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Friday Variety

It has been a while since I last did a Friday Variety. This past month there have been a few changes here and there that have caught my attention but didn’t quite deserve a whole post to themselves. In no particular order:

Brand new Nikon: Nikon adds a sequential rays motif to the background of the original type treatment to convey the feeling of infinite possibility.

AIGA National web site: Finally, the AIGA site looks like a design organization. Job well done by Flat (although some have complained about their lack of web compliance). Along with the redesign comes improved usability in their forum section as well as the return of the AIGA Journal of Design.

Kitchen Fresh Chicken: First they went for an acronym to hide the word fried. And now that, I guess, a new generation is consuming KFC they are advertising as Kitchen Fresh Chicken — not a bad plan. [Bonus points to whomever gives the KFC acronym new meaning]

United Livery: United airlines updates the look of their planes as well as a new ad campaign by Fallon. (Rumor on the street is that Pentagram NY was in charge of the new airplane graphics). So far, all that there is on the internet are speculations on what it looks like. [Image found through USaviation.com, proving that there are stranger forums than Speak Up]

Update: Kurt Koepfle from Pentagram provided a better image for the new United livery.

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PUBLISHED ON Feb.27.2004 BY Armin
saxophonejones’s comment is:

Kinda Funky Chicken

On Feb.27.2004 at 10:16 AM
JonSel’s comment is:

Here is United's new livery in action. I would assume it's a Pentagram job. They've been working with United for several years. It looks much more like a "people's" airline than the previous grey/blue livery. I like the abstracted symbol on the tail. Nicely done, considering some of the more recent abominations.

Incidentally, airliners.net is a great resource for plane fans.

On Feb.27.2004 at 10:33 AM
marian’s comment is:

The GDC just relaunched their site as well. I'm going to very tactfully abstain from commenting on it (except to say, you shoulda seen it before -- whoa).

Interestingly, they're using a similar colour palette. I can't say I care for those chunks of 70s kitchen appliances colour.

JonSel, I don't agree with you re the nwa -- I like it. I like the way the plane looks like a bomber. I'm not so keen on the United livery, though I do like the logo -- even though I suspect that in some previous post I may have said I didn't like the logo.

On Feb.27.2004 at 10:55 AM
eric’s comment is:

marian, the NorthWest logo will forever be underscored by the bad appropriation of, well, the original NWA acronym.

On Feb.27.2004 at 10:58 AM
Brook’s comment is:

i hate KFC. i can't believe the shit they say in their ads. trying to push fried chicken as a healthy low-carb alternative to the burger joints? that's almost as ridiculous as saying that big ass 1/3 pounder at burger king is suddenly healthy when you remove the bun. i just saw a bacardi ad on a bustop...

"Bacardi and Diet Cola. Zero Carbs. Who knew?" it then said there were still 60 calories. which makes me very curious...if there are no carbs, that means there are 15g of either protein or fat. that just seems really weird.

On Feb.27.2004 at 11:10 AM
Armin’s comment is:

Kurt Koepfle from Pentagram just sent me a nice image of a plane in action. This one has mountains.

On Feb.27.2004 at 11:14 AM
mitch’s comment is:

as an aside, the January/Febuary 2004 issue of Print has an article about branding of so-called 'budget' airlines such as song, Ted, and easyJet.

On Feb.27.2004 at 11:24 AM
eric’s comment is:

i'll preface my comment with, "i live in nyc and am leery of all things aeronautic," but with the fade at the top doesn't the new United tail look like it's on fire?

On Feb.27.2004 at 11:30 AM
Rick’s comment is:

I like the way the plane looks like a bomber.

Marian, are you sure you're a canuk?

Nikon: I don't want to like it. But I kind of do. Actually, it reminded me a lot of that link from Veer: J-cards.

AIGA's site: Okay. I'm a little suprised at the amount of clutter, but I guess that's the way things look right now. And it's way better than the old one.

Killed For Consumption. Gross.


On Feb.27.2004 at 11:41 AM
Sam’s comment is:

United is by Pgram. Some team called "Beirut" something. Does that sound right?

(Hi Melissa)

On Feb.27.2004 at 11:56 AM
Darrel’s comment is:

There isn't a single 'alt' tag on the AIGA home page. Pathetic. Just goes to show (once again) the AIGA doesn't 'get' the web. Oh well...at least there's content on there.

Bwahahahaha! From the KFC site:

...and our suppliers tell us that they are complying with this policy...


...Our suppliers also tell us that to promote the health and well being of the chickens in their care, some chickens may, from time to time, be given medications (including antibiotics)


Oh...well as long as they TOLD you that, sure...I'll trust you.

On Feb.27.2004 at 12:08 PM
miss amanda’s comment is:

not digging those GDC colors either. Nor am i digging the blurry stained glass looking headers when you click through.

meh. i guess one of these days i should become a member.

On Feb.27.2004 at 12:27 PM
Brian Warren’s comment is:

I really like the new United stuff.

And the new nikon Rick, I agree, I kind of dont want to like it but I do - something about it is really welcoming - it feels like they have gone back to their roots a little bit. Something about it makes me think a little bit modern and a little bit old school...

On Feb.27.2004 at 01:28 PM
Paul K’s comment is:

More on the AIGA redesign (specifically the forums) here.

Rick took my KFC idea...

On Feb.27.2004 at 02:39 PM
Armin’s comment is:

On a positive note for KFC, the new ending animations on their TV ads are pretty swift and well executed. They almost, almost make me want to eat their chicken.

Oh, and Kinetic Featherless Chicken.

On Feb.27.2004 at 03:02 PM
Michael B.’s comment is:

Yes, the new United livery is by Pentagram. As one of the designers involved, I have to tell you how amazing it was to go onto a site like www.airliners.net (one of several blogs devoted exclusively to people who, um, like airplanes with a passion. Within four hours of the posting of the first (unofficial) photograph of the new paint job, there were more than 100 comments, pro and con. Wild.

On Feb.27.2004 at 04:20 PM
Rick’s comment is:

Miss Amanda-

I really thought the "blurry stained glass" things as headers were kind of nice. They appeal to my obsessive need for orderliness.

Overall, it looks a lot like Digital Thread.

Of note: If you view the source of http://www.gdc.net/index.php, you find an interesting little (dirty?) secret.

I've been trying to come up with an excuse to say "The Maple Leaf state" while writing this post, and I haven't found one yet.


On Feb.27.2004 at 05:00 PM
marian’s comment is:

eric, i don't understand your nwa comment. but oh well. and no, the united tail does not look like it's on fire. fire is yellow. and yes i'm sure i'm a canuck. and i was going to say something really mean about KFC, but brook said it for me -- or part of it anyway. and does everyone feel as lethargic as i do today?

On Feb.27.2004 at 06:54 PM
Sam’s comment is:

Personally I like to fly Skyhigh whenever possible.

On Feb.27.2004 at 07:14 PM
JonSel’s comment is:

eric, i don't understand your nwa comment

Marian, there was an 80s hardcore rap group called NWA. The letters stood for "N___'s With Attitude". It was my first thought when seeing the new ID and planes for Northwest.

On Feb.27.2004 at 08:04 PM
eric’s comment is:

and Marian, dear girl, the warmest part of the flame is blue. the fade on the solids and the abstraction of the logo looks a bit like, "the plane's on fire" to me.

Jon... thanks for 'keepin it real', g.

On Feb.27.2004 at 09:02 PM
Armin’s comment is:

I'm with Marian. The new planes look frosty to me. And yes, those NWA planes are mean-looking.

On Feb.27.2004 at 09:19 PM
marian’s comment is:

Thanks JonSel (and eric), I have ... once again ... learned something today.

Except about the fire. True, the heart of a flame may be blue at its hottest point, but even in the lovely blue flame of an oxy-aceteline torch, the tip where it fades out is still yellow.


On Feb.27.2004 at 09:45 PM
d’s comment is:

Did anyone notice the AIGA Design forum?

It was designed by Behaviour with the help of Naz from Absenter.org

It seems as if the AIGA took a close look at the success of Speak Up to consider in it's design and development of its forum. Which you can read a little about here.

On Feb.27.2004 at 10:17 PM
brett’s comment is:

Did someone say 'blue flame?'...

Anyway, Michael’s right. the folks on a.net take this stuff pretty seriously. There’s currently a poll on the homepage to rate the new United livery. Go vote. Afterwards, feel free to jump into a lively conversation about codesharing alliances and irregular operations.

On Feb.27.2004 at 11:14 PM
Armin Vit’s comment is:

> It seems as if the AIGA took a close look at the success of Speak Up to consider in it's design and development of its forum.

Ah, the secret though is that the success is neither in the design nor in the development of Speak Up…

On Feb.28.2004 at 05:30 PM
Darrel’s comment is:

Ah, the secret though is that the success is neither in the design nor in the development of Speak Up…

Very important point. ;o)

On Mar.01.2004 at 09:23 AM
Armin’s comment is:

Anybody catch the new United TV ads? Good stuff. Very different. Courtesy of Fallon in Minneapolis.

On Mar.08.2004 at 09:19 AM
Armin’s comment is:

> Along with the redesign comes improved usability in their forum section as well as the return of the AIGA Journal of Design.

OK, before you get out your gloves and accuse me of senseless self promotion and own-horn-tootin', I want to say that I'm only mentioning this because I want to share.

Born in Mexico but made in America — an article I wrote for the new AIGA Journal.

On Mar.12.2004 at 11:26 AM
Armin’s comment is:

Quick note: Nikon's identity was done by Interbrand.

On Apr.23.2004 at 03:34 PM