I-Manifest is a charity that provides pathways for young people to pursue a real, sustainable career in the creative industries – whilst also inspiring them to reach their full potential. Their focus is on youth marginalised through geography, culture, disability or socioeconomic status. The idea of the charity is to create social equity through opportunity, mentoring and innovative education programs.


iManifest Studio @ Vivid Ideas 2015

Over three days of #vividsydney this year I-Manifest worked with over 100 kids from 9 schools, to create some incredible bodies of work. Students worked with industry mentors across photography, digital media, film, animation, design (and even paper design!) as well as Sydney’s top advertising agencies. We we’re incredibly honoured to have four mentors join the event from our creative team – our Senior Designers; Dan Ingham, Ed Hall, Jo Roca, and Tom Carey.

As industry mentors, Dan, Ed Jo and Tom spent two days with students; giving them an introduction to the creative industries and the wildly varied paths into them. Our Senior Designers each gave a short presentation on their career paths, from school to internships and branding. They outlined their roles and gave the students an insight into the kinds of exciting projects that come their way.
After a short briefing, the guys then worked with teams of students to help them represent the notion of empowered young people, using the visual construct of ‘I AM’. The teams worked across multiple platforms, using film, photography, paper sculpture, animation, design and illustration. Each group created a variation of unique ideas which were then taken to be developed further during the continuing Studio program.

A huge thanks to iManifest for involving us in such an inspiring program. We were really honoured to take part and excited by the great work that came out from each day. Looking forward to Vivid 2016!

Congrats also to everyone who took part as Industry Mentors, Judges, Agency Partners, and Sponsors. You can find more info about the event here.
Photo Credits: Liam Cameron


Yesterday morning we launched our 14th Best Global Brands Report.

Damian, CEO for Interbrand Australia and Opera Australia Artistic Director Lyndon Terracini spoke to an audience of senior marketers at Aqua Dining.


Best Global Brands 2013

In addition to presenting findings from the report, Damian looked at the changing role of leadership and the impact this is having on the world’s leading brands. Lyndon Terracini spoke about the extraordinary rise of Opera Australia. Under his artistic leadership Opera Australia has doubled its earnings in the last two years to become one of the fastest growing opera companies in the world. This is at a time when many opera organisations around the world are struggling. Opera Australia’s success has come from delivering a vision that artistic success and commercial success aren’t mutually exclusive. And that opera shouldn’t just be produced for a small minority of connoisseurs — it should be for everyone.

Highlights from the Best Global Brands report include:

• For the first time in the history of Interbrand’s Best Global Brands report, there is a new #1 brand: Apple. For the last 13 years Coca-Cola held top position
• Google also trumped Coca-Cola. Google moves to #2 and Coca-Cola is now at #3
• Technology businesses dominate the world’s most valuable brands, with 7 of the top 10 brands originating from this sector
• The majority of top rising brands originate from the tech sector. These include Facebook, Google, Apple and Amazon. Prada also made the list of top risers for 2013
• While the tech sector is the high growth sector, brands that struggle to show leadership quickly lose momentum. Nokia and Nintendo were two of the major declining brands this year. Blackberry left the top 100 altogether
• This year, the total value of all 100 Best Global Brands is USD $1.5 trillion — an 8.4 percent record increase over the total value of the 100 Best Global Brands in 2012

Find more information on this year’s Best Global Brands Report here.

Making brands move

We’re in an era when brands live on screen, so we think in motion first.

For this short experimental motion piece, we set ourselves the task of bringing to life the humble Interbrand square.

In this surreal, abstract and deliberately chaotic animation we wanted to explore how we could push the boundaries of such a simple geometric shape.


Making brands move

At a breakfast briefing today we launched our 13th Best Global Brands Report.

Damian, CEO for Interbrand Australia and Telstra CMO, Mark Buckman spoke to a packed audience at Aqua Dining. In addition to presenting findings from the report, Damian looked at the power of connecting brands and employees to drive better business performance.


Best Global Brands 2012

Mark Buckman gave everyone an insight into the revitalization of Telstra’s brand and business. He spoke about Telstra’s evolution to becoming customer-centric business. The focus on improving how customers connect has seen in the last 12 months almost 30 per cent more Australian’s consider a Telstra purchase. Mark emphasized the importance of building the brand from the inside out — that ultimately the culture and leadership has been fundamental to activating Telstra’s renewal and delivering better customer experiences.

Highlights from the Best Global Brands report include:
• Coca-Cola retained its #1 position. Apple jumped to #2 with stellar sales in both developed and emerging markets over the last year.
• Social media giant, Facebook (#69), enters the report after making headlines as the third largest IPO in US history
• Google (#4) experienced a 26% increase in brand value over the last year, exceeding rival Microsoft’s (#5) brand value for the first time in the history of Interbrand’s report.

• Automakers showed strong growth through global expansion, product innovation and the smart application of digital technologies. Nissan grew brand value by 30% this year. Other strong performers included BMW, VW Hyundai and Audi.

• The banking sector faced declines. Global brands Goldman Sachs, CITI, JPMorgan all suffered as a consequence of reputation challenges. UBS and Barclays left this year’s top 100 league table.

For more information on the Best Global Brands report

Our Sydney studio is bigger and better than ever. We now have a beautiful, spacious new home with dedicated client rooms. Even the sound system received an upgrade.

There are still a few pieces of furniture to be delivered and a couple of walls still to receive a lick of paint, but in the meantime, feel free to drop in for a chat.


Our new studio


We agree with designer Craig Oldham. It is a tragedy that the art of the hand written letter seems destined to become a thing of the past. So Craig created the Hand Written Letter Project and extended an invitation to the world’s leading designers, design studios and creative thinkers, simply asking to write and share their thoughts in hand written form, on their own letterhead. Our own submission, was a recent feature in Creative Review.


Handwritten Letter Project

Some of the other designers involved include Michael Bierut, Steven Heller, Tony Brook and Milton Glaser. The collection has been released in a limited edition book that will ride along with an upcoming travelling exhibition. Both will be raising funds for the National Literacy Trust.

<p>&lt;p&gt;Congratulations to Joao, our Brazilian-born designer and ex-graffiti artist, for winning the latest Stand Apart award. It’s an award voted by everyone in the studio to celebrate those who most stand apart for the ideas and imagination.&lt;/p&gt;</p>


Stand Apart Joao

<p>&lt;p&gt;And this year, we helped Joao celebrate by taking the afternoon to learn how to cook Indian food with Ajoy Joshi from Nilgiri’s.&lt;/p&gt;<br />
&lt;p&gt;Good to know Joao can also cook a pretty good Chicken Biryani too.&lt;/p&gt;</p>


The red dot design awards is an international awards program that recognises excellence across design and business.

And as reported in Desktop and Campaign Brief, we’re excited to say that we have been recognised for our work with 2 red dots. For Griffin Theatre Company, and The Great Blandini.


Our Red Dots

For Griffin, we created an identity that allows the brand to express its own creativity and personality through words. While the mood may change from one production to the next by using different combinations of words, colour and imagery to strike their own chord, the backbeat is always unmistakably Griffin.

We created The Great Blandini for Steve Bland, re-toucher extraordinaire. Briefed to create an identity that stood out from the norm, appealed to the creative industry, and reflected his sense of fun, we transformed regular Steve Bland into The Great Blandini, and an engaging, Victorian-inspired identity revealed itself – referencing an era when magic was still truly enchanting.

The wins build on our successes after this year’s D&AD in-book and last year’s Australian Graphic Design Awards, where we won six distinctions and two finalists.


At the recent Brands Under the Spotlight, we launched our new book – Brands, Words and Meat Pies.
The book showcases the value we place on words and the role of language in creating brands that stand apart. Or, to put it another way, verbal identity.
So what’s it all about? Here’s a snippet from the book.


Brands, Words and Meat Pies

When you’ve decided on your idea, it can be communicated in two ways – visually and verbally. Through design, and through writing. And while everyone knows about visual identity, graphics, photography, logos and such, not many people think about verbal identity. Which doesn’t really make sense, considering how important language is to us humans. A brand’s verbal identity can be every bit as distinctive and engaging as its visual identity. And with a little thought, it can be just as easily managed. The result is a combination that’s powerfully consistent, making it easy for your customers to recognize and trust your brand over time.
If you’d like to read more, send us an email and we’ll send you a copy.


We put words on the centre stage. And we stayed true to our word at our latest Brands Under The Spotlight, where we discussed the power of speech and language.

Sam Strong, Artistic Director at Griffin Theatre Company, called on everyone to trust their instincts when it comes to storytelling. One of our very own wordsmiths, Chris, then took to the stage to highlight the lack of emphasis that businesses, and even many creative agencies, place on words and language, as well as show some great examples of brands getting it right.


Brands Under The Spotlight

A lively panel that teamed DDB’s Matt Malik, Telstra’s Midu Chandra and Time Out Sydney’s Darryn King for a discussion focused on words in a digital age. And finally, our Richard had the last word with an entertaining piece that compelled all of us to not just to think carefully, but also creatively, about the words we use to express ourselves – as individuals and as brands.
Thanks to everyone who came, hope to see you again next year.

<p>&lt;p&gt;On the day the iPad 2 was released, our Dean got one. Then he played lawn bowls and had a beer or two.&lt;/p&gt;<br />
&lt;p&gt;That’s because Dean won the Stand Apart award in our Sydney studio for all his great work over the past few months. And we celebrated with him on the lawns of Paddo Bowls.&lt;/p&gt;</p>


Stand Apart Dean

<p>&lt;p&gt;And not only does Dean know a thing or two about brands, he’s also a highly talented conceptual artist, and you can check out some of his work &lt;a href=”http://www.ubyka.com/”target=”_blank”&gt;here&lt;/a&gt;.&lt;/p&gt;</p>

At the 2010 AGDA Awards, we received 6 distinctions.

We won 4 distinctions for Identity, Publications, Typography and Art Direction for our new visual and verbal identity for Griffin Theatre Company.


AGDA Awards

We won 2 distinctions for Illustration and Publications for our refreshed brand identity and brochure design for Australian Institute of Company Directors.

And finally, we won 3 nominations for Identity, Typography, and Self-Promotion for The Great Blandini (plain old Steve Bland will never be the same again).