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What Got Us Fired Up At #bnconf 2014

Last week, our creatives attended the Brand New Conference in Chicago. They came home full of inspiration, rage and passion. Check out their notes and thoughts from the conference below.


Meredith Post, Senior Designer

It’s easy to create beautiful things. We’re all artists at the core, born with natural creative talents and then formally trained to refine the craft. Any of us can sit down and knock out something that looks hot and makes people want to drool, all while harnessing jealousy from the design community. No question we saw a lot of it from speakers at last week’s Brand New Conference. But what about the rest of us who are, as speaker Sol Sender calls it, “in the trenches”?

Read the rest of Meredith’s post here.


Dave Heyne, Senior Designer

I’m ruinously impressionable. It’s a gift and a curse. When I immerse myself in the excitement and pantomime of a massive gathering of creatives—like Brand New—I have a tendency to run away with a new sense of excited, reckless determination. While there’s much from #bnconf that’s making my room spin, I’ll share my most fully formed conflict.

Strategy, I love you. Strategy, I hate you.

Read the rest of Dave’s post here.


Brandy Lockaby, Design Director

I have become painfully aware that design and branding mirror the tragic flaws of our narcissistic culture. We prioritize our craft rather than deeply understand the true nuances of our soul. Empty people frantically fight to conceal empty brands with as many facelifts as possible, ultimately pointing the excuse finger to everything other than ourselves. We celebrate those shallow “masterpieces” and we tear down each other in the name of progress. We make idols of our brands and ourselves. We know better …

Read the rest of Brandy’s post here.


Abby Hofmeyer, Senior Strategist

I found the Brand New Conference both infuriating and inspiring—hitting either obnoxiously opposite or spot-on with my perspectives of design and branding. While Bobby Martin went on and on with “the logo is the most important thing,” and pitifully referred to brand expression as “bull****,” I found my hands trembling and head spinning with frustration.

Read the rest of Abby’s post here.


Rebecca Huffman, Senior Trends Analyst

The idea of “greater purpose” is such an unfortunate cliché—a personal and fluctuating concept so generalized that we dismiss it with apathy in favor of design narcissism. Not everyone can save starving children or combat global warming, after all. However, what we forget—or perhaps fail to understand—is the sheer power of design when driven by purpose.

Read the rest of Rebecca’s post here.


Jenny Pohlman, Design Director

After being exposed to designer after designer—whether at this conference or in my 5-year career—you seem to get used to a certain egotistical narcissism that always troubled me. Designers especially deal with it due to the fact that we are constantly forced to defend our ever-so-naked work up on a wall and hope that it makes it to the next session. It’s that insecurity that seems to hold us back and make it so easy to pass judgment on one another.

Read the rest of Jenny’s post here.

 

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