Aaron Smith


I agree Aaron. The most important thing about painting is the experience. I always say – the process is more important than the result.

Love this work by Aaron Smith. So much life and color and yet also so still. Beautiful. See more of his work here.

(via Booooooom: http://www.booooooom.com/2012/09/04/aaron-smith/)

Goldrun creates virtual stores for Airwalk

Airwalk launched it’s invisible pop-up store with the help from the teams at Goldrun and Y&R last November. The virtual store could be accesed using their cellphones in 2 locations: Washington Square, NYC and Venice Beach, CA. The users could download the application, go to the locations and hold up their phone. They would then discover images of limited edition Airwalk shoes around them which they could tap on and then purchase.

Goldrun has since launched many other campaigns utilizing augmented reality for companies including Bloomingdales, Esquire, H&M and more! I have a feeling this new dynamic, interactive tool will influence marketing for years to come.

OH and watch out for the founder Vivian Rosenthal. She’s creating quit a success story with her new company Goldrun and you should definietly add her to the ‘people you should know’ list.

Want to know more? Watch this Video about the Airwalk campaign
pretty sweet…


Google logo today combines dance and animation beautifully

The google logo today is a little animation by Ryan Woodward. His animation combines dance and simple lines to create movement and emotion that is just beautiful. A friend sent me a link to another animation that he had done and I was captivated. His new work is called “Conte Animated” and it combines gesture drawing of the human figure, 2d animation and contemporary dance. Being a dancer and an artist, this work really speaks to me and I love everything about it.

Watch the video here:

More about Ryan Woodward.

Designer you should know: Erica Eden

Erica Eden is a senior Industrial Designer at Smart Design and a founding member of the Femme Den.

Why is she is cool?
Erica is a part of Femme Den which focuses on developing a deeper understanding of how to design for gender. Women buy or influence up to 80% of consumer goods, so Femme Den focuses on improving design for women. They also strive to end stereotypes on how to design for women (for example: make it small and pink) and work to develop new techniques based on how women interact with a product. Their vision is inspiring and influential in today’s market. Erica mentions in her AIGA presentation that in industrial design, only 10-15% of the designers are women. Read more about the Femme Den on Fast Company.

You can see Erica in action in this great video presentation where she speaks about designing for women.
She explores some of the products designed especially for women and why they were successful. (or NOT successful)
AIGA Business and Design Conference 2010: Erica Eden

You can also learn more about Erica here: Q & A with Eden on the New York times.

Rock on, Erica Eden.

New FUZE drink commercial films puppets upside-down – say what?

I just saw a new FUZE drink commercial on TV and I immediately searched for the creators. The characters were quirky and interesting and I couldn’t tell how much was animation and how much was film. After coming across this article, I discovered the unique process that went into making this commercial. They filmed puppeteers in costumes upside-down and added animation at the end. Say what?! Check out the commercial and the ‘behind the mix’ video all about how they made these characters come to life.

Kudos to the director Aaron Duffy from 1st Avenue Pictures and the puppet creators from Randy Carfagno Productions.

Check out one of their new commercials:

Check out the ‘Behind the Mix’ video and peek into the creative process:

Daily Deal Website Design Tips

We have been spending a lot of time lately reviewing daily deal site designs. We have had a lot of requests for custom deal branding for our daily deal software, Deal Current, and we wanted to share tips, sites for critique, and sites we have designed.

Groupon is one of the hottest internet companies on the web today and this is due to the fact they are a steward to their brand. We feel the foundation of a great company is brand design. The way you communicate each element of your brand through design determines the initial impression and lasting memory you leave with a customer.

Here are some tips:

  1. The brand initially starts with the name. Try not to use “Deal of the Day” or “Daily Deal”. Deal in the title is OK, but keep it short and simple.
  2. Try to have a mascot or at least an icon that people can associate your brand with.
  3. Keep the design simple. You don’t want to distract from the purpose of selling the deal.
  4. Make sure the deal title, main image, and buy button are the 3 most prominent focal points.

Here are some sites we found that we weren’t too fond of:

The next two are from the site Media Web Connect. They have created their software on a template system and the design customization capabilities are minimal. Also its hard to see the buy button on the sites and there doesn’t seem to be any guidance with design standards and color choice.

Media Web Connect Deal of the Day Design Media Web Connect Deal of the Day Design

The following two are from the site Tippr. Tippr runs their own daily deal site and is licensing their platform out to 3rd parties. We like their site, but their 3rd party sites seem to be the same template and brand. Usability is clear, but the design is pretty plain.

Tippr Daily Deal Site Design Tippr Deal of the Day Design

Here are some sites our clients designed on our platform that we love:

IDineDeals.com is from the Rewards Network. They implemented a very clean design with a clear focus on the offer each day.

Deal of the Day Design by Deal Current

Another one of our clients Morgan’s Deals implemented their brand with a great sense of style leaning towards the female demographic.

The design is clean and the messaging is clear. These are the key elements to a good e-commerce and daily deal site.

Deal Current Daily Deal Site Design

Another one of our favorites is by DiscoverSD here in San Diego. They call their program the Hookup and have an excellent sense of brand. Their program is a weekly deal and each week they feature the coming weeks deal upfront. This builds the momentum and ensures a strong day of sales each week.

Deal Current Deal of the Day Design

Awesome Animated Video for the Yellow Bird Project

I know I already posted about the Yellow Bird Project a while back, but I had to share this new video I just saw on their site. This non-profit company works with an amazing range of indie rock musicians to create unique t-shirt designs that benefit an array of charities, each chosen by the musicians. Music + T-Shirts + Art + Charity. What a cool idea.

They have just released this new animated video with their original theme song written by “The Tallest Man on Earth” and animated by Jonathan Lindley. I love this sweet animation made with paper. Watch below, or check it out here.