Welcome to the third chapter of our 2011 year-end wrap-up, in which we focus on visual communication, including a full range of graphics, identity, packaging and otherwise visually-driven content from the past year. Without further ado:
At some point this spring (April 15, according to our e-mail history), an aspiring clogger reached out to us about contributing to Core, hoping to complement his liberal arts education at Dartmouth College with an outlet for his passion for everything from vector graphic intoxication to a hospital within a hospital, among other obsessions (such as his current series on "Masters of the Cutaway"). His efforts have been certainly been appreciated by our editors and readers alike, and we're almost embarrassed to admit that he has almost singlehandedly brought graphic novels into regular rotation on Core. From his first six picks to his blockbuster best-of—both equally excellent places to start, as far as we're concerned—Dave has demonstrated his expertise on classic imagery and new talent alike.
Meanwhile, the graphic identity attached to the tenth anniversary of the event that precipitated bin Laden's demise struck us as the opposite of the gratuitous piece in GQ. Instead, as many of our astute commenters noted, the busy, overly-literal graphic looked like a classic case of design by committee.
Thus, Ko's entry is more of a rebranding of a stigmatized product than a packaging design; cigarettes—the product of ill repute—are subject to a sort of debranding, from truthful barbs to grotesque imagery.