Friday, 31 December 2010

Best of 2010 Xmas/New Year pieces

Thanks to all those people who very kindly sent me Christmas cards and some exceptionally fine and humorous Xmas and New Year promo pieces.

Here are two of the best:

A beatifully packaged and well presented pair of Red and White Christmas socks. They were mailed in a bespoke envelope shaped wallet (made using Colorset, Bright Red 270gsm) and held together with a 'seal' shaped sticker. The pair of socks with the 'warm wishes from Bob' tag is hot foiled blocked (on Matrisse 200gsm) and held on by red ribbon and a lovely little gold coloured safety pin. The attention to detail is fantastic.  

Again, this is a piece which is produced with fantastic attention to detail (and it's not even produced using our paper!). Simply (but very nicely) wrapped in brown paper, there is a well produced white box inside which when opened reveals the number of the limited edition snowball and the message "catch you in the new year". Inside is a lovely snowball (fake, but very realsistic) and some loose snow! Really excellent production:  

...and what about the rest?
The above pieces are just two that I thought were worth highlighting because of their exceptionally high production values but I also received some other excellent cards, calendars, bookmarks and novelties. HOWEVER, I also received some items which those design companies should simply be ashamed of - especially if these were the same items as were sent to clients or potential clients. Here are three examples (names witheld!):
  • An item where the wrong postage amount had been put on it so it arrived with a postage to be paid sticker (if mine was wrong, so were all the rest).
  • A fairly well produced notebook, the effect of which was ruined by it being put into a 'jiffy' bag together with a compliment slip which had a greeting laser printed onto it.
  • Beautifully silkscreened tea towel and lovely tag, badly let down by being sent out in a wrongly sized, bog standard C5 "Office Depot" business envelope!
The point to be made here is to only send something out into the market that represents what you can do best. If an item is let down by incorrect postage or a badly thought out envelope or content, it won't impress a new client and might even make an existing client think again. If you aren't going to see it through and produce something of the same quality and production values that you would be happy to produce for a client - my advice is, don't do it!
Posted by Justin Hobson 31.12.2010

Friday, 24 December 2010

Adidas F/W 2010

This is the latest collection of Adidas 'Training clothes' with the Fall/Winter 2010 collection. It is a pair of brochures, Mens and Womens and as I'm sure you can see from the images, they are beautiful pieces of literature using vibrant punchy colours.

Art Direction, design and production is by Made Thought. The superb photography is by Andrea Spotorno. I can't say too much more about it - look at the images below, they speak for the job...
Below pic shows the clever 6pp, a slit holding the CD in the fold:
...and this is the Mens:
Each brochure is a 4pp cover with a 44pp text, saddle stitched. There is a loose 6pp insert which list the international distributors and which cleverly holds a CD and this is held in place with a white elasticated loop - a clever idea and really well executed. Size is 275x200mm portrait and it's printed on Marazion Ultra which gives it that dead matt/flat look but with great reproduction. Cover is 300gsm, text is 150gsm and 6pp insert is 300gsm. Print is by Push.
Posted by Justin Hobson 24.12.2010

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Celia Stothard 1949-2010

Today I received the sad news that Celia Stothard died on 8th December (because of the snow, I only received post today sent on the 13th December which is why this announcement is quite so late).

My sincerest condolences go to her husband and partner Alan Kitching.

It was barely a year ago that I was invited to a private view in London, celebrating the work of Alan Kitching and Celia Stothard at The Typography Workshop. Derek Birdsall paid tribute to Alan and Celia's fifteen year partnership. In his response, Alan touchingly referred to his having been rescued by Celia from his former 'vagabond' life camping out at the Chelsea Arts Club!

The cover of the 2010 Fenner Paper diary was designed and produced by Alan at The Typography Workshop and Alan and Celia were genial hosts when I popped in with mock ups and proofs and most forgiving when the printing and binding of their copies ran later and later...!

She will be sadly missed by all that knew her.

Below is a picture of Celia and Alan working together at the Typography Workshop.
Photo taken by Phil Sayer for Eye Magazine.
Posted by Justin Hobson 23.12.2010 

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

2011 Fenner Paper Diaries - out now!

It's that time of year again when we are busy packing up and sending out our popular Fenner Paper diaries.

If you normally receive one but haven't yet, DON'T PANIC! The snow and ice have taken their toll in delaying both the production and the mailing, so it should be with you soon.
This year's diary follows the same style and format as previous years - 153x232mm portrait and has the 'month to view' format which is what many people like. There is also some information about finishing and formats (as above).

This year the cover is printed on Flockage Litho 250gsm [our litho printable flocked paper] in three colours and the text is on our Offenbach Bible 60gsm in just one colour. We're very pleased with it ...and I hope you'll like it too!

They are in the post but if you haven't received your copy by early January, please drop me a line.
Posted by Justin Hobson 21.12.2010

Monday, 20 December 2010

Happy Christmas to one and all!

Thank you to everyone who has sent me cards, e-cards and other jolly xmas stuff. Rather sadly for the first time ever, I think I've received more e-cards than printed on paper ...sad but true!  Anyway, thanks to all for your good wishes.

And here's one of my favourites so far this year from Sandy Suffield:
Posted by Justin Hobson 20.12.2010

Friday, 17 December 2010

New equipment arrives!

As part of our 'continuous investment programme'  (that amounts to all the shirt buttons and brass razoos that we can find!) I'm pleased to announce that we have purchased a 'ROUND CORNERING MACHINE' for the Fenner Paper sample room ...and here it is:
I can't really say much more about it because the title 'Round Cornering Machine' pretty much says everything there is to say - it puts a round corner on things! So, we can now put radius corners on samples and dummies - for examples on invitations or brochures up to a maximum thickness of about 10mm.
Posted by Justin Hobson 17.12.2010

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Deutsche Bank Guidelines

This is a fantastic project - not only does it look great and work well but because it's succesful in an area (brand identity) in which these days, often guidelines are only produced digitally. In this case,  Deutsche Bank agreed that it’s new brand and visual identity guidelines should exist physically as well as digitally. The book is intended to set the bar and act as constant inspiration for Deutsche’s creative agencies around the world - and it certainly achieves this goal.

It took Studio 2br over 12 months to complete the research and design to develop the new identity system, design the new Deutsche Bank Brand Portal and produce the 80-page A3 guidelines book. All in all, a very large project.
Below are the scatter proof/print test sheets:
Design is by Studio 2br. Creative Director on the project was David Shalam.

The job is an 80pp, saddle stitched, self cover A3 portrait format and the paper used is our Marazion Ultra 90gsm - yes that's right 90gsm ...the paper was chosen for it's tactile matt quality, excellent opacity and the way this large format saddle stitched book opens, the pages turn nicely and the flow is just right.

It is printed in 8-colours, with a silkscreened plastic wallet to protect it. Print management was placed in the extremely experienced hands of Paul Harding (a freelance production man who comes highly recommended by many clients). The printer on this excellent piece of literature was St Ives Westerham Press.
Posted by Justin Hobson 14.12.2010

Monday, 13 December 2010

Carbon Rations!

I've only just received a copy of this very nice little job which was produced last year for the Copenhagen Climate conference.

Ration Me Up is a monthly Carbon Ration Book created by The Ministry of Trying to Do Something About It (and designed by thomas.matthews). It was launched at NEF's 'the Bigger Picture Festival of Independence'.

Thomas Matthews designed this monthly ration book to teach each us all of the true cost of our day to day necessities and habits by calculating personal monthly carbon usage.

The covers of all the ration books were produced on a variety of different colours of Colorset 270gsm which were all 'leftovers' from another job at Calverts Press. Here they all are at the exhibition:
The Ministry of Trying to Do Something About It are:

Clare Patey – Artist
thomas.matthews – Communication design
Cathy Wren – Installation Designer
Dr Victoria Johnson – Research
Corrina Cordon – Project Manager
Jonathan Atkinson – Project development and management
Jenny Hayton – Costume Advisor
Tim Mitchell – Construction

Posted by Justin Hobson 13.12.2010

Thursday, 9 December 2010

World's most expensive book sells for £7.3m at Sotheby's

On Tuesday a new record was set for the most expensive printed book in the world!
A rare first edition of The Birds of America was sold at Sotheby's in London yesterday on 7th December for £7.3m, making it the most expensive printed book in the world.

London dealer Michael Tollemache, whose winning bid came in more than £1.3m above the £6m estimate, described the work as "priceless".

...and here's a picture of this MASSIVE book:

The four-volume work, produced in the 1830's is  from the private collection of Frederick, 2nd Lord Hesketh, comprises 435 hand-coloured etched plates with line-engraving and aquatint.

The engravings are by Robert Havell and Son, of London, and WH Lizars, of Edinburgh, from the original life-size watercolours by John James Audubon.
All prints were reproduced in double-elephant folio (what a shame we don't have names for paper sizes like that anymore!) which represents a sheet size of around 972mm x 654mm, from the copper plate etchings and then hand coloured.

The Birds of America took Audubon 12 years to complete and his technique involved shooting the birds (with a gun, not a camera - but do remember this was the 1830's) before mounting them with wire in order to pose them for his sketches!

Now I know people think that Fenner Paper have been around for years but even we haven't been going that long!, sadly we didn't supply the paper for this particular job!  However the paper used is all watermarked  J. Whatman Turkey Mill and was actually produced at a paper mill in Maidstone in Kent which is very close to where we are based.

The "Turkey Mill" was established as a paper making mill back in 1740 by James Whatman - hand making paper and over the next hundred years became one of the most highly regarded mills in the country. By 1859 the Turkey Mill and Whatman watermarks (trade names essentially) were sold to a neighbouring mill - Springfield Mill which believe it or not, is still running! - producing a range of specialist scientific filter and medical papers and is the last remaining paper mill in the Maidstone area. In 1976 the original Turkey Mill was bought by the dreaded Wiggins Teape (now ArjoWiggins) and closed down, bringing to an end over 280 years of continuous paper making at Turkey Mill.

Here endeth the history lesson!
Posted by Justin Hobson 09.12.2010