To consider graphic design as a way of representing the conceptual thrust and identity of the event, copywriting then becomes a supplement that allows for a narrative to surface. It similarly facilitates the reading of an event’s identity along a distinctive narrative. Perhaps the best way to consider this is to think of identity-making as a kind of story-telling. Just as storytelling is contingent on the careful layering of events, one after another, an event’s branding also composites visual elements with copy and content. Copywriting then becomes another layer within the complex networks of identity-making and is key to contextualising the design within the “world” that it has developed for itself.
Case Study: OH! Holland Village
It could be as simple as shuffling the focus to a catchy tagline for the 2017’s edition of OH! Open House at Holland Village. The introduction of a tagline “Your Guide/Tour of Singapore’s Oldest Bohemian Enclave” enabled the event to take on a different kind of positioning that adopts the conviviality of a tour agency and its sureness in promoting specific locales to potential customers. Together with a robust programming by the OH! Team, it proved a successful edition with many sold-out runs.
Case Study: ADM Graduation Show 2016
For instance, in the work for the ADM Grad Show 2016, the affinities between the Golden Voyager Record and the graduation showcase premise was also founded on narrative – just as the record ventured into the far reaches of space and bravely carried with it a document of the world’s creative endeavors, the graduating cohort too were presenting their hard work in their final venture outside of school. The show’s introduction (available here in full) sought to contextualise and hint at these narrative affinities:
“In 1977, the Voyager space probe was sent to explore the furthest reaches of our solar system. Carried on board was the Voyager Golden Record, a document of life on earth, including art and culture, intended as a hopeful message from humanity to other civilisations out in the cosmos.
The ADM Show chronicles a similar passage to the stars and beyond. It is an annual event that is both a record and a voyage, documenting four years of hard work and exploration, and culminating in a unique set of artworks. It is an articulation of where we come from, and where we are headed. It is a compendium of our world and work, an expression of our practice, our endeavours and research.
Even the Voyager probe that appears solitary continues its journey accompanied by the sounds of humanity. Similarly, no student at ADM exists in isolation, we are all individuals, peers and colleagues collaborating to create and exhibit an expression of who we are right now, what we have learned together, and where we dream of going.”
Case Study: Dreamseeds Arts Festival 2016
We also worked on the positioning of Club Rainbow’s inaugural Dreamseeds Arts Festival 2016 that took inspiration from its name and uses the imagery of a sapling in various stages of growth to guide the event’s positioning and communications such as the press release, social media marketing copy, etc. A copy of the press release can be retrieved here.
The story of the “dream seed” was also introduced as the story of the festival, devised through a simple narrative that introduced both elements and accompanied the designed visuals:
“A seed begins life hidden away from the rest of the world. Yet, small and inconspicuous as it may be, it has a dream—to one day break through the soil and emerge triumphant as a new sprout.
But of course, a seed’s growth doesn’t stop there. It continues to grow, reaching for new heights each time. Like a seed, our dreams take time to flourish. They may start small, but fuelled by passion and hard work, they grow stronger and stronger. Until one day they defeat all odds… standing proud and tall!”
Case Study: Dreamseeds Arts Festival 2017
We also developed Dreamseeds Arts Festival 2017’s theme of exploration which was titled “Finding Futurenova” — Futurneova being a planet that personifies the spirit of imagination, innovation and intrepidness. Four characters were also introduced as part of the festival’s conceptual positioning.
“Dreamseeds Arts Fest: Finding Futurenova charts the voyage of a team of curious explorers as they venture into the great beyond in search of the dream planet Futurenova. On their journey, they come to discover a brilliant power within them all along – the gift of imagination, allowing them to manifest Futurenova and to transform dreams into reality.”
Apollo, Vega, Cosmo and Luna were conceptualised and designed with a specific narrative arc that coincided with the discovery of Futurenova. The characters and their accompanying story serve to create a vibrant world for the beneficiaries to dive into, allowing for them to also identify with the characters and situate themselves within the same dream-seeking narrative. This narrative is detailed in the exhibition booklet and broken out into chapters that conveyed their journey towards the mysterious planet:
“It was a lively night at Ground City, with the sound of music and chatter pouring out from the arts market. Up above, the stars were glittering bright and full of promise. Best friends Apollo, Vega, Cosmo, and Luna were hanging out on the rooftop, eager to get a better view of the beautiful speckled sky. As they shared stories and traded secrets, an explosion of white light interrupted them and caught them all by surprise. Looking up, they realise that the night sky had changed. An unknown, glowing planet was floating mysteriously on the horizon!”
— Chapter 1: What’s That In The Sky
“As they travelled deeper into space, diligently following the map’s coordinates, they found themselves being pulled into a massive wormhole. Even Vega’s piloting instincts was not able to stop them from falling in. Like Alice diving down the rabbit hole, the spacecraft continue to tumble down a strange place with seemingly no end.”
— Chapter 3: A New Frontier