Guiding the next wave of designers

In the first of our Parallel Thinking series, we want to showcase our partnership with The London College of Communication.

The future of design

Every year we welcome a new team of design students at LCC to give them a taste of industry and agency life. Full disclosure: we love doing this.

Guiding the next wave of designers is integral to the studio. On a personal level, it’s a lovely thing to do and really rewarding.

Paul Ellerker
Students at our London Fields studio
Students at our London Fields studio
  • We choose a concept, eg ‘Sustainability’

  • Work up a brief

  • Present it to the group.

The presentation

We take the students through what we do - essentially as we would do with any client - walking them through recent examples of work.

2022’s brief included our work for Or, Tate, and Ethnic for example.

The students get a live brief, they do the work as a project, and learn to present so it’s just like they’re working for us in an agency environment. This is something we feel is invaluable to their development as a designer starting their career.

Paul Fox
Selection of this years student projects
The Parallel process

If you’re new to Parallel and our work, the key to all our big ideas is simplicity. Not simple work, but finding the beauty in simplicity. It’s our way of clearing through the clutter to land the message and let the design stand out.

The nuts and bolts

Next, we go through our actual process: the nuts and bolts of any design brief. From the first steps of costing, research and delving into a competitor’s landscape, to the real work behind verbal identity, visual development, and concepting through to final delivery.

The 2022 student brief

We asked for a brand identity, brand toolkit, packaging, and sales platform (website or app) for a rental subscription service for a clothing retailer. Students were asked to:

  • Choose a retailer

  • Decide the use - is it for formalwear, officewear, kids, or outdoor?

  • Name the initiative

  • Create a new identity that works alongside the retailer’s existing logo.

  • Ensure it’s distinct in style to the retailer’s existing brand.

Our links with industry are very important to us on GB&I (Graphic Branding and Identity BA (Hons)). Studio Parallel set an exciting project, our students were given the opportunity to experience the atmosphere of a busy creative studio and got some really great feedback and support from the creative team

Katy Oswald, Senior Lecturer / Year One Lead BA (Hons) Graphic Branding & Identity