Digesting Design

Wieden+Kennedy 1 Month Review

Posted in Internships by Paul on June 30, 2009

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This evening marks the end of my first month in Tokyo and with Wieden+Kennedy and as you already know the drill, yes it has flown by even quicker than everything else that has happened over the past year. But what a month June has been for me; I’ve settled down in Tokyo and I’m soaking everything up as it’s an amazing city and a complete culture change for me. In terms of W+K, I’ve felt like part of the team from day one and I’m learning lots working alongside Eric. It’s an amazing company to be part of, so I am relishing every moment I have here.

As per my previous post about W+K, the book I was working on is coming along nicely and is just about in it’s final stages and just like I did at Pentagram, by working on a book, it’s a great project to work on by keeping refining and carrying on with designing for a professional context. The web work and mobile phone designs are also nearing the end and I’ve just started on some t-shirt designs and I can’t wait for the new challenges that lie ahead for me in July.

W+K regularly have speakers in and there’s also lots that they are involved with inside and outside the studio walls. Eric presented to some other students from Asia so I sat in on that a few weeks back and it was great to hear about his story and just made me buzz even more off W+K. You can see the presentation on W+K’s blog here. Team ANSWR also popped to the studio a few weeks back to present some work to us and to let us know what they are up to. It was great to see another company based in Tokyo and what they are up to, and it’s amazing just how far ahead their thinking along with W+K’s is ahead of everyone elses. Click here to read about ANSWR’s visit. I managed to get some nice freebies and  a show reel from ANSWR. Then last Tuesday, me and Andrea popped by to one of W+K LAB’s video shoots about an hour away from Roppongi and it was interesting to see all the behind the scenes stuff. The LAB guys working on the video and all the design work to go along with it, have just a few weeks to get it all finalized so I can’t wait to see what the final outcome is. We convienently arrived at the time where the dancing girls scene was happening, and specifically the champagne spraying scene. There was only 3 of 4 ‘sprayers’ available so in hard times, I had to stand up for the cause. You can see a set of photos we took on my Flickr page here.

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Then, last Friday, and this will definitely be one of the highlights of my year out. W+K invited John Maeda to breakfast (he cooked breakfast before for our director, John Jay, so obviously we had to repay the favour when we heard he was speaking at a sold out lecture in Tokyo). If you don’t already know John Maeda, he is the current President of the Rhode Island School of Design, graphic designer, author and all around good guy and legend, being voted one of the most 21 important people of the 21st century. He was only in the studio for about an hour, but with a full spread of breakfast laid out by team ‘Wieden+Dining‘, it was a fantastic morning. He had some great stories to tell about being president and was a very down to earth guy. I did comment on one thing, but I got a bit star struck and not too sure whether he knew what I was talking about, but a fascinating hour. The team over in Portland were also watching via video link including John Jay. Check out the breakfast with John Maeda here. Finally, yesterday I got to take a look at W+K’s global book, which isn’t for a sale so a rare opportunity to check it out. And what a book it was, telling the W+K story from day one right up until the current day, including information about all the worldwide offices and teams, brilliant stuff! It can be seen on the W+K global blog here.

I’ve got lots more planned whilst in Tokyo so watch this space.

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  1. […] IS Studio, D&AD Student Awards, G20 music video, Type Tarts, Tunnel 228, the Ghibli Museum, breakfast with John Maeda, Trashed, Pecha Kucha Tokyo, Wieden+Kennedy Tokyo, Banksy vs. Bristol Museum exhibition, […]


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