Monday, November 2, 2009

irony in simplicity

Hope everyone had a lovely Halloween. I got stuck in the rain and ended up getting shoved into NYC's Halloween parade while trying to cross the street.

I loved the costumes that were simple and ironic. I contemplated being a potato because I knew people would over-think it. A friend of mine was a bush - the plant version, not the presidential one. Halloween is a chance for us to take on the shape of something or someone new and sometimes the simpler you make it, the more ironic it can be in a sea of overly complicated costumes.

Thinking about this in the shower this morning, I started to apply this to the packaging design around me. In the packaging world, sometimes being a more simple design can make your product a winner - think about Method products for example. It's funny then that packaging designs are so complicated. They shout every benefit the product could possibly provide in a flashy, sparkly font. Why does it have to be "vitamin enriched, volumizing, shine inducing" shampoo? Why can't it just be shampoo?

I would like to design refillable packaging that simply states what it holds - shampoo is "shampoo" and hand soap, "hand soap." I feel like it could surprise visitors to your home.  Would they feel unnerved and ask what brand your hair spray was? 

 As it goes 'being a good designer means not adding as much as you can, but taking things away until only what is necessary remains.' We've all heard the phrase, but rarely do brands apply it.

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