Since we covered Creative Week New York last month I figured it would only be fair to feature a parallel of it from the West Coast. First celebrated in 2006, San Francisco Design Week (SFDW) is organized by the San Francisco chapter of AIGA partnering with the local chapters of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA), the Interaction Design Association (IxDA), and the Society for Environmental Graphic Design (SEGD) and it features open studio tours, exhibitions, and talks starting next Monday, June 13. The identity for SFDW has been designed by SALT Branding.
The new identity focuses not on the usual San Francisco monuments (let’s face it, the bridge and cable cars have been done to death), but rather one that, like design, affects San Franciscans every day — the fog! Design, like the fog, is everywhere — swirling around us, influencing what we do and what we see.
— Salt Branding
Also like Creative Week New York I really appreciate that there is an effort to look for something unique about the city and translating that into an interesting visual. Creative Week New York was about the city’s grid and tightness — SFDW is about the fog. What’s nice about the concept is that if vendors that do mugs and t-shirts and teddy bears had figured out how to render fog as easily as the Golden Gate Bridge it would already be a terrible cliché but because fog isn’t easy to visualize it’s a great thing to build a design around. The first time I saw the logo I didn’t realize it was foggy, I just thought it was meant to be groovy looking so I’m either a little dense sometimes or the logo just needs some explanation here and there. The execution has a late-1990s-Neville-Brody-Blur-typeface look to it (which is not a bad thing altogether) updated to 2011. I also like the 1-color version shown on the t-shirt, perhaps I like it more than the nebula version. Overall, it’s a fun temporal identity that works well for one year as it would probably get tiring if repeated.