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A Hyper Cool (And Controversial) Rebranding For American Airlines

13 Sep

Heres another article I found about a rebrand of American Airlines, I love the retro feel of this. The brief was posted on a creative site, open to over 6,000 creatives. So they had their pick of the designs, and could choose what felt right for them. This article concentrates on their favourite, which would definitely be mine too. To see her full range of designs for this click this link:

Taken from


The “uninvited redesign” has become a fixture on the Internet over the past few years. It perpetuates the perfect symbiotic relationship between designer and audience: People love seeing what Wikipedia or Microsoftmight look like in the hands of a genius, and designers love stretching their legs without the burden of a real client or brief.

It’s even become a way for established agencies to secure work. In 2011, Boulder ad agency Victors & Spoils did a hypothetical rebrand for Harley Davidson that helped them nab the actual gig. And this spring, upon news that American Airlines would file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, they reached out to AA’s CEO Thomas Horton in much the same way. “We’ve decided to act as if we’re working together already,” wrote CEO John Windsor. “We’ve put this brief to our crowd of 6,000+ creatives–offering $10,000 of our own toward the ideas we think can best help American Airlines become a more nimble airline.”

The invitation has spurred dozens of redesigns. One of the best came from Cyprus-based designer Anna Kövecses, whose no-nonsense, vaguely retro aesthetic lends itself to the company’s historic brand. The concept won the young designer $1,000 from Victors & Spoils, along with valuable media exposure. “My aim was to strip down the AA identity to the core and this meant building down the whole design to match this core as well,” Kövecses says over email. “For me, this core expectation has turned out to be safety. I wanted to design something that makes people feel safe because it visually meets up to the extremely high technology of aviation, the security and flawless on and off board services provided, and reflects the great history and experience behind American Airlines.” In muted greys and blues, set off by a wood grain highlight texture, the boarding pass and website exude a quiet calm. Simple, readable Helvetica signage and subtle nods to AA’s post-War heyday round out the identity.

But Kövecses explains that her vision comes from a deeper consideration of AA’s brand. “I tried to look at the whole problem from a Dieter Rams-inspired point of view and find out what this company is about, what people expect from this company,” she explains over email. “Then visualize exactly that expectation, not less, not more.” It’s no secret that AA is at its worst where customer experience is concerned, a problem they’ve misguidedly tried to solve by launching a series of bizarre standalone sitesthat target women, African Americans, and other minority groups. Kövecses reinvented the website by improving the UI, but also by including a robust user-generated travel blog where customers can swap tips and stories in return for AA bonus points. Travelers can take ownership over the site by registering as a blogger, and connect with friends and fellow tourists. Buying a trip you’ve read about on the blog is the obvious, but not overbearing, end goal. By incentivizing sharing with frequent flier points, AA could cultivate a socially oriented rewards site.

As BuzzFeed’s Russell Brandom pointed out last week, uninvited redesigns are “the frenemies of the web.” And they’re everywhere. But mocking up a slick-looking homepage only takes a few hours. Implementing a design strategy across a sprawling, multi-organization corporation? Not so easy.

That doesn’t mean that such exercises are meritless, of course. Redesigning a big brand is a way to fill out your portfolio, and as Victors & Spoils have demonstrated, a way to grab the attention (and business) of companies that would normally hire elsewhere. What seems troubling, in the grand scheme of things, is how these redesigns are being consumed. In the ecology of the Internet, aesthetics frequently trump content–designers looking for attention in the form of clicks will shoot for something that looks good, rather than something that might solve a more complicated, organization-wide problem.

Such behavior was demonstrated by another young would-be American Airlines designer, who published a public missive against AA that called out their “hideous” site for causing him “horrific displeasure.” To his surprise, a designer within AA reached out to him, hoping to give a little insight into how a multi-armed organization handles their web presence. It was a fascinating, insightful response. “You want a redesign? I’ve got six of them in my archives,” said the mysterious source. “It only takes a few hours to put together a really good-looking one, as you demonstrated in your post. But doing the design isn’t the hard part, and I think that’s what a lot of outsiders don’t really get, probably because many of them actually do belong to small, just-get-it-done organizations.” Unsurprisingly, he was soon fired from his post at AA. On his blog, the designer labeled the AA employee’s response “a cop-out.”

Kövecses’s reimagining does address the company in a deeper way, making it much more successful (and interesting) than some of the other more superficial concepts out there. And unlike many of her peers, she doesn’t have outspoken ambitions to work for AA–for now, she says, it’s simply a chance to show her chops.”


Machine Creates Art Using The ‘DNA’ Of ‘The Perfect Espresso’

13 Sep

This is such a unique way to create art, I dont know how they thought of it. I think it is also a great way to brand a coffee shop, instead of the usual illustrations, this creates individual images depending on the coffee/drink you ordered. So your takeaway coffees have their own personal sleeve. I really like how they have done this!!

Taken from

For the project ‘The Naked Espresso’ that highlights the features of an espresso machine, Australian ad agency Reborn hacked a Breville Dual Boiler espresso machine to include: an Arduino, flow meters to access espresso flow rate, steam LED to indicate when the steamer was activated on the machine, NTC temperature sensors, and pressure transmitters.

As an espresso gets brewed from the coffee machine, the science behind its making (temperature, flow rate, pressure and steam) gets collected and artistically visualized in a real-time animation.

The speed of the animation is based on the pressure and flow rate of the espresso; its color palette, frequency and variety of shapes, based on the temperature and steam used to make the espresso—making each piece of art one-of-a-kind and a summary of the espresso.

The artistic pieces were printed and attached to coffee cups, to give customers a unique coffee experience and create identifiable coffee cups—even if they all drank the same drink—as they were different based on the visualizations.”









A Top Nike Designer Rebrands Game Of Thrones

13 Sep

So as I’m studying graphic design, I’m always interested in re-brands. But I have to admit that I’m not exactly geeked up on Game of Thrones, but this is still an interesting article to read, as a designer of Nike has re-branded it.

Taken from


If you’re Nike Brand Design rock star Darrin Crescenzi, and you’ve created everything from the Nike Fuel gauge to the U.S. Men’s Olympic Basketball uniforms, what do you do in your spare time?

You, like the rest of us, get hopelessly addicted to George R.R. Martin’s fantasy series Game of Thrones. (Warning: Extreme, esoteric geeking out ahead. If you have no idea what the heck Game of Thrones is, go read the series, then meet me back here in a few months.)




“Like many people, I was introduced by the HBO adaptation–I’m sure to the chagrin of the longtime readers. I began reading the first novel while watching the first season, quickly becoming hopelessly obsessed. I basically disappeared for about five months, devouring all five books in the series, culminating in this borderline-depression when there were no more books to read,” Crescenzi tells Co.Design. “I’m not entirely sure of the full impact the books had on my social life, but there was definitely a span there where friends stopped calling.”

But unlike the rest of us, Crescenzi didn’t end his obsession there. He’s a branding expert, after all. Logo and typographical designs are what we eats, sleeps, and breathes. So while he devoured the books, he also kept a notebook at his side, recording the text descriptions whenever George R.R. Martin introduced a new house sigil. By the third book, Crescenzi stopped taking dictation and began drawing the sigils then and there, eventually compiling the whopping collection of sigils you see here. “I didn’t brand each house–George R.R. Martin did, and whether or not it was intentional, the result is an integral piece in the success the series,” Crescenzi says. “All I wanted to do was give them a sort of unexpected and unified visual language.

“The sigils really do act as branding, in that they give each character formal distinctions–Lannister’s use of crimson and gold, for example, sets that family apart from the rest on a purely visual level. But they also serve to give a vague indication of the values and psychology of the wearer. That same crimson and gold alludes to power and wealth and vitality, and when combined with the symbol of a rearing lion, tells a holistic story about the prominence of that family and their importance within the narrative,” he explains. “Conversely, the white and grey of House Stark is a straightforward representation of them–stoic, bleak, rather depressing. House Bolton’s pink and red ‘flayed man’ sigil pretty much screams psychopath.


“What I find most fascinating, however, is the fact that these ‘brands’ exist only as the written word. A Song of Ice and Fire is devoid of illustrations (other than the maps, of course), and yet when we read a description of, say, a battle between Lannister forces and Stark forces, we immediately create a mental image of screaming gray-clad men rushing into an army of red, despite not being part of the exact verbal description of a battle. These brands become such a key part of the reading experience–Night’s Watch black might as well be Tiffany blue or UPS brown or T-Mobile pink.”



I asked Crescenzi if his work at Nike influenced his work on this sort of visual fan fiction, and surprisingly enough–while most designers tend to distance their professional projects with their geek side projects–he admitted that it absolutely did. “One of our biggest challenges is maintaining a consistent brand voice despite having an incredibly diverse consumer-base. Athletes have very different interests, and sometimes you want basketball to look like basketball, women’s to look like women’s, running to look like running. Other times, you just want it all to look like Nike,” he explains. “Then, you try to maintain brand voice though both Nike and in-direct retail, digital, out-of-home, broadcast, and social media, and do it in incredibly diverse marketplaces around the globe. It’s a daunting task and takes teams of talented and highly organized minds to make it happen. This immense scope of our work makes discipline a core competency for designers here. “That endless pursuit of visual consistency was one of the driving forces behind the look and feel of the poster. I never thought of the project as a series of logos; The approach was much more that of creating an icon set.”

In the end, as true as he remained to the books, Crecenzi did take a few artistic liberties of his own. He ditched all of Martin’s descriptions of physical figures, as he didn’t feel the forms would shrink well to icon-size prints. (He also just found such depictions, like House Umber’s giant breaking out of chains, too literal for his taste.) Other times, he combined a few of Martin’s visuals into one simpler, unique logo.

“House Seaworth, one of the most popular within the texts, is a black ship with an onion on its sail,” he explains. “I decided to create a form that was both simultaneously an onion and a ship–in my opinion, the result is more memorable and was more fun for me to design.”

Now fellow geeks, Crescenzi openly admits that a few houses are missing from his poster, but if you’re a diehard GoT fan, who’d like a print for your wall, they’re available for $35.”

If Classic Cartoons Were Fashion Labels

10 Sep

Quite interesting to read. How would you have envisioned the cartoons you watched as a child? I love how Paul Marren has managed to capture the air of the cartoon (if you like) in the labels he has created.

Taken from

“As an exercise in logo examination, UK graphic designer Paul Marren has re-branded popular classic cartoons—such as ‘Tom & Jerry’, ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ and ‘Scooby Doo’—as hipster fashion labels.
Check out some of his works below: ”













If Microsoft’s New Logo Style Was Applied To Other Famous Brands…

10 Sep

So another Re-brand which has been “squared off” this post looks at how some of our other favourite logos would look if they were changed in a similar way. What do you think?? I think  Microsoft could have been a little more adventurous.

Taken from

“After 25 years, Microsoft recently unveiled its new logo—just in time for Windows 8.

The logo was given a clean sans-serif typeface, and a minimalist version of Microsoft’s symbolic four tiles.

Mexico-based Lee a Ele imagined what the logos of other famous brands would look like if they underwent the same treatment.

The results? Just take a look for yourself below: ”








Yoobi Branding

23 Aug

Here I found a post about the branding of a new restaurant in London. I love how everything works together. They have really been successful with the overall brand of this restaurant. Thinking and taking into consideration everything from the packaging to the tables and chairs.

“Yoobi is the first restaurant specializing in Temakis in London. Inspired by Brazil, a country in which the Japanese emigrants have made this dish a specialty, thevery successful graphic identity of the restaurant has been fully thought by Ico design.” – Taken from Fubiz














YSL Reveals New ‘Saint Laurent’ Brand Logo

20 Aug

Here’s another brand we all know, thats going through a re-brand at the moment. I have to say, I really like this. It is so simple, but it stands out so clear. I have never really been a fan of the other logo, I think this will attract more people and it just looks more young and gritty, if you know what I mean.

‘As part of the move to modernize the iconic fashion house—after changing the brand’s name from ‘Yves Saint Laurent’ to ‘Saint Laurent Paris’—the first images of the new Saint Laurent Paris logo has been revealed.

Editor-in-chief of LOVE Magazine, Katie Eleanor Grand, shared a picture of the fashion house’s rebranding on her Instagram that showed of the logo shows ‘Saint Laurent’ in typography.

The August issue of VOGUE Paris also featured a black product box of with ‘Saint Laurent’ in typography with ‘Paris’ written in smaller type beneath, and surrounded by a thick black frame.

However, the iconic ‘YSL’ logo—designed by Adolphe Mouron Cassandre in 1963—will not be completely phased out.

According to The Telegraph, the new logo will only be applied to the house’s ready-to-wear line, and its official moniker will still remain as Yves Saint Laurent. ‘ – Taken from Taxi magaine