Graphic Design & Web Development

Design - from all angles

A blog about design, though not in the strictest sense of the word. Marketing / branding resources and musings of a web and graphic designer who sees the world through Pantone-colored glasses and a 12-column responsive grid. {Subscribe to the RSS feed here: RSS}

Lessons from the Creation of the 2016 Olympics Logo

Nyla Smith | Thursday, July 28, 2016

With the summer Olympics right around the corner, I’m sure you’re excited to watch the world’s best in swimming, volleyball, and gymnastics. And the one player making an appearance at every sport? The Olympics logo, of course. Read on for the fascinating story of how the official Rio 2016 logo and font came to be, and some lessons you can learn from the process.  Read Article »

Brand Archetypes — Meet the Jester

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Who doesn’t like to have fun?! The role of the Jester archetype is to bring everybody together to play and appreciate the joy in life. As the ultimate entertainer, the Jester is able to make people feel good — a feeling that any brand would like to have associated with it. Read Article »

Brand Archetype — Meet the Creator

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Seemingly oxymoronic by nature, the Creator archetype desires freedom while at the same time deeply motivated by control. Hanging in this delicate balance, we find visionary and innovative brands that value imagination and self-expression, particularly in the fields of the arts, design, marketing, and technology.  Read Article »

"N" is for Negative Space (How to Use Gestalt Theory for a Memorable Logo)

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Don’t be fooled by the term “negative space.” When it comes to logo design, negative space can be used in very positive ways. As with many other aspects of design, we can look to the field of psychology for insight on how to use negative space to create a memorable logo. Read Article »

A New Flag for New Zealand?

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, September 22, 2015

New Zealand is on the hunt for a new flag design. On September 1, after sifting through a mere 10,292 submissions, officials revealed the top four design contenders to replace the country’s flag. As opinions from New Zealanders on the proposed designs have been mixed and mostly negative, we have to ask – just what makes for a good flag design? Read Article »

"D" is for: Die Cutting

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, August 04, 2015

die cut business cardMost print pieces we see are solid and rectangular, but this doesn’t have to be the case. If you want to make an impression with a unique print piece, consider die cutting to add interest, increase memorability, and to reinforce your brand or a particular message.  Read Article »

Branding Mistakes: Overlooking the little moments

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Have you ever been to a magic show?It’s pretty captivating, right? The conclusion of every magic trick is that special moment — the prestige, the climax of the trick — that leaves you mesmerized with delight and amazement at What. Just. Happened?! As a brand, you want to do the same thing. No, not deceive people with smoke and mirrors, but delight your audience. How do you do that? By capitalizing on the little moments. Read Article »

Branding Mistakes: Blending in with the crowd

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, October 14, 2014

stand out from the crowdWith 7 billion people in the world, it can be a daunting task to stand out from the crowd. While we like to think we are unique, so does everyone else…right? No less apparent in the business world, it can be difficult to differentiate between similar businesses. So, what makes one bug exterminator, or plumber, or dentist different from all the others in your city? What distinguishes your branding from your competitors? Read Article »

What we can learn from Google's Doodles

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Google DoodleYou may have admired Google’s fantastically fluid logo without giving it more than a passing thought. A couple of keywords in the search box and you’re ready to explore the infinite wisdom of the World Wide Web. But before you go, why not take a minute to learn a lesson or two from those innovative Doodles?   Read Article »

Get creative with your business cards!

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Creative business cardBusiness cards are, without a doubt, the most common marketing piece there is. But that doesn't mean it has to look common! Read on for a few creative business card ideas you may want to consider. Read Article »


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