The New Wine – Waves
«Waves» is the debut album of «The New Wine», a band described by some as four guys creating guitar- and synth based pop with light riffs, aesthetic bass and steady beats. Over the last two years of touring, the band’s sound have evolved and taken on a darker, more organic sound, while staying true to their catchy pop-vibe. The band wanted the cover to hint to this evolution, while still staying somehow visually related to their previous releases, «Bridge» and «Revolving Cylinder».
With this in mind we decided to continue playing with geometric shapes like we did on their EP, but to introduce a wooden cube as an organic element. We wrapped it up in several layers of PVC-film, which was then peeled off in the shape of waves to reveal the wooden core, much like layers of synth and electronics are added to the band’s musical core, which is a traditional band using guitars, drums and keyboards.
Norwegian Rain — Identity
Living in Bergen, on the western coast of Norway, means a life in rain. You can hate it or love it, but no matter how you approach it, one thing is certain: It will rain tomorrow. And the day after. Making something good out of this rainy situation, Bergen-born founder and creative director Alexander Helle formed Norwegian Rain.
The Norwegian Rain collection is a subtle composition of traditional men’s tailoring and the technology found in heavy-duty rain protection. While keeping you dry and warm, the garments are also elegantly shaped eco-friendly fabrics with fine men’s tailoring details sewn in. Norwegian Rain is one of those brands who’s got what it takes to become really successful, and maybe help the style-minded urban man to finally get rid of his umbrellas.
The Norwegian Rain brand is developed collaboratory between founder Alexander Helle, bespoke tailor and co-designer T. Michael, and Grandpeople. Our involvement in the visual aspects of the brand will continue as Norwegian Rain evolves.
SVA magazine — Magazine
In the words of the editors, SVA is a «pure, high fashion magazine on the Scandinavian market. It keeps a close eye on Scandinavian fashion, yet it never loses sight of the international fashion scene». In November 2010 issue #5 became the first issue to launch international distribution in 12 countries, and also the first issue with editorial design by Grandpeople. On the subject of future we made a distinct title font called «Framtida».
TAQ – Light Drawings
Identity and album artwork for Norwegian pop/rock ensemble «The Alexandria Quartet». After touring all over Europe with their debut material for 2 years, The Alexandria Quartet went back to Bergen, Norway, to work on new material. Coloured by the dark, rainy clouds and the harshness of Norwegian winter, the songs seemed to take on a darker, more psychedelic cloak. With their new sound, and the album title «Light Drawings» ready, the band contacted us for a visual make-over.
We wanted a look that reflected this new musical direction, which led us to shoot the band in a dark studio setting, and ultimately to combine photography with illustrations and handmade textures.
For the vinyl edition of the album we created a pattern that was engraved into the b-side of the second disc.
The New Wine
The New Wine is a young band experimenting with both electronic and acoustic expressions, always with a clear objective: To create music that you can dance to. The band requested a visual profile that could be recognized without showing their name. Our approach became an abstract, customizable, systematic illustration concept.
Looking for a foundation in both the world of art, and in simple mathematics, we came up with a set of rules that provided an illustrative, repeatable pattern. We built the pattern in several layers of cardboard an photographed it for the vinyl sleeve design, and simplified it into vector graphics for prints on t-shirts and tote bags.
The profile for the 2007 Ekko festival had a simple approch based on plain typography and circles. Keeping it this simple and not grid based, it became both strict and playful at the same time. We designed a wooden dispenser for the festival programme, which was printed on thin paper allowing it to be easily teared out by the visitors. For t-shirts and tote bags we upped the playfulness, somehow remixing the festival profile with animals in stead of circles.
The EKKO festival features an exhibition of silkscreen prints each year, hand made by a selecion of designers and artists. Our contribution for 2009 was based on a play on standards and expectations. By printing a main color that is close to, but not really black, on a piece of paper that is not white, but a very pale pinkish-orange, in a size and format that is smaller than the biggest available, and most common format for the exhibition, the poster stood out from its fellow prints in a little weird yet interesting way.
The Biennial Reader
This anthology on the global biennial phenomenon includes seminal republished texts collected from around the world as well as newly commissioned contributions from the leading scholars, curators, critics, and thinkers of biennials today. Poised to be a vital resource for scholars, students, curators, artists, and critics alike, The Biennial Reader reflects on the past, the promise, and the future of the biennial, and, in the process, on its impact on contemporary art, curating, and art institutions writ large.
Dealing with 512 pages of contemporary art theory we had to create a grid with high legibility that would still be flexible enough to allow a certain variation between the spreads. With articles such as these it’s easy to alienate the reader, so we focused on rhythm, variation, progression and carefully selected materials.
A highly acclaimed car magazine about people and lifestyle. The editors approached us to develop a visual profile for issue #27. We had very ambitious plans, with dubious pop-cultural references to criminal conspiracies in car movies like «The Italian Job» and «The Getaway». The process was very long and organic so part of the original plan had to be abandoned, but we developed a completely new grid and a bespoke title font. Engine™ is the result of a study in abstraction of technical drawings, blueprints and cross sections of car engines.
There’s a direct link between sports and statistics, it’s called math. The idea of measuring and comparing results is what makes sports so entertaining, and we wanted to apply this idea when designing this annual report for Bergen city, department of sports and culture. Looking into field markings and court lines we found that they all reminded us somewhat of lines and curves from graphs and statistics, and the color schemes seemed to follow a set of unspoken rules in both these markings and in teams’ uniforms. Bright, colorful, and often just a little skewed versions of the primary colors. Inspired by these findings, the annual report was shaped within its own set of «unwritten» visual rules.
One name notably absent from last week’s Scandinavian design special is none other than Bergen’s Grandpeople, a studio with a real eye for colour, typography and art direction that is so sharp you could lose an eye or two. ;)
Founded in 2005, this awarding-winning studio deliver unique ideas, visual communication, illustration, photography and creative direction from the western edge of Scandinavia to the world. They have worked with a wide range of clients, from big multinationals to start-ups making up for in aspiration what they lack in money.
I was a bit short on time today to integrate some fancybox magic into the feature (whereby you click on an image, watching as it “magically” enlarges to it’s original size) but you can easily work around that by right-clicking/tapping an image, then opening the image in a new tab; a bit lo-fi, but hey, whatever gets the job done ;)
This post is tagged Art Direction, Books, Editorial, Grandpeople, Identity, Oslo, Packaging, Record Sleeve