As we reach the end-groove of 2011, the veteran design rockers at How2Design end their year-long paper playlist on a high note. As you may remember in our original story in January, the group dropped its clever mock-vinyl promotion in six installments that we’ve loved. Now that Felt & Wire’s collection is complete, we asked studio principal Noemi Kearns to share the backstage details of this outstanding series.
[Noemi Kearns] Just as we’re always telling our clients, it’s all about creating a rich experience through design. We love the thrill of seeing people interact with our work, and the record project we began last January was particularly fun.
As it goes, one of our specialties is our thorough research process which leads to greater strength, we think, in both the aesthetic and intellect heft of our work as a whole. Suffice to say that a lot of research went into creating each of these “greatest hits.”
We strive to make sure no detail goes to waste — so the deeper the audience goes into a piece, the richer the rewards. For instance, in this series the song title of each record was carefully selected and arranged in a sequence to represent an eclectic mix that offers a surprise each month — but when read together, the titles tells a running story complementary to our attitude and philosophy. We want people to think, but also chuckle now and again. Humor is integral to much of our work because it’s such a great way to elicit both a cerebral and emotional response. (Plus, we love what we do, and it’s hard to hold that back.)
Beside the tremendous response we’ve received all year from our clients and peers, the most rewarding payoff from this year’s promo was knowing that not just one group benefited from our donation tradition, but six.
January | February: One of the top 10 largest community arts schools in the country, Neighborhood Music School of New Haven, Conn., celebrated its 100th anniversary this year. A happy birthday indeed to our good friends at NMS.
March | April: Smile Train is a charity that concentrates its resources on one issue: repairing cleft lip and palate, with a surgery that costs as little as $250 and takes as little as 45 minutes — that’s something to smile about indeed.
May | June: Established in 1960 in Bloomfield, Conn., the Fidelco Guide Dog Foundation has helped more than 1300 blind men and women, civilians and veterans have their quality of life vastly improved by a guide dog.
July | August: A program of the Wish Upon a Hero Foundation, Strike a Chord purchases instruments and lessons for financially struggling music students.
September | October: At DonorsChoose.org, the public is able to fund a variety of projects submitted by teachers for classrooms in need — who in turn showed their vast appreciation by bombarding our mailbox with an outpouring of glittery thank you notes from each student impacted by the gifts.
November | December: Little Kids Rock is an organization that provides music instruction for public school students left behind due to budget cuts. We hope our continued support and the gift of music makes as great of an impression on these little kids as it has on us.
Happy holidays, everyone!
Projects of this magnitude and detail require strong partners: How2Design credits the folks at Cannelli Printing for bringing this vision to life. What’s Connecticut-based H2D got going for next year? A new blog, a new line of goods and merchandise. (You’ll hear about it on Felt & Wire, but to be sure, join H2D’s e-mail list.)