and sea-related. Also, each resource has an icon that is used for the infographics in the book.
Infographic illustrations were a very important element of the layout and required designing many icons, which, of course, was quite fun for us (especially if they involved animals). The book also required designing maps and graphs – the illustrative material was quite massive. To keep everything clean we used a two-column layout for the text with one-column narrower space for larger illustrations.
The cover also uses the symbols for the resources arranged in a wheel. The extra thrill came from using varnish to add a small wave ornament onto the cover that is only well visible from certain angles.
This was a huge and quite an ambitious project but it definitely gave us a lot of satisfaction to see it completed.
As you may or may not have gleaned we at re:design are huge dog lovers. As we’re not alone in that sentiment and pop culture is full of beloved dogs, our today’s poster honors them in retro 8-bit aesthetics. Can you guess which dogs made it to the poster? Well, if you can’t they’re signed in the bottom of the poster (name, source and breed).
A few close-ups (signed below):
Enlarged dogs above as follows: 04 Pluto (Disney), 07 Dogmatix (The Adventures of Asterix), 08 Beethoven (Beethoven), 12 Scooby-Doo (Scooby-Doo), 14 Dino (The Flinstones), 24 Huckleberry Hound (The Huckleberry Hound Show). The opening image is, of course, Krypto from Superman.
If you happen to like the poster, you may own it, either from Society6 (where we’re now starting) or The Bazaar. All proceeds will probably go to supporting independent font designers when we buy their fonts so, you know, a good deed there.
And this is the full list of the dogs: 01 name: Krypto / known from: Superman / breed: Kryptonian Terrier 02 Grey Wind | Ghost | Nymeria | Shaggydog | Summer | Lady / A Song of Ice and Fire (Game of Thrones) / Direwolf 03 Brian / Family Guy / undetermined 04 Pluto / Disney / Bloodhound 05 Gromit / Wallace and Gromit / Beagle 06 Fluffy / Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone / Cerberus 07 Dogmatix (Idéfix) / The Adventures of Asterix / Gallic Westie 08 Beethoven / Beethoven / St. Bernard’s Dog 09 Snowy / The Adventures of Tintin / Wire Fox Terrier 10 Astro / The Jetsons / Great Dane 11 Droopy / Droopy, Master Detective / Basset Hound 12 Scooby-Doo / Scooby-Doo / Great Dane 13 Scrappy-Doo / Scooby-Doo / Great Dane 14 Dino / The Flinstones / Snorkasaurus 15 Bolt / Bolt / White German Shephard 16 Lassie / Lassie / Rough Collie 17 Odie / Garfield / Beagle 18 The Hound of the Baskervilles / The Hound of the Baskervilles / Hound
19 Sparky / Frankenweenie / Bull Terrier 20 Toto / The Wizard of Oz / Cairn Terrier 21 Snoopy / Peanuts / Beagle 22 The Little Dog | The Big Dog / 2 Stupid Dogs / Dachshund | Old English Sheepdog 23 Lady | Tramp / Lady and the Tramp / Cocker Spaniel | mutt 24 Huckleberry Hound / The Huckleberry Hound Show / Coonhound 25 Dogbert / Dilbert / Beagle 26 Santa’s Little Helper / The Simpsons / Greyhound 27 Jake the Dog / Adventure Time / Pug 28 Lucky, let’s say / 101 Dalmatians / Dalmatian 29 Milo / The Mask / Jack Russell Terrier 30 Rover / Windows XP / Digital Retriever
Just like planned, except a little later, we get to present you our wedding invitations. This was an extremely challenging subject to design, not because wedding invitations are difficult (they are not) but because we expected so much from ourselves and also we had to come to a consensus between our two ideas.
And yes, we did fight a little over the concept. Very little.
The first thing we agreed upon was the shape and the method of folding, simple yet apparently surprising (so much so that more than one person seemed puzzled to refold it after opening). The second thing was offset printing that we wanted: it’s in two Pantone metallic colors, copper and warm silver, printed on one side of the paper (Munken Pure) and folded. That was all done in a printing company but the difficult part, cutting out the triangles to make the ribbon shape, we did by hand. (Okay, it wasn’t that difficult, just time-consuming.)
We printed the inside information at home because it had to be unique for each invitation. As for the ornament, a closed invitation shows just a pattern of abstract round shapes with only two copper hearts. As it is opened the shapes are replaced by more hearts, with pigeons and our initials thrown in for a good measure.
At the back we repeated the initials, together with the most fun part of the design: couples of various animals. We designed most of them especially for the invitation but those of you who drop in here often will recognize a bit of design recycling, too. We later reused the animals for other wedding materials, such as menus. We packed the invitations into metallic copper envelopes that we bought on the internet and were lucky because they matched the print perfectly.
And below is a large-ish gif so wait while it loads.