Sunday, July 16, 2017

Gorillaz, Time Capsules & Brandless Shopping

Weekly Update 2017-29: The hypnotic new music from virtual band Gorillaz, pinpointing specific time periods in popular culture, and a new sustainable take on the grocery shopping experience.

Music: Gorillaz
How is it that a virtual band created in 1998 still has the ability to sell out huge stadiums for shows, and even create a whole music festival almost 20 years later? The secret sauce to the amazing success and catchy tunes of Gorillaz is, of course, Damon Albarn. Music genius that he is, Albarn has released the next instalment of Gorillaz' adventure through the universe called Humanz. Like the other albums before it, Humanz is star-studded with vocals to help Albarn bring his virtual band to life including Grace Jones, De La Soul, Popcaan, Kali Uchis, Vince Staples and so many more. The album takes a more soul/funk turn than past albums, and I am personally loving the journey. How difficult would it be to make a Halloween costume of Murdoc Niccals, I wonder?

My current favourites are Strobelite, Charger and She's My Collar.

I made a little timelapse of 30 minutes of logo creation for the Check In App project, which I thought might be a nice little piece of process work to include with the project. I love the way people use social media to display their process (no matter the work they do) like painting, cooking, or even editing music, so I thought I would jump on the bandwagon myself.

I've also been working on a small redesign of my portfolio site, thinking about archiving some projects and adding new ones. I think 12 projects is probably too much so I'd like to whittle it down to six or so and treat them more as case studies with process. I'm also making a new splash's a teaser.
The face may look a little familiar to you. And I was thinking of playing around with dropdowns for my bio. Select a different option and be taken to a product page or blog post. (Right now all of the options for the last one take you to your email client...but maybe I could send people to my instagram or something too?

This week I want to start recoding the footer on my website. I can improve the grid and the responsiveness, so I'm going to start from scratch and do it right.

I also have a meeting for FriendCanoe on Tuesday, so I'll be working on that as well.

Random Thought:
I was watching Fargo (the television show) the other day, and thinking about how interesting it is that the third season is set in 2010, a time really not very long ago and yet distinctly different from the world we live in now. People were just starting to use Facebook in a widespread way to find out personal information about each other, and even use that to blackmail people and steal identities.

Dastardly stuff. To use such a recent and yet distant phenomenon as a plot device is something I find so whimsical. It's interesting to think about a show whose setting is only 7 short years ago, as a period piece. But that's what it feels like! And the clothing, like a pair of huge fur mukluk boots, seemingly so hideous now, made me remember that I also had a pair of those boots.

Perhaps it's interesting simply because it wasn't so long ago that I can't fathom it, or because I actually lived through it myself. But in any case, Fargo does it well.

Inspiration: Brandless
So it's 2017. Are you still shopping in a real store? I wrote a post a while ago about virtual stores, and it appears my prediction is correct. With the onset of Amazon Go, allowing shoppers to select their items and be charged automatically when they skip the checkout line and simply walk out the front door, why not push the idea even further and order all your food online?

Suddenly, a new competitor enters the ring: Brandless. Launched less than a week ago and based in San Francisco and Minneapolis, you can make all your grocery store purchases through this online store selling generic, high quality products with no brand. Think No Name or Great Value: cheaper prices by losing the brand, and even cheaper when removing the brick-and-mortar store from the equation.

Did I mention every single product is only $3? Affordable, accessible, and beautiful to boot. Someone knows the value of good design.

Pretty much every product is organic, recycled, environmentally conscious, all the good things in life. This way of shopping makes things much more sustainable.

Can I just take a moment to say that the lack of a brand; rendering a brand “brandless”, is inherenty a brand? Therefore this is one of the most interesting brands I have seen in a long time. Really makes you think.

Currently, Brandless is testing the waters with only packaged food and supplies, but has plans to break out into fresh food soon. Check out their website here.

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