December 2008

Pearl Café in summer mode

During the summer holiday some people in Melbourne hang around town and some, the lucky ones, find somewhere quiet in the country or by the sea. This is Pearl Café in holiday mode with a summer menu and an image by Andrew in holiday mode as well.

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We wish you reconciliation in 2009

International Reconciliation Year 2009.

It seemed fitting to see in the new year in with a message of peace. It is an age old cliché that needs little explanation in such interesting times.

From the United Nations website:

Reconciliation was a way of embedding into culture the high ideals beyond petty concerns, a process that made humanity and the common good the cornerstone of development. Reconciliation between those estranged by conflicts was the only way to confront today‘s challenges and the process and practice of reconciliation must be promoted by States; between men and women, nature and humanity, and wherever fraternity and justice were absent from human relations. The initiative had the support of governments, institutions of higher learning, civil society groups, the alliance of civilizations and the culture of peace.

In response the studio has developed an image of peace, executed with a collection of stamps and some spare time.

Happy holidays to all. Thank you to all our contributors, our clients, our collaborators and those of you out there on the other side of computer screen interested in our works and the ideas in and around communicating ideas to the community.

Peace and reconciliation to one and all in 2009 and beyond.

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Nothing is something

On the back streets of Abbotsford, Melbourne the Olympic spirit of 1956 remains. Thinking, writing, making is one aspect of human expression that doesn’t slow down, go bankrupt, even in time of crisis.

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Rudd‘s — Hesitation Revolution, stinks

A Hesitation Revolution was put place by Australian Prime Minister Mr Kevin Rudd yesterday. Modern politics placates, outrages again by putting in a place for Australia a carbon emission reduction target of 5% for 2020.

Vote with your feet people — make stickers, make posters, make badges, print t-shirts, invent slogans, it is time to make your thoughts known.

Global warming is a fantastic opportunity for the community to innovate, create, change and prosper (sorry if it sounds like some corny 101 motivation thing).

Give the people what they want Mr Rudd, people voted you in for some real leadership.

Visit The Greens here.

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Is graphic design dead?

Long live graphic design.

Branding, graphic design, visual communication, communication design, or whatever variation of the same theme is one of the community‘s least known career paths. Yet with countless presentations, articles and dialogues developed to explore graphic communication and its context in the community, it seems that one fundamental element, the profession‘s name, requires a rethink.

Clients and audiences may always struggle with identifying and trusting innovative communication design work. Time, education and experience may the best method for swaying opinion. However, the process could be accelerated if the profession‘s name better reflects the sector‘s activities.

Our film — What is graphic design? was posted on a year ago and has enjoyed subsequently over 30,000 views. This exposure has attracted a range of comments attesting the elusive position that graphic design holds in the community. This state of affairs brings to the fore the question of whether the community has got it wrong, or where the graphic design industry has it wrong. We believe the latter, and opt for dropping ‘graphic‘ from graphic design and adopting‘communication‘ to form communication design will make what we do a little clearer and logical.

As much as the term graphic design holds much fondness with designers that started their careers working from drawing table, instead of the computer. Never-the-less, it seems timely that the occupation had a name change to match the multimedia nature of contemporary work. The term — Graphic design, is related to the printed outcome, whereas many designers of this age work across a range of media, making communication design an appropriate description of designers activity in print, advertising, branding, motion design, signing and 3D design, product development to conceptual or strategic thinking.

In 2001 the creative sector was demarcated  by The UK Government‘s Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). The DCMS then developed a widely-quoted definition of the creative industries as:
“those industries which have their origin in individual creativity, skill and talent and which have a potential for wealth and job creation through the generation and exploitation of intellectual property.“ (DCMS 2001, p. 04)

The DCMS went on to define and recognise eleven creative sectors:
—  Advertising
—  Architecture
—  Arts and antique markets (see also Restoration)
—  Crafts
—  Design
—  Designer Fashion
—  Film, video and photography
—  Software, computer games and electronic publishing
—  Music and the visual and performing arts
—  Publishing
—  Television and radio

With the current DCMS definition of the Design sector Graphic Design is described as — communication design. It is a term that defines the work in a concise fashion and armed with such a term there is potential for clients and the public to have an immediate description of the sector‘s area of practice rather than a visual / physical reference.

As the creative sector enjoys a wider understanding and status within the community, the sector now is being aligned with like sectors such as finance, technology and manufacture. The Creative Industry or the Creative Economy is born, this emerging sector is attracting much attention, from the top policy makers within our community down. The United Nation‘s Creative Economy Report, launched this month is one of the many policies changing the face of design and it‘s activity in the community.

In light of all this activity organisations such as the American Institute of Graphic Arts, and the Australian Graphic Design Association may need to reflect the changing times as well. The American Institute of Communication Arts, and the Australian Communication Design Association seems only a word away from this next chapter.

What are your thoughts?

Read about the creative industry here

Download the United Nation‘s 2008 Creative Economy report here