Archive for the ‘In the Studio’ Category

A year in – 2018 roundup

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Last year was a busy first year for Typeface.

Highlights include:

  • A solid new brand for Bliss.
  • Typeface created a new brand and microsite for Business Management Partners, Biramis.
  • A fresh new website to celebrate Ital Logistics’ approaching 20 years in the business.
  • Working closely with Partisan, to create a great new brand and brand language.
  • Working alongside Oswaldtwistle restaurant officinados to create Tap Select; a modern brand for an exciting new bar venture.
  • A hand drawn brand for MJD Copywriting, with a website ready to go.
  • Working with Brooke on their PR/Social Centinary campaign.
  • A rebrand and a new website for SEO experts Coffeepot Digital.
  • A strong brand and confident website for Tanzanian charity, Tupo.

As well as servicing local agencies and building upon current relationships with studios such as Seabrook, Slingshot and Coffeepot.

All while maintaining and building upon the quality that clients now expect from, and associate with a Typeface project.

 

I like your owl

It’s 2019 and Typeface is looking forward to a focused second year as a full service agency. Building on relationships from the previous year and embracing new projects and clients. Getting 2019 off to a good start with two new website launches this January with clients from two very different industries.

Moving forwards, Typeface would like to build partnerships with more of Manchester’s digital agencies, as well as continue to provide large, small and startup businesses with added value through creative ideas and great design.

Some end of year statistics. 

  • 11 website design and builds.
  • 13 beautiful new brands.
  • I have managed to use the same pencil for six months …
  • … in fact, I haven’t used a pen this year at all.
  • The Leuchtturm A6 notepad holds exactly six months of notes, fits perfectly in an inside or back pocket. I also feel the paper quality is slightly better than Moleskine. My current pad is orange.

 

Working with Brooke

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Typeface has recently completed a project with Brooke. Originally the brief was to produce a series of colourised images for Brooke’s social media channels from their extensive archive of WWI imagery. As work progressed it became clear that this was more than fodder for social media channels, it became a series of creative assets that the charity has complete ownership over, and something that its audience continues to engage with on an emotional level.

Brooke has an enviable social media presence that consists of a very passionate, educated and engaged audience. Typeface wanted to create something for them, to highlight that the work carried out by Brooke is just as important 100 years after the charity was founded. Typeface took assets from Brooke’s archives and adapted them to the way we now connect with the past, and the way we consume media.

The concept itself was simple. Black and white images have a nostalgic quality that can make them difficult to connect with. Adding colour to the subjects while keeping the rest of the image intact helps to remove the subject from the past. Clothes that looked old suddenly look fashionable, skin tones pop and, importantly, to the viewer the subject becomes much more real and much more relatable.

Like all good design, the method is simple. Colour is painted on to the original photograph using a steady hand, a pen and tablet. Skin tone and shading is a quality of the original black and white image; the brain merges tone and colour and presents something that our eye sees as normal. Each image contains no more than four flat colours, but the end result is powerful because the subject has a story to tell.

Respect is earned

It was important that Typeface invest thought in to the most respectful way to treat these images. If a human is interacting with an animal then both subjects are colourised to highlight the bond that comes from relying on each other to such an extent. Out of respect, the decision was made to not completely remove the subjects from their past, and so colour fades back to black and white wherever feet touch the ground.

 

Simplicity is confidence

With a simple idea well executed; the finished creative ended up being a very emotive project to work on. Brooke now has a collection of powerful imagery to share. Out of the archives has come some fantastic creative assets that need no explanation, something a modern audience can quickly understand and connect with.

While the brief didn’t change, the scope of the project itself widened. Originally a series of simple images to share over social channels, the project has inspired the media team to use these solid creative assets in their centenary celebrations. Typeface produced two colourised images of founder Dorothy Brooke, and after consulting their empassioned community, Brooke have turned one of them in to a limited edition print for purchase on their website.

The Dorothy Brooke print is available to buy here, all proceeds go towards the Brooke charity.

 

Today marks the anniversary of the letter our founder, Dorothy Brooke, sent to The Morning Post in 1931 alerting the British public to the plight of ex-war horses in Cairo. To mark the occasion our CEO, Petra Ingram, reads Dorothy’s letter which you can listen to by clicking the link in our bio. This year marks 100 years since the end of WW1 and through our #EveryHorseRemembered campaign we’re raising awareness for the 8 million horses, donkeys and mules that died in the Great War, as well as shining a light on the millions of equines that still work around the world today. Photo colourisation by Typeface – @pete.morley . . . #horse #horses #horsesofinstagram #horseofinstagram #horsepower #horsewelfare #equine #equinephotography #equinesofinstagram #equestrian #equestrians #equestrianism #instahorse #instahorses #lovehorses #ww1 #firstworldwar #ww1horses #workinghorses #militaryhorses #horsesinwar

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About the Creative Process

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The creative process, it is a very real thing but it’s not a one size-fits-all set of checkboxes or a list of rules to follow; it’s a framework. The creative process is a set of tried and tested rituals, but they vary from person to person.

A creative framework should help narrow the scope of a project and take away second guesses, so the designer can focus on answering the question at hand. Because design is about looking for the question and then answering it, it’s important to remove any noise. Since confidence and clarity are the end goal; work has to be approached in a confident and clear way.

Starting with the client brief, the initial conversations, the mood boards, wireframes and sketches. To the grid, the palette, the font choices. All of these self imposed constraints build an organic framework where creativity can thrive. There’s no time for artist’s block when clients are paying by the hour, so a solid creative process means that at no point does the designer ever have to look at a blank document before work begins.

It’s this organised foundation that leaves room for thought; and that’s where creativity thrives.

Creative processes

Initially, Brand and Web are approached in a similar way at Typeface. The framework is assembled by gathering the initial brief and client conversations, competitor research and market analysis. In the case of Brand, this might start when taking this information and applying it to a mood board, to map out the thought process and give pool of ideas to draw from. In web design, this process usually begins with the client brief and initial site map, and continues with the Wireframe and Style Guide process.

Brands don’t live on screens. The creative process at Typeface may start on screen if the exercise calls for it, but it will always move in to the physical space. Ideas flow on to paper organically, lines can be erased and moved until pleasing abstracts are created. Shapes are formed and redrawn. This solid framework encourages creativity and leaves room for play; it’s the ethos behind the Typeface creative process.

Hello Typeface

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Launching a service or company is all about positioning. Understanding where you fit in the value chain is half the battle.

Where does Typeface sit?

Typeface is a quality, creative service for busy studios, creative companies and creative people. Typeface isn’t about competing with agencies for their clients, it’s about supporting those agencies with quality work, to boost their current offering and to pick up the slack when the studio is overwhelmed.

There are three key values that lie at the heart of Typeface’s creative offering.

  • Branding is a journey, not a destination.
  • Simplicity is confidence.
  • Creativity thrives under a solid framework.

The Typeface Creative Process

A creative process is not a one size-fits-all set of checkboxes or a list of rules to follow, it’s a framework. A set of tried and tested rituals that vary from person to person.

A creative framework should help narrow the scope of a project and take away second guesses, so the designer can focus on answering the question at hand. Starting with the client brief, the initial conversations, the mood boards, wireframes and sketches. To the grid, the palette, the font choices. All are self imposed constraints that build an organic framework where creativity can thrive. There’s no time for artist’s block when clients are paying by the hour, so a solid creative process means that at no point does the designer ever have to look at a blank document before work begins.

It’s this solid foundation that leaves room for thought, and that’s were creativity thrives.

Should your designer be able to code?

Typeface thinks so. A car designer should know how a car works, how materials interact. An architect needs to know what’s possible in the real world of bricks and mortar. It stands to reason that a web designer should really know how to develop a website. Here at Typeface, all website development is done in house.

Want to know more? Contact Typeface to arrange a meeting, or pop along to the office at Colony in Jactin House, Ancoats for a chat and a brew.