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We blog on the latest things that inspire us, trends we spot and new work as soon as it’s released

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Brand perspectives

13 Nov 2018 by Brian Slade
Illustration of generic city hall building

An early brand project risk analysis on all possible perspectives can save a bunch of rework, awkward pauses and electrical appliance analogies! (Keep reading and all that will make sense!) Working with a regional...

Meet Sarah

11 Sep 2018 by Brian Slade
Meet Sarah

A new design face at Insight, here's a sneak peek into Sarah Turner's creativity and innovation. Sarah has only been with Insight for a short time but has made an immediate impact. All very positive too: she's a...

Shifting creative conventions

04 Sep 2018 by Brian Slade
Magenta lego house by Luka Hooper

Christmas day early 1970s, I opened a bag of Lego blocks. Just blocks, no people, characters or wheels. One of my favourite ‘toys’, I loved creating houses, forts and spaceships. Today Lego produces hundreds of...

What makes visual design effective?

21 Aug 2018 by Brian Slade
Visual design

The surprisingly simple idea of ‘clarity’ will invariably unlock the answer to the question of what makes visual design effective. Clarity of understanding based on the accessibility, usability, and desired...

Not everything that shines is gold in the world of branding

14 Mar 2018 by Brian Slade
Brand building

Your brand needs an evolution or a revolution. But how the heck do you choose the right people to work with to develop, evolve and roll out you brand identity? There’s a fine balance to be struck between...

What's going on under there?

24 Oct 2017 by Brian Slade
Rug graphic

    Say the word 'strategy' to a lot of designers and a shudder runs up their spine leading to a slightly glazed look. It won’t be because they don’t like to think about what they’re doing or...

Space to think and do.

16 Oct 2017 by Brian Slade
Space to think and do.

To unlock creative ideas most of us need to make space and time to ‘unplug’. To some extent ideas can come from anywhere but in reality a significant factor in unlocking ideas is allowing our subconscious to...

The 2017 NZSO Season hits the streets with an ‘expected, unexpected’ conviction

21 Aug 2017 by Brian Slade
The 2017 NZSO Season hits the streets with an ‘expected, unexpected’ conviction

Creating a campaign months ahead of it appearing in public is always an interesting exercise. Not only is there the delayed creative gratification but also trying to gauge how effective the idea will be in reality....

Giving a little back

08 May 2017 by Brian Slade
Brian Slade assessing student work at CoCA

Time’s precious right? So getting the ‘opportunity’ to be part of Massey’s CoCA (College of Creative Arts) image and identity class yesterday was both a thrill and a challenge, in amongst meetings,...

Leading a positive work culture

16 Mar 2017 by Brian Slade
Leading a positive work culture

  Ask most New Zealanders “what sort of culture does our capital city have?” or "describe our teenage drinking culture” and you’ll probably get pretty clear answers. Cafe and binge. However, ask...

Communication design trends 2016

01 Jun 2016 by Brian Slade
2016 Design Trends teaser image

Creative Director, Brian Slade, looks forward to see what we’re likely to see emerging in our industry in the next 12 months. “A trend never simply emerges for a single year and then disappears in a puff of...

Yes. But why?

03 May 2016 by Brian Slade
Yes, but why?

Clients ostensibly hire creative agencies to produce creative solutions. You think? We prefer to believe that they hire us for effective creative solutions. And effectiveness is what gets us going. It powers up...

05. Imagery

04 Apr 2016 by Brian Slade
Imagery blog post title slide

Creative Director, Brian Slade, concludes his review of Insight's body of work over the 2015 annual reporting season. In the last in this series, we take a look at how a picture can say quite a bit. As designers, we...

04. Graphics

15 Mar 2016 by Brian Slade
Annual Report graphics title

Creative Director, Brian Slade, reviews aspects of Insight's body of work over the 2015 annual reporting season. As designers, it’s what we do. The definition of graphics, from the Greek graphikos, is ‘something...

03. Colour

26 Feb 2016 by Brian Slade

Creative Director, Brian Slade, reviews aspects of Insight's body of work over the 2015 annual reporting season. A highly emotive aspect to all graphic communications and subject to trends and association, colour...

02. Typography

22 Feb 2016 by Brian Slade
Insight 2015 Annual Report typography

Creative Director, Brian Slade, reviews aspects of Insight's body of work over the 2015 annual reporting season. Typography remains a powerful weapon for any designer to wield in their creative work. In the last few...

01. Messaging

19 Jan 2016 by Brian Slade
Insight 2015 annual report season messaging

Creative Director, Brian Slade , reviews aspects of Insight's body of work over the 2015 annual reporting season. Meet Lulu and Rufus/  Over the past six months, in one of our busiest periods, we’ve managed...

The power of the strong visual continuum

13 Oct 2015 by Brian Slade
MRP website page

Line of sight When you're talking to customers, community groups, suppliers and shareholders the length and breadth of the country, and an internal audience the size of a small town, the best...

Type design to make a point

12 Oct 2015 by Brian Slade
Stand font

What the type? The familiar quote that the pen is mightier than the sword has endured for generations and defended, with rightful eloquence, the intellectual ‘content is king’ premise. However when it comes to the...

Discard the cookie cutter

29 Jun 2015 by Brian Slade
Branding cities - Christchurch

What might at first seem a familiar creative challenge often requires a different solution from the one used before, writes Brian Slade. And that is certainly the case for city identities. You can easily make...

Trending away from Trends

11 Mar 2015 by Brian Slade
NZ Super Fund website close up

A well designed future may be informed by trends but shouldn’t be slavish to them says Brian Slade.   At the start of each year, just as are getting back from that glorious summer break, there seems to be an...

The 5 day Visionarium

20 Feb 2015 by Brian Slade
Visionarium wrapped container

The challenge was to dress a travelling container, the Visionarium, for Future Christchurch that was approachable and informative. Turnaround was about 5 working days from start to finish. The creative solution was to...

Branding 360

10 Feb 2015 by Brian Slade
Design detail for NZ Drug Foundation branded office fit out

We’ve been working with the New Zealand Drug Foundation for years. We’ve created core brand identity elements, video, web, symposiums, sub-branded initiatives and a whole lot more, including their quarterly 40 page...

Human interest

03 Feb 2015 by Brian Slade
Air NZ 75th anniversary stamp

You can take all the technology you like but at the end of the day the human interest angle always seems to be a key focus for us… and I think that's a good thing. This was clearly demonstrated earlier this month...

Designed to work

19 Dec 2014 by Brian Slade
NZSO 2015 Season thumbnail

Design shouldn’t seek to be creative or effective. It should always strive to be both. Earlier this year we secured the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra as a client for the first time. The NZSO is well known for...

24% of New Zealand children are living in poverty

24 Oct 2014 by Brian Slade
24% of New Zealand children are living in poverty

Wave upon wave of evidence tells us… 24% of New Zealand children are living in poverty. The longer they live in poverty the greater risk of physical harm, cognitive development and health issues they face. With this...

30-30-30, the EBOS journey

14 Oct 2014 by Brian Slade
EBOS, Annual Report 2014

EBOS are on a journey that sees them embarking on a very new chapter this year with a change of leadership. Last year's best awards finalist ‘combined’ report was split into two documents this year. The strong...

Vital/ creating capacity to meet demand

09 Oct 2014 by Brian Slade
Vital/ creating capacity to meet demand

With a clear eye on future trends within the healthcare sector, this year's annual report focuses on Vital's effective strategies to meet the demand with a strong clear message: Cause/Effect. In line with their visual...

Making it Large

13 Sep 2014 by Brian Slade
Making it Large

Published late last year, Lettering Large, the new book by The Monacelli Press NY features our work for AlburyCity Nexus. Celebrating all things internationally typographic on a large scale there are 240 pages of...

Scaling new heights

14 Aug 2014 by Brian Slade
Scales IPO

Everyone who picks up our recent IPO document for Scales loves the feel. A high build UV overgloss creates a unique sensory experience that separates this document from other offers. A playful ‘apple sticker’...

Design as a business enabler

30 Jun 2014 by Brian Slade
Design as a business enabler

Good design thinking brings a great idea to life and increases the chance of a start-up’s success says Brian Slade. I think deep within all of us is a desire to make a difference. It creates a sense of purpose,...

Life changing design

01 Jun 2014 by Brian Slade
Life changing design

Design has the power to make a tangible difference to those who really need it writes Brian Slade. I enjoy being a designer and sometimes I love it even more. Intuitively I know that the work we do changes how...

More Savii

29 Apr 2014 by Brian Slade
Savii brochure

Neat little project for an innovative crowd who run an employee benefit programme with a difference. Harnessing collective purchasing power Savii provide big savings on core household items allowing everyone to get...

‘Stop Press’ article on our new Stand branding project

28 Apr 2014 by Brian Slade
‘Stop Press’ article on our new Stand branding project

Stop Press, 5 July 2013 Marketers could be excused for thinking that not-for-profit (NFP) sector brands learn from commercial consumer brands, not the other way around. However, developing a new brand for a...

Designing for multiple audiences

01 Feb 2014 by Brian Slade
Multiple audiences graphic

Communications need to be dressed differently to communicate effectively to different audiences however they should clearly come from the same source, writes Brian Slade. Coming into a project with a new client, it...

The language of feeling

02 Dec 2013 by Brian Slade
The language of feeling

Design is a powerful language with a unique ability to convey feelings and to bring words to life writes Brian Slade Design is considered a visual discipline. But what excites me most about being a designer is the...

Branding 'Not-for-Profits'

01 Dec 2013 by Brian Slade
Not for profit image

What is the role of brand in the not for profit sector? In summary, a good NFP brand: Promotes the Cause/Raises awareness of the issue Attracts funders Attracts the right sort of funders with aligned values ...

Storytelling across mediums

01 Oct 2013 by Brian Slade
Storytelling across mediums

Good design tells stories that excite, engage and resonate with their audiences – regardless if it’s on or offline, writes Brian Slade. I must admit I am a relative novice when it comes to the digital...

It's clear what makes for good design

01 Sep 2013 by Brian Slade
It's clear what makes for good design

As the media we work with become more sophisticated and diverse, the need to design clearly and deliberately is subject to multiple distractions, writes Brian Slade. Few issues are as simple as they first appear,...

Anyone can be complex,
clarity is harder

30 Jul 2013 by Brian Slade
Anyone can be complex, <br>clarity is harder

Clarity in thinking and design can help unravel the most complex of organisations and aid in cut through communication, writes Brian Slade. I get a real buzz from coaching young designers as they are full of...