Photo studio day

Today’s office - product photography @trgmultimedia has an amazing studio.

Absolutely everything you need for #photo  #film #cgi 

#productdesign #packagingdesign #creativedirection #photography #kidscrafts

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Passionate about Creative Process

I’m scary passionate when I talk about creative process. It is my zone. The only thing that excites me more than taking about the “how” or the “why” is the actual process of doing or #making.

And I love to hear the paths to a solution. There’s never only one route. 💛💛💛 #art #design #creativity #ux #creativedirection #consumerproducts #consumerproductdesign #blackdesigners #womenindesign

Delanie West - answering a question about product design. 

Delanie West - answering a question about product design. 

Hey Hey Hey! I was awarded a Patent this May! Yay! (Ok, Delanie...enough alliteration)

This may, I was named as the inventor, for the container & labeling process design. (I started this work in 2013, filed for patent in 2015 and the patent was granted this May.

Although I am no longer with Faber-Castell, I have contributed to the intellectual property history of the brand, being the first American and the first African American to be granted a patent for the brand (stadium cheer)

The design strategy was intentional in the protection of creative equity and building efficiencies into the manufacturing and production processes.

When you incorporate manufacturing and production understanding in your creative process you can impact operational process. Design is not only how something looks.

While not a utility patent, a design patent protects creative intellectual property efforts. The effort resulted in work which has protections for the next 15 years.

What did this new design accomplish? (It's all in how the creative brief was written ya'll)

• Eliminated costly manufacturing processes.
• Reduced inventory and waste at the factory level.
• Improved production time.
• Eliminated reliance on poor forecasting.
• Cost savings for compliant trilingual labeling. 
• Increased the overall life of the product with the new air-tight housing.
• Allowed the customer to actually see the pigment in the container. 
• Much cleaner, chic aesthetic.
• Allowed for formula coding on the housing.
• Pat Pending and Pat status protected(s) this product from knockoffs.




Your Creativity Influences Others - You Never Know Who Is Watching!

A few weeks ago, I shared a throw-back story about an a development project and cited my history at EK Success. That post would capture a few likes, but I actually forgot about it until a new comment was added:

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Small world... 😮 You’re from NJ and worked at EK Success! My dad was a warehouse manager there for my entire childhood and would bring me the best markers and stickers. I credit him for nurturing my creativity. 😊 I got to work there as a summer intern before starting college. Good times!
— Daveia Odoi

This, my friends, might be the BEST comment I’ve ever received. This young lady ( who coincidentally I was already following on Insta) posted this message on my @besupercreative page.

She was influenced by the products I and many other talented people created at @eksuccessbrands well over a decade ago (back at the Carlsdadt NJ location).

She credits her Dad (who worked at EKS and would bring her creative materials) for her inspiration to pursue art and design. She would later reveal to me me who her Dad was and I totally remembered him for his kindness and his wonderful spirit. I remembered him instantly.

There were so many good people who I met during my time there, by FAR one of the best creative cultures and the best experience in my career. To have his daughter share this on my page floored me. She went on to pursue a career in the arts as an illustrator/designer.

We have no idea who’s watching, or who’s being inspired. Her post absolutely made my day!
Be sure to follow fellow creative @daveiaodoi ! on Instagram 🎯🎯🎯 https://daveiaodoi.com/hello/

Viola Davis illustrated by Daveia Odoi daveiaodoi  https://daveiaodoi.com/hello/

Viola Davis illustrated by Daveia Odoi daveiaodoi https://daveiaodoi.com/hello/

My Lhasa Apso Shows Me WHO'S Boss.

On this blog I ALWAYS talk design and creativity, but today I’m gonna talk D.O.G.

My dog Pepper is a 16 year old Lhasa Apso. A few weeks ago, Pepper showed me WHO was BOSS.

Pepper made it clear today: 
1. He does not like to be outside. 
2. He does not like to be ignored. 
3. He does not tolerate being around strange humans. 
4. He does not want snacks when he wants what he wants. Snacks mean nothing to him. 
5. And when he's mad, he's certain to get his payback.

He is the BOSS of ME!

He is the BOSS of ME!

Storytelling for Children's Packaging Design - Plant a Pizza Garden

Creative consumer product design professionals MUST be great storytellers, and do so with few words and images. If lucky, designers get to do this work with the help of copywriters. Often, designers are only working with developers and marketing partners. They are the first consumer “pitch” person via the design effort.

Plant A Pizza Garden - Packaging Development project for Creativity for Kids Faber-Castel ( Visuals prep for consumer insight review)

Plant A Pizza Garden - Packaging Development project for Creativity for Kids Faber-Castel ( Visuals prep for consumer insight review)

One of the most difficult jobs is storytelling for DIY products which are creativity complex. Images, graphics and copy-writing are the tools of the trade.

You’ve got to tell the product story in a concise manner, capture the shoppers attention and tell them what the product does in a matter of seconds.
Designers have to create a compelling story telling aspect to creative consumer products.

  1. What is it?

  2. What does it do?

  3. Who is this for and who’s purchasing it?

  4. How do I do it?

  5. What’s Inside?

In this instance, you’re selling to Mom, Dad, Grandparents (Adults) and the Kid. You have to consider what language do you use for all of these shoppers, and what aesthetics do you apply?

If you can’t capture their imaginations, they’re moving onto the next thing!

Final principl display panel - Plant a Pizza Garden

Final principl display panel - Plant a Pizza Garden



Final Packaging Back Panel Layout

Final Packaging Back Panel Layout

This is what packaging iteration design can look like. The lettered packaging options were submitted for an online consumer insight review. Consumer comments helped to eliminate the options that failed to communicate the concept.

Also included, the final iteration which went to production, front and back. Notice the cute kid didn’t make the final cut. 😏 Sometimes models “read” well on packaging, sometimes not. It’s a cost you’ve got to budget for, you usually can use the model shots in other marketing collateral.

#packagingdesign #productdesign #projectmanagment #artdirection#creativedirection #copywriting #photography #kidsproducts #kidmodels#productstyling #importexport

International Buying influences Product Ideation - Llama Lamp Creative STEAM STEM project for Children.

Some of my best ideas were developed when I was out of my normal 9-5 environment. Why it’s important to get up, get out and experience new stimuli.

I found these prototypes at a Hong Kong gift fair. At the time, Llamas as a motif were beginning to trend. We applied the Llama motif and modified the LED source via a mechanism that met the target landed cost for the project.

Llama Lamp LED USB Powered DIY Lamp - Creativity for Kids / Faber-Castell

Llama Lamp LED USB Powered DIY Lamp - Creativity for Kids / Faber-Castell



The two “animal” product forms were created from LED lighting and corrugate. For creative craft product design, this idea is rich for a concept that allows for consumer DIY experience.


#productdesign #productdevelopment  #led #stem #steam #kidscrafts #kidsroomdecor

LED USB Corrugate "Deer" - Hong Kong Gift Fair

LED USB Corrugate "Deer" - Hong Kong Gift Fair

USB LED Corrugate “Giraffe” - Hong Kong Gift Show

USB LED Corrugate “Giraffe” - Hong Kong Gift Show

Throwback Thursday - When Product Development starts at a Manhattan Flower Market

Photo “real” sticker embellishments for Stickopotamus (Sticko) EK Success

Before photo stock companies relaxed the rules in the fine print, and before digital photography, because so widely available, when you needed an original rights-free image, you had to create it yourself. In this case, the project brief (which I had written) called for original photos of popular flowers (an ever-popular theme for art and craft projects).

At the time the photo studio of choice was GF Studio in Wyckoff, New Jersey, who at the time was also the primary photo studio for Toys’ R Us. It was always fun to work off-site at GF Studio for the day because you’d never know what fun toy product Gary Franco and the gang were shooting that week! ( and Gary was so fun to work with!)

To find the variety and quality (and budget price point) of flowers needed for the project, I beat it to the Manhattan flower district ( early morning from NJ ), to select the best buds for the photo shoot. After which I made my way back to NJ to the studio to get on with the photo shoot. GF Studio was really great with food photography and styling as well and captured the flowers in perfect form.

Below: some of the images from the shoot and the end product designs.

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The end result after painful bleeds and die line creation. Eeek

The end result after painful bleeds and die line creation. Eeek