Red Dot Award: Brands & Communication Design

Long live print

Opening new pages: long live print

The suspicion could arise, that the chapter of print media is closing slowly with increasing digitalisation. In contrast, there is a development to higher and higher product quality, which impresses the reader with creative ways. First-class print media are awarded in the Red Dot Award: Brands & Communication Design. Only the best design ideas can convince the superb jury, which still stands behind the relevance of print media. Red-Dot jury member Bettina Schulz knows about the importance of printed publications: “They create an important second pillar of communication alongside digital content, and they make it possible to convey certain values and create a different perception.” The following four works show how versatile print is.

Time journey with a difference

A bygone time is brought to life with the book “Es wird Nacht im Berlin der wilden Zwanziger” (Night falls on the Berlin of the Roaring Twenties) from TASCHEN. The design by Robert Nippoldt tells the story of significant artists and writers, actors and directors in Berlin in the 1920th century. The book, designed and illustrated with hand-drawn typography in the style of illuminated advertising, billboards, old movies and movie posters, tells of the success of art in a time of technological and societal innovation, social contrast and political unrest. With the translation of musical and cinematic elements into the graphic world of the print medium book, the Red Dot awarded book is rounded off.

Approachable content

The name of the Red Dot awarded magazine “MATERIAL” of the Lasalle College of the Arts says it all and captures the brutalism theme in the bi-annual issue in all facets of print. The design by Macarius Eng reflects the imperfect, rough and cold characteristics of brutalism excellently. With regard to the design, the titles are orientated towards the defective raw concrete case, which the typography takes up multifariously with working it in the rugged aesthetic of digital menus.

Long-time Red Dot jury member Jean Jacques Schaffner knows from his own experience: “Not in all sections print is still popular and useful. The decline of daily newspapers shows clearly, that information spreading works without print, too. However, sensuality and materiality are not dead. Beautifully made annual reports, fashion magazines business prints and invitations for events are popular. Feeling and smelling are still important, but not always.”

Pages soaked in alcohol

The presence of the book’s central theme alcohol is immediately evident as soon as one opens the Red Dot: Best of the Best awarded “Charles Bukowski Glitch Book” from Luta Sprava. The underground author Bukowski was known as an outlier of the modern literature for his works about alcoholics, prostitutes, gamblers and losers of the American society. Featuring a hip flask on the cover, the topic alcohol continues through the book as a successively emptying wine bottle and numbering of increasing blood alcohol concentration. The texts, full of violent and sexual pictures, are portrayed with drawings and illustrations in black, white and red with the help of imaginative typography, symbolism and contrasts. The agency Tough Slate delighted the Red Dot Jury not only with high-quality pictures but also with engaging designed typography, which takes the reader into Bukowski’s world without reading any word.

To have one’s fingers on the pulse of the time

Also, the illustrated book from photographer Armin Walcher is among the 2018 Red Dot: Best of the Best awarded works. The book “Zeit-los in Bewegung” (Time-less in Motion) pays attention to the opposites of flexibility and stability as well as of social change and tradition. It focuses on thirty people from Ausseerland, the geographical centre of Austria. With the help of portraits, which tell the people’s moving stories, and completed by beautiful images in both panorama as well as detail shots, a visual language that is natural, honest and full of exciting serenity is created. The qualitatively excellent photographs complemented by the self-reliant and differentiated composition of text and image, up to the visual depth, convinced the Red Dot Jury as a work of absolutely outstanding quality.

Top ranking of print media in the Red Dot Award: Brands & Communication Design

How can print and online media coexist in the future? “Just like bicycles and cars, cinemas and television. Every medium has its strengths which should be taken full advantage of,” explains Bettina Schulz.

Well-designed, high-quality print works are still convincing – like the Red Dot awarded works from 2018 and the jury voices show. Only the bests receive an award in the competition. Which projects will succeed in doing so in 2019, will decide among others Bettina Schulz and Jean-Jacques Schaffner as members of the jury. Only till 28 July, the registration for the Red Dot Award: Brands & Communication Design 2019 is possible in the category “Publishing & Print Media” as well as in 16 other categories.