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Ryon Edwards

Design is an integral part of every RP strategy, and Ryon is its Czar. He joined the firm in 1996 and is recognized as one of the Southeast’s most respected art directors. He is also well known for his vast knowledge about and obsessive love of typography.
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posted by Ryon Edwards Sep 24,2014 @ 06:03PM

Hi-fidelity Stereophonic Design

When I stop into my local Goodwill, I usually head straight to the vinyl records section. I just gotta know what obscure album might be there or if today is the day I find that one album I’ve always been looking for. I'm also on the lookout for great design. Every once in a while I come across a cover design so strong, that it just stops me in my tracks. That’s how I discovered my first Command Records album.

Command produced records in the late ’50s to mid-’60s and were produced and engineered by Enoch Light, a pioneer in stereo recordings during a time when AM (monaural) radio was the standard. Many of the covers were designed by well-known artists/designers like Josef Albers and Paul Bacon. Josef Albers! These abstract, minimalist covers stood apart from the typical covers of the time and beautifully captured the essence of the music through expressive design and well-crafted compositions. The covers gave the listener an idea of what to expect — a crisp, modern, stereo sound that’s harmonious, but with a sense of playfulness. Most of the Command Records covers incorporated classic design principles brilliantly: balance, proportion, rhythm, emphasis and unity in a modern style that still looks fresh today.

What a great example of form and content working well together. Stereophonic design, indeed.

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posted by Ryon Edwards Feb 25,2014 @ 04:02PM

Inspiration Everywhere

While waiting in the examination room at my eye doctor, I noticed the archetypal medical poster on the wall depicting normal and abnormal conditions of the eye, complete with cutaway illustrations of eyeballs and eyeball parts, with precise labeling and detailed information. This observation inspired me to create my own poster — but for type-geeks and non-type-geeks alike. - RE

posted by Ryon Edwards Jan 31,2014 @ 03:01PM

Warby Parker: finding a niche and making it happen

A few days ago, I happened to be scanning channels in the car and came across an interview with Jeffrey Raider, founder of Warby Parker on Business Radio powered by The Wharton School. This interview really got me thinking about the importance of identifying an unmet need in the marketplace and really focusing on that niche market. Raider and his business partners have done just that with their business Warby Parker, the wildly successful online prescription eyeglass company that's changing the way people buy and shop for prescription eyewear.

The idea for the business was born in 2010, while Raider was studying at The Wharton School. During the interview, he recalled his experience of not being able to find any glasses that fit his personal style or his budget. That frustration led to an idea that led to the formation of the company (along with three other classmates) that would provide quality, stylish eyeglasses at a fraction of the price of designer prescription glasses. They figured out a way to keep prices low by designing their own frames and selling online, cutting out the middle man altogether and refused to charge outrageous prices. This link explains exactly how they do it: http://www.warbyparker.com/how-we-do-it. They identified the unmet need in the marketplace and delivered in a big way. They've carved out that niche — and the target audience is quite specific: men and women ages 18 to 34 who like to buy designer eyewear, but not willing (or able) to shell out $500 for a pair. Warby Parker designer glasses typically cost about $100/pair, including the prescription lenses.

They win over customers by making the online ordering process simple and easy — with a focus on the customer and making sure the brand experience is all positive. For example, they’ll send five pair of glasses for you to try for five days, offer free return shipping on the ones you don’t want. On the website, you can try glasses on virtually to see what they look like on you. Oh yeah, and if that’s not enough, there’s a Buy A Pair, Give A Pair program. Warby Parker funds the production of a pair of eyeglasses to give away each time a pair is sold. To date, they’ve provided 500,000 pairs of glasses to people in need in developing countries. Certainly, a powerful social mission and a great way to make a difference.

The founders’ affinity for simple design as well as an appreciation of well-made objects is evident. Spend some time on the site, and you definitely get the sense that they are passionate about the products they create and truly care about making the world a better place. They've found their niche and have filled the need, and with the added component of social good — that's what I call a relevant and purposeful brand.

http://www.warbyparker.com/

 

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Note: Raider and another partner from Warby Parker started another company in 2013 called Harry’s— "Great Shave. Fair Price”. This time the products are shaving razors and blades. You guessed it — design conscious, quality, german-engineered blades and stylish razors at a very reasonable price. Check them out at www.harrys.com.

posted by Ryon Edwards Dec 11,2013 @ 01:02PM

Riggs Partners’ work published in Print magazine

We're pleased to have work selected for Print magazine's 2013 Regional Design Annual. The annual is the only comprehensive survey of outstanding design throughout the United States. Now in its 32nd year, Print’s Regional Design Annual is seen by tens of thousands of creative professionals, among the largest such audience in the country.

The work featured is the 2011 Annual Report for Palmetto GBA, a subsidiary of BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina. Palmetto GBA provides technical, administrative and contact center services to the federal government (Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services). The book has a blind embossed short cover, colorful infographics and custom die cuts and illustrations for the fold-out case studies.

posted by Ryon Edwards Aug 13,2013 @ 09:54AM

House.

No, not the TV show, but House Industries, the prolific type/art/design studio based out of Yorklyn, Delaware founded by Rich Roat and Andy Cruz in 1993.

I first encountered their work in 1996 at the Smithsonian Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum at an exhibition called Mixing Messages: Graphic Design in Contemporary Culture. I remember seeing a meticulously crafted 3D cardboard cutout of a custom van with very interesting colors and type — reminiscent of 1960's psychedelia with a touch ’70s creepiness. But what really stopped me was the attention to detail and the craftsmanship that went into that piece. And this project was created to promote a line of themed fonts. Brilliant.

House Industries continue to inspire and amaze — yesterday I received an email from them announcing new women’s shirt designs distributed and sold at Uniqlo. The designs are a type lover’s dream with some great patterns and color combinations. Check them out here.

But it's not just the shirt designs. It’s the fact that these guys (and gals) are involved in so many diverse projects. They partner/collaborate with many different individuals and companies and have become notorious for their tongue-in-cheek viewpoint on American popular culture. Their passion and love for the craft is evidenced in everything they create. They are artists, typographers, craftsmen and excellent marketers, promoting their work within a broad range of design disciplines: fashion, architecture, furniture, print, web, environmental, industrial and much, much more. Check out this recent storefront display for Hermés in Japan. Wow.

House Industries has made an incredible impact on the world of design and they continue to inspire with their creativity and talents. Here’s to House!

Check out this highlight video of some their work.

 

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