PopTech is an annual three-day conference that takes place in October in the American town of Camden, Maine. It is an occasion where people from across many different fields meet with the intention of discovering and exploring a shared potential that reaches far beyond individual aspirations and goes on to inspire positive collective action.
Attendees include scientists, technologists, humanitarians, designers, artists, innovators, academics, corporate and governmental leaders as well as those that defy conventional categorisation. The conference is made up of presentations, interactive sessions, dinners, chats and debates, movie screenings and music-making. Featured speakers have included tech pioneer Tim O’Riley, cultural philanthropist Stephanie Coontz and behavioural economist Dan Ariely.
New York based Collins worked with PopTech to design and creative direct the 2017 conference, to build this around the theme and potential to “Instigate”. This manifests itself visually in the intersection of form and colour, in the bisecting of type and the implications of convergence. This links a variety of assets that included posters, supergraphics, lanyards, motion graphics, video, bags and event brochures and programmes.
Opinion by Richard Baird
FranklinTill is a futures research agency working with lifestyle brands, design-orientated businesses and organisations in a variety of sectors to explore and implement design, material and colour innovation. Their services include conducting, analysing and communicating research and bringing this to life through strategic insights, publications and experiences.
FranklinTill’s clients essentially turn to them for insight into form, colour and material, and their innovative and sustainable outlook. This, in turn, informed the development of their new visual identity, created by London based Commission. This is characterised by a critical coalesce of form, colour and material composition that serve to link business cards, stationery set and pin badges. Online, colour and form is explored, absent the tactile qualities of print, through the abstraction and diffused quality of imagery.
Opinion by Richard Baird
In 2014 Bedow worked with Essem Design, a Swedish manufacturer of artisanal hallway products and furniture, to develop a new graphic identity. This included logotype, adverts, catalogue, product sheet and stationery design. The concept was based around the simple gesture “Hej—Hej då”, hello and goodbye in Swedish and a reference to the most common phrase used in the hallway.
This verbal gesture was visualised using Commercial Type’s Dala Moa, paired with Futura, and played out across a brochure and stationery set of white and unbleached papers. The result balanced a playful and personable expression with the functional and crafted. This is expanded on and further explored throughout Essem Design’s 2018 product catalogue, also designed by Bedow, in the approach to art direction, colour, form and illustration.