Offset 2017-02-22

Stand back! We’re ready to create something! The KBE team is rejuvenated and inspired after a weekend in Dublin for #OFFSET2017. This was our third year as a creative team at one of the top design conferences, OFFSET. Last year we took back so much to the studio and rubbed shoulders with the likes of typographer Seb Lester and Stefan Sagmeister, this year we had new idols to stalk!

Our favourite speaker was Bruno Maag a typography designer. His theories on teaching and applying science to design really had an effect on us. Also as he pointed out that our work is always backed by science, and if we put in the time to learn, as we have, then we should always feel confident. “We are designers, not artists, we have a job to do” – Bruno Maag. He spoke about crafting typefaces in Dalton Maag and how he trained in typography with the guidance of Wolfgang Weingart.

An overall theme of OFFSET this year was creating the work you want to do, in the hopes that the money will come instead of settling in to doing work you may not like to pay the bills. Like previous years it’s always inspiring to see just how many people came to design through unique ways. Many of the designers at OFFSET preached that if you take the time to do the work that you love the most then you will get recognised for that work. A reassuring message to do what you love and find your niche!

We mostly recognise OFFSET as a graphic design festival however it was refreshing to see a number of illustrators such as Rod Hunt, Lorna Ross and Marion Deuchars just to name a few.
Rod Hunt’s  isometric illustrations for IKEA and Top Gear were particularly interesting where he shows us the original sketches that are sent to the client and the process of building the scene with adding colour and detail. He also taught, that as designers we should not do anything for free, that our designing and time is worth money, even if we are told that it will be great exposure. The Advertising Agency – Chemisty taught us how important copywriting and reaching the right language tone is. With work for Lidl, Tesco Mobile and The Irish Cancer Foundation where the catchy, bold language stands out against the simple background.

Not only was OFFSET 2017 inspiring, it brought new aspects of design to light for the kaizen team, such as the impact of sound design with Echo lab  who showed us how much emotion sound can add to an image you see the power of all design and the creative potential that exists in all media. Another interesting aspect to see was the paper interaction design of kellianderson.comKelli Anderson  who showed us with clever origami even a paper pop up camera is possible. We also got to hear about how to manage multiple creative departments in a large company from MPC Creative – who worked on the very much loved Christmas Buster ad and blockbusters such as Ghost in the Shell, Mission Impossible and The Jungle Book. An interesting side for us, was to be shown behind the scenes of the Cushelle advert animation from how the scene is constructed down to taking facial expressions from their employees.

As always the talks inspired a newfound confidence for us, leaving us feeling lucky to do the type of rewarding work we love every day. We left OFFSET on Sunday evening tired, inspired and thinking about how we apply these creative meanderings to our own work. We are looking forward to getting back to the drawing board in the studio!