All posts in Design

Muse Developments – The Gables

Gables Phase 2 signageWork has begun on Phase 2 at The Gables housing development, with Phase 2 coming soon. The team are excited to work with Muse Developments again to provide on- going marketing support.

This phase is a follow-on project at The Gables, having worked for 2 years on Phase 1 providing design, print, direct mail, internal and external signage and photography.

BLOG: Firsts

by Wayne Stuart

This piece was meant to be written just after Christmas 2015, but with the weight of work and pace of life, here it is two months late, not too bad.

It’s fortunate that this piece is late because it was based on two ‘firsts’ for us, which turned into three. The first of the firsts was an installation at the fabulous Our Lady Immaculate Primary School. We were asked to create designs for a stained glass window for their new chapel at the school, something inspirational for the children, something calming and thought provoking. A unique and absorbing challenge! They didn’t want anything overtly religious but it had to have a religious feeling. We immediately thought of the stunning windows at Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral. When a couple of designs were rejected we finally took inspiration from an act that takes place, shapes our everyday lives and can be called miraculous… daybreak. That early morning sunrise that is referred to as ‘heavenly glory’. The finish was created with a permanent vinyl which can be enjoyed inside and out. The effect when it captures the light is truly inspirational and thanks to the vision of OLI is something we are immensely proud of.

The second of the firsts was our first Christmas campaign for Merseyrail. Winning a competitive pitch is always a huge boost, but when the client has the same vision you have when faced with a simple sketch and a head full of ideas. It tells you that they have faith and trust in the agency. This was a true team effort, and thanks to the fantastic CGI work from Justin Metz, a simple sketch became quite magical and life like. We wanted to bring an old fashioned charm and Disney-esq magic back to Christmas and thanks to everyone involved we think it really worked.

Our third first was the creation and production of a child’s activity book. A simple yet effective piece of design that communicates important safety messages about the Merseyrail network. Colouring in, spot the difference and bespoke nursery rhymes are brought together with original illustrations and characters created to engage and inform a young audience, and with the added bonus of giving the Accounts team something challenging to do in their lunch hour!

 

What we have been up to in 2016

Here are some examples of our most recent work…

Get your website redevelopment back on track

Over the past year or two, more and more, we have had new clients come to us to redevelop their website having had a bad experience with other website developers. Bad advice, bad design, bad customer service and bad application of technology are just some of the reasons sited for seeking us out to help. Often as not, the need to get the website redevelopment back on track is combined with a tight deadline that must be met. When faced with this for the first time, being honest, we were more than a little nervous about how we might tidy up someone else’s mess. Now, many months and many websites down the line, we have a clear process that is applied for all of these types of web jobs.

It helps that the web development team at Clarity Creation have, between them, delivered in excess of 200 websites and also that, on a number of occasions, we have never actually met our clients face to face but, instead, delivered them a website based upon email and telephone communication (particularly the case with many of our London clients). The fact is, that most websites are very much alike in terms of site sections, navigation and features and it is largely the design that differentiates one client from another.

Having said this, part of the problem is that a lot of web developers make the process more complex than it has to be and they try to justify their over inflated project management fee by asking irrelevant questions or undertaking pointless activity. Many fail by forgetting that, ultimately, they are their to serve the needs of the client and the best interests of their client’s target audience rather than proving their own intelligence.

So, there you have it, if you want to work with straightforward, honest and skilled web developers who really want your website to succeed then give us a call on 0151 293 0505.

Our Latest Work

Take a look at what we have been getting up to recently!

Below you will find examples of our latest work including signage we have designed and installed, flyers we have designed and printed, events we have managed and responsive websites we have created:

For a more detailed look at each individual job featured have a browse through our portfolio.

Is your website responsive?

Businesses must have their websites mobile-friendly by 21 April, or face a significant drop in their online revenues according to a piece by Gareth Evans of Equator on The Drum.

With Google statistics stating that over the course of the next year internet browsing on mobile devices will overtake the traditional desktop viewing is it time to ask whether your website is responsive?

More and more, people access the internet using devices other than a desktop computer. Smart phones, tablet devices, even smart televisions, all mean that guessing, let alone managing, how a user might access your website becomes tricky.

If you are interested in ensuring your website is seen by as many people as possible across a range of devices get in touch…

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Talent taken to new heights

by Wayne Stuart

The last few weeks have reminded me just how lucky we are in this industry to work and be around such talented people. I’m not just talking about my colleagues, friends and various suppliers, but the clients and individuals we are fortunate to meet who become part of the story we tell through our creativity.

LIPA is a perfect example of this. We design and produce their prospectus and a chunk of marketing collateral that surrounds it. As part of the design process we regularly come into contact with the students and staff who make LIPA what it is. For those of you who don’t know, LIPA is a multi disciplinary performing arts university in the heart of Liverpool. Here they teach everything from Management to Musical Theatre, to students from all over the world. As part of the students’ education, experts from all over the globe regularly give a master class that will focus on one particular aspect of the performing arts. And that is how I was lucky enough to spend an hour in the company of Woody Harrelson. It was fascinating to hear first hand how this huge Hollywood star nearly froze, starved and was about to give up on his acting dream – saved only by a phone call and with no thanks to an overly paranoid girlfriend. His advice and encouragement to the students was priceless. Their reaction to him was also eye opening; there wasn’t any star struck fawning nonsense (that came from me) they just wanted to get every bit out of the session they could. The question and answer session was the best I’ve ever heard, I really got the impression that every student in the room thought “one day I’ll be in that chair!” An added bonus to all of this was that we could use a good friend and fantastic photographer, Deana Kay, to capture his visit (some of my favorites from the day are shown below).

 

The following week we were asked to art direct a photography shoot of a dancer the images from which would be used for a banner stand and within the new prospectus. This was no ordinary shoot and as you can see from the images above, no ordinary dancer. Jonny is an expert in aerial dance, this involves using the silks and wirework you may have seen in large theatre productions. The silks and the technique are hugely impressive; Jonny will wind them around parts of his body so he is suspended at various heights and angles held only by the loops and ‘knots’ he has created using his feet!! The moves were captured perfectly by Pete Carr in very tricky conditions, low light, and limited time with no chance of using a tripod. It was Jonny who controlled the shoot from 15 feet up!! It is time’s like these that you can easily forget that you have a job to do and just get caught up in the moment. It’s also very easy to feel guilty asking a guy suspended, upside down held only by his feet and thighs to “hold that for a few more, just a couple more, one more…thanks”. Not a problem for Jonny who was eager to push the shoot ever further. So, next time you see a show like Cirque du Soleil with the cast performing 30 feet above you, think of Jonny and the many students who are trained at LIPA, they may be one of the people astounding you with their skill, athleticism and, let’s face, a huge dose of bottle.

Thanks to Wired Aerial Dance, Cotton Street, for the use of their facilities and thanks to Jonny for just being Jonny.

What’s the big idea?

by Wayne Stuart

We are asked how we come up with the solution to client’s briefs, so I thought I’d do just that that using the Merseyrail M campaign.

Merseyrail invited us in to pitch for their NPS Awareness campaign; this is an opportunity for Merseyrail to inform their customers of the good works and improvements they have made on the network. The creative had to be able to carry multiple messages, be engaging and most off all memorable.

Our starting point was to find out just how much work Merseyrail had put into improving it’s service and it’s image, what came really clearly is how much they cared, for the well being of both their customers and their staff. We wanted to create a personality for them, but with so many people working there just who could we choose, we certainly didn’t want to copy Halifax by choosing a Howard (remember him?) character or photo fit profile of everyone, that would be just too weird. You may think our solution was just as far fetched but we thought M could embody the spirit and nature of the entire corporation, plus it was a great exercise in brand re-enforcement.

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A very early sketch of him was agreed in house and it was then I thought of the big hug advert, I just loved the idea of Merseyrail having a warming, comforting presence. That big hug campaign tried to communicate in pictures just how comforting having a warm mug of soup really is, well for me keeping people safe, secure, warm and well fed and watered and providing a good service is exactly the same.

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The next step was to decide on how he/she looked, would it be soft, squidgy, smooth or fluffy, you’d be surprised just how passionate people felt about the final look. We brought in one of the digital creative from Firesprite, a games developer in Liverpool, to help us finalise the look and feel.

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Just as I was feeling very happy with the final creative I saw this.

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Now let me tell you, I wasn’t involved in Disney’s creative approach to this new release and I certainly wasn’t spied upon by their creative director (although that would have been ace) no, this was just a coincidence and one we were quite happy with as we hoped people may see their creative and think of ours.

After a successful pitch we were given the good news and it was full swing into production. The real beauty of the campaign was how flexible it was without any disruption to Merseyrail or their staff. We even drafted in members of staff as models to save on costs and time and I’m sure you’ll agree they are quite a good-looking bunch.

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