BoyDog Design
Design and more…

orchid-226x300 Radiant Orchid has been chosen as the IT color for 2014. As stated in Pantone’s press release, this shade of purple has “an enchanting harmony of fuchsia, purple and pink undertones, Radiant Orchid inspires confidence and emanates great joy, love and health. It is a captivating purple, one that draws you in with its beguiling charm.”

I couldn’t be happier as this is one of my favorite colors! Let’s see how this choice influences design in the coming year.


While I’ve know about Pinterest for some time now I never really took the time to get into it and see if it was for me. On the suggestion of a friend I spent some time on there and I have to admit it – I’m hooked.

Unlike Delicious and StumbleUpon, which I use daily, Pinterest allows me to collect information in a more visual form. And isn’t visual what graphic design is all about? It’s really amazing how your boards start to take shape. At first you aren’t quite sure what type of things to post, but you pick it up quickly. I will always be looking for anything that relates to design or that I find inspiring in some way. But… Pinterest also lets me put a bit of myself on my boards. I get to save recipes, craft projects, and whatever else hits me at the moment.

I have decided to share my Pinterest boards with you all. Take them at face value, literally. They are all pinned because something about them interested me. Me. If you see something that connects with you, repin it or leave a comment.

One last suggestion. If you are already using Pinterest or decide to finally check it out, I recommend that you click on different user’s boards and view their profile as a whole. It’s amazing how you get a feel for the person based solely on the visual impact of their pins. Some people are drawn to design and color. Others have a very muted take on what they like. From a visual standpoint, I find this fascinating.

So go check out Pinterest! See if it’s something that interests you. You can check out my boards at

As they say on the site… Happy Pinning!


Sept 29, 2011: New packaging for Ivory soap brands on display at Procter & Gamble's Cincinnati headquarters. (AP Photo/Tom Uhlman)

What does this brand’s evolution mean to you?

Seriously,  I’m curious – what do you think about this new packaging? Obviously, it gave me pause and that is why I’ve decided to explore it in this post. The more I think about it – more levels of consideration come to mind. Let’s reflect on a few now:

Brand Recognition

Few products have enjoyed widespread recognition as Ivory soap. It is iconic in that it represents soap in it purest and basic form. No fuss – just soap. Years of positive consumer feedback have secured Ivory soap’s place among its competitors.  As long as Ivory can continue these branding benchmarks it should expect continued success based on its marketing strategy.

With the introduction of new package design, do you think Ivory will suffer a change in brand recognition?

Package design today requires the use of color, type, and shape that will bring attention to your specific item. Anyone who walks down the aisle of a supermarket quickly sees that package design has evolved into a rainbow spectacle of products vying for your attention.  There are two ways to look at Ivory’s new packaging. In one way they have joined the masses to compete using the same media. I’m wondering though if their product would stand out from the crowd even more if it had retained it’s white (as in pure) packaging? Speaking for myself, I have often overlooked a product with a new package design simply because it was new. I was not aware of the change and my eye simply overlooked the product. Even items that I use regularly I have overlooked and assumed it was out of stock on the shelf at that time. Eventually I’d discover that it was there, right in front of my nose. Will that be the case for Ivory?

Below are some examples of how Ivory packaging has changed over time. If you’d like to see more examples they can be found on Photobucket and Google.

New packaging for Ivory soap


Without any knowledge of the specifics of Ivory’s marketing plan, I will presume (based on my personal perspective) that the market reach is for any age group that wishes to use soap in its purest form, at a competitive price, and that is easily accessible for purchase. No bells or whistles. No fancy claims. Just soap – use it and it successfully cleans what it is applied to.

Will the new package design negatively affect a current user’s opinion of Ivory soap? Conversely, will the new package design positively entice a non-user to give it a try? Will the new colorful package bring it to the attention of a new customer base? Will the new package design imply a change in the product’s performance to both past and potential consumers? Does a change in the use of color, type, and package shape wield that much power in the minds of a consumer?

It’s a battle between “if it ain’t broke – don’t fix it” and “out with the old and in with the new”.


Let’s face it, the economy is a tough nut right now. People are more aware than ever of how far their dollar goes. I know that some pricey product lines establish their identity with the use of specific fonts and colors and the materials they use for packaging and the product itself. Things that shine give off the aura of expense. There is a certain luxury attached to the softness of fur, fine leather, cashmere, etc. We can all tell the difference in the package design of a brand name product when compared to a knock off sample or even a dollar store brand. Most likely it doesn’t have the same presentation and impact. It is in fact a step down from the originating brand.

So how will the public perceive a product that evolves from a predominantly white package to one that incorporates color? Will there be any perceived change in the brand’s value? Will there be a change in the perceived return on investment when buying Ivory soap? I  must admit I’ve never contemplated the repercussions of a change like this before. I would be interested to know if any metrics become available that give us a answer.

So what do you think?

I’m confident that hours and hours of discussion were involved in this package design change. It was accomplished by utilizing the skills of the highly acclaimed agency Wieden+Kennedy of Portland, OR. Time will tell if this new package design will enhance or detract from Ivory’s brand. I will continue to monitor my media sources for more information. If you have any thoughts on this, please feel free to share.

If you’d like to read more about the roll out of this new package design, here is a recent post on Yahoo.

I continue to be impressed with the willingness of the design community to share information. Links, tutorials, books, samples, templates, fonts – you name it and it can be found online. I’d like to contribute to this stash of information by making my bookmarks available to anyone who browses my blog.

Delicious offers bookmarks collected by its members. The range of interests are vast. For me, you will find that my bookmarks coincide with my interest in graphic design, advertising, web design, marketing, industrial design, and the range of software used in those pursuits.

Please, feel free to browse the bookmarks. You just might find the information you need. I would also like to encourage you to add to my bookmark list via email, posting to my blog, or sharing via your delicious account.

The best thing about delicious bookmarks is that they are always available to you as long as you have access to a computer with an internet connection. I started using delicious because I wanted to have my bookmarks available to me wherever I was and on whichever computer I might be working on at the time.

Give a try. Browse my bookmarks. I hope you find something of interest. Maybe you’ll find some answers for things that have you stumped. Enjoy!

Mexican artist Gabriel Dawe creates huge three-dimensional art installations using Gütermann thread.


As I browse through my emails and RSS feeds this morning I’m finding a pattern in what interests me – anything and everything that is INSPIRING. I love color. I enjoy its use and combinations and found this article very inspiring. It would be fantastic if, as a designer, we were allowed to follow our creative flow and run with color. But, alas, that opportunity rarely happens.

Immerse yourself in color and ponder all the possibilities…

For myself, any article about color is fascinating. I realize, I’m a designer, and so it’s only natural that I find this topic interesting. Over the years I’ve had to work with clients to complete various types of projects. Whether a print job or web-based, all of these projects used color for impact, continuity, branding, emotional hook, etc. Recently I came across this article, “Things Designers Need To Know About Color” (via Naldz Graphics), and thought it would be helpful for non-designers as well.

Any information I can pass along to current or future clients can only benefit our working relationship. I encourage everyone to read this article and hopefully you will learn something new or gain a better understanding of the many aspects of the use of color. The next time you are faced with a creative challenge that utilizes color I hope you will remember some of the facts from this article. If you are a non-designer working with a design professional I hope this information helps the communication process. posted this new color identifying system. Absolutely fascinating and surprisingly logical. Years ago I worked with a designer who was color blind. I had no idea. He managed to execute perfect ads. It wasn’t until someone played a prank on him and rearranged his markers that we came to know he was color blind.

I wonder how a system like this would have affected his productivity. Beyond that, think of all the applications to benefit someone who is color blind navigate and participate in their world. And, from a design perspective, I find this system to be a wonderful use of easy to read symbols that should prove useful anywhere around the globe.

I came across this via Twitter… Give it a try. What did you score? I got a 15.

Online Color Challenge

Thank you to X-Rite!

If you’ve spent any time at all viewing my website, it’s pretty obvious that my answer to that question is a resounding NO. Alas, there are many of you who just won’t allow yourself to jump in to the beautiful world of color. Maybe you think you’re going to make a mistake. Maybe you lack confidence in the effectiveness of color. Maybe you just never gave it much thought. Whatever the case, you owe it to yourself to explore the use of color in your marketing.

First off you need to recognize that colors influence individuals in a subjective way. Overall, colors have a distinctive connotation. It’s something that’s been passed down through time and we’ve all incorporated these views without realizing it. If I say – purple – do you think “royalty”. If I say – red – do you think “love”. And how about “black”? In the US black is associated with death, but in China, for example, white is associated with death. Keep that in mind if your business is international. You should be aware of the culturally assigned meanings to colors.

And going along with the subjective view of color, it’s apparent that we all see color a little differently. Some of us, not at all. For example, if you were working up a campaign for a senior audience, it’s best to maintain mid-hues because there is a gradual loss of perception in high contrast color combinations. For babies, their color perception develops gradually. Infants process color in the right side of their brain whereas adults process color in the left side. Babies see pure color compared to the translated color observed by adults. The reason for this is the introduction of language. Language is processed on the left side of our brains and as we connect the color to the word our perception changes. Cool, isn’t it?…

And if you can’t see color, that’s no excuse at all. I once had a graphic designer who worked with me and it was months before he confessed that he was color blind. He managed to do wonderful work by keeping his markers in a row. Somehow he knew what the color was provided it resided in a specific spot on his work area. He didn’t appreciate a practical job played on him some time after the revelation. Someone (who shall remain nameless) switched his markers around. Needless to say he was not amused.

Let’s not forget about trends in color. What’s IN one season will be OUT the next. Or so you are led to believe. For Spring 2009 lavender has been declared the IT  fashion color.
Pantone announced that the color of the year for 2009 is Mimosa

How about automobiles – what do the color choices tell us? Back in the 80’s the colors were combinations to invoke a luxurious expensive vibe. Not your basic blue, but a combo of colors to create a rich blue. And we all acknowledge the appeal of a red sports cars? Today, you’ll find that along with our desire for technology the colors used will have metalics added to create the illusion of techno relevance. I’m not making this up. You’re seeing what you crave.

Now let’s return to how color can make a difference in your marketing plan. Hopefully you all realize that color is part of your brand. Your logo, and everything else associated with your business that you use to communicate with your market should have a consistent color choice. Continuity is key. Without continuity recognition of your brand becomes more difficult. With it, you build your brand. You imbed your product or service in the minds of current and potential consumers. Every effort should be made to choose the appropriate color. What does it say about you?

I can give you a real life example of the impact of color. A few years back I was asked to develop advertising campaigns for laboratory equipment. In the biotech/pharmaceutical industries there isn’t room to stray from the facts. You are obligated to state the facts to enable the buyer to decide if your product is exactly what they need. You can’t fudge the facts, you can’t blow smoke, you can’t do anything that goes off-message. But, you want to stand out in the crowd. The predominant media choice was trade magazines. Going through them I couldn’t help but notice that all the ads looked alike. A headline, a photo, a description of the piece of equipment and maybe some specs. Pretty dry. I realized that the only thing I could change was the use of color and so that’s where I focused my attention. Over the next few months I incorporated color into the ads. A choice that didn’t go over too well in the beginning. Patience and repetition prevailed. Over time it was easy to recognize our ads. There was no doubt about it. And interestingly enough other things started to change. I was asked to design the control panels for lab equipment. I used color here too and soon our equipment had that spark of freshness and forward-thinking that was missing in the competition. Some time went by and eventually the use of color became a more accepted practise in designing lab equipment. Ask yourself, why should a lab technician have to stare at an uninspiring piece of equipment all day when they could just as well have something that’s pleasing to the eye in the room with them? It was a success story. The brand became strong, sales increased and now a 50-year old company was associated with building a quality product and developing trends.

Update: Great Article – “Color Therapy To Beat Recession Blues”