Coke summer cans
Both Coke and deadly rival Pepsi have Coke produced limited edition runs of can designs in recent years - here's Coke's effort for the summer.
The first can featuring a Sunglass icon (above, far left) launched this week with four additional designs to be released over the next two months, culminating with a special July 4th holiday can (above, far right).
The cans were designed by Turner Duckworth. They will be featured on packaging, in-store displays and TV ads in an integrated campaign devised in collaboration with Wieden + Kennedy and Coca-Cola's rather portentously titled 'North America Creative Excellence team' . The designs will also be used for merchandise – T-shirts, hats, beach towels etc etc (you know the kind of thing).
Turner Duckworth's work for Coke (which has won a lot of awards in the past year) is explained by the brand's design director Moira Cullen in this video
Now I have a Coca-Cola craving
What about the paratext? The design, placement and treatment of the barcode, the ingredients, the volume, the copyright notice, the registered tradmark notice, the recycle logo, distribution and manufacturing blurb, the website, the customer care line etc. How are these aspects of the design handled?
We know it's possible to handle information in a variety of different ways. We can make reading easier or harder (according to the dominant norms of each particular time and place). We can use hierarchy in attempts to define the order of information–obscuring that which may be crucial for making an informed decision. We can make reading harder by using smaller type, reversed out, poorly printed, with long line lengths, placed vertically (less likely to be read once can is opened as drink may spill if rotated) on the back.
What does it mean to use design in this way? What does the design reveal about the ideas and ideals of the product, the company, the political arena in which it is situated?
Also, Why is the high sugar content not highlighted by the design, but cool fizzyness and/or aspirational motifs are?
"Why is the high sugar content not highlighted..."
"crucial for making an informed decision"
It's Coca-Cola, and it's bad for you – we all know that. I know that, but it doesn't stop me drinking the stuff.
As for all the other points, I would think Coca-Cola would be pretty content with whatever has worked for the last however many decades.
I have to say I like these and I can see them working as a selling point. They're the kind of thing people might go and try to collect a set of for fun. I have the recent Beck's bottles around my office and I don't even drink. I have because they're a nice object and I would think these cans will bring out a similar response.
If only Coca-Cola put as much effort into their ethical policies as they do promoting the brand.
I really like the BBQ can, I actually like all these cans and usually dismiss any kind of "design remixes," Pepsi had a whole series a couple years ago too, anyway these Coca Cola cans are cool beacuse they stay true to the logo while playing around a bit.
Pretty cool, they aren't amazing but nice to see them try and maintain the simplicity of the theme instead of going berzerk with exploding type and a million colours.
As for the hater post, without being too naive here but I'd assume all the other stuff....may be on the other side of the cans? Maybe this design is a single sided affair?
I agree with Al woods - nice to see them add variety with our putting all the drop shadow / water droplet gubbins back on there. The beach ball and sunglasses are interesting - not showing the whole logo.
To follow on with what Ellie was saying about the obscuring of the full logo highlights how much of an icon Coca-Cola has become. We see it with Penguin bars, Pringles and, perhaps most notible, Toblerone/ToMyDad/Tobleronandonandon... where a brand or company image becomes so synonimous with a product that the shape or particular font becomes embedded in the public conscious. This could effectively make advertising very cheap for these companies, as half of the job has been done by the consumer by recognising any given detail of the logo.
The point I make here is, is advertising becoming lazy, resting on the laurels of the ground-breaking designers that laid the foundations? Or does this push new designers to come up with their own particular slant on something so monumental as the Coca-Cola brand?
The above ideas taken into consideration, I lean more towards the latter. They simply add their instantly recognised logo to other instantly recognised features of summer. BUT IT WORKS.
My comment had a number of concerns that I would suggest are inter-related, and are not directed only with the examples shown here, but at design practice in general.
1) Is it enough to focus solely on ‘the cover‘ and to negate all the other details? Does that not destroy the very value that design can have? Shouldn't we judge design, not only on ‘the cover’ but on the other constitutive parts also? By focusing solely on the cover don't we reduce the very parameters of what design can be?
By way of explanation we can turn to the work of the recently defunct DR. They were fascinated by the supposedly banal details of objects and sought to include them in interesting and innovative ways. Their playful approach to barcodes for example elevated this negated and the commercially necessary aspect into an integral part of the whole. They deployed design everywhere and as a consequence the everyday was made strange.
2) But in order to assess any design we would need some notion of the intention. What does the design seek to do? How does it seek to determine me (both positively and negatively) How is design used to either mask or reveal? So the DR example, while interesting, is limited as it deploys design as an added feature. Design becomes a product (DRWEI). We are never sure where the decisions that created the design came from - “make the logo bigger”.
For example, the publishing industry (on the whole) struggles to make any profit. This means that the stores that stock their books have a certain amount of leverage in deciding the design, according to their own (bland and ill-informed) criteria. Design is reduced to decoration or signage.
3) This knowledge takes us into the larger socio-economic domain where it is apparent that certain ideas concerning production, distribution, and property remain uncontested. This means that the governing authority that determines design rarely comes from the designer but from the deeply imbedded, but wholly contingent, set of practices. Design is an assumption built upon assumptions. So while design is engaged to work within prescribed limitations, we should attempt to use our creativity to think beyond those borders.
In that sense, by attempting to read each of these levels and understand the effect it has on our practice, we open a space in which thinking becomes possible and an opportunity arises in which we can change our practices and challenge these dominant ideas and ideals.
Wonderfull... Coke of sunglasses... in the summer is very interesting...
DR went bang. Focus on the bits that make people buy more. That keeps the brand managers happy and is the reason that back of pack is called back of pack and not front point-of-sale side of pack.
Standout by Standing in Line: A mantra for dullards.
Focus on the bits that make people buy more
That keeps the brand managers happy and is
the reason that back of pack is called back of pack
and not front point-of-sale side of pack.
I think cans are a true reflection to the brand coca-cola is today. the very simple / smart designs are what people do in the summer, what coca-cola have done very shuttle yet hugely creative, fun and inventive
Unsure what a dullard is. Guessing it’s not good.
So would one not be a dullard if they too the time to cleverly craft the expiry date then?
Anyhow, all I am saying is that crafting a bar code and ingredients copy is a self pleasure exercise that has little impact at point-of-sale. That said, Innocent created a nice trend in making more of the ‘other’ on-pack info, and it works well.
Shouldn't we be questioning consumer behavior, buying a drink because its in a pretty can?
Certainly it follows the rules of simple but beautifully executed design. Even if they have missed a few packaging necessities (i.e. ingredients and other info mentioned previously) but as a branding exercise its very coca-cola in a 'oh shiny' kind of way. Although as we debate this I wonder how many people do you know keep all their used cans of drink? . .except maybe alcoholics?
So does it really matter if for a few short months when it will probably rain anyway that a drinks company tries to brighten up our day with or without the inclusion of a sell-by date, which, come to think about it I've never paid attention to anyway.
It's a outstanding idea for designing and promoting brand, "coca cola". It also a way that Coca Cola has been a the biggest beverage company in the world.
I love it. Back to the basics. Keeping it crude and simple. It will be interesting to see how well it is received by the consumer though. But now I really need a Coke!
All these comments and only one person is questioning the ethics of coke. These can designs epitomise everything that graphic design has become and everything I think it shouldn't be; a simple and crude way of making an utterly pointless, unhealthy http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/8056028.stm environmentally damaging http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2003/jul/25/water.india product seem appealing.
The world doesn't need coke, so why are we praising these 'cool' cans. 'Cool' isn't a word that should stand up in the design world any more. We should be focusing on thoughtful, sustainable and social design.
It all stems from a crappy design education that I'm stuck in the middle of. Students are only taught "design cool things and you will make money", not "design thoughtful, meaningful things and you might be able to make people lives better".
Just watched the video. How on earth does the current branding of coke show the "honesty" and the "truth of the brand", and why do they show polar bears and penguins drinking coke. Maybe when we've caused enough environmental damage these animals will have no way of hunting their natural prey so they will be forced to drink coke. Bizarre.
Muito legal novas latas mais vale lembra que a normal também é 10
The 4th July and BBQ cans are excellent. I do wonder though if the 4th July version will be recognized for what it is outside of the US. Most people in the UK would need some sort of explanation to go with it. Whilst we have all heard of the 4th July how many actually know what it means?
That aside this is excellent fun design work. I wish I was as good as that!
If you have something to hide, design badly and write poorly. Set the text in small type, no leading and wide measure, and use mind-numbingly dull legal language. This approach all but screams, “We don’t want you to read this, but we are required by law to tell you.”
Was about time that the Coca-Cola goes back to the basics. Keeping it crude and simple, as says Pete N in his comment, but I think a company as Coca-Cola, has to go even more into the future, with the idea not only to be the best in the market, but also including in his design, a way that will polluting less, since the moment that the bottle or can is in the hands of the consumers, making it easier and pleasent for the costumer a way to handle the recolection of the material to be recicle. This action and a world campaings to preserve the midle ambient I am sure that will boost the Coca-Cola company to the place that is supouse to be. I am sure this is possible...
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