brand thinking


Design and the future

Design, as a thinking style, is starting to be recognised for its contribution to tackling today’s most complex problems. Its role may be even more important in the future, or the Future, that permanently fascinating horizon which occupies our dreams and fantasies. But not just in making the products and services of tomorrow.  Keep Reading

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A Carol For A Brand New Christmas

In a saucepan, on medium heat, bring to a boil 3 cups of milk, a cup or so of heavy cream, 3 inch-long cinnamon sticks, vanilla (bean/pods or vanilla essence) and a teaspoon of grated nutmeg. Switch off the heat. Separately, beat 5 egg yolks and sugar until thick ribbons form. Slowly whisk in the hot milk mix, until smooth. Add rum/bourbon/brandy and stir. Refrigerate overnight. Before serving, fold in the stiffly beaten egg whites. Garnish (grated nutmeg, cinnamon, or chocolate; feel free to improvise).

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maternal marmite bottle

Hidden In Plain View: Physique

First published in a slightly modified form ‘Physique’ in Business Standard, 17 November, in Deep Design, a fortnightly column by Itu Chaudhuri.

Brands place a premium on attention, firing images and words shaped into messages to inform and persuade. Indeed, we live amidst a war for our attention, an exquisitely perishable wisp that lives in the now.

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nobel and bob dylan

Nobel, Dylan and the twilight of authority

First published in a slightly modified form ‘Nobel, Dylan and the twilight of authority’ in Business Standard, 22 October, in Deep Design, a fortnightly column by Itu Chaudhuri.

“The Nobel Committee has won the Bob Dylan Prize,” announced the Always Contrarian Everyman, or ACE, a lapsed academic I’d been introduced to by mutual friends, to help with some research on communications planning.

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Photo Credits: Niloy Kundu | ICD

The Three Ages of Olympic Logos

First published in a slightly modified form in Business Standard, 13 August, in Deep Design, a fortnightly column by Itu Chaudhuri.

Everyone loves a new, public logo. It’s a polarising icon, and comments are free. So it is with Olympic logos. Deep Design seeks not to praise or bury them, but to discover the meaning interred into their bones.

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Making Sense of Election Symbols

By themselves, symbols mean nothing. It takes prior knowledge to associate, purely by convention, a white-tipped cane with its blind owner. More connotative symbols acquire meaning by social processes. In an English storybook, a cock may announce the break of day, while its Indian cousin, the murga, may identify a certain type of tandoori joint. Each of these uses a code, a script that tells us what the once-arbitrary symbol means in a particular context.

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