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Dušan Janković (1894–1950), Mihailo S. Petrov (1902–1983) and Miloš Babić (1904–1968) were critical participants in the history of Serbian graphic design, and their best pieces represent its climax around 1937. They also spoke the same creative language as their fellow artists in Paris, London, Berlin, Vienna, Budapest and Krakow, using the international vocabularies of either the Art Deco or Avant-Garde movements.
The following text is excerpted (and edited for space considerations here) by Irina Subotić, from the catalog of the exhibit Three Interwar Poster Artists: Janković, Petrov, Babić at The Museum of Applied Art in Belgrade, on view until Nov. 24.
In the period between the two World Wars, graphic design became a significant factor in creating contemporary applied art (design and illustration of all types of publications, design of letters, logos, signs, diplomas, greeting cards, invitations, stamps, banknotes, securities, packaging, advertisements, posters). It influenced the creation of visual codes of the broadest strata of everyday life. This happened in the capital of the newly established Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes/Yugoslavia, which was hastily changing following the Modernism that marked those two turbulent decades.
The work shown here includes some printed but mostly original comps designed for foreign printers to follow.
Dušan Janković, a student of architecture at the Belgrade Technical Faculty (1913–1914), was guided to Paris by the circumstances of the First World War. He continued his education at a private engineering and architecture School of Public Works (École des Travaux Publics, 1917–1918) and at the painting department of the National School of Decorative Arts (École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs, 1918–1921). This famous school set the course for Janković’s future. He became a decorative artist trained to create in a variety of applied and fine-art disciplines. During the 1920s, he occasionally turned to painting and, from the middle of the decade on, to graphics. He was also involved in the cultural life of Belgrade, where he was to return in 1935 to work as a technical editor at the National Printing House of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia (1935–1945). From that moment on, publication design and graphics became his principal activities. After the Second World War, Janković worked at the publishing enterprise Novo pokolenje (1945–1945) and at Jugoslovenska knjiga (1948–1950).
Janković’s early poster works show his interest in Cubism and African art, the futuristic tendency to depict movement and speed, the use of aerial perspective, modernization of folk ornaments, and new typography. … By adopting the contemporary poster-making approach, he set the subject of his advertisements, i.e., ornamental and/or figurative allusion to it, in the foreground, making his own artistic expression more moderate and abstract. His interest in movement and his choice of colors, which became richly nuanced owing to airbrush technique, remained unchanged. Experts working at the agency he collaborated with believed in representativeness of his work and included it in the exhibition staged at their London branch office in 1931. Meanwhile, Janković had no success in competitions staged by French car manufacturers and the Belgrade State Tobacco Monopoly Administration.
Posters re-emerged in Janković’s oeuvre during his final stage of creativity and life, after his return to his homeland. The works created for the exhibition activities organized by the Prince Paul Museum reveal that he continued to follow global standards.
Mihailo S. Petrov
Eight years Janković’s junior, Mihailo S. Petrov was fascinated by graphics as a visual medium, by German Expressionists, and was one of the first associates of the most Avant-Garde magazines of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, namely Zenit, Dada Tank and Út. Petrov departed from the Avant-Garde as early as 1925, got involved in mainstream painting and socially engaged and applied graphics, and became omnipresent in Belgrade cultural events through activities of the Association of Fine Artists as well as by staging exhibitions and publishing reviews. Graphics also became an area of his pedagogical work.
Absorbed by the ideas of Cubism, Kandinsky and the Constructivists, young Petrov … soon embraced generally accepted visual advertising schemes with marked expressive dynamics. Petrov himself highly valued his own posters and book illustrations, and included them, along with his other achievements in painting, in an independent exhibition staged in 1940. After the Second World War, he was one of the creators of political posters in Serbia, based on the ideas of Socialist Realism.
Miloš Babić was one of the rare interwar artists for whom commercial graphic design was a profession, and not only one of his activities. He arrived in Belgrade in 1923, at the age of 19, previously living in Subotica (1921–1923) and his hometown Novi Segedin, where he obtained his diploma at the Applied Arts School, Interior Architecture Department (1918–1921). He found a job at the painting, advertising, sign painting and decoration atelier Futur. Owing to its owners, the brothers Pavle Bihali and Oto Bihalјi Merin, it was a place where progressive ideas were discussed, particularly the mid-European art and political ideas, and a destination for publications adorned with the most modern graphic design, which remodeled the fine art solutions of the Avant-Garde movements to match the mass taste of the epoch. At that time, Babić embraced International Constructivism to produce his best posters around 1930, when he freely demonstrated his association with this progressive stylistic expression. It also affected his later design solutions. … Like many of his contemporaries, Babić felt deep respect for films as one of the modern technological and artistic achievements. His oeuvre was influenced by specific light effects occurring during film projection, like Metropolis, the cult film by Fritz Lang.
Babić took part in several national and international poster competitions. He was particularly emotionally inspired for the 1930 Geneva competition, when he produced the Flag of the League of Nations draft poster, pinning high hopes on success of this organization in preservation of world peace. It was a kind of introduction into a cycle of socially engaged paintings (1930–1937, kept in the National Museum in Belgrade and in the City Museum in Subotica) with extraordinary conceptual and stylistic expression, which were also based on his poster designs. Babić strived to become an associate of the Advertising and Publishing Office Sedma sila, founded in 1937 by journalists who were members of the Belgrade section of the Journalists’ Association of Yugoslavia. He most probably failed since the draftsmen who were eventually hired had already worked with other newspaper companies. After the Second World War, he did not return to his commercial design activities.
Art Directors are the superheroes of aesthetics, the designated eye for design, the interpreters of the visuals. Art Directors are fascinatingly vital because they act as a pipeline, linking the client and the creative team.
Always original, and never without a unique outlook, Art Director’s perspectives are worth diving deeper into, so today, we’re sharing the top five Art Directors that you need to follow on Instagram. Each account shares tidbits of their work, including inspirational passion projects, and is sure to give you at least a little bit of creative gumption.
Jeremy Sengly | @jeremysengly
Art Director, designer, and animator, Jeremy Sengly is a man of many talents. Most of his posts are doodles and comics, all ingrained with a wicked sense of humor. However, one post that stood out the most was a comic strip about LA summers; it’s nuanced yet simplistic, a perfect reflection of the summer heat. Jeremy has created for Lazor Wulf, Vice, MTV, SuperDeluxe, and FoxADHDm; his feed is proof of the range of styles he can design for.
Laurène Boglio | @boglio_boglio
As the Art Director for Little White Lies, a bi-monthly print magazine committed to championing great movies and the talented people who make them, Boglio surrounds herself with creativity. From France and currently based in Brooklyn, she helps the publication’s audience open their eyes just a tad bit wider to the world surrounding them. Her feed swims with GIFs and illustrations that each showcase a unique outlook on different scenarios. She also has quite the resume, with clients ranging from The New York Times to the BBC to Barnard University.
Jessie Bearden | @jessiebearden
You might know Jessie Bearden from NBC’s Making It, hosted by Nick Offerman and Amy Poehler, but you’ve most definitely seen her work elsewhere. Bearden began her career in New York City after studying Art Direction at the University of Texas at Austin, but her side project became her full-time job in a genuinely creative fashion. She’s worked with clients such as The Gap and ESPN, and her work features unorthodox materials to create fascinating works.
Artem Matyushkin | @artem.indd
Based in both New York and Moscow, Artem Matyushkin is an Art Director and graphic designer who has a strong eye for typographical design. Having worked with MoMA, Dover Street Market, Totokaelo, and Condé Nast, his work is refined and highly technical. Often sticking to a soft color palette and curved type, his designs are unmistakably his own. Some of my favorite pieces on Artem’s feed were designed for Bambule and consist of vibrant yet trippy graphics that make you crave more.
Carla Palette | @carla.palette
With a bio proudly stating, “I’m Not For Everyone,” you know that Carla Palette’s work is beautifully provocative, intense, and alternative. Her feed comes filled with color, bold and unique typefaces, and she often shares other designers’ work that inspires her. While based in Berlin, Carla works with global beauty, fashion, food, and lifestyle brands. So while she might not be for everyone, her work certainly is.
Burger King has consistently been recognized for its Halloween stunts, and this year is no different.
This year, the burger joint “disguised” one of their most iconic burgers, The Whopper, into a special edition “Whopper Jr.” that’s both candy-sized and candy-shaped, created by Ogilvy. The innovated stunt is both clever and straightforward, a winning combination for a brilliant campaign.
Halloween is one of the favorite times of the year to wear costumes. With this premise in mind, Ogilvy – De la Cruz developed a campaign for Burger King that breaks with the traditional “trick or treat”, “disguising ” one of its iconic hamburgers.
Burger King has been recognized worldwide for decorating its restaurants, modifying its logo and even dressing up its main character to celebrate Halloween in its own way. This year, it transformed its iconic product and will launch a special edition of Whopper Jr., with the size and shape of a candy.
Thus, from the Burger King App, fans can order a limited edition of the Mini Whopper Jr. In the application you will find this hamburger that was specially created for this occasion.
“It is part of our vision of Borderless Creativity to think ideas that go further, ideas that in addition to communication include products or relevant innovations for our clients, that above all, help them grow their business”, said Jessica Apellaniz, Chief Creative Officer Ogilvy Latina.
Rafa Reina, Chief Creative Officer of Ogilvy – De la Cruz in Puerto Rico, added: “We are very happy with the development of this campaign. We set out to encourage the use of the Burger King app in a season like Halloween. We did it by creating an innovation with our beloved Whopper Jr. This is an edition that you can only find in the app and in restaurants around the island. In addition, we will run the campaign on social media with influencers and celebrities. Burger King is crowned like the king of a season in which not everything is gummies and chocolate “
“With BK being the category leader in Puerto Rico, we knew that expectations were high for us, for the public and for ourselves. For this reason, at this time of year, we decided to take risks and beyond carrying out a traditional communication action, we developed a product launched exclusively to connect with the most demanding: young people. All of us who work in this industry know that a new development takes time, and in this case, doing it for a limited time while preserving the freshness and naturalness of our ingredients, was the best way to put in everyone’s mouth what we really are”, indicated Daniel Pérez del Valle, VP Marketing of Burger King Puerto Rico.
Chief Creative Officer Ogilvy Latam: Jessica Apellaniz
Chief Creative Officer Ogilvy -De la Cruz: Rafael Reina Granados
A visual play on words that works throughout the product and packaging design is a fun way to create a complete identity system. Designed by Un Barco, Floresta is essentially a floral-inspired ceramics brand created for flowers… also known as cannabis. However, beyond the florals, the entire identity system incorporates visual cues that are evocative of the retro past. Not to mention, the typography alone is full of movement, grit, and nostalgia. A beautiful mix of everything cannabis evokes.
Floresta is a kit of ceramic pieces for cannabis, inspired by sunflowers and cherry blossoms. Flowers for flowers. The kit contains one pipe, one drying box and one storage box. We created the Floresta´s visual system.
Ceramics: Eugenia Fernandez Mele
Art Direction: Un Barco
Photography: Lucia Baldi
Los Angeles gallery The Pit has opened a solo exhibition from artist Devin Troy Strother, which confronts its audience with a graphic commentary on systems of oppression and white-washed cultural concepts. The provocative multimedia installation entitled “Undercover Brother” is on view through December 18th and is composed of hanging figures, ceramic sculptures, and collage paintings.
The Pit focuses on highlighting artists who work across a variety of mediums and looks to engender cross-generational conversations between historical and emerging artists. As such, Strother’s brazen works fit right into their lineup, pushing back on boundaries and the status quo, and reclaiming ownership of long-held societal beliefs.
Strother uses replacement, rearrangement, and reconstruction to subvert conventions established by our white-dominated world, creating alternative racial narratives with a darkly humorous slant. For example, the SoCal-native is known for painting on top of photos of famous white artists and actors to make them appear Black.
Further exploration of these ideas is on full display within the works featured in “Undercover Brother,” including thrifted figurines Strother has painted and reworked in a process he calls “bombastic rebranding.”
“It’s revisionist art history to show a present reality reflective of what I believe the intentions of said works were,” Strother says on The Pit’s website.
Ultimately, “Undercover Brother” serves as a continuation of Strother’s ongoing dissection of culture and oppression. Borrowing gestures, images, and themes from Philip Guston, Strother makes a commentary on how reclamation, reinvention, and empowerment can be used by oppressed populations as sources of pride and survival.
Today, the beloved processed cheese company, Velveeta, announced their refreshed logo that will be seen on products starting in 2022.
As the world moves towards one filled with flat logo designs, Velveeta decided to play keep up with their first logo refresh in over 20 years with design from Jones Knowles Ritchie. Because the brand saw an uptick in first-time customers in 2021, it makes sense that it wanted to move its identity in a more striking and more straightforward direction.
The new logo features a script-inspired typeface, with the removal of the oval encapsulating the logo, as well as the text reading “liquid gold.” While simplistic, the new logo better expresses the brand through a gooey yet refined personality.
“Our new logo is simpler, bolder, more creamy, and more expressive,” said Leah Bowman, associate brand manager of Velveeta at parent company Kraft Heinz to Adage. What’s more, the packaging also gets that extra special JKR touch, as they successfully transformed Velveeta into the epitome of a modern, processed cheese god.
Furthermore, the brand needed to create a campaign surrounding the new look so consumers could feel appropriately introduced to the change. Of course, the spot is quite cheesy. Dubbed “That’s La Dolce Velveeta,” it draws inspiration from the Italian phrase “la dolce vita,” translating to “the sweet life” (and, thankfully, not the Fellini flick, though that would have been wild).
Creative agency Johannes Leonardo and film director Harmony Korine (of Gummo and Spring Breakers fame) worked collaboratively on the numerous ads for the campaign, featuring luxurious characters exultingly devouring the joy of being overwhelmed by a Velveeta treat. Because Velveeta, after all, makes our lives a little bit simpler and more delightful, and consequently, a little bit sweeter.
Anyone who’s watched even a single episode of the beloved HBO series Sex and the City knows that Carrie Bradshaw would make the world’s worst Airbnb host; she’s messy, she smokes, and she doesn’t have a single pot in her kitchen.
Alas, the adored sex columnist and shoe obsessive lived in one of the most iconic apartments to ever grace the silver screen, so it seems Airbnb is willing to roll the dice here. They announced this week that a few lucky fans would soon be able to spend the night in casa Carrie, right in the show’s titular location, of course, New York, New York.
The activation serves as promotion for the upcoming and highly anticipated reboot of the series, enticingly entitled And Just Like That…, slated to hit your HBO Max feeds this December.
Sarah Jessica Parker herself will virtually welcome guests to the recreation of her character’s Upper East Side brownstone upon their arrival, and Cosmopolitans for toasting with the girls will obviously be on hand. A concierge will also be on-site throughout the stay.
Much like in the show itself, the star of the space is Carrie’s endearingly messy closet, filled with debt-inducing designer goods. Guests will have the chance to play dress-up in a wardrobe that would define an era, complete with a fashion-forward photo shoot. The stay package wouldn’t be complete without brunch in Chelsea, where some of the show’s most memorable post-date gossip sessions went down.
Only two one-night stays on either November 12th or 13th will be up for grabs at just $23 a night, with Airbnb’s books opening for these coveted spots on November 8th at 9 AM PST/12 PM EST. So whether you’re a Carrie, Miranda, Samantha, or Charlotte, you’ll have to act fast.
While this reboot of Carrie’s apartment seems nice enough, I couldn’t help but wonder…
Can you ever really reboot a past love?
“Dear Design Martyrs” is PRINTmag’s latest advice column from Debbie Millman. Debbie will respond to your most burning questions about design, branding, work-life balance, and so much more.
Dear Design Martyrs,
I have gone on many “first” interviews that seem to go well, and I keep hearing that I’ll be getting a call-back for a second interview. Then I don’t. I’m afraid I am not making a good first impression. Any advice?
Worried in Wisconsin
Think about how you come across on any day of your life. Are you joyful or fearful? Are you full of energy and enthusiasm, or are you reserved and thoughtful?
Despite our best efforts to hide our insecurities or appear sincere, humans are easy to read. That can be terrifying when meeting someone for the first time in an interview, especially when you want to make a good first impression.
The primary reason someone will not hire you or buy your work or take the action you want them to take isn’t that they don’t like the work you are showing them—it is because they don’t trust you or that you can do the job. I firmly believe the most important attribute to convey in any meeting is one of being trustworthy. Establish that you are authentic, honest, and sincere from the instant you meet someone. Everything else—your work, your professionalism, your skills—must also be stellar but are secondary to the first impression you make about who you inherently are as a person. Therefore, first impressions are crucial to beginning a path to trust.
Impressions are formed very quickly; they develop in the reptilian part of the brain, which we can’t control. All responses from the reptilian brain are involuntary, and this helps determine whether any situation we faced was welcoming and safe or uncertain and dangerous over thousands of years. We’ve used this ability to become the dominant species on the planet, and it is the foundation we use to guide our impressions and opinions of everything.
First impressions are fast and happen this quickly:
- Face to face: approximately 4 seconds
- Telephone: approximately 2-8 seconds
- Presentation: approximately 20 seconds
And in that 20 seconds, the impression we make is based on the following:
- 55% non-verbal cues (which include body language, posture, facial expressions, and eye contact)
- 38% is created by your voice quality
- 7% is created by your verbal content
What does that mean?
93% of your impression happens before you even show your work!
When making a good first impression, you have to be intentional about how you want to come across. You can’t just hope that you will make a good impression. You have to actively intend to make a good impression. Think about what your first impression might be now: How do you come across? If you don’t know how you come across, it might be good to ask someone you trust who will tell you the truth. Remember: you only know what you know and what you don’t know. We don’t know what we don’t know, and this is an opportunity to investigate an aspect of your personality that you don’t know.
Compare the description you get to who you are on your BEST DAY. How would you describe how you come across when you are feeling like your best self? What is your impression when you are like that, and how is it different from other days? What creates or causes that energy? How can you aspire to make that impression in every interview?
You might think that you have to pretend to be one way when you are feeling like another. That is not the case. You can still feel nervous and insecure but present your best self anyway. It is a matter of how much you will allow yourself to indulge in behavior that is not in your best interest. You must conjure who we will now refer to like this: As If You Are You On Your Best Day.
Presenting yourself As If You Are You On Your Best Day is not pretending to be that person. It is bringing that person—you—to life. This mindset is fundamental to creating and holding a vision of yourself as that person.
Try and write an As If You Are You On Your Best Day essay about who you are when you are in your best mindset. Be as descriptive and as honest with yourself as possible. Try to feel yourself living in that reality. Think about what it feels like and how you may or may not be different when presenting yourself to others. Practice bringing that part of who you are to life until you don’t need to practice anymore.
It might take a lifetime, but it is worth it.
Need some design advice? Got a question for Debbie Millman? Send your questions here!