As always, the folks at Mattel picked a direction for the designs. Even though this version is heavily influenced by the original sketch you can still see a us trying to squeeze as much variation out of the idea as we can. Streaks or bevels, sparks or lighting bolts. How iconic is the design of Buzz Lightyear? We felt like there were infinite ways to render him and they all we’re clearly Buzz.
That’s when the name changed! Rock ‘N’ Rollers out, Zing ‘Ems in. This is so common in the work we do. The design is done, everyone is excited, then 2 steps backward. This even happens when designing logos for baseball teams. I’ll bet if you tried really hard you could find team identities whose name was changed mid-process but everyone liked the logos we had been working on. I think it makes the project more interesting. Below you can see our first attempt at the Zing ‘Ems, this time referencing a different composition from a different Rock ‘N’ Rollers Round 1 concept sketch. Again, as much variation as we could while keeping the guts of the design the same.
Here’s a look at variations of the text on it’s own. I’m not 100% sure but I think Mattel wanted the Zing ‘Ems brand to not be Toy Story specific. Watch out for those Monster University Zing ‘Ems!
The last part of the project was to create a rendering of Buzz to be used as a graphic for the packaging. Here is the sketch we used as a jumping off point and a screenshot of how we built the character in Illustrator.
Here are a few different outline color options for the Buzz character rendering.
And here’s the final packaging. Unfortunately, our Buzz didn’t make the cut. But you know what? That’s just the way it works. Our job is fun and fulfilling, and it’s not that way because of the final product or result. It’s fun and fulfilling because the process is fun and fulfilling. Drawing is fun, working with all the awesomely creative people at Mattel is fun. Looking back at the work you’ve done, whether is printed on the final package or not, and being proud of what you’ve made. That’s fulfilling.
Sometimes you get a big break and Brandiose has been lucky enough to get a bunch of big breaks. When the guys and gals from Mattel reached out to us, seeing if we’d be interested in working on project with them, well, that was a pretty epic break. We’re going to spend the rest of the week showing you guys the work that we did for our first Mattel project. We had so much fun working with them, it felt like a dream come true. I mean come on, sitting down to sketch Buzz Lightyear! How great is that?
When it was time to start the project, Mattel sent over a folder. The project was to create a logo and character graphic for the packaging of a new type of toy, originally named “Rock ‘N’ Rollers” but eventually named “Zing ‘Ems”. As if working for Mattel wasn’t cool enough, the home of Barbie and Hot Wheels, but to find our we’re working on a Disney and Pixar product. It was tough to wrap our mind around how great it was. So we broke all the furniture in our office, piled it in the middle of the floor, set it afire, and danced around it while smearing war paint on our faces in ecstasy. Well not really, but we were pretty excited. The contents of the folder they sent over were amazing. It was like getting a skunkworks brief. Grainy shaky video of the product in action (Check that out here), rough prototypes, and inspiring renderings of the final toy.
To say we were inspired would be a bit of an understatement. We have a saying around the office, if a project is inspiring it’s a “fast pencil project”. That feeling that the pencil has no friction to it, those smooth lines spill out of the pencil and quickly pile up as the vision in your mind emerges from the paper. Here’s what we came up with for the first round of sketches.
Tomorrow, we’ll show you some of the vector color concepts!
If you aren’t following The Clink Room on Instagram you’re not getting the whole Clink experience. We’re showing sketch book pages in their natural habitat, how we organize our inspiration for Hat Club’s Fall 2013 collection and even never before seen notes scribbled on the back of our sketchbooks.
Hey we’re on Instagram! Slow, I know. But Instagram is great. I’ve been using it personally for about a year and I really like doing it. This means a lot more behind-the-scenes to share with you guys. We’re also going to make Instagram a bigger part of the rebooted Clink site coming in a few weeks. We’re @theclinkroom so get out those phones and give us a look. Or take a look here.
Hey Clinkers! Wanna hear an interview with Jay and myself? Mike, Danger and Greg over at Logocast have a awesome podcast and we were flattered to be invited for an interview. Head over to The Logocast and give it a listen. There’s a hours worth of deep-cut behind the scenes Brandiose stories!
PS. Hometown League posts start again tomorrow.