Saturday, July 20, 2013

Designing B2B Brands

designing b2b brands

This beautifully planned, strikingly designed, and solidly produced book of a couple hundred pages amounts to a seminar in the highly integrated development and presentation of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu, a global brand I'd previously not known about. The Google short version of their mission tells us, "Deloitte services include audit, consulting, financial advisory, risk management and tax."

Indeed there are some differences between Business-To-Business and Business-To-Consumer branding; a comprehensive, up-to-date, panorama of a single firm is just that, and won't approach or touch upon every imaginable identity communication concern you may have about your own service or consumer product. Nonetheless, whether you're an MBA, an MFA, or work with branding in another capacity, these "lessons" the subtitle describes can be appropriated well and applied to good effect in many other cases. Following contemporary design trends, the book's open layout, excellent typography, and use of [literal] "white space" conveys a sense of leisurely opulence and purpose. Designing B2B Brands has found a place alongside the books I consult for inspiration and return to for advice.

my amazon review: design seminar

An Ordinary Toad's Extraordinary Night

An Ordinary Toad's Extraordinary Night on Amazon

ordinary toad's extraordinary night cover
Just as she did with The Tiniest Tiger, Joanne McGonagle has written another book that helps people of all ages understand a little more about the orders and distinctives of nature (especially amphibians in this case) than they previously may have known; even better, she has given us a story that helps all of us of any age celebrate our uniqueness, along with the irreplaceable value each of us has in the world and within creation. The storyline seems too long and complicated for most younger kids of about 4th grade or younger, yet at almost every step along the way, they still can learn a truth or a fact about nature or about themselves that doesn't depend upon grasping the entire narrative from first to final sentence.

Joanne's words and the whimsical though quite realistic pictures place us inside the story of young American Toad Andrew, who, although he is an "ordinary" toad, is not a "common" toad—we can find those many places in Europe. Via Andrew's interactions with his mother and grandfather and with other animals, he learns a lot about himself, and teaches the reader about differences between toads and frogs.

Rachael Mahaffey created the beautiful illustrations that make this just as much a picture book as it is a story book! However, just as with several books for younger readers I've recently reviewed, I very much wish the color palette of An Ordinary Toad's Ordinary Night was brighter and lighter, though I appreciate that the darker, more subdued hues may be closer to actual toad habitat. Also, the format that guides the reader by highlighting all the text inside scrolls is a great touch. Every creature, every human, every aspect of every habitat is important!

my amazon review: Toads, Frogs, Uniqueness, Importance...

Friday, July 19, 2013

Little Lost Tiger

Little Lost Tiger by Jonathan London, author; Ilya Spirin, illustrator on amazon

little lost tiger cover

Little Lost Tiger is a beautifully illustrated description of a night and the following morning in the life of Siberian tiger Striped One and her young son, Amba. Author Jonathan London nicely describes the frozen habitat, the creatures (tigers and others) who live there, and the excitement of a sudden forest fire. "A Note from the Author" at the end tells us a little about Siberian tigers; it informs us Udege and Nanai tribes both call tigers "Amba," so that's where the baby tiger in Little Lost Tiger got his name.

I love that the story itself is short enough to hold a young child's attention; I also appreciate how London's narrative and Ilya Spirin's drawings work in tandem to describe the Siberian wilderness. My main reservation is about Little Lost Tiger being yet another book for young children with dark hued artwork! I realize the setting most likely was not especially light and bright, but a few more glints and suggestions of brightness would help with total appeal.

my Amazon review: a story about Siberian Tigers