Insights from the Creative Industries
by Derek Yates and Jessica Price

Douglas Coupland, Hans Ulrich Obrist. The Age of Earthquakes: A Guide to the Extreme Present

the Venture

“A new wave of products is helping people change their behavior and daily routines, whether it’s exercising more (Jawbone Up), taking control of their finances (HelloWallet), or organizing their email (Mailbox)…”

Stephen Wendell. Designing for Behaviour Change

Good For Nothing

“We are consuming too fast, creating unnecessary waste and feeling frustrated. Let’s fix our relationship with electronics!”

the Restart Project

“The thing is, Google knew something we didn’t. It knew that Apple’s taste was a temporary advantage. It knew that designing a host of functional, universally integrated services was harder than designing pixels.”

Fast Company. Apple Finally Learns Ai Is The New Ui

ustwo, Monument Valley

“Many institutions that otherwise would have native apps or mobile sites have opted instead for official accounts. You can send any kind of message (text, image, voice, etc), and they’ll reply, either in an automated fashion or by routing it to a human somewhere. The interface is exactly the same as for chatting with your friends”

Matt Webb,

“Businesses need living identities, not dead logos”

Moving Brands, Living Identities

Sennep. Twitterball

“I believe that sustainability is not just what you eat or what you wear, it’s also the way we deal with others,”

Martijn Engelbregt

Project, Projects.

“The process is the product…

Logic is our tool…

The input is our material…”

Luna Maurer, Edo Paulus, Jonathan Puckey, Roel Wouters. The Conditional Design Manifesto.

I am my MTV

Sennep, Dandelion

“Children, with their own unique imagination and preferences are central to the goal of Catalpa. Koeweiden Postma found it logical that children were allowed to contribute their bit to the visual identity which will surround them.”

Koeweiden Postma

Morag Myerscough and Cottrell & Vermeulen with Vital Arts

“Participation requires the integration of action, thought and feeling so that meanings are made for and by the participant.”

Paul Ramirez Jonas

“We have the feeling that design is no longer about exclusive products, but increasingly about something that is woven into everyday life. Of course in the shape of products, but also in the shape of concepts services, systems, experiences and solutions to problems.”

Pim Van Baarsen

‘the Haiti Report is a deep exploration of innovative solutions for community development.’

“Design thinking is about believing we can make a difference, and having an intentional process in order to get to new, relevant solutions that create positive impact.”


“The opportunity before us is enormous; what we do with it will be determined largely by how well we are able to imagine and reward public creativity, participation, and sharing”

Clay Shirky

‘the Rules is a global movement to empower people and change the precepts that create inequality and poverty around the world.’

“We empower organizations and communities to shift the way they think, build, and grow together… (to do this, we) use methodologies that draw from community development, design thinking, organizational transformation, and branding.”

Openbox. Design & Innovation

“I made a discovery today.  I found a computer.  Wait a second, this is cool.  It does what I want it to.  If it makes a mistake, it’s because I screwed it up.  Not because it doesn’t like me…”

The Mentor, Conscience of a Hacker.

“I love pixels! They’re the building blocks of all the visual design we do here at ustwo, but are so often relegated to a mere afterthought in the excitement of working with colours and styles.”

Gyppsy, ustwo

“This is not a guide to the nuts and bolts of finding a printer and selling subscriptions but a contemplation of the major elements that will set you up for success. By the end of this piece, you’ll understand that “How do I start a magazine?” is actually the wrong question to ask.”

Steve Daniels, Makeshift. ‘How do I start a magazine?’

Makeshift. A field guide to hidden creativity

Build, ‘In the making’ book.

Marko Goller, ‘Design for behaviour change’.

“It made sense for corporate identity designers to apply standardization and aim for simplicity to make the most of what reproduction and communication methods were available to them…”

Jose Martinez Salmeron, Director social@ogilvy in 2008

“Clearly marked with its serial number #L1F3; not only was the submarine given a name, it was given the means to turn itself from a prop into a form of media.”

M&C Saatchi, Milan

“We are not working in the blind. There is a history of people that came before us who thought about graphic design, and graphic design with computers.”

Rune Madsen, Printing Code

Deviant Art. Moving Brands

“We now judge the success of a brand not by its ability to manage its brand mark but in its ability to be recognised without its mark.”

Heidi Lightfoot, Together Design

Rachel Botsman, The case for collaborative consumption

“Underlying some of this is us questioning where the boundaries and borders of design as a practice are. Does it have to be linked to ideas of consumption and production for an industry? Can it ask questions?”

Matt Ward, DWFE

“Our working area is primarily determined by text & image, together with objects and space: drawing characters & letters, creating word images making numbers understandable, designing, signposting, visualizing processes & intention, developing spatial situations, creating structure in visual material. It is all to simplify the traffic between people in order to increase the probability of communication.”

Total Design 1963

“Design must make a contribution, however small in scale, towards creating a better world, better environment – a society capable of getting more joy out of life. In other worlds, design should increase the aesthetic element of living.”

RHK Henrion

UNICEF Tap Project, Droga5

“Social networks are harbingers of the evolution of the value of capital in our society, from the direct product of labour … to the effects of education and knowledge dubbed cultural capital, where affiliations, relations, communities, and networks of mutual recognition operate.”

Andrew Blauvelt, Brand New Worlds

“the interactive element needs to be driving the programme, and often this will happen through a system of things. Not the old school idea of 360-degree marketing where you define a message and put it in as many different boxes as possible.”

Hashem Bajwa, former digital strategist Droga5

FARC Operation Xmas, Lowe & Partners

“A logo was a mark of ownership, while a brand is a story … Corporate identity sought to make a name recognisable and memorable, while branding is about bonding consumers to companies with ties so strong that in the words of Saatchi & Saatchi, there is “loyalty beyond reason.”

Andrew Blauvelt, Brand New Worlds

Weare, Moving Brands

“Can you empathize with the users’ experience, and therefore come up with new features, new ideas, new things, and then understand it sufficiently to execute and engineer them?”

Hashem Bajwa, former digital strategist Droga5

Wallpaper Custom Covers, Kin

“In the aftermath of its golden age corporate identity became, well, corporate: rigid, cold, sterile and imperious. How to make a proper corporate logo became increasingly formulaic, built on the back of whatever was successful before.”

Andrew Blauvelt, Brand New Worlds

Betty Crocker Families Project, Zeus Jones

“I feel my work for WITNESS has become part of the DNA of my creative life. Though I’ve never been able to donate funds of any consequence, I have given my creativity and literally months of my own and my team’s time… I always felt like even if I don’t do anything else in my life again, at least I’ve done this.”

Harry Pearce, Pentagram

Rory Sutherland on real & perceived value

“Until communication design is critiqued by some strong independent voices, there will be no effective critical discourse. I don’t for example think of myself as a critic; I’m too close to the coalface to be effective… To be a critic you need to be above the daily grind.”

Adrian Shaughnessy

The Century of the Self, Adam Curtis

“The brand identity provides you with identity. That’s the promise the brand makes, and it’s a promise it must keep or lose your business. It’s a very one-sided deal, not at all the same agreement you make with your club, family, cult, or religion, all of which require a certain degree of effort, commitment, and closeness in exchange for the rewards of belonging.”

DK Holland, Design Issues

“Brands provide, through their products, a lopsided and fallacious sense of belonging … , with no dues, no initiation rites, no rules and no obligations (except the literal “buy in”). You’re automatically accepted, and you can drop out anytime you like with no repercussions!”

D.K Holland, Design Issues.

“I don’t care about the reasons why brands are doing this kind of project; I just love that this is the way we are working, and it’s good for society.”

Tara Austin, Ogilvy & Mather

“I slowly realized that I had many of the skills needed to write, design, and edit the books I actually wanted to produce.”

Adrian Shaughnessy talking about Unit Editions

Decode, open source identity

“Digital making … offers an opportunity that has never happened before – to stand on the shoulders of giants.”

Karsten Schmidt

Whale Trail test episode, ustwo

“Iteration is really just building small things, looking at them, trying them out, and seeing what happens. It’s about getting a response from people and, in light of that response, adapting what you do.”

Matt Rice, Sennep

“The tendency is for digital to be about cold, hard experiences whereas if you add moments that have clearly been touched by the human hand then you can achieve surprise and engagement.”

Kevin Palmer, Kin

“A Trademark is a picture. It is a symbol, a sign, an emblem, an escutcheon, an image. A symbol of a corporation, a sign of the quality, a blend of form and content. Trademarks are animate, inanimate, organic, geometric… They indicate, not represent but suggest, and are stated with brevity and wit.”

Paul Rand, A Designer’s Art

“It’s a way of saying this is what we stand for, this is what we believe in, this is what we think is the future.”

Lindsey Liu, Method

All the views and thinking from across the Wolff Olins global community

“Part personal perspective, part collective manifesto, Designs On— is, at its core, a flexible forum that drives exploration, iterative thinking, early prototyping, and sharing, minus boundaries or constraints.”


“Graphic Design can change things, but it also plays a strong role in sustaining things as they are… We are interested in finding collaborations or alliances or conversations where graphic design can become a useful tool”


“We believe that design can play a part in generating discussion around what kind of future we would like.”

Dunne & Raby

“In our day and age… what are books for? What do they do? Books serve not just to be read, but also displayed, exchanged, reviewed, collected, shelved, archived, reproduced online and circulated in libraries. Designers today use books, blogs and zines as outlets for ‘so called’ personal work”

Ellen Lupton

“Design criticism is everywhere, underpinning all institutional activity— design education, history, publishing, and professional associations.”

Rick Poynor/ Michael Rock

“I’ve come to the conclusion that when you apply design skills to real world problems it becomes really interesting.”

Nat Hunter, RSA

Ogilvy, Immortal Fans

“It’s people who are driving the environmental megatrends, and we know that people can change, and the people who are best at getting people to change are creatives.”

Lucy Shea, Futerra

“As a designer it gives me hope because we have been complicit in the feeding frenzy of the money-making; now as part of the Occupy movement, there are designers working without ego, just with a belief in what the movement is doing.”

Jonathon Barnbrook

the Great Recovery

“I think we try to have it both ways as graphic designers; we like to think that what we do is important, but we don’t actually want to be held accountable for anything.”

Lucienne Roberts, LucienneRoberts+

Decode, Jay Z/ Bing/ Droga5

“… these changes are generating a rapid movement from impressions to ‘expressions’, and intellectual property to ‘emotional capital’. Such approaches maybe key to breaking through a cluttered & fragmented media environment, relying on consumers themselves to help knit together information and impressions gathered from multiple media experiences.”

MIT Convergence Culture Consortium

“In almost every area, there are people out there creating amazing content, and they would jump at the chance of creating content for your brand—if your brand is meaningful.”

Adrian Ho, Zeus Jones

“participatory culture is a culture where everyone has the potential to produce and contribute creatively— (it) is about being able to rewrite and rescript the environment around you, to remix the media that comes into our lives. That is in some sense a modern definition of what the consumer does in a digital age.”

Dr. Henry Jenkins

“Little Printer is a product of now. It is a “product,” a tangible thing, but is also a “product” in the sense of a consequence of contemporary culture. It humbly and accessibly exemplifies how physical and digital have merged to become one, to become hybrid objects, to demonstrate how objects might become networked, and how domestic objects might behave.”

Dan Hill, Domus

“Part of what we do is make tools that will allow us and other people to experiment individually.”

Matt Webb, ex Berg

“The thing with digital is that even at the last minute you can make it better. . . Actually even after its launch you can make it better. You can improve it as you use it and as you see other people using it. I feel much more comfortable with this way of working.”

Matt Rice, Sennep


“Our business is inherently multidisciplinary, inherently complex and inherently involves lots of people who are not from the design industry – so it is really important that to be part of this you need to understand and feel capable of operating in a team.”

Mat Heinl, Moving Brands

“designers and technologists must share know-how and experience to come to grips with the opportunities created by networked social media and that the best way to do this is through the collaborative making, not specifying.”

William Owen, Eye 64

“We don’t do marketing or campaign — the best marketing is great user experience.”

Mills, ustwo

“Optimise everything. This is our purpose. We are designers. We work in print, interactive media and spaces. We engineer brand identity, establishing or reinforcing strategic foundations. We art-direct moving image, still image and sound. Logical lateral thought. This is our method. Compelling execution. This is our craft.”

Accept & Proceed

“Developing Own IP games and apps was a way of us showing our clients, ourselves, and the industry that we care about what we do. We are seeing the benefit of this risk to all areas of our business… From recruitment—where we can employ great people because they want to be part of a business that is creating interesting things—to the skills that are nurtured in the games area and then applied in the other things that we do.”

Mills, ustwo

Letman, abcdefgh…

“Print innovation up until the invention of the Internet had been related to improving speed and efficiency, but once we came to realise that the value of print was no longer in the transmission of information people started to focus on its ability to define physicality..”

Tim Milne, Artomatic

“The digitisation of the design process has resulted in the ironing out of many of the inevitable imperfections of preceding craft based processes, so designers are beginning to build flaws into their work in an attempt to counter-act the ‘slick look’. Often they adopt methods that force unpredictable things to happen, exaggerating ‘errors’ to create a sense of ‘authenticity’.”

Ann Odling Smee, New Handmade Graphics

“In developed economies, marketing and client service budgets are moving from brand and traditional advertising into the social web and rich Internet applications. It’s difficult innovative work that involves making tools and platforms for people to use, not making finished messages shouted from megaphones or oratorical asides expecting no reply.”

William Owen in “Messy Medium,” Eye 64

“It can be amazingly liberating to be systematic—to have a set of restrictions and to make them work for you.”

Mason Wells, Bibliothéque

MIT Media Lab identity by Green Eyle

“Overall, because branding is about creating and sustaining trust – it means delivering on promises. The best and most successful brands are completely coherent. Every aspect of what they do and what they are reinforces everything else.”


Wally Olins, On Brand

“Products are made in the factory, but brands are made in the mind.”

Walter Landor, Landor Associates, 1941

“All businesses, no matter what they make or sell, should recognize the power and financial value of good design… the design bar has been raised and design-oriented businesses are winning.”

Adam Swann, Forbes

Swisscom identity by Moving Brands

“In the 1970s and ’80s, designers were largely packagers of culture. They came in at the end and applied a badge. Now brands create popular culture, and they employ designers to be part of this process.”

Russell Holmes, Strategy Director, ICO

Moving Brands Showreel

“Logos are what designers want to create, not what the public wants to see.”

Simon Manchipp, co-founder of Someone

“Can you empathize with the users’ experience, and therefore come up with new features, new ideas, new things, and then understand it sufficiently to execute and engineer them?”

Hashem Bajwa, CEO, digital product development studio, DE-DE