Portaluca Part 2

September 26th, 2014 by Molly Danks

Portaluca, formally known as 4th Street Boutique, has launched their new brand!

 

Last year, Hyperquake created the new brand name, story and identity for Portaluca.  To commemorate the launching of the new brand, Portaluca honored all contributing members at the ceremony in August.  Hyperquake is excited to have been a part of such a powerful cause and transformation.

 

Christopher Corgiat and Lauren Kroger, happily accepting our award!

 

Please visit the store located on 4thStreet in downtown Cincinnati. All donations and proceeds support Dress for Success Cincinnati.

Sparking Ideas by Switching Things Up

June 24th, 2014 by Molly Danks

As an innovative design & branding agency, we are regularly tasked with thinking outside of the box when researching for projects.  Recently, we were given the opportunity to work with a company on a project related to male grooming and the art of shaving, so we decided to have an internal brainstorming session.  As part of our session for this specific project, we began to think about how men vs women shave.  Knowing that sometimes the best thoughts or insights can come from the most unlikely sources, we decided to put ourselves to the test and shake things up a little. You don’t believe me?

Hyperquake team switching it up!

So, we presented the team with a bunch of disposable razors and shaving cream. To truly gain some interesting insights, the women were tasked with shaving their faces and the men were challenged with shaving their legs! The men were totally up for the challenge! We females, however, opted to keep the cover on our razors, fearing stubble or thicker hair regrowth as a result of shaving our faces would not be worth any findings that this research may yield.

Nevertheless, it was so interesting to see how women reacted to using shaving cream on their faces for the first time- almost every female in the room smeared the shaving cream right across their faces, including their nose!  The guys thought that this was strange, but to a female that typically applies only a moisturizer or face soap, the nose is just as important to include in the application process!  The women had so many questions as to which way to shave- with the grain, against the grain, aftershave or no aftershave, etc.  The men had answers. Shaving cream was a must!  Aftershave seemed to be optional, and most of the men had similar techniques.  From a female perspective, moving a sharp razor across the face, was something that required total concentration and precision.  As a female that regularly nicks an ankle or knee during a “quick” shave before laying out poolside, this was definitely not an option when it came to shaving the face. Oh by the way, did I mention the smell of that stuff?  Definitely some room for improvement.

Holly & me experiencing shaving like a man.

Now, for the men shaving their legs, the pictures tell it all! The shaving cream was a must for them with the hairy jungle that they were about to tackle and it was so interesting to see how the women’s shaving cream slipped right out of their hands! No to mention, the balancing act of hiking one leg above your waist was that similar to a circus performance.  The men couldn’t believe how difficult it was to balance and shave all at the same time. And, the length of the process was surprising to them.  As they complained about how much time it was taking, it made total sense when we females realized that shaving cream for us, was not a necessity.  In fact, most often, not even used at all!

Dustin & Christopher balancing the art of shaving.

Thinking outside of our regular shaving roles, proved to be both fun and insightful.  It is always a good idea to switch things up and find insights and inspiration wherever you can find them.  The strangest things can spark the greatest ideas.  Check out 5 Fresh Ways to Spark Creativity.  Maybe you or your organization can incorporate some of these techniques into your next brainstorm or meeting!

 

 

ArtsWave Agency Challenge

May 12th, 2014 by Molly Danks

ArtsWave is the first and largest united arts fund in the country. You may not realize that it supports more than 100 arts organizations that help to make Cincinnati an amazing place to live!  Places like ArtsWorks, Cincinnati Ballet, Playhouse in the Park, CAC, Ensemble Theatre, Findlay Market, and the Children’s Theatre may not exist without the support of such donations from local companies and individuals. Currently, the 2014 ArtsWave Community Campaign is in full swing and is one of the main drivers for community donations for the organization.

Hyperquake was committed to making a company donation, but we didn’t want to stop there.  So we came up with a plan to share the information about ArtsWave with our team members to see if we could get everyone onboard with providing support.  For everyone that made a contribution, we had an afternoon planned to include lunch and the opportunity to participate in some fun art related activities with the chance to win a team prize, and most importantly – bragging rights!

We broke the agency into small teams to compete in four art categories; Painting, Sculpting, Acting & Photography. Each category was faced with a unique challenge; from painting a portrait of one of our partners while blind folded, to sculpting their favorite zoo animal with one hand tied behind their back! Everyone agreed this was a really fun way to think about the arts and work as a team to contribute to such a great cause.

Emily Zalla, designer at Hyperquake, painting while blindfolded.

Directors, Sherwood MacVeigh and Shari Ernst, work as a team to sculpt a snake with one hand behind their back.

Color photo submission titled, "Work Hard, Play Hard"

Our main objective was to remind everyone the importance of supporting the arts in our city and how our donations can continue to help make Cincinnati a significant city within the arts world.  We reached our team goal and had a great time doing so!

If you are interested in making a donation or learning more about the organization, please check out their website, http://www.theartswave.org.

Portaluca Part 1

February 24th, 2014 by Lauren

In 2013, Hyperquake partnered with Dress for Success, one of the nation’s most influential charities that benefit women. The Dress for Success marketing team asked that Hyperquake lend our strategic and design expertise to help redesign the logo for their biggest driver of revenue, 4th Street Boutique. 4th Street Boutique is located in downtown Cincinnati and has been keeping women fashionable for less since 2002.

What started out as a simple re-branding project, soon evolved into much more. To accommodate 4th Street Boutique’s growing business success, expanding to multiple locations, it became clear that it needed a powerful identity system to support business growth and stand the test of time. Hyperquake, in collaboration with 4th Street Boutique, created the name and designed the identity for Portaluca.

Portaluca stands for personal strength and the power to truly realize and achieve your dreams. This is everything that Dress for Success stands for and helps women achieve everyday. We are so thrilled to have been a part of this inspiring cause and having the opportunity to create a powerful identity system that truly speaks to the cause.

4th Street Boutique will be debuting the brand later this year — more photos to come soon!

 

MBA Veterans Rebrand

October 23rd, 2013 by chris.mock@hyperquake.com

We’ve officially wrapped on the MBA Veterans rebrand and are thrilled to introduce the work and how we went about it.

First, a little background on the company. MBA Veterans (or MBAV for short) is a networking platform for military veteran students and alumni of the world’s top-ranked MBA programs. Founded by veterans Chris Petersen and David Chonowski, MBAV’s mission is to connect those who are working to get, or have already received their MBA degree with potential employers.

Having the opportunity to completely rebrand a company is always exciting and MBAV proved no different. Through this process we explored the idea of “Commercial Cover”, which became a central design theme for the project.

By drawing inspiration from military imagery, the mark came to life in the shape of a badge. It truly embraces the duality of the lives of Veterans and their continued journey beyond their service, with a symbolic star tucked into a strong badge-like shape…a metaphor of a “medal of honor” and their military service “tucked into their back pocket”.

MBAV recently introduced the new branding as part of their presentation at their 6th Annual MBA Veterans Career Conference this fall in Chicago.

Round 2 with The Brandery

October 11th, 2013 by Dustin Blankenship

Another amazing startup recruiting class scouted by The Brandery meant another awesome opportunity for Hyperquake. This year we had the pleasure of working with two guys that came to town to continue their quest in launching something they call Frameri. Founded by Notre Dame MBA grad Konrad Billetz and business partner Kevin Habich, Frameri looks to be the first interchangeable frame and lens system for prescription glasses. Allowing glasses wearers to truely look at their glasses as an accessory, not just a necessity.

Helping build an online fashion brand from the ground up was something that we could not have been more pumped about. Taking the Frameri guys through the process from discovery to reallization was exciting for everyone involved. From the very beginning, there was a mutual understanding that in the fashion world, your brand can mean just as much as your product, so we made sure that one informed the other and told the same story.

Currently taking pre-orders and continuing to build their funds, the guys are working hard to start shipping by early 2014. Keep your eyes open. Frameri is going places.

Zoofari Part 2

September 27th, 2013 by rachel.robbins@hyperquake.com

As Jen McLaughlin, Client Manager at Hyperquake, mentioned in our last blog post, we were named Zoofari’s Creative Partner for 2013. We had a lot of fun partnering with The Cincinnati Zoo, as we crafted the event’s visual style and print collateral…almost as much fun as we had celebrating at the event!

It was a night of wild weather as well as “A Night of Luxury” at Zoofari 2013. The heavy rain could not stop the more than 2,500 guests that attended the Zoo’s annual fundraiser. And, as you can see from the pictures below, the Hyperquake team had a fabulous time at the event. Not only was there amazing food (I think I made it to more than half of the 50 restaurants that were present), festive decorations, signature cocktails and African entertainment, it was wonderful to visit with friends and clients. Zoofari truly lived up to its tagline “A Night of Wild Luxury” (what brainiacs came up with that?) and we cannot wait until next year’s event!

Inside the tent

(it was equivalent to the length of a football field!)

Hyperquake's best dressed couple

Zoofari client leads

Framester fun

Part of the Hyperquake team

Jen, Dustin, Christopher & I

 

Zoofari Part 1

August 27th, 2013 by jen.mclaughlin@hyperquake.com

In January the Cincinnati Zoo selected Hyperquake as its Zoofari creative partner for 2013. Hyperquake and client team members gathered August 20 at the Zoo’s new Africa exhibit to celebrate the project’s successful completion. Hyperquake collaborated with the Zoo to develop the event’s visual style and created print collateral including a corporate sponsor piece, save-the-date mailer, poster, invitation, and program.

We look forward to attending Zoofari’s “A Night of Wild Luxury” on Friday, September 20. Thank you to our friends at the Zoo for being a wonderful partner!

 

Dustin Goes to Portland

August 14th, 2013 by Dustin Blankenship

Ok, really quick introduction. I attended Web Visions Portland this year, a great and worthwhile conference. I listened to a man named Andrew Hinton speak and it was the most impactful lecture during all three days of the event.

Andrew spoke of the contextual circumstances for which we design and why we should begin to think about them more deeply. He mentioned pace layers and how things evolve and change at different speeds. He related these pace layers to design and how the organization of information and technology evolve at a much higher speed than spoken or written language. Therefore, we have a better grasp on spoken language because it is something that has remained mostly the same during our lifetimes. The thing that was most interesting to me was that Andrew positioned human perception and/or cognition at the core, as the layer that moves the slowest. Then, all kinds of metaphorical doors started opening right in front of me…

Pondering Andrew Hinton's lecture at Courier Coffee, Portland

I started thinking about how our perception is formed from the time of birth. As we grow, we slowly begin to understand how certain things work in our world. Environmental cues or affordances that we start exploring lead us to understanding at the very onset of our lives. Then as we move forward in age, new things come into play such as written and spoken language and technology. Everything seems fine until these new layers start contradicting what we already perceive. We perceive certain things in our environment to behave a certain way, until there is a sign or some other semantic element telling us the opposite. Then everything gets complicated.

Think about a tennis ball. When it is just sitting still, it is just an object in an environment. When you pick it up it becomes something that can be bounced or thrown. To me, a tennis ball may also mean rulebook, boundaries, forty-love, Andre Agassi or maybe even Europe. To someone who may not know much about tennis, it will mean something completely different. To a dog, a tennis ball might just mean a lot of running and fun. Ultimately, a tennis ball is simply a round object that can be picked up, bounced, thrown, etc. One object takes on many meanings when we start adding levels of complexity, which vary depending on who or what come in contact with it.

For some reason, we insist on complicating things. As children, we start to understand environmental cues and the affordances they offer, how things work at a very basic level. When more information gets layered in, those basic affordances start to get buried and before you know it, something that should be simple to understand is nearly incomprehensible.

So, what do I think this means for design? Well, if you think about children having the ability to approach something with almost no frame of reference, no influence, where every experience is a new one, then they seemingly are some of the best candidates for testing interaction design. Be it a physical product, a digital application, or something in between, children are only going to pick it up and interact with it in the way that seems most natural.

We should be more observant of children—they take things as they are. Children use simple things that they have learned and apply those rules to almost everything that they encounter. As we grow, we lose sight of that. Problems, in design or life, need to be looked at from children’s perspective; we should try to understand and analyze problems at a raw level before adding extraneous layers that complicate it. Albert Einstein agrees: “If you can’t explain it to a six year old, you don’t understand it yourself.”

 

Picture This!

August 6th, 2013 by lauren.schultz@hyperquake.com

Hyperquake Creative Director Dan Barczak’s article, “Photo Finish: How product photography is elevating package design,” is the cover story for Package Design Magazine’s June/July 2013 issue. Dan discusses how using photography in package design can be engaging and differentiating, and explains how three brands are using on-pack photography to resonate with consumers.

Dan also explores four ways that photography can be used in packaging design to attract consumers: authenticity, appetite appeal, unexpected cleverness and emotional connection. Each of the three brands he explores–Qizini, Übernuts and Petcurean–exemplify the evolving methods of using photographs in packaging.

By implementing qualities of realism in photography, Qizini magnifies the freshness and quality of its pizza’s ingredients; this packaging creates authenticity and ignites the consumer’s hunger.

Übernuts uses cleverness and humor in its packaging to engage a younger consumer audience. Having nuts performing a song or playing with a basketball humanizes the product and makes it more relatable for consumers.

Petcurean’s new premium dog and cat food brands, Go! and Now, depict dynamic black-and-white action shots of an animal running on each package. The company even names the pets on the back, creating an immediate emotional connection with the consumer by reminding them about the furry members of their families.

Dan endorses photography in package design as the ideal way to attract consumers’ attention in our fast-paced world.

 

Download the PDF of “Photo Finish.”