This Week In Design & Brand Strategy: 8/24/15 - 8/28/15

The world of design is expanding into all sorts of different markets while also keeping to the markets it steadily began in. Vehicle and car styling, which might surprise some and might be common knowledge to others, all begins in Southern California. When you see a BMW or Mercedes, odds are it was originally conceptualized in the sunny state of California. In an article from Huffington Post that was published this week, the author discusses the Art Center College of Design schools and how the graduating class is rising to be the thinkers and designers for a new breed of cars. “Students, with backgrounds in everything from illustration to engineering, are drawn here from all corners of the world where they undergo eight accelerated terms, taught by top industry experts. Finally, at the graduation show, they display their vision of the future hoping to send tremors though the industry.” The author describes how these new designers are taught all aspects of the business through internships and corporate sponsored projects at leading car manufactures. Reading through the article just shows you how inspiring and creative these new designers can get. 


We all enjoy finding new music on places like Spotify right? The unfortunate part about this whole experience however is the amount of choices we have to make in order to find the music we like. However, according to recent article on Fast Company this struggle may be fixed now. There is a new sheriff in the town of “music finding” and it goes by the name of “Radio Activity.” The concept and design of this new product is centered on the beats of particular genres. In other words, the device will provide you with musical options as you adjust the beats per minute. “Roper first identified the beats of music genres. Reggae sits at a lazy 60 to 75 beats per minute. Climb further up the scale and you have blues at an average of 60 to 90 BPM. Dubstep is at the upper end at 130 to 150 BPM. Roper slipped the controller over a stick that represents the music's tempo.” In order to change genres, the user simply slides the controller up or down just like you would with a metronome. This unique way to find new music is definitely bound to gain some traction within the musical community with its user-friendly interface and simple concept. I for one, am definitely a little over answering so many questions in order to find the perfect genre for the mood I’m in.


If there’s one thing I like writing about, its television shows. TV shows, I feel, have a very unique opportunity to design something incredible that carries a very artistic weight. Well, this week the folks at CO.Create for Fast Company sat down with Sam Esmail, creator of the popular summer show Mr. Robot. On top of the fact that this show has become one of my slight summer obsessions, this article was super interesting because it discussed Esmail’s process in designing the opening sequences for the credits. He begins by telling us that when designing the opening credits for Mr. Robot, he likes to design it after the common openings done in films. In other words, Esmail treats it like an open canvas to show the viewer the major themes of the episode. “It's a blank canvas that you can do anything with because you have nothing before it to worry about, no context—you're creating the context.” In the interview Esmail also discusses how important the design of the typeface is to the finished product. “Fonts are something I obsess about constantly. People might find that silly, but for me, everything in a film should be deliberate and designed.” Clearly a lot of design and creativity goes into just the small details of the shows we watch every day. I highly encourage anyone to give the show a shot; if not for the content, to see its artistic design. 


Anyone who uses Instagram is as frustrated with “the square” grid as much as anyone annoyed with the Twitter 149 character limit. Well, be frustrated no longer! An article on Fast Company this week announced that Instagram has now allowed users to access multiple layouts in uploading images of all different sizes. In other words, the app now lets you have photos that are wide or tall that wouldn’t usually fit into the normal square frame. Usually when uploading a photo to Instagram you are confined to the square format, but now, if you tap “… a new icon, [it] lets you preserve their original orientation, be it landscape or portrait.” This is an excellent design move for Instagram as it will make the entire user experience more comfortable and friendly. 



Nichole Dicharry, is a Digital Marketing Assistant at IIR USA, Marketing and Finance Divisions, who works on various aspects of the industry including social media, marketing analysis and media. She can be reached at Ndicharry@iirusa.com 

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