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In-house teams: how Facebook designers work “cross-family” to unite its offering

“It’s such a big team, we could never run it in a traditional hierarchical way,” says Austin Chang. Chang is director of product design at Facebook and is based in California. When he speaks to Design Week, it’s from his home office. Like so many workers around the world, he’s been at home since the coronavirus pandemic told hold in earnest in March...

How Ladybird’s classic nature books were updated for a new generation

In the 1950s, Ladybird’s What to Look for series launched with a playful look at spring and autumn. The season-inspired books were written by E.L. Grant Watson and illustrated by painter Charles Tunnicliffe, aiming to show children the changing events in the four seasons across the UK. The series has now been revived for the first time in 60 years...

Pentagram’s Yuri Suzuki and Sascha Lobe partner on MIDI’s harmonious rebrand

Pentagram partners Sascha Lobe and Yuri Suzuki have designed the new identity for the Musical Instrumental Digital Interface (MIDI), based on musical forms and frequency waves. The work includes a new logo (static and sonic), sound design, video and motion graphics as well as typography. MIDI is used by musicians, producers and DJs as a way to create...

This start-up challenger is designing glasses for Black people

“At some point, I realised the problem wasn’t with me or my face, but with the product itself,” says Ackeem Ngwenya. “It became clear that the product was not made for people like me, and that I could do something to change that.” Ngwenya is a product designer based in Berlin. He is the founder of Reframd, a start-up that designs and makes glasses...

See-saw for kids at the USA-Mexico border wall wins best design of 2020

A temporary installation that allowed children from the USA and Mexico to “connect playfully” across the border wall has been chosen as the best design of 2020. Teeter-Totter Wall won the overall prize at the Beazley Designs of the Year, which opened at London’s design museum in November 2020. The annual awards seek to showcase the most innovative...

Nalla designs online resource to help creatives on Blue Monday and beyond

London-based branding studio Nalla has developed a mental health resource database for creatives called MindFull. It has been launched today on “Blue Monday” – the day of the year that is supposedly the “most depressing”. The concept was first published in a 2005 press release from UK travel company Sky Travel, and takes into account bad weather, long...

How designers are “animating the sky” with drones

As the UK rang in the new year 2021, a 100-metre tall pensioner, followed by a giant turtle, lit up the London skyline. It was the work of some 300 drones flying in London’s first-ever large-scale drone show and had been created and filmed a couple of nights before. The Mayor of London’s annual New Year’s Eve celebration is just one of an increasing...

Taxi Studio’s “optimistic” identity for equal opportunities design initiative Up

Taxi Studio has created the new identity and positioning for gender equality design initiative Up. The Bristol-based studio worked on the naming, brand positioning as well as the visual assets for the group, which seeks to support female designers throughout the industry. Up is the latest initiative from the West of England Design Forum (WEDF) and...

Design in 2021 – what will retail design look like?

What do you think 2021 will hold for retail design? Alasdair Lenox, executive creative director, Landor & FitchAt Fitch, now Landor & Fitch, we have been designing retail through a Physical, Human and Digital lens (or PHD as we call it) for many years. This proprietary design philosophy has allowed us to think holistically about every point...

CES 2021: smart masks, smarter homes and flying vehicles

This year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) looked different from the previous 53 editions. Held annually in Las Vegas, US, this year’s show – which brought together some 1,900 tech companies – was virtual. It’s estimated that around 150,000 people tuned in online throughout the week. Perhaps unsurprisingly Covid was the dominant theme this year, whether...

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