What exactly is Swiss Design, anyway?
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What exactly is Swiss Design, anyway?

Graphic designers hear the term Swiss Design all the time. Yet most of us, if asked to define it, could do no better than point to a rather vague, general gestalt: crisp, blocky layouts, a minimalist design ethos, and sans serif typefaces. Indeed, for many people, Swiss Design is basically synonymous with Helvetica—the very name of which…

The new Google Fonts is a win for designers
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The new Google Fonts is a win for designers

Google launched Google Fonts in 2010 to provide web fonts free of charge. Over the next six years it grew considerably, becoming very popular with web designers—for the obvious reason of affordability. The original website was definitely what the startup world would call an MVP: minimal viable product. It got the job done, but it…

How to perfect your brand presentation
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How to perfect your brand presentation

Back in the day, the concept of a full “brand identity design” applied mostly to major corporations with a huge marketing presence. Everyone else got along well enough with just a logo; at best, one that could be stamped on letterhead and business cards too. Now, even small businesses have to think right from the start about…

Liqueur labels capture a bygone era
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Liqueur labels capture a bygone era

The whole world of beer, wine and spirits tends to elevate design to a uniquely privileged position, relative to other industries. Nowhere is this truer than with liqueur labels—a bigger subset than you might think, comprising fortified wines, aperitifs and digestifs, as well as harder mixers. Often liqueur labels straddle a line between quasi-medicinal authority and bacchanalian…

Surf Art: A brief history of surfing design & culture
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Surf Art: A brief history of surfing design & culture

Today there is a whole genre of surf art. It’s usually illustration-based and characterized by a mixture of psychedelic, surrealist, punk and comic book-derived influences. How did we get here? To understand the development of surf art, you need to understand the development of the surfboard—a paradigmatic design object in itself, with an amazing history in…

Shining the spotlight on Canadian design
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Shining the spotlight on Canadian design

In honor of Canada Day, we thought we’d take a moment to celebrate Canadian design, both historical and contemporary. We’re all familiar with the US 20th century design greats—Saul Bass, Milton Glaser, etc.—but Canadian designers from the 1950s, 60s and 70s, of equal artistic stature, remain obscure to many of us. If you want the full history…

Beer label brilliance from MANTSA®
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Beer label brilliance from MANTSA®

After trying his hand at logo design for a while, Filipino designer Kenneth Olympia (aka MANTSA®) decided that the way to get his awesome illustration skills noticed would be to design for the world’s burgeoning craft beer industry. We chatted with him about how he got his bottles in a row. Name: Kenneth Olympia99designs handle: MANTSA®Location: Philippines…

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