Speaking at the TheDieline.com conference

I have been asked to speak at the 2011 Dieline Package Design Conference, to be held in conjunction with the HOW Design Conference next June in Chicago.

With the staggering growth of online resources like TheDieline.com for compelling and current brand and package design information, it was exciting to get the invitation from Andrew. And the fact that it will be held with the HOW Conference was even better!

My talk will be titled, Being First, Lessons from Packaging’s Past. And here is how I describe the content.

The package is a unique object in our contemporary culture. Created as a vessel, designed as an icon, sold as a brand, and consumed with both passion and derision. In short it is a unique intersection of design and life.

Great package designers are cultural historians. Creating the new, by often rearranging and distilling from the aesthetic events of the past. Perhaps selecting a typeface designed in 17th century England, maybe combining it with an illustration style reminiscent of Keith Haring, and finally perhaps creating a new bottle with state of the art bioplastics. We are high wire artists, but often with the comfort and historic richness of an aesthetic safety net.

But what if there is no net? If the moment arrives when you are asked to create something for the first time, for a product that has never existed or a technology that is new?

This talk will focus on what Coco Chanel, Alex Steinweiss, Procter & Gamble and others did at that moment.

Be there on June 22nd!
And in the mean time if anyone has any first ideas for this talk, just let me know.


About Richard Shear

designer, husband, teacher, blogger, father, athlete, author, historian Richard has over 25 years of brand identity and package design experience, with a wide range of clients such as Ahold, Coca-Cola, Hasbro, IBM, Johnson & Johnson, Pernod Ricard and Procter & Gamble. He began his career working with the legendary advertising art director, and AIGA Medalist, George Lois and the British design manager Clive Chajet. In his next design management position at Lippincott & Margulies, he worked with Walter Margulies learning the complex skills of global corporate identity. He then became Creative Director and Partner at Peterson & Blyth, one of the premier brand identity and package design firms of the time. He is a founding faculty member of the Masters in Branding Program at New York’s School of Visual Arts. He publishes the blog The Package Unseen, and has been a guest lecturer at colleges including FIT, Trinity College and Tyler School of Art. He is a graduate of the Tyler School of Art at Temple University. Richard is a Board member of the AIGA MetroNorth Chapter, past President of AIGA‘s Brand Design Association, President of the Package Design Council and a member of its Board of Directors. He is a member of USA Cycling and US Rowing, a nationally ranked masters bicycle racer, and a member of The Saugatuck Rowing Club, the 2010 Masters Club National Champion.
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