Christmas 2017 development

Yes... well...things didn't quite go as swimmingly as I was assured of when last I wrote about this campaign. I'm not going to pretend I'm at all happy with the sharp turn this one took. As my previous post explained, I had started early, checked in for and got a solid go-ahead, and worked hard and thoughtfully to create a campaign I really believed in. Something I was - still am - certain would be very successful in all the ways it needed to be.


And then minds were changed (or worse, half-changed), the campaign was casually gutted and I was left trying to turn remnants of this into something... good. The management balked at some of the more distinctive parts of the suite, elements that had been in since the beginning, and tried to make it safer (can't it have Father Christmas? Do people like foxes? Let's have a more jolly blue etc) and of course took out all the stuff that made any of it work.


The fundamental problem that motivates times like these is a lack of understanding of, or better yet, faith in the design process. As a designer I had worked though various possibilities and iterations and arrived at the best possible version of a whole idea.


What the campaign is now is something designed by committee with the designer desperately tidying up behind. So desperately in fact I have worked myself into a sickbed this week. With wholesale changes being made right up until deadline I have not stopped working intensely for weeks. a period that should have been spent polishing a final form OK'd weeks ago became redesigning huge swaths of the campaign. Decisions that should have been sorted out weeks before were suddenly being made days before deadline, requiring yet more major adjustment (for example, the decision to use a fake gold effect rather than a real gold Pantone in printing).

Slightly unsurprisingly this week I came down with tonsillitis and retreated to bed to whimper and neck penicillin.


I'm very happy with some elements, still. Mainly the table headers/strut cards:


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