spring break // austin, texas

kcai aiga went to austin. it was a great experience digesting the culture and design in austin. we were able to tour three studios on our trip//

mcgarrah jessee//  the largest studio we visited with about a hundred or so worker bees who are very humble about their success, outside on a small patio they had all their local addys stacked up the wall, which amused all of us. we learned about how to reinvent a long standing client for each year, without really reinventing them. the process of keeping consistency year to year while also bringing a fresh look seems challenging but this team seems to have a great handle on it. one of the projects exemplified the importance of bringing alternate image making into their compositions, with incorporating print making.

pentagram// just a small branch of pentagram, which is a company spread around the globe with i believe 19 partners who orchestrate their own group of designers with their own specialities. the austin pentagram mainly works with print. book and magazine layouts as well as event posters and restaurant menus. they had just finished a very large war photography book which was completely daunting to wrap my head around.

foxtrot bravo alpha// in a quaint little house, with a spot on color palette. they are the smallest with about 8 people total. hearing from fba was the most intimate with them addressing us, kcai, directly in their presentation. from them we got a great glimpse into process and iteration with keeping up with the design of sxsw. the creation of a catalog of elements which can be edited and combined to fit on small badges to giant banners was fascinating. seeing their iterations really showed great insight into the development from idea to idea, and how the elements evolve and the importance of keeping your thought process because just because it wasn’t chosen the first time doesn’t mean it didn’t contain successful elements.

hearing from these three influential studios in a place other than my home town of kc was very insightful. just experiencing the different environment of austin and observing each company’s involvement in the community was fantastic. a great time. many thanks to all the studios for taking the time to present to us! oh, and we also spotted the yeti designed by local designers at SHS//



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