ShopAround by Design by Toko, Australia

Opinion by Richard Baird.

Brand identity and business cards by Toko for New York and Amsterdam-based creative production agency ShopAround

ShopAround is described as a creative supermarket, however, in more conventional terms, began as an artist representation agency in 1998. It has grown, since then, to become a creative production agency specialising in contemporary illustration, graphic design, animation, motion graphics and interactive design. ShopAround co-ordinates a network of over 80 international freelance designers, and fosters new creative talent from its offices in New York, Amsterdam and Rotterdam.

ShopAround worked with Sydney-based Design by Toko on a new visual identity. This appropriates the visual vernacular associated with independent supermarkets and small gift shops. Multi-colour and shape are the basis of identity, with a referential quality that is playful and distinctive in its new context and proportionality. This links business cards, stickers and tote bags, with an updated website soon to follow.

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Superkül by Blok, Canada

Opinion by Richard Baird.

Brand identity and note card by Toronto-based graphic design studio Blok for Canadian architecture firm Superkül

Superkül is an Canadian architectural firm with a portfolio that is described as having an understated boldness, subtlety and spacial richness, and a process that intends to find the essence of each project and remain true to this throughout design and development. Superkül has won many awards and is considered one of Canada’s most progressive architecture firms.

To celebrate their first ten years Superkül worked with Toronto-based graphic design studio Blok on a book that would both serve as a collection of work but also as a reflection of the firm’s unique philosophy and design approach. This was an exercise in discovery and a clarity of positioning which was then expressed materially through subtle paper transitions, finishes and printing techniques. This can be seen here.

Blok follows this up with the launch of Superkül’s new brand identity next week. Where book, in its comprehensive yet singular form could be seen as the strategic component of branding, one that clarified approach and direction, visual identity is the distillation and expression of this across of variety of new assets. These included wordmark, business cards, notebooks, packaging, stationery and website.

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Lorod by Pentagram’s Natasha Jen, United States

Opinion by Richard Baird.

Brand identity and blind embossed business card by Pentagram for fashion brand Lorod.

Lorod is an American fashion label that redefines timeless basics with modern, modular construction, distinctive fabrics and vintage-inspired chic. The designers at LOROD experiment with production methods to give each garment a quirky, personal and one-of-a-kind quality, and utilise new distribution tools to produce collections within the U.S.

This intersection of the classic and contemporary, refined craftsmanship, a utilitarian functionality and quirky personality informed Lorod’s brand identity, designed by Pentagram partner Natasha Jen and her team. This is expressed in the combination of wordmark, colour and form, in messaging and art direction, and the way that these are used across tags, business cards and website.

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