18 Ranch Chicken Dishes by Victor Design, Taiwan3 August,2017
Opinion by Richard Baird
18 Ranch worked with Victor Design to develop packaging for its range of chicken ready meals. Working with the brand’s mascot and established guidelines, also created by Victor Design, the studio took an unusual approach that juxtaposes the warmth and visceral qualities of product photography, with the modern and convivial character of geometric illustration, solid colour and white space.
Victor Design’s work for 18 Ranch is a bit of an oddity, in the best possible terms, with what might be described as a split personality in the abrupt intersection of two quite different visual styles. Individually, these are straightforward in their intentions, and stylistically distinguished. These leverage the visceral and reassuring qualities of warm and rustic dish/ingredient photography, and the quirky and unexpected illustrative qualities of 18 Ranch’s visual identity.
The chicken is a well-established mascot, and has a uniqueness in colour, geometric character and circular body. This body functions as the connective tissue. The bowl completes the lower half of illustration. The use of space, the choice and setting of type, and the illustrative component are, throughout the 18 Ranch range, consistent and dominate elements, the introduction of photography is the first divergence from this. Check out the other ranges here and here.
It is certainly distinctive. And although typesetting is awkward—the balance between the two different languages feels unresolved—font choice sits well alongside illustration. Photography is in service of concept through its simplicity, arrangement and consistency. Pack hierarchy is perhaps a little challenging. White space and illustration draws the eye, makes a clear connection with brand, however, differentiation between the range feels secondary. Type, image nor colour really help divide with an immediacy.
As a mass-market product the approach and result is a bit of curiosity, and why it made it on to BP&O. It is communicatively well-intentioned in its duality, stylistically memorable and builds on an established brand language. Although the line between the two styles is abrupt there is playful, if a little under defined, correlatory component. More work by Victor Design on BP&O.
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