Inspiring Design Thinkers

I attended the Design Thinkers Conference for two days straight. I was so enlightened and felt extremely rejuvenated after these informative, mind-blowing sessions from some of the most inspiring speakers.

Here is a summary from some of the speakers from Day 2, they focused on more of their design and work process behind, which I thoroughly enjoyed.

'Inspirations' by Christian Schwartz

Brian Collins & Leland Maschmeyer – talked about giving constant challenges in today’s world, because the future is unknown, nobody can tell what is going to happen so we should always fill our work with fascinations and design the future. The future is up to us to create.

Eric Ryan – an entrepreneur who makes soap (you might have seen them on the racks at Shoppers). His presentation was mainly about his bumpy journey of his start-up company and how its packaging design, ingredients, sustainability changes the industry. He also wrote a book with his partner called The Method: 7 Obsessions that Helped Our Scrappy Start-Up Turn an Industry Upside Down

Deborah Adler – She impressed me with her thesis project. She designed a system for packaging prescription medicine since the old prescription labels are poorly designed. Information is not legible, misleading and hard to decipher for the patients especially for the seniors. They died from taking the wrong medications. She then started experimenting with packaging, information architecture, and focused on creating the right experience to have a positive impact on people’s lives. She brought her design/idea to Target and from there, they developed the ClearRx System (I wish we have that system in Canada).

Next, Bobby Martin Jr. and Jennifer Kinon talked about the Life Cycle of a Brand, mainly concentrated on the history and development process of Girl Scouts. The new logo was adopted and based on the old logo way back in the 70s, using the shape of the clover leaf. “Brand finds iconic imagery from history to create new unique icon”.

After lunch, there was Todd Simmons, who gave insights about storytelling. He thinks that each client story is different and each requires a different approach/design to do the job right. Hence, “One size fits none”. I think his speech particularly makes sense to me, because often in times projects have different purposes and serve a different client, that’s why sometimes I find myself struggling when thinking about what is the best or most appropriate approach for that specific job.

Jessica Hische – She makes me laugh. A very down-to-earth topographer and illustrator. She does lettering and type designs. By the way, for those who don’t know, there’s a difference between lettering and type designs. Lettering is illustrated or hand drawn while type designs are designing fonts. She showcased a lot of her past jobs and book designs, very nice stuffs! She also thinks that type designer and web designers are related, because she does web designs on the side. Actually, she has done a lot of side projects for charity and for fun, such as Daily Drop Caps, Photo lettering, Mom this is how Twitter works, Don’t fear the Internet etc. A quote from her, “Make things you wish existed”. She made me feel really lazy in comparison….There’s also an article on her in the Communication Arts Issue 52.

Also, her word of advice for those who want to become a successful illustrator, “just draw dogs doing human things” – best quote of the day.

Steve Edge – Talked about his movement, Laterialism. It is the foundation of his designs. Lateral = “sideways”, which means a new view or innovative way of thinking and challenging what is normally being accepted. He went on and recommended that, “Dress for a party everyday and the party will come to you”.

Besides, having my Design Thinker origami bag filled with swags broken in the middle of the street, it was a great and very inspirational experience.

A design that fails.


Glasses-free 3D iPad app

The idea of glasses-free 3D graphics has already been seen from Nintendo 3DS, but now you can see impressive 3D graphics on your ipad 2 as well! Thanks to the Laboratory of Informatics of Grenoble at the EHCI Research Group, the 3D experience makes use of ipad 2’s front-facing camera to detect the movements of the user’s head in front of the screen. I can’t wait to see how many interesting 3D apps that are going to be available!

Original Post: Mac Stories

River turned Green by Mcdonald’s Shamrock Shake. Yum? or Dumb?

Creating buzz for Mcdonald’s Shamrock Shake for St. Patrick’s Day in Chicago, the campaign involves an over-sized shake that has been placed at the riverside. The river is dyed green, as if it was caused by the tipped over shake. I am not a big fan of this idea, as my immediate thought to this campaign is “How are they going to turn the river back to its original colour?”.  Also, I don’t like the fact that you are putting chemicals into the river to turn its colour, we have enough pollutions already, we don’t need more from advertising.

Sorry, I’m not really lovin’ it.

This is what I called, Design that Tastes Good. Yumm~

Oversized bowls of dipping sauce sit at the base of the elevator banks in one of Shanghai’s most popular shopping malls. As each elevator descends, nuggets lower into the sauce, reminding the people the taste anticipation and provoking immediate action or response.

Brilliant idea.

Yet, seems like this idea has already been used long ago for Orea Cookies. Either one, I still think it’s great and clever. I’d totally go grab them immediately when I see these in person.

Check them out! (Make sure you’re not on a diet when you watch them, otherwise you’re putting yourself into trouble)

Mcdonald’s Dip Dip Nuggets Campaign:

Oreo Cookies Campaign: