Leeds Digital Festival Design Day showcases the best of a digital city

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  • April 18, 2011

Leeds Digital Festival Design Day 2011

Two of our very own talented web designers received a well-deserved pat on the back when they came into the Branded3 office this morning; as Max Shearer and Andrew Machin made it through to the final three teams chosen to rebrand Leeds Digital Festival this year.

With Max in one team, and Andrew in another; they were both hoping at least one of them would be in with a chance of representing Branded3’s creativity by making it to the final (or at least engage in a little internal rivalry). But it was a pleasant surprise when both teams were chosen to go through to the public vote.

A testament to our hard-work ethic and innovative abilities, Max and Andrew attended the Design Day on Saturday at the Round Foundry Media Centre, along with the city’s collection of digital and marketing talent.

As mentioned in a previous post, Leeds Digital Festival have put an interesting spin on this year’s event by crowdsourcing the design process, and letting the public decide which of the final three brand ideas to develop.

By allowing the design and marketing professionals from some of the top Leeds agencies as well as local students to create the new identity, the organisers’ aim is to encourage the active participation of the city’s creative community, and promote Leeds as the core of the country’s creative and digital industry.

Breaking down any barriers of competition and rivalry between local agencies, the Design Day brought together specialists of varying skills and experience, and ended up being a pretty good day out too (which inevitably ended with a trip to the pub!)

Team MachinAfter being organised into five groups, the teams got started on brainstorming ideas. Andrew’s team, which included Epiphany’s Senior Creative Designer Gaz Battersby, and recent Graphic Design Masters graduate Hannah Backhouse; came up with an idea which would bring digital into the city in a way that was open and accessible to everyone.

Using large pixel forms to create a logotype as well as a graphic style that was scalable; the team’s proposition was to have installations throughout the city which would relate to each digital platform Leeds had to offer, such as web, film and TV, communications, gaming etc.

As such, Andrew’s team impressed with their presentation, which included their rather ambitious ideas of a large space invader landing in millennium square.

Team MaxMeanwhile, Max was working with web developer Rick Harrison, TwentySix designer Adam Campion, and Julian Oxley, a computer scientist. They wanted to introduce an interactive theme to the brand to try and encourage a new audience to the event.

Their idea involved using QR (quick response) codes integrated into the identity. These codes can be scanned with most modern smartphone, and link to either a web address, a piece of text, a phone number, or a pre-written SMS message.

Linking in with the city’s owl trail; which leads visitors around the city by following various ornamental owls located at different points around Leeds; Max’s team thought this same notion could be applied to the digital event, by placing QR codes around the city and creating an informative ‘treasure trail’.

With all five groups having finished their presentations, the teams then had to wait for the judges to make an impossible decision and choose the best three ideas. Being some of the most experienced and knowledgeable figures in the industry however, made the judging process a little easier.

They included Andrew McCormick, an expert in digital marketing and editor of Revolution; David Worthington, chairman of Media Square’s design brands; and Kate Bradshaw, a digital consultant with an award-winning background in commissioning and producing digital products.

Now that the judges have made their verdict, it’s up to the public to take a look at the final three ideas and vote on which they think should be the new identity of Leeds Digital Festival.

Whilst we’re now torn with who to vote for; you however, can vote for anyone; so keep an eye out on B3Labs for when we update you with how and where to vote, and help make Leeds the centre of all things creative.

You can find out more about the Leeds Design Day by visiting the festival’s website at www.leedsdigitalfestival.com, or follow the hastag #LDF2011 on twitter.

Felicity Crouch

About Felicity Crouch

Felicity is Branded3’s Marketing Manager and develops and executes a creative marketing strategy for the agency to encourage new business. With a background in journalism and digital project management, Felicity manages a large number of marketing channels effectively to raise Branded3’s profile and facilitate the growth of the company.

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