Its time for me to share what I've been working on this past week. If you've been following the past few "Freeday" post, you would know that I've been discussing the most pressing visual design trends of 2019. Drawing inspiration from that, I decided to try my hand at developing a mock ad in the same vein as the advertisements I see along my daily commute. As I've mentioned previously, Japanese design tends to lean heavily into simple design principles that focus on balance, economy, harmony, scale and reptition. Simultaneously, very few design elements are used in comparison to western-centric design philosophy. Those design elements primarily include space, line, shape and the occasional value or color. Just so we're on the right page, check out the selection of graphic designs below; can you see specified design principles/elements represented?
Taking those ideas into consideration, I chose to develop my idea with the help of my friend Raun. He is a fantastic photographer, whose work can be found on his instagram. Recently, he visited Tokyo and had some photos of his trip developed here. Upon receiving and looking over the results, one photo in particular caught my eye.
Raun was trying to expend the rest of the film so he could install a new roll, therefore considered the photo a throwaway. He didn't particularly find this photo well-shot or interesting, so he gave it to me. I think its quite amazing that even his trashiest photos have a remarkable amount of depth and value. Anyway, I had been thinking ahead to this particular project; considering the use of his photo as a great opportunity to express an idea for a restaurant ad inspired from a Japanese chef I had seen on a Netflix show(The Final Table) months prior. Getting to the start of this project was very roundabout, but I think thats what makes it the most interesting.
Its called "Satoyama/里山". Satoyama is the boundary between cultivated farmland and the mountanous forest region found in rural parts of Japan. Some people harvest wild vegetation from this area so that it may be consumed in local cuisine. Chef Narisawa and his self-titled restaurant, have been leading the charge to make this sustainable and eco-friendly business practice mainstream over the past 10years. Presenting the natural beauty of the earth as edible and high class as any other ingredient produced in well manicured fields. I selected a quote from Narisawa that reflected this message and overlayed it on Raun's photo. I personally think his photo is strong enough to carry the idea since it clearly illustrates the "里山" boundry, only be plused by the restaurant branding and hook in the bottom half of the composition.
I'm still trying to figure out the organization in the bottom half of the composition. Its difficult to think of a hook without an editor or at least someone who is familiar with Japanese advertising(you'd be surprised how little people in general perceive/receive communication). In any case, what do you think? Does my effort look on par to the examples I gave at the top of the post? What should I consider editing? What type of advertisement should I try next? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. As always, please like and share this post~
Until next time,