February 27, 2009
Posted By: ellen

Too Cool Promo

I received this promo in the mail the other day from HSBC. You place it in your freezer for five minutes to determine if your freezer is set too low. If the plus sign becomes a minus, your freezer is colder than it needs to be.

So what does the temperature of your freezer have to do with HSBC? Technically nothing, but the story they’re telling is one of financial sustainability. They’re encouraging people to be more responsible with their money by making small changes. Responsibility seems to be an emerging theme for 2009 (for some companies at least). Corporations are attempting to regain the trust of the American people by changing their image with communication pieces such as this one. Successful or a sham?

February 26, 2009
Posted By: MSLK

Masters of Linen_blog

Challenges
Masters of Linen, a French organization dedicated to educating designers on the possibilities of sustainable linens, was looking to create a trade show booth for the Premier Vision fabric trend show. This booth needed to be inspiring, alluring, and commanding from afar, while reflecting MOL’s marketing theme, “Into the Light.”

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February 26, 2009
Posted By: Marc

Nature Mill Composter

Our modern landfills never return any of the organic waste we deposit into them, a point Ellen shed light on in another one of her blog postings. They’re essentially giant barriers between our man-made world and nature, sealing rich organic nutrients from ever returning to nature. Scary stuff, when you consider all that trash we are hermetically sealing off.

Given that we’re an eco-conscious graphic design studio committed to sustainability, it was time for MSLK to step our efforts beyond simply reducing, reusing, and recycling. Since a majority of us in the studio prepare our lunches at work, composting our food scraps seemed to be the solution to a huge missed opportunity. After an exhaustive search, we found the perfect solution. Enter NatureMill, a kitchen appliance which takes the effort out of composting, turning our food scraps into compost — rich nutrients to add to soil.

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February 25, 2009
Posted By: Sheri

Most designers consider the UPC bar code to one of the biggest pains in creating consumer packaging. The requirements for using it make one of the largest, horsiest, and most unattractive elements on the package. In addition, the contrast required for getting a good read by most checkout scanners almost always requires that it be run in black on a white color block. Not so awesome, especially on an otherwise delicate or sophisticated design that may not be using the color black or white anywhere else.

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February 23, 2009
Posted By: MSLK

most sites are redesigned for purely, cosmetics reasons, overlooking the more crucial content, navigational and marketing challenges

Marc, Co-Founder of MSLK, writes an article outlining steps to creating a website.

Nine Steps Towards a More Effective Website
MultiChannel Merchant, online magazine
February 23, 2009

7 proven tips for a successful Web site redesign
FuelNet, online magazine
February 23, 2009

7 proven tips for a successful Web site redesign
Business Management Daily, online magazine
March 3, 2009

Rebranding Your Web Site
Baseline, magazine
April 2009

9 steps to a successful site redesign
iMedia Connection, online magazine
April 1, 2009

9 steps to a successful site redesign
E3 European Agency Network, online magazine
April 1, 2009

February 22, 2009
Posted By: Marc

Love affairs over the phone are quite common. However, the object of my affection is a phone itself, my iPhone. Though I resisted the temptation for quite some time, a few months ago I picked one up and have yet to put it down.

All the hype surrounding this phone is well-justified, which is why I now feel compelled to shout my undying love from every rooftop. I love everything about it, from Apple’s sleek industrial design to the intuitive software. I’ve had brief affairs with cellphones in the past — even with my old Palm Pilot back in the go-go 90s — yet those were short-lived, as they never made life easier. They all came up short, and required endless hours  transferring information onto them. Instead of being liberated, I felt a slave to these things.

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February 20, 2009
Posted By: ellen

 Green Depot Refills

Last weekend I stopped by the recently opened Green Depot on the Bowery. The products they sell are similar to those found in most environmentally friendly aisles, ranging from household cleaners to baby and pet products to books on being green. The most impressive part of the store is the way they’ve merchandised their products. They’ve placed a huge emphasis on education by creating stations that engage shoppers and encourage them to interact with the products for sale.

When it comes to selling environmentally-friendly products, the element of education is key. Essentially, the packaging and retail environment surrounding the product need to convince shoppers of the added value of buying green. This is especially challenging now that consumers are keeping a close eye on the bottom line.

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February 16, 2009
Posted By: Sheri

As the granddaughter of a highly regarded optometrist, I could probably write a very dry dissertation on how optical illusions work, but for today let’s just say static motion illusions are cool. For example, the image above isn’t a rotating GIF or a Flash animation, it’s an ordinary still JPEG. I  know it looks like it’s moving, but that’s just tiny adjustments in your eyes assimilating that movement. Pretty cool, eh? I could look at this one for hours. And while this is captivating online, image how impactful it would be in print.  Nothing says 21st century innovation better than a printed image that moves! Perhaps this should become the next campaign for Apple?

Let’s look at some more.

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February 10, 2009
Posted By: MSLK

MSLK--James-Porto-Website
Challenges

Photographer James Porto needed to refocus his website and bring his new, MSLK-designed identity online. This website would have to convince creatives that James Porto was a strategic partner capable of actualizing art directors’ fantastic visions.

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February 9, 2009
Posted By: ellen

MSLK Things to Love

We’re big fans of Valentine’s Day here at MSLK. In keeping with tradition, we’re sharing some of our favorite things to set your heart aflutter. Whether you’ll be spending the 14th with your sweetheart or rocking it solo, we’ve found a little something for everyone to love.

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