Browsing articles in "Ideas"
Aug 8, 2011
Zelda Harrison

XCD Interviews… Michael Wolff Part 1: Strategy made Visible

Earlier in the year, XCD caught up with Designer Michael Wolff, the founding partner of Wolff Olins along with advertising executive Wally Olins.

Wolff Olins is easily recognised as a preeminent authority on Branding amd Corporate Identity, which Wally Olins defined as “strategy made visible”. Wolff Olins published their design philosophy in The Corporate Personality (1978) and Corporate Identity (1989). In its decades long history, Wolff Olins has had offices in Hamburg, Paris, San Francisco, Madrid, Lisbon, as well as New York and Dubai.

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May 9, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Sebastian Guerrini: The Brands of Life

Our esteemed Argentinian Branding Guru shares some thoughts from his studio in Barcelona. Enjoy his lovely illustrations of ink and watercolour.

A psychological and philosophical approach of the relationship between stories, identities, images and brands, looking for the understanding its mechanism, since this affects the work of identity designers.

If we try to answer what or who we are, we would possibly tell a story about us. This would be a story that has a title, our name and may be our image. This story will probably tell everyone about our origin and develop, but leaving an open ending because we are still alive. At the beginning, the story will place our origin, our birth, in a scenario and context: the social group and place that gave us life. This origin also involves to the people who bred us.

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Apr 25, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Lightspeed and the Human Hand, No. 5

Jonathan Arena explores art, craft and design in Japan: Entry # 5


Plato once observed that “although craftsmen are all poets … they are not called poets, they have other names.” This centuries old statement is very telling about the design industry today – a semantic notion that allows people to classify and assume, which skips process.
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Apr 21, 2011
Zelda Harrison

XCD interviews… Christopher Scott

Christopher talks about being Irish, celebrating cross-culture and poster design

XCD: Please introduce yourself, ie., Where were you born and what neighbourhood did you grow up in? Could you tell us more about your family and how you became a designer? Who are your favourite clients/collaborators?

My name is Christopher Scott a graphic designer from Northern Ireland. I have had my posters exhibited all over the world including the Louvre France, Italy, Peru, Spain, USA, Bolivia, Korea and many more. I was brought up in a village called Donaghmore of which I do not remember much about. The three things which are clear in my mind: the house number was 18, all the kids played football after dinner until we could not see the ball because of the darkness and finally I drew pictures of my favourite characters ‘Super Mario’ and ‘Teenage mutant hero turtles’. I would then sign them, go around the houses in my neighbourhood and sell them for 50p so I could buy sweets in the local shop.

As long as I can remember I was always drawing and painting. Which continued until the year 2003; I was 17 years old. I became very bored with the drawing and painting process because I felt that I was not creating anything unique. I started to search for other methods to use my creativity and I randomly turned on the computer one day in school and opened up the program Microsoft Paint. I just started experimenting and within 3 hours everyone had surrounded me and saying the work is amazing.

I have collaborated with many graphic designers all over the world including Yossi Lemel, Reza Abedini, Woody Pirtle, Hervé Matine, Utpal Pande and many more. I also really enjoy working with Ryan O’Neill and Mark Douglas who are local photographers in Northern Ireland.

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Mar 6, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Lightspeed and the Human Hand, No. 3

Jonathan Arena explores art, craft and design in Japan: Entry # 3


Richard Sennett, author of the lauded book The Craftsman, teaches that “machine systems break down when they don’t work in an explicit manner, whereas people make discoveries”.  It seems slightly ironic then, that the most ubiquitous tool for design today is the computer, singularly capable of providing direct experience through sight. There is a loss of the sensitivity that came from detailed handwork that was required by graphic designers twenty years ago, before computers.

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Feb 7, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Lightspeed and the Human Hand, No. 2

Jonathan Arena explores art, craft and design in Japan: Entry # 2

The United States experiences Japan, in large part, through its design culture — from ancient ceramic traditions and minimalist architecture, to today’s high-tech gaming, fashion, and technologically driven lifestyle. Design is a traditional and necessary function of everyday life – fully ingrained into Japanese lifestyle. This is what makes design in Japan so dynamic, and allows creativity to permeate the society in a way that is unique to the Archipelago.
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Jan 30, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Lightspeed and the Human Hand

Jonathan Arena explores art, craft and design in Japan: Entry # 1

Recently, I was given the opportunity to visit and work in Japan for a month. While I
was there, I began compiling photographs and writing to help satiate my interest in the
relationship between art, craft and design. These journal entries reflect that intent.
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Jan 17, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Diseño Shakespear tells the story of Icono

Like all good brands, Icono has a story to tell.

XCD would like to thank our contributor from Argentina, Diseño Shakespear, for this lyrical case study in branding.

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Jan 10, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Lessons Learned from Michael Bierut @ Pentagram

XCD caught up with Pentagram partner Michael Bierut in South Africa and picked his brain about Design. Here is a lively discussion about his experiences with New York City’s Library project.

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Oct 17, 2010
Zelda Harrison

Continuing Education 2010

Last year Maryam Hosseinnia shared her thoughts about inspiration and design during a 2-week workshop in Basel. This year, her adventures in recharging and expanding horizons take her to Den Haag in the Netherlands.

Click here to download Maryam’s report

Maryam Hosseinnia is the Program Lead and the full-time faculty at The American University of Kuwait. She has been working in Kuwait for four years.

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