Filtering by Category: Research Tasks

Reference Book

Added on by James Cronin.

Potential Employers

Throughout the PD1 module I have researched into potential employers in my chosen specialism areas, advertising and branding. I've put together a reference book which contains evidence of research and a shortlist of agencies I aspire to work for. The list contains international/London based contacts as well as others outside London.

This book is also for personal use and runs alongside information captured in this blog detailing the application process and thoughts on how to approach these agencies.

Each page follows a designed format to aid navigation:

  • Name
  • About
  • Contact
  • Website
  • Personal Thoughts

Alongside this information I have included representation of their work, which I have collated. This research process has inspired me to one day collaborate and design for a top agency.

5 More Design Blogs

Added on by James Cronin.

When I started this blog I put together a list of five blogs I visit daily. Below I've created a new list of some blogs I have found recently which I think are really interesting. It would be useful to analyse the blogs and discover what makes each one work so that I can apply those ideas to my own. David Airey "A brand identity designer working with clients across the globe." His site has a dedicated section for design students.

Design Notes "Multidisciplinary designer, writer and educator Michael Surtees tries to explore people’s daily experiences and observations with design."

Designers Journal "Is a collection of jottings, doodles and graphic design & creative eye candy from around the world."

It's nice that INT aim to "champion great creativity", by publishing exciting practitioners both on their website and in their magazine.

September Industry SI try to focus on quality rather than quantitiy and prefer to post biweekly rather than daily. It contains a carefully curated selection of contemporary graphic design.

Advertising Agencies

Added on by James Cronin.

Below is a list of 10 Advertising Agencies in the UK. The list combines both big international names as well as young creative agencies. Leo Burnett Leo Burnett - London believe in a friendly, often informal approach to design combined with a passion for great ideas. They were the highest ranked agency in the Sunday Times '100 best companies to work for'. Leo Burnett are the 3rd most creatively awarded communications agency in the UK.

Grey Grey London are an ambitious agency who strive to evolve each year. With an understanding of the business planning and practical application of business brand change.

M&C Saatchi Founded on the principal of "brutal simplicity". In 1995 Maurice and Charles left Saatchi & Saatchi to start a new agency. The agency now has offices in five countries and two global clients. "It is easier to complicate than to simplify.

Mother Is a creative agency with offices in London, New York and Buenos Aires. Mother is the UK's largest independent advertising agency.

Publicis Publicis Group is one of the World's leading communications networks. In the UK the Group consists of 5 brands including Advertising.

Saatchi & Saatchi A global advertising agency network with 140 offices in 80 countries and over 6500 staff.

Adam & Eve A young creative agency spanning advertising, digital and social media.

Euro Rscg The largest global agency as measured by total number of global accounts.

Fallon Founded in 1998, the agency has grown to a 160 person strong multi award winning business named 'agency of the year' by Campaign magazine 2006.

rkcr y&r Have won more "effectiveness" awards than any other UK agency in the last 5 years. "Creating big ideas to solve business problems.

Howies - A Deconstruction

Added on by James Cronin.

Analysing and deconstructing a pre-existing brand or company is a useful tool for professional development, as it allows you to work out whats working and what might not be. Your findings can then be applied to your own professional practice and the work that you produce. Howies Howies are a small active clothing company based in Wales, they make men's and women's clothing for sport and everyday wear.


  • Originally set by Clare & David Hieatt in 1995
  • Based in Cardigan (West coast of Wales)
  • Named derived from Clare's maiden name, 'Howells'
  • Eco-friendly - abide by ethically correct practices
  • Sell sports clothing / equipment to men & women
  • Range of sports include: mountain-biking, surfing, skateboarding and hiking
  • Main competitors include: Bamboo Rider, Yew Clothing and Levi
  • Have their own printshop
  • Clothing is made in China
  • The company is now run by Timberland
  • Don't have their own in-hourse design team
  • They commission freelance writers, designers, photographers and illustrators
  • They also include customer contributions to their publications
  • Host competitions and sponsor sporting events / teams


  • Howies have a small printed publication and website
  • The identity is an outdoor, sporty and environmentally friendly company
  • The lifestyle they promote is active and ecological
  • The language they use throughout their site and publications is friendly and informal
  • The graphic language used is a nice balance between computer and hand generated imagery
  • They use a mix of illustrations and photography
  • The typeface used on both the site and publication is sans serif
  • In terms of stock and material choices they have favour good quality which they believe will last longer
  • The materials are ethically sourced, an example is their organic cotton
  • The editorial is portrayed as a 'personal message' from Howies
  • Its a collection of articles and used as a form of interaction with the audience and their clients


  • They exist to sell environmentally friendly clothing and sports equipment
  • "we believe that making a product that lasts longer is better for the environment" -
  • They are not the first to sell clothing to this target audience but there views on ethically sourcing the materials are original


  • The Howies 'model' continues to work as they re-enforce the brand by sponsoring sporting teams
  • They adapt: A vegan pro skater informed Howies he was cutting off their organic jeans leather label so they made an animal free one in his honour
  • They are listed as one of the UK's most ethical brands
  • They believe designers should show benefits of eco-design and sustainability
  • Howies themselves admit they are green but could be greener
  • Timberland have taken over Howies and now produce four catalogues a year
  • 1% of all their income is donated to eco projects

What's working / What's not working?

  • The logotype is simple and clear - it can be used on any coloured background (dark or light)
  • However the blue colour is used inconsistently throughout the website and publication
  • No one in the class had heard of Howies, this maybe be because:

- we are, as students, the wrong target audience

- they rely on their strong relationship with existing customers and focus their attention on these customers returning

- it may be because they want to appear smaller and more personal