Brandspiration is how we share mood board inspiration from different aspects of design to create stronger brands. This time we delve into monochrome – the method of limiting colour to just one.
When it is time to consider printed marketing collateral again, there is an abundance of options that will add real interest and improve the ROI. So, take the time and explore the folds! here is our easy guide to some of the options you can choose.
How minimalism and maximalism have evolved as design styles in the history of graphic design.
From road signs to laptops and mobiles, we’re surrounded by icons. They have a universal appeal and transcend language barriers. Find out how to master icon design for your brand
Having read many articles on what to expect in branding and graphic design for 2021, here are Alex's top five themes to inspire your next design project!
As events and training sessions move online, here are our top three design tips to promote your webinars AND your brand.
Photography plays an important part in your visual brand storytelling. Discover the pros and cons of the different options available when sourcing photography from free to commissioned.
Follow our checklist of what digital marketing channel should be kitted out with to ensure you maximise your opportunities in the new normal.
Top tips on how to use designer tricks to turn your plain text report into eye catching collateral and strengthen your brand building through thought leadership collateral
Infographics are a fun and engaging way of presenting information, especially complex data and processes. Rowana guides us through five ways where they are especially helpful in powering up your communication.
Doing regular audits of your marketing collateral is a must for seasoned marketing professionals. In this post, Alex lists relevant questions to ask yourself to help you get started with your audit.
As businesses take stock and review current product and service offerings to stay relevant in an evolving business climate, Rowana shows you why colour palettes are a quick and easy way to give your communication a lift.
Highlights from the recent retrospective on Bridget Riley at the Hayward Gallery – focusing on the monochrome work. A fantastic inspiration for any graphic design system!
As we make less use of print, we are seeing an increase in the use of branded merchandise – helping businesses deliver that all important tactile brand experience.
Top tips to enhance your pitch decks and make your concept memorable when asking for finance.
Improve your long-term brand building whilst delivering content marketing with maximum impact. Alex gives you some tips with examples from our portfolio.
Useful tips and advise on how to make sure your PDF collateral is as good as it could be. This includes page links, forms and how to deal with interactive elements and multimedia.
When it comes to building your brand online, how the typefaces work on your website is a key tool in creating brand recognition. Here are five of our favourites.
There are many ways you can make your business card stand out and deliver a great first impression of your brand. We've selected some top choices we have at our disposal for every business card design.
Let’s demystify colour theory and understand terminology that helps us manage (and enjoy!) colour even more in our brands.
It is tempting to get stuck in a rut with your marketing, doing the same things month in, month out. If it is time to get some new ideas, here are our top tips for where to go for inspiration.
Cleverly designed corporate reports from white papers to research and annual reports make great tools for building engagement with your audience. When they feel simple and attractive to read, it builds trust that strengthens your competitive advantage.
Stock photography are instantly available images that will enhance most communication and in most cases, are very affordable. The downside can come if you crave a bit more individuality. So here are our top tips that are easy to implement and will make your stock photos more unique to your brand.
The most popular colour for corporate identity is undoubtedly blue. You can enhance this tried and trusted route with a powerful yet practical supporting colour palette. Here we explore some of our favourite combinations to enhance mid and navy blues.
Next in our series of typography blog posts; five fabulous ways to combine serif and sans serif typefaces, creating variety and interest in your brand platform.
Do you know your tracking from your kerning? In this post we outline key typeface terminology so that you can get to know your own brand's typefaces better – and talk about them like a pro!
In marketing, nothing denotes premium and luxury quite like a special piece of print finishing. Here is our current TOP FIVE to inspire your next print project.
10 Colour combinations to inspire your next branding project – whether you are re-branding or looking to extend your existing colour palette.
To ensure you squeeze every bit of return on investment out of your sales and marketing materials, use these four fundamentals to review design work and take it from good to great!
Are you nervous to branch out with new colours, shades or tones in case things start to look a bit crazy? Here are some tips to grow your confidence and how to strengthen your brand through colour.
It can be easy to confuse ‘having some images’ with truly effective visual storytelling. This post is intended to help understand what visual storytelling is but also to encourage business and brand managers to think beyond the somewhat formulaic stock imagery option.
The London Coffee Festival, a celebration of the specialty coffee scene, provides a fantastic showcase of the coffee market with hundreds of stalls, tastings and demos. The UK has been described as a leader in European coffee culture, and the event attracts a high number of international visitors. Here's a quick snapshot of the branding and marketing at the festival.
Nothing is as tactile and holds your attention like a beautiful piece of print. Used in combination with other (digital) channels, it is proven to make campaigns significantly more effective. It is simply a key asset when building brand loyalty with discerning customers.
London Design Week, held at the Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour, showcases the latest trends and collections of international interiors brands. With so many showrooms on offer, it's easy for brands to get lost in a sea of collections and showrooms merging together. Here are our marketing and brand highlights.
Our site for Lulubaby launched in November 2015. We repositioned the lifestyle brand online, delivering a brand experience that was a truer reflection of their service and as well as significant improvements in functionality. Connecting with their increasingly growing mobile audience and not missing out on Google mobile search rankings were key aims. The new site had an immediate impact, with 100% increase in enquiries within the first few days of launch.
A lot can be done to strengthen a brand without touching the core assets like the logo. This is particularly useful if campaigns are a normal part of your communication schedule as it's easy to inject fresh energy for increased tactical results whilst retaining the overall brand effectiveness.
14 – 17 January 2016 | Various locations across London
Lumiere London, attended by over 1m people, was a free light festival that took place across London, covering Mayfair, the West End, King's Cross and Trafalgar Square.
As we are starting to feel festive at IC Design – helped along by the great selection of Christmas lights and decorations going up around us - here are a few of my favourite Christmas decorations, snapped on my iphone as I have been passing various places in the last week.
We've been taking a look at how some of the websites we've created over the last couple of years have been performing. First in the series is our website for the Swedish Chamber of Commerce for the UK (SCC), which launched in October 2014. Demonstrating the impact a responsive site can have, mobile traffic has grown by 194%.
One of our must-see shows of 2015, Ai Weiwei is a Chinese artist but perhaps more famous as a human rights activist. His work in this exhibition provides his commentary on politics, his life and the perception of what we hold in value. For example, is an art installation of jars containing ground up vases that were thousands of years old more valuable than the vases in their original form? This is the largest show Ai Weiwei has held in Britain and is an incredibly powerful and engaging exhibition of some of his most important work, spanning from the early 90's up until today.
The annual design exhibition, 100% Design, showcases some of the best designers and manufacturers in commercial and domestic interior design. It is always a joy to visit and see so much great design all under one roof. Here are my 10 pieces of design that particularly caught my eye.
Take a closer look at everyday objects that are all around and you will find great graphic images that could look like something completely different or be the start to a great brand adventure!
Get inspired – not just by typographic styles but how they are rendered. The choice of typeface plays a big role in a brand's identity but what can catapult the effect is how you use it. Here is a selection of our favourite typographic applications in and around Soho.
The 2015 Taste of London was a veritable feast for all lovers of sunshine and gastronomy. This event is perfect for anyone interested in the London F&B industry.
Green can be a tricky colour to pull off. It is easily associated with recycling, sustainability and nature so how can brands tap into a relatively low use colour to stand out? Here is a bit of inspiration from in and around Soho.
A V&A and Crafts Council Exhibition until 27 September 2015, London SW7 2RL
Precision. Intricate. Extraordinary. Expertise. Non-essential. Pleasure. Passion. Investment. Opulence. Exclusivity. Innovation. Preciousness. These words form the basis of the V&A exhibition exploring what luxury is, what makes it and our own understanding of it.
Old Soho – when we started this theme, we thought it would be full of all the typical Soho stereotypes. Run-down buildings and cobbled streets, neon lighting and adult shops. We came across all these and more, with many of these combining contrasting elements to produce incredible images that challenges perceptions of what Soho is and can make you see things in a different light.
March's theme is light and shadow. Fantastic effects can be created through the use of light and shadow, sometimes completely altering an object to produce something new. These photos tend to capture a moment in time – the right circumstances creating incredible images. For us, they can inspire new ways of looking and creating objects, graphics and patterns.
London Design Week, held at the Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour, showcases the latest collections of international interiors brands, celebrating classic contemporary to cutting edge style. The week highlights the latest trends and styles, with workshops, insights and 'Meet the Designer' sessions. We popped down to have a look.
This month's theme is Blue. Associated with sea and sky, it's generally considered to be cool and calming. A popular corporate colour, meanings connected with blue include intelligence, knowledge, peace, loyalty and trust. Here are some of our favourite blues from around us in Soho covering doorways, lighting, hoarding and reflections..
Number three in our series is architecture. It's hard to know where to start in a city full of incredible contrasts and when you think of architecture around Piccadilly Circus, the first things that may spring to mind are the iconic advertising, the theatres and shops. Scale, material and intricate details are just a few of the things we found.
A report published last month by the Content Marketing Institute highlights trends for 2015 in the UK in content marketing (creating unique content and distributing it to engage your audience, primarily through mediums such as blogs and social media). Here are the key findings.
During 2015 we will continue to search for the perfect balance between creativity and technology. Finding solutions that resonate and deliver exceptional results. Here are a few things to think about.
Colour theory is an important consideration when building or developing a brand. Whether consciously or not, people make associations and connections with particular colours. With some colours associated with a range of emotions, and often conflicting ones (red is commonly associated with both anger and love), it is important to ensure that your brand is communicating the correct message.
Hot off the press is our own corporate brochure. We wanted to create a piece of print that would communicate our story to prospective clients, whilst celebrating the beauty of print. A piece that could take inspiration from our premium consumer brands, but brought into a corporate setting.
Has the time come to start dipping your toe in the water of paying for social media? With the exception of Facebook, paid (or sponsored) social is still quite undeveloped and there are new options coming to market. Twitter has sponsored links with Pinterest and Instagram following suit. If you are not using paid social yet, it might be time to consider it.
The second in our Hunting the magic visual inspiration series is texture. The scale varies immensely - from details in shop doorways and windows; to building surfaces and gardens. Often quite unexpected, these textures add an extra touch that can make you stop and look again.
Until 14 December 2014
Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BD
Take an inspirational trip to the Royal Academy for this dark and dramatic exhibition.
There's a wealth of visual inspiration surrounding us in our environment, much of which often gets missed or lost in the noise of millions of different messages all competing together. We are inspired daily by the little surprises and details around us in Soho, and will be sharing the themes that influence us in a series of posts. First up: geometric patterns.
In today's Data-driven marketing scenarios, how can you keep the brand magic going? As it's impossible to build brand loyalty without generating an emotional response, you need to make sure that Data does not drive out the magic in a brand and that creativity can still flourish.
Content marketing is an area that has been rapidly growing and expanding - especially over the last couple of years. Some people are fed up of hearing about it, others say it's a recipe for success - it builds up brand awareness, reputation and repeat purchasing, as well as differentiating you from the competition. Here's my take on it and how it is relevant for our clients.
I have been considering what will happen as we move from ‘got to do it because everyone else is’ to ‘how can I identify concrete results from our social media activity?’. Thinking about our client group (professional B2B firms and premium consumer brands) in particular – with their lower volume, high margin business model – how can Social become more useful and how can it really connect with other marketing channels?
Typography is a huge part of design and, if used correctly, is as important and effective as a logo, colour scheme or imagery. It can be the difference between beautiful, clean design and a confusing, ineffectual piece of work. Well set typography guides the reader through the content on a particular page, website or poster, drawing their attention to key messages before leading them through the full content.
Modern Art of South America from the Patricia Phelps de Cisneros Collection
Until 28 September 2014
Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BD
A little gem of an exhibition, Radical Geometry is a showcase of twentieth century South American art, which was created at a time of social and political upheaval.
Back in the day, print was just about the only way for most professional services companies to promote themselves (as well as the odd trade fair). This is now a distant memory with digital being firmly established as the driving communication tool for just about everyone. So how does print measure up today and how can we use this medium to our advantage?
A lot of information has been written on design strategy, theory and practice. This post is a condensed version on core principles that can help you use design more strategically in your business. It's easy to create communication that looks great - but in order for it to be effective, a design strategy ensures that everything produced communicates the correct and consistent message.
Until 7th September 2014
Tate Modern, Bankside, London SE1 9TG
Take an inspirational trip to the latest exhibition at the Tate Modern - Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs.
The commercial effectiveness of the work we produce is really important to us. Great design should deliver two things - a great creative alongside great commercial results. We like to set objectives with our clients at the start, which define the design strategy and our concepts. But how can you measure the value of something that is often considered to be very subjective? Here are a few things to think about.
Hello, My Name is Paul Smith
Until 22nd June 2014
Design Museum, Shad Thames, London SE1 2YD
This month, our design team had the pleasure of visiting The Design Museum's latest exhibition 'Hello, My Name is Paul Smith'.
The EY Exhibition - Paul Klee: Making Visible
Until 9th March 2014
Tate Modern, Bankside, London SE1 9TG
Taking advantage of the longer opening hours for the Tate Modern at weekends, I grabbed my chance to see the Paul Klee exhibition before it ends this coming weekend.
As we start a new year, which will undoubtedly bring even more exciting developments in the digital world, we at IC Design still understand the beauty and power of print.
Exhibition review of Only in England
Photographs by Tony Ray-Jones and Martin Parr
Media Space, Scienece Museum
21 Sept 13 – 16 March 2014, SW7 2DD, £8