“The BlackBerry Bold is for people who like to balance work and play, with a real entrepreneurial sprit,” says John Glasgow. “We conceived of a pinball machine, where many business icons were interconnected. Because of the overall pinball composition we ensured that the fun features of the phone were clear.”

“We have a great deal of respect for the art direction of [Inferno’s] Paul Nowikowski,” say Glasgow. “He allowed Vault49 all the time and space we needed to experiment, make mistakes, learn from them, and to ultimately create some of our best work. He also offered key mood guidance along the way, suggesting where we might be liberal and freehand, and where we might be more structured.”

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Glasgow says that the designs show what can be achieved if clients share decisions about the overall concept for a project with designers and illustrators, instead of forcing a design into a preconceived mould. It allowed Vault49 avoids the eternal problem of studios – and particularly illustrators – who become well-known primarily for one or a few styles: that of being asked to continuously recreate successful previous pieces for new clients.

“We were determined to avoid any clichés within our own portfolio,” says Glasgow. “Certain areas of our portfolio have been repeated once too often by client request, and we made sure that every aspect of this brief was driven by ideas and original concepts.”

Getting inventive
Inventor was the most complex of the pieces, as it brought together different styles of work from across Vault49’s creative team – including vector art, hand-drawn elements, photocopies and cut-outs. The design had to work in print, and form the basis of an animation, which was to be created by motion-graphics artist Russ Murphy (www.ruffmercy.com). Including hand-drawn elements also threw up some challenges.