ayana baltrip balagas | design : speak

Thanking Mary Thorsby and Nikki May

Posted in Branding, Business, Design, Design Education, Design Matters by ayanabaltrip on 2015/03/20

Thanking the wonderful content strategist and writer Mary Thorsby and  great graphic designer and creative Nikki May for their incredible talk with the Portfolio class today on how to present oneself professionally online and offline. 

 

They covered writing the critical content for the portfolio and resume well and distinctively, and presenting ones best work. In addition, they encouraged students to let the clients and emloyers be “your” best advocates for your work. Really great advice.

Thank you so much Mary Thorsby and Nikki May!

Thanking Steve Jobs for “thinking differently”

Posted in Branding, Business, Design, Design History, LinkedIn, Macworld, Musings, Process, Social Good, Technology by ayanabaltrip on 2011/10/06

Okay, here’s my tribute to the genius of Steve Jobs and thanking him for being a pentacle of the “think different” principle.

By creating the Apple Macintosh computer, he and Steve Wozniak changed my life, turning me into a geeky girl, and moving me into the world of graphic design, which I easily added to my early work as a performing artist and educator.

In the summer of 1989, I decided to take a basic computer class at Laney Community College, in Oakland, CA. The computers used in this class were Macintosh 512Ks. The 512K was released on September 10, 1984, and retailed for $2,795.00. (Source: Wikipedia) In this class we learned Microsoft Word 4, and Hypercard. I was hooked from day one.

Upon completion of the class, I found someone selling a used Mac Plus for $1000.00 (less than 1/2 the retail price) which my dear mother gifted me. The seller threw in a, now get ready, 20MB hard drive/power console combination unit. The operation system was version 6, and came on 6 floppy disks. I had a friend help me install it onto the hard drive, and imagine my delight after booting the machine and drive to see that I not only had MS Word 4, but Aldus Pagemaker and Freehand, Adobe Photoshop 2 and Illustrator 88. Hypercard was, at that time, part of the system software, so I had that too! I was totally hooked then and have stayed a loyal Apple Macintosh user.

After the Mac Plus (which I still have), I moved on to the Macintosh II Si, Quadra 800 (the first Mac tower), the iBook G3 (the white square one), the Power Mac G3 tower, the iBook G4, the G5 (dual processor), Macbook Pro (Intel Core Duo), Macbook (Intel Core 2 Duo), and as of last summer, the iMac (i3 processor, 20.5″). I still use the G5, Macbook Pro, and Macbook as well as the iMac.

In spirit, thanking you again Steve Jobs for being one of my examples always inspiring me to “think different.” May I too, inspire others.

And please support cancer research and all those working toward the eradication of this disease.

Think Different Ad

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My iBook G4 arrives. Mr. Big Fluff was more impressed by the box it came in.

Is A Revamped Brand Enough: The U.S. Postal Service Is Dying. Why Not Radically Rebrand It? | Co.Design

Posted in Branding, Design, Design Matters, LinkedIn by ayanabaltrip on 2010/12/31

 

In this era of digital communication, one has to question whether revamping the U.S. Postal Service’s brand is enough. I think the designs Chase proposes are quite good, but are addressing the problems the postal services is dealing with that not only concern the prolific use of digital forms of communication that many of us are using, but also the many internal issues the service is dealing with, the most important being the laying off of employees due to a diminishing budget. What do you think? The full article with all design explorations can be read here: The U.S. Postal Service Is Dying. Why Not Radically Rebrand It? | Co.Design.

Winter 2010 Postcard Arrived

Posted in Branding, Business, Design by ayanabaltrip on 2010/11/19

My Winter 2010 promotional postcard has arrived. Time to get the Winter 2010 campaign in gear.

Addendum: Gap Bows to Outcry – Nixes New Logo and Crowdsourcing. Design Still May Have Lost Out.

Posted in Branding, Commentary, Design, Design Matters, LinkedIn by ayanabaltrip on 2010/10/12

It was wonderful to see the outpouring of concern over the Gap’s brand redesign and the impact it had in ultimately getting the company to back away from the poorly designed new mark, and ultimately, it seems the practice of crowd-sourcing. (Please see link at the bottom of this post for the article concerning this.)

I do feel a bit sad though, that while the Gap has  publicly stated that they would not out source the design work again, and that this event has given many companies pause to think before engaging in this practice, the value that designers and design bring has been greatly compromised. Much of the dialogue missed a lot of the salient points that apply to design and the process. Is this because of the “instant information” culture in which we are living? Is it because we are in an economic depression? I don’t know. I see a lack of trying to understand the design process, or maybe even a resistance to doing the work entailed in developing the process, in more and more students.

How do designers sell the value of design in these times? Love to know your thoughts.

Gap Bows to Outcry – Nixes New Logo and #Crowdsourcinghttp://bit.ly/cdb5xg

Is The Design Process (Strategic Design) Going The Way Of The Dinosaur?

Posted in Branding, Commentary, Design, Design Matters, LinkedIn, Process by ayanabaltrip on 2010/10/11

Tom’s of Maine new logo:

In my last post, I added the newly designed Tom’s of Maine logo and packaging to the discussion of poorly designed branding speared by the newly designed GAP logo.

In both cases, I sincerely feel the design process, and strategic design have completely been left out of the equation in the development of these brands. What is going on? As a design educator I find what I see as becoming a trend exemplified by these two examples quite disconcerting.

During project critiques, the design process that looks at the targeted audience and what it has already bought into in respect to a company’s brand and product or service, is always at the forefront of the design choices of color, typography, imagery, layout, etc. I just don’t see this consideration given in the case of the Tom’s of Maine and GAP redesigns.

What am I missing? Love to know your thoughts.

Graham Smith of ImJustCreative offers a nice perspective on the outcry about the GAP logo redesign. In his post, The Gap Logo – Is the outcry and criticism justified. In his followup post, The GAP Logo Design Revisited, he, in good fun, offers his reworking of the logo.

New GAP Logo

Previous GAP Logo

Tom’s Of Maine Changes Their Brand Also | Filed Under #disappointing.

Posted in Branding, Commentary, Design, Design Matters, LinkedIn by ayanabaltrip on 2010/10/10

So about a month or so before all this hoopla about GAP changing is classic, modern brand to, what I consider a mundane, nondescript one, I needed to buy toothpaste. Off I went to Trader Joe’s to purchase my Tom’s of Maine Natural Antiplaque & Whitening Gel. To my surprise and chagrin, I noticed that they had changed THEIR BRAND!

I buy the spearmint flavored paste and felt the leaves illustration at the head of the container visually conveyed what flavor I was purchasing. The new package has no illustration and is using a color palette purple, dull green, aquamarine blue, and blue (I think) used as the logo, which doesn’t visually relate at all the the product.The only element that may visually relate is the flavor name that is written in this horrible font. What were they thinking?

In addition, the logo has been redesigned in a way that has no connection what-so-ever to Tom’s of Maine’s long-standing brand. The typography is weak, and as a consumer, I have no idea what they are attempting to convey as their brand with this new design. I wonder if they crowdsourced this redesign.

Love to know your thoughts.

Noted: A discussion on the new logo for the Oakland Museum of CA @Brand New.

Posted in Branding, Commentary, Design, Noted by ayanabaltrip on 2009/12/10

What do you think?

Join the discussion at: http://www.underconsideration.com/brandnew/archives/more_oak_less_cal.php

Also let me know what you think by adding a comment here as well.

Noted: An advertising agency has come up with a campaign to promote a forthcoming food festival – Telegraph

Posted in Branding, Design, Experimental, Noted by ayanabaltrip on 2009/09/27

Picture 2

An advertising agency has come up with a campaign to promote a forthcoming food festival – Telegraph

I became aware of this article via two folks on Twitter: Jordie Welles and chetan. A truly interesting graphic approach to advertising.

Posted using ShareThis

What Do Designers Think About The Concept of Personal Branding?

Posted in Branding, Commentary, LinkedIn by ayanabaltrip on 2009/06/02

While at WordPress’s WordCampSF, I heard a really great talk by Dave Gray of Xplane | The visual thinking company. In that talk, he mentioned David Armano of Logic + Emotion. Last year David Armano did a presentation on the concept of personal branding at the Chicago Convergence Conference where he stated “The hallmark of any brand is authenticity . . .”. He then proceeds to speak on the advent of personal branding. Here’s the video of his talk.

Personal Branding-Brand U.O, David Armano, Critical Mass

My question: How does the concept of personal branding come into play for graphic and other design professionals, both on a personal level and when dealing with clients?

I most certainly am using social media to gain more exposure through the use of specific types of blog postings, tweets and status updates; and when I meet clients or potential clients, I am very aware of the visual representation I want to present.

What do others think of this? Are you more aware of the need to present or create a very specific brand for yourself, and do you incorporate this concept as part of the design strategy for your clients?

Fast Company Magazine related article: The Brand Called You. http://bit.ly/Yvl8 (Great find by Arne Van Oosteram of designthinkers . Thanks Arne.)