Independence to us at OneWildcard is shoving out that person(s) driving your life and grabbing that wheel. This is what we believe our nationalist heroes and heroines did. And this, is the insight behind Inde-Bants. Continue reading →
Some days back, I was invited to speak at the 2017 Orange Academy Annual Immersion (graduation) Ceremony. After meddling with the thought shelves in my head, I wasn’t satisfied with the topic ideas I had. I went about with thought clouds on my head, trying to pull out something that will be interesting, educative and fresh but all my efforts were like trying to weave my eyebrows; fruitless.
Finally I found a topic; Perfection.
I used to suffer from this a while ago and I still do, always having that niggling thought that “this is not yet perfect” when I’m done with a task. From what I have observed, many of us do suffer from this actually, especially creatives. Something is always missing.
However, as I have painfully discovered on many occasions, perfection is a mirage. It’s that puddle of water you see in the distance when driving on a tarred express road on an oven hot afternoon. Yes, you (almost) see it in your mind but it keeps eluding your grasp. The closest we get to it is creating an illusion that it’s there. There are just too many dynamics that bar the existence of perfection. Time, situation, effort, resources and other factors.
Using Lagos as a point of reference, we are well aware of the fact that the word ‘calm’ will be hard to truly associate with it. More like ‘chaos’ will do. Interestingly though, in this seeming chaos lies an order that is observed in the daily workings of the activity in the state. A typical Danfo driver knows which roads to take when he has an expired license, people living on the mainland and working on the island know the best times to move and with kids, not just in Lagos but in some major cities as far as Sao Paolo, without a football pitch they still find a way to have great fun playing football. All these point to the fact that Lagos people try to make the best use of what they have got, so should we as creatives. In the chaos of the design demands, rejections, wants and needs of our sphere, we should look for a pattern, an order that will help in making the best use of what we have to create the best that will work for our clients. Often times, this is presented in form of culture, “our own way”.
There are times though, when we are fully immersed in the process and it seems everything is just a horror of activities with no direction. That’s when there’s the danger of losing focus and getting frustrated comes in. Right then is the cue for us to step back and reassess the situation. Be a drone and take an aerial view of all that’s going on. This will help in affirming how far in the journey to the goal we’ve traveled. Take this old shot of Tejuosho for instance, when you look at the picture closely, you see a pattern, a kind of order. But if you’re within the place in the picture, you’ll definitely not see that.
Much as we seek that order in our chaos, we mustn’t create that for our clients. What we create must be simple enough to be used with ease. In a provision store as packed as one of those in Dosunmu, the trader always knows where to search whenever you ask for an item. This ease of access should also be a point of note when designing for clients. This can be done with the use of landmarks or references that’ll enable better user experience.
Even with all these, there’ll still be some frustrating challenges that will make you want to hit your head or another’s head on a keypad. At such times, what happens? Do you get knocked out or bounce back and give all you’ve got?
In this game, more often than not, it’s not about who gets there first. It’s about who drags the media along to the finish line, and creates an illusion of crossing the finish line first. Fair doesn’t have a place here, and Apple knows this.
With the ‘coming out ceremony’ of its new products (and building), Apple has once again got many talking as planned. And yes, there is no denying the fact that its products are made with some of the best cutting edge, sometimes futuristic technologies available.
Time and time again, Apple has shown that it’s simply not enough selling bad ass products. You have to sell something else too, like a truckload of ego massages or an enormous quantity of snob factor. This however, doesn’t come easy, or cheap.
It takes intensively strategic and visionary planning such that as a brand, you’re ahead of your competitors with as much space as two years. Apple buyers know that what they get has been given the utmost attention in ideation, creation and detailing.
With Apple, it’s not about creating new and many products. It’s majorly about reinventing what’s been invented by others in such a way that it’s hard to get a better product anywhere. With the few products it has, you’re sure they’re the best. This, is one of the reasons why Apple has a cult following today.
Add that to the fact that the customer relations of the brand is top notch. It will be surprising if the case is otherwise as it’s a fact that everything about Apple revolves around the customer. The user experience, technology simplicity, class of products and emotional appeal.
Whether or not the prices of its products are eye watering, Apple will most likely always smile to the bank. Because, as said earlier, it doesn’t just sell gadgets, it sells a packing of snob power to go too.
Balls: Devoid of all things soft and proper; Defiance-filled; immersed in the roaring flame of guts. Give-middle-finger-able attitude.
Humor: Wise-ass; ‘Disher’ of hard knocks enshrouded in grinning fists.
Sophistication: Savagery packed in the soft wool of class, fully understood only by the perspicacious; Unapologetic cosmopolitanism.
The New Yorker: The magazine that has consistently exhibited balls, sophistication and humor in its (cover) designs.
Talking about designs that hijack your attention without apologies, there’s something about them that makes your brain smile in appreciation. Most of The New Yorker’s cover designs do that to you.
The first thing that got me interested in the magazine is the expertly woven messages spun in the yarn of the illustrations of its cover pages. The devastating use of satire is top notch; it pulls no punches in slamming the intended message home.
With the covers of the latest issues, it appears the magazine has upped its ante in delving into the blatantly controversial. Whether it’s good or bad on the conceptual scales that relate to the society is not my focus here; what I see is that these covers have got conversation blazing away.
As with some of its past covers like “View of the World”(Saul Steinberg), “The Politics of Fear”(Barry Blitt) and “Moment of Joy” (Jack Hunter), these recent covers are generating conversations and inhabiting headlines. And this, is a feat that only the best (and well, worst too) designs accomplish.
All these boil down to simplicity; that cunningly created design that makes you deceive yourself into thinking “oh, it’s so simple anyone can do it!” But we know, simplicity can be a real tough nut to crack. If done right though, it’s the best starting point for an attention grabbing design.
Simple (done right) is sophistication. It is humour with a wicked twist. It is balls. Go the simple way.