July 21, 2014

CreativeMornings Johannesburg: Heritage | Tickets now available

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Happy Monday, err’body! It’s almost noon. so you’d better be awake by now.


Seat bookings are open for Friday’s talk with Deon Maas, at the Nicework offices. He’ll be speaking on the the subject of Heritage, and you can read a little more about him right here. The talk is happening from 8.30 to 10.00 on Friday morning, and you can grab tickets here. As always, the tickets are free (lucky you!) but in high demand, so get ‘em while they’re hot.

We’ll see you on Friday!

If you’d like to stay in the loop about CreativeMornings Johannesburg, you can make use of these handy-dandy newfangled social mediaz:

CreativeMornings Johannesburg on Facebook
CreativeMornings Johannesburg on Twitter
CreativeMornings Johannesburg site
or just subscribe to our newsletter!

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July 17, 2014

Mapei Interior Design Illustration

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Italian illustrator Carlo Stanga has created these beautiful illustrations of interiors for Mapei. The use of perspective and detail particularly make these illustrations worthwhile looking at for longer periods of time. Consider designing an interior or getting an interior designed. It is an industry standard to get drawings and then at a later stage computer generated renders. These illustrations leave nothing to imagination and gives you or your client a detailed view of what your ideas will look like. This can save lots of time and money in the design process by understanding visually what an interior space may look like more accurately.



Via: Behance

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July 16, 2014

Kid Art Grows Up

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Telmo Pieper teamed up with his younger self, to illustrate what his young mind was yearning to express while he still needed to brush up on his Photoshop skills. Finally his series called Kiddie Arts is revealed. It’s nice to see people digging up childhood treasures and breathing new life into them! We all grow up so fast… (via Colossal).






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July 15, 2014

CreativeMornings Johannesburg: Heritage | Deon Maas

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Happy Tuesday, everyone! We are pleased to announce that our next CreativeMornings speaker is documentary filmmaker Deon Maas. The talk will be taking place on Friday the 25th of July at our offices – you can check out the Facebook event for more details.

Deon Maas is an ex-journalist, ex-photographer, ex-radio show host, ex-TV talk show host, ex-Idols judge, ex-record company executive and ex-husband.


Over the past few years he has established himself as a documentary filmmaker.  His latest film, Punk in Africa, has shown at more than 60 international film festivals including Rio, Rotterdam and Durban.  NME has voted it as one of the ten most important documentaries on Netflix and it’s been favourably reviewed by the Village Voice, Huffington Post and USA Today.  Jam Sandwich, his television show, has won four SAFTAS, one for Best Concept/Script, one for Best Reality Show and two for Best Music Show.  He created the hip-hop platform HipHopKop and used money from Norwegian taxpayers to do distance learning about the music industry in South Africa.  He is a social commentator and author.  His book, Witboy in Africa, was a best seller and serialized on radio.

He is curently finishing up three documentaries:  One on Oppikoppi’s 20 years, one on Shangaan disco and one on the Bacardi House scene in Attredigeville.  He is also doing a programme on the history of South African rock music on Radio Sonder Grense.

He firmly believes that South Africans don’t give a shit about their heritage. He is also on Facebook, where he accepts all friend requests except those with no pictures or pictures of the old South African flag.

If you’d like to stay in the loop about CreativeMornings Johannesburg, you can make use of these handy-dandy newfangled social mediaz:

CreativeMornings Johannesburg on Facebook
CreativeMornings Johannesburg on Twitter
CreativeMornings Johannesburg site
or just subscribe to our newsletter!

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July 7, 2014

OAK Wine

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Happy Monday, everyone! Here’s a late afternoon post to ease you into some cosy winter winer drinking – an inspired pack design concept by Spanish design studio Grantipo and ad agency La Despensa. The eventual plan involves crafting the bottles from the barrels in which the wine was fermented – the designers are still consulting with winemakers to work out the kinks. Can’t wait.


We’re loving this trend that seems to be developing – designers and artisans collaborating with the makers of products in order to really understand what they’re branding, and crafting design that’s not just a pretty face.







via: Designspiration

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July 7, 2014

Typography is not just typography anymore

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We think we are living in the golden age of typography. There is an explosion of hand lettering, a rejuvenation of old processes like letterpress and gravure and digital tools are allowing more people to create beautiful lettings and typefaces.

We have collected a few of the best examples from around the web for you to see what we are talking about. Please enjoy

Komen Bake Sale – A Flour lettering by Amanda Charniak

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Alphabet [Re:Production] – a lettering by Birgit Palma

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Sirkel - a lettering by Ross Drakes

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Islands – an interesting take on islands by Shahin Haghjou

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Montecastrello – Hand made typeface by  Stephanie Toole

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Tell us which is your favourite.

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July 4, 2014

Google’s new ‘Material Design’ UI a break from the apple dominated design world

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Material design by Google

We have talked a bit about Google’s I/O a lot recently but there were very busy and many things were announced. One of the most interesting is the new Material design. This is google’s approach to unify Android which is a fairly fragmented platform. It is also a bigger step into creating a whole second world, a layer that lives in our smartphones, TVs, watches, browsers and if you are really tech mad in your glasses. They are attempting to shape the new way that we interact with the digital world (obviously with Google at the centre). It comes at the perfect time when seamless wearable technology seems to be at a tipping point.

What we find very interesting is that everything has a certain level of tangibility to it. This is the evolution of the brand bible, it is an ethos or approach that can span multiple applications and screen. Now we wish we bought Google stock a few years ago. You can delve very deeply into material design here.

They even have very fancy words to talk about the new approach

We challenged ourselves to create a visual language for our users that synthesises the classic principles of good design with the innovation and possibility of technology and science. This is material design. This spec is a living document that will be updated as we continue to develop the tenets and specifics of material design.

What we like is the google, apple and Microsoft are all pursuing different angles in UI and UX which will ultimately lead to innovations that will benefit the users (thats us).

Material design by Google Material design by Google

Material design by Google Material design by Google Material design by Google

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July 3, 2014

1818 Brooks Brothers Lifestyle Magazine

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Simple elegant typography makes a huge difference. This amazing publication 1818 designed by Stephanie Toole at Brookes Brothers is a perfect example of great typography in a publication. The use of minimal colour and a gold foil coupled with her selection of fonts make the publication feel fresh and sophisticated. The combination of Serif and a gothic typeface makes it feel modern but hints at the heritage of one of the countries oldest retailers.

A bit about the publication:

In the fall of 2013 Brooks Brothers launched 1818, the inaugural issue of the company’s lifestyle magazine. Titled after Brooks Brothers founding year and reflecting their heritage as America’s oldest clothing retailer, 1818 served as a great step forward in the brand’s ability to speak of its incredible heritage yet showcase a unique presence in the modern environment. 

1818 Brooks Brothers Magazine layout 1818 Brooks Brothers Magazine layout 1818 Brooks Brothers Magazine layout

If you are interested in typography you can download out typeface

1818 Brooks Brothers Magazine layout 1818 Brooks Brothers Magazine layout 1818 Brooks Brothers Magazine layout 1818 Brooks Brothers Magazine layout 1818 Brooks Brothers Magazine layout 1818 Brooks Brothers Magazine layout

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July 1, 2014

Google i/o 2014 – the full presentation

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Google i/o logo

Google is one of the most spoken about companies in the world, they also have their huge developer conference once a year. Google i/o is one of the block buster presentations of the year, akin to Steve Job’s Apple presentations. This year the design and presentation of the information was world class. Google is busy defining their own style and breaking from the apple centric design world.

We think these presentations are great because:

  • They have a single message per slide
  • The speakers enhance their words with helpful graphics
  • The information is represented in clear and simple way

If you want some help improving your presentations:

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Lets make all your presentations amazing


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July 1, 2014

How Coca-Cola Makes More Than Just Beverages

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Known as possibly the most recognized, popular and famous brand in the world, Coca-Cola has developed an incredibly wide array of products and drinks. Ice Teas , Coffees , Energy drinks and even Distilled Water.  Even with their standard offering of Coke, Sprite and Fanta, their product range, sizes and materials is vast and varied. How does one even begin an ad campaign for one of these products ?

Well, as one of the major brands of the world, they carry a great responsibility in creating quality and genius ad campaigns, as well as the production and recycling of their products.  Here are some of the most notable ones for me :


Ogilvy & Mather China developed the ’2ndlives’ campaign to deal with the issue of all the trash and recycling problems within Indonesia, Vietnam and Thialand. By adding on “extra features” to each bottle cap, new lives were given to the cool drink. Various tops were created for the campaign, including paintbrushes, spray bottles, pencil sharpeners, night-lights and bubble blowers. Even toys for kids like waterguns and rattles.

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Small World Machines

Leo Burnett and TheSuperGroup were the masterminds of this concept. There is a longstanding tension between the people of Pakistan and India, and as a way to bring people together, they created an interconnected set of vending machines that required you to touch hands, dance, laugh and engage with people on the “other side” in order to get a free can of Coke. By creating these simple interactions between people, many laughs and cans were shared and the campaign did much more than just promote itself and its tagline of “Open Happiness”,





With Coca Cola teaming up DEKA R&D, a solution for generating clean drinking water in developing communities around the world. By taking old storage containers and converting them into these centers- free water, electricity and Wifi was made with further access to medicine, drinks and important local information also being supplied. By going beyond just trying to sell their product but actively aim to better these communities, Coca-Cola generates 800 litres of water daily.

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All in all, Coca-Cola engaged with their audiences and gave both compelling and award winning campaigns as-well as making active differences in the lives of hundreds of thousands people.

Great brands are beyond a mere design, but also reflect a core set of values and ideas. It requires figuring out what makes you unique and pushing it.
We at Nicework can help you with that, so read our amazing article on “Great Brands Are Communicated and Not Designed” or come visit us and have a baked good and tasty tea and lets help craft your vision.

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