Archive for June, 2010

Yellow Fever

by Stephen Bell

Two years ago in our ‘Visual Futures’ presentation called The New Optimism, we noticed that the colour yellow was beginning to appear in all forms of design from furniture to fashion, graphics and interiors. This coincided with the beginning of the global recession and global misery. Injecting the colour yellow into our lives seemed to be a deliberate way to cheer us up…..after all yellow is perhaps the most optimistic colour. It reminds us of sunshine, citrus fruits, golden harvests, spring flowers, warmth, brilliance, luminosity. All good stuff!

Well it seems like yellow is here to stay a while longer – which is probably just as well as we are about to have one of the most severe budgets on record. The image above shows just some of the things that we have observed in fashion, interior and design magazines in the last few months. Last week some of us attended a trends presentation by Li Edelkoort (one of the worlds leading design and trend forecasters) and she declared that ‘yellow is here to stay’……and also that (and this is one of my favourite quotes) ’yellow is the new pink’. Li also said that we need to learn how to use it successfully as it is not an easy colour to work with. Hopefully, practice will make us perfect and happy.

If the shirt fits…

by Tom Probert

A photo of the new Tottenham home strip was leaked onto the internet this week. It wasn’t a great shot. Spectral and grainy, it looks like a ghost shirt. But it wasn’t just the quality of the image that gave it an ‘other-wordly’ feeling.

There’s an asymmetric navy epaulet effect in Spurs blue. And there’s the Spurs cockerel over the left breast. It looks strangely dignified. And yet there’s something’s missing. Something that marks out nearly all top flight football teams these days.  What could it possibly be?


A note from our cockroach catcher-in-chief

by Vicky Bullen
Our school in Buikwe. We're getting there.

Our school in Buikwe. We're getting there

Just a quick note to update you on my trip to Uganda where I am spending a week helping build a school in the village of Buikwe as part of Ogilvy’s Many Hands project.

We arrived Friday am to torrential rain and high winds. Not at all what we expected. Piled wet and soggy into the mini buses and went to change money in Kampala. Men with AK47s on the door of the banks – all quite intimidating.

The first afternoon was spent settling in, playing football with the kids and taking lots of pictures. We had a bit of an explore of the site and the village. Just the most amazing contrast to what we are used to.

Have to say that dormitory sleeping is interesting but by night 3 -last night, I felt I was getting used to it. Night 1 I caught 2 cockroaches! I now have the envious title of chief cockroach catcher. Thank goodness we seem to have scared the rest away.


SHINE Award 2010 – How to enter?

by Tom Probert

Shine is our annual student award where we seek to uncover the latest design talent. The 2010 Shine Award ‘Call to Entry’ posters have been gracing the studios of design courses across the country, but we have received a lot of inquiries from students who haven’t seen the posters, requesting details for entering the award. So with this in mind, here’s how you do it:

Simply submit one piece of work that best showcases your talent. Shortlisted candidates are invited to present their portfolios and finalists will be selected to design the poster for next year’s award. The winner receives £3,000 (yes, you read that right) and a three month paid work placement at the agency.

Send your entry by 1st July 2010, including your name, contact details and college to: Shine Awards, Coley Porter Bell, 121-141 Westbourne Terrace, London, W2 6JR

So good luck and I look forward to looking through all your entries next month!

Customers naturally shop with their eyes

by Katie Monk

Its always nice to get some feedback on the work we have produced, and it doesn’t get much better than this.  Have a read of this quote from Simon Askew, the fresh food buyer at Harvey Nichols about our work for Inishturkbeg

‘It is important that food not only tastes fantastic but also looks fantastic if it is packaged . Our  customers naturally will shop with their eyes.  The packaging design of Inishturkbeg is for me an exceptional piece of work that manages to cleverly evoke not only a sense of the quality of the product inside, but also of the beauty of the enviroment from which it is sourced.’

Not bad, even if we do say so ourselves!

A Night at the Museum

by Stephen Bell
London Pearls

London Pearls

A year and a half ago, we here at Coley Porter Bell created a new identity for the Museum of London with the aim of bringing its venues and values together, changing perceptions from ‘just a dusty box of old things’ and to pave the way for the opening of the spectacular new £20m Modern Galleries of London. Our identity was based on the idea of an ever-changing city and the marque was created from coloured layers that map out the shape of its past, present and future. London’s very own thumbprint if you will, illustrating the patterns people have left throughout its history. Well the new galleries were officially opened on the evening of Thursday 27th May and we had a ticket.

London Style

London Style


Why our ideas need more sex at work.

by Stephen Bell
The ideal agency at work

The correct way to run a marcoms agency?

Is an agency just a place where ideas can have sex? Are they merely handy locations for concepts to screw around, where notions can have multiple partners and produce large sprawling families of new ideas?

You may think swingers-club-come-love-dungeon is a strange metaphor for a commercial communications organisation. But the conventional take on creativity is that it is the product of solitary and internal processes. Think sociopathic art directors, tortured geniuses in garrets, borderline autistics who break the all rules but come up with brilliant new ideas.

So it’s a bit of a surprise to learn that creativity is in fact a ‘network effect’. According to Matt Ridley writing in the Wall Street Journal, the inventiveness and rate of cultural change (ie creativity) of a population is directly related the amount of interaction between individuals.


This blog is about all the things that inspire us as we make brands beautiful: insights and ideas, points of view, fabulous work, nascent trends - all the things that excite us and help us to see new possibilities for the brands we work on. So please enjoy, add your comments, forward the link, and come back and see us. We’ll be posting regularly.