Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Project Packaging, Final Projects

So ya'll have seen The Amphibian—he was my solution to week 3's Project Packaging challenge which was to take Barbie or GI Joe and create a new, original identity. Wanting to spread peace, love and understanding to the world, the Post Bellum series could also include Tour De France Joe, Mt. Everest Joe, Scuba Joe, 8 Olympic Swimming Medals Joe (ok, that name might need to be tweaked a bit), Eco Challenge Joe... you get the idea. Think I should figure out how to pitch it to Hasbro?

Each week of Project Packaging, we had a different challenge and only a week to get it done—to a point that's essentially finished, not just comp-ed up. Every week there was a winner and your stuff got displayed at school for the following week. Since we're all paying for an education, no one got voted off. :) If you want to check out the class blog, you can see what other people did. Here are a few of my other projects...

Week 1:
Design packages for two bags of munchies—chips, cheetos, whatever... one original flavor and one alternate flavor... using only hand done type and illustrations. We were allowed to use a typeface for the fine print but were supposed to come up with illustrations for the major type and graphics. We could either use the company's existing logo or design a new one... which I did since it fit better with my design.

Zapp's Potato Chips are made in Grammercy, LA, just outside of New Orleans. I thought it would be fun to give it a bit of bayou flavor, especially in celebration of the cajun crawtators. These are YUMMY chips, by the way.

Here's the original bag design:

And here's my re-design:

Week 2:
We did pet food and the only stipulations were that we had to use photography and of the two packages, one had to be a can. I got to do cat food... for some reason I didn't take a picture of the can. The judges really felt this missed the mark as they thought the barley was wheat and it says "no wheat" on the front of the package. They said they wanted to see chickens on the package. Right. That's what I was thinking too... but... well... This one didnt' make it to my final critique as we only had to choose 4 of the 6 projects to revise. I liked it... but as far as communicating what's in the food...it kinda flopped. The original is on the right, my re-design on the left:

Week 3: The Amphibian

Week 4: BEER!!
Design a 6 pack (or 4 pack) of some type of bottled beverage using only ONE Typeface (which was assigned to us) and minimal other graphics. I was assigned "Excelsior" which is a kind of boring, standard serif typeface. It was created as a newpaper face in the 20s, in case you wondered.

I chose Smithwick's Ale (pronounced "smitticks" or "smiddicks" for those irishly challenged) and gave it a medieval, castle feel—in celebration of Excelsior and in light of the fact that Kilkenney Ireland, where the ale is made, has one of the oldest standing castle towers in existence. The package is bigger than most six packs and would likely be a total headache to have on store shelves...but the thought was that once the adults are done drinking the beer, they can give the "castle" to their kids to play with... a re-use is better than straight into the recycle bin, right? That's what I thought!! The castle bricks are all made out of type.

The 6 pack—hexagonal shaped and in the style of a castle!:

Up closer, the banner is a hand painted watercolor I did:

And the bottle labels:

Week 5:
Find a product at Walmart, made for Walmart and labeled with one of it's brands (Mainstays, Home Trends, Faded Glory, etc.) and create a packaging re-design to allow the product to compete with Target...but at close to the same Walmart price point. In other words, don't break the packaging budget so that Walmart would have to charge more. I opted for a stainless steel coffee tumbler (it had only a sticker on the bottom), coffee scoops and filters which were both in non-descript baggies.

Week 6:
International Foods. We just had to find some food product that's made in another country and re-design the packaging...again, two packages and one had to be a can. I went with three since my brand had two nice bottles as well. AND, I actually WON this one... the final week. You can see the original packaging here and here (the Sofrito ACTUALLY uses comic sans as it's main typeface). The two bottles don't go together at all so I was looking to make a more consistent line. And the tomato paste didn't exist but I needed a can so invented it. Here are the final three:

That's it for Project Packaging! It was a great class and I learned a ton... especially the fact that I don't think I want to purely design packaging for a living. It was intense to have to get these done in only a week but I learned how to move much faster with my decisions and how to just pick a direction and go with my gut...which, in most cases, is the right direction. Nice to know...

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