Welcome back to the blog.
A few months ago, a former co-worker commissioned me to create a logo for a custom set of business cards. It was a simple identity/branding task, that was aimed at helping my client become established as a distributor of fine South African wines for markets here in Japan.
I've since lost contact with him, but he was extremely satisfied with my work the last I heard. Naturally, as with all my design tasks, I created a Pinterest board to help guide the overall direction of the logo creation(seen below). However, looking beyond the simplicity of a business card, I decided to go one step further and develop his idea into the potential packaging of a wine bottle design.
This time I focused on the unique identity of the people and culture of South Africa. Therefore, I collected various imagery that resonated with these ideas and included those in the board as well. Using the reference materials above, I created various colored drafts and patterns to use in the final design. Though none of the patterns are particularly authentic to the country of South Africa, the purpose of the exercise was to simply interpret the data and create an impression of the multitude of cultures, languages and ethnic groups that the country prides itself in.
Combining this patchwork of artistic identity would eventually lead to the painting seen below. Foregoing the typical paper labels pasted on wine bottles around the world, I decided a fabric label would not only heighten the perceived quality of the product, but better align with the more earth-bound and natural essence of the people. I believe my design evokes the unique hand-dyed and spun fabrics of kente cloth found in many communities and countries across the African continent.
I was quite happy with the result of my bottle, especially taking into consideration it was completely made in a brand new program that I have yet to become proficient in(Krita for those interested). However, I was still curious as to how I could make a proof of concept for potential advertising. So, I took this design to the next level and created a mock-up for a billboard. At this point, I imagined Istanan Wines to be more than a distributor of established wine brands, but a full fledged winery. Because...why not?
What do you guys think? If I go back and make edits, I would probably drop the contrast of the text by using an alternative color to black since it doesn't actually exist in nature. Overall, I'm pretty happy with the end product. What product should I design next? I'm considering making a package for my ChaTo project or moving on to something completely new; animation perhaps? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. As always, don't forget to like and share this post.
Until next time,
Long time, no see. Apologies for the extended absence. Your boy was going through some things(some of which, remain to be resolved). However, thats neither here nor there. I decided today would be a good day to return to my habit of exploring random Japanese words I consider interesting. Today's choice is a complicated one, inspired by various personal, political, and social events. For the sake of not being so esoteric, lets focus on the demonstrations that have plagued Hong Kong for the past 3 months. I won't go into too much detail regarding Carrie Lam's proposed extradition bill, but if you are interested in learning more, feel free to checkout Asian Boss's video below.
In any-case, these protesters are vehemently opposed to the use of force by the Hong Kong police department, even resorting to violence in cases of self-defense. Therefore, I have decided today's word is "抵抗/ていこう/teikou・resistance", so lets breakdown these kanji.
As you can see, this word contains 2 separate kanji with roughly the same meaning. While some may find this to be a nuisance, I personally find this to be a blessing in disguise. Due to the number of instances in which either character may appear in combination with others, it increases the probability of understanding the general meaning of a previously unknown word. This happens to be the case for the latter half of "抵抗", (抗), since it functions as a prefix for many words such as:
抗議・Protest 抗菌・Antibacterial 抗争・Dispute 抗うつ剤・Antidepressant
On the other hand, the former half of "抵抗", (抵), is much more complicated, hence why it might be considered a nuisance. However, to be fair, its alternative uses could loosely be associated with ideas that are functionally "contrary" to a person's interest, as in:
抵触・Inconsistent/Contradictory 抵当・Mortgage 抵当流れ・Foreclosure 副抵当・Collateral security
I think its cool that these symbols can be packed with so much meaning, both static and fluid. Are you able to reconcile the slight nuances between the two kanji introduced at the top of the post? Can you see how they might differ in use depending on the context given in their alternative examples? Are there words in your native language you feel may be redundant or obsolete? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. As always, don't forget to like and share this post~
Until next time,