Chris Noble Portfolio

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An extensive yet honed pick of my static graphic design work from the last eleven years or so. It includes a lot of magazine design, promotional and branding work, illustration, copywriting, packaging and product design and more. On the side of this, I produced work for video and even did a little writing that can be found via my website, chrisnobledesign.com.

Text of Chris Noble Portfolio

  • 1. chris noble PORTFOLIO

2. AIntroductionBMiscellany: from Branding to Packaging to MarketingCPublication DesignDWith Added CopywritingEIllustrationFPhotoshop WorkGWeb Workchris noblechris@chrisnobledesign.com 3. chris noble portfolio email index Introduction ALong story short.In 1981, my brother Mark and I werebought BMX bikes. Six years later,my father was knee-deep in the UKsBMX freestyle association whenthey acquired the UKs only freestylemagazine, Freestyle BMX, which Markhad contributed to. My father quicklytook over the magazine and made mynineteen-year-old brother editor.As a teenager, I idly drew detailedlettering and graphics on everythingfrom bedroom walls and trash cans toenvelopes and school history books. Ateighteen, I started learning the ropes ofdesktop publishing and soon becamethe magazines designer.In 1992, during the doldrums of actionsports, Mark and I started a newcompany with me as Creative Director,took on the flagging magazine andrelaunched it as Ride BMX Magazine*.Its there, at first in a tiny set-up underthe stairs at home in rural Dorchester,England, that I really cut my teethin print graphics, crashing throughinfluences such as magazine designersDavid Carson (Raygun, Beach Culture),Andy Jenkins (Homeboy, Freestylin)and Jeff Tremaine (Big Brother), andGrand Royal magazine. The first sevenyears were a pure hands-on learningexperience.It wasnt all magazines. Throughoutthis period and beyond, I workedwith James Holder on his variousprojects, among them popularclothing labels, caf chains and third-party branding work. (James is nowfounding father and Creative Directorof the international sensation that isSuperdry.)And with growth and new publicationscame new art directors and designersto hire, mentor and manage as wellas other creative contributors tocollaborate with, not to mention overallbusiness direction.In 1999, having successfully launchedDirt MTB Magazine to critical acclaimagain initially with my designwesetour sights on the lifestyle market withLevel magazine. It turned out to bean epiphany for me. Given my usualfree rein, months of part-time tweakingfrom the initial Ride BMX/Grand Royal-inspired mock-ups led to the finalhoned product with its own uniquestyle. It won the Best DesignedConsumer Magazine of the Yearaward at that years UK MagazineDesign Awards, beating Wallpaper*and other favorites in the shortlist. Anewcomer to the lifestyle scene, Levelrenounces the style despotism ofcertain rivals, the awards book states.The judges concluded, Clarity, control,confidenceand all in its first issue!While Level only lasted two yearsitdidnt stand a chance against theestablished titles with their hardenedand ruthless London-based ad salesteamsits aesthetic effect still lives onin my work. Over the following years,many articles in Ride BMX Magazinewould have fit comfortably into Level,bringing the clean yet grid-free lookof the latter to a new subject andaudience to widespread approval.This tight branding, a Helvetica-plus-hand-drawn look, lasted a few yearsuntil I broadened my scope, givingindividual articles greater personalityand by adding typefaces and artdirection suited to the subject. Each ofthese articles still had a look distinctlyof the magazines brand, only withadded appeal by sub-branding thesubject fittingly. I made a similarapproach during my temporary stint asart director of Document SkateboardMagazine, after which the editorswished Icould have stayed on.We sold the company at the end of2006. After a year of art directingRide from my new home in the US,I moved on to freelance for variousclients, including as Art Directorfor the Southern California-basedSnowboarder Magazine.Thinking.Good branding is all about the totalfeeling you get, from the brands publicface to the end product experiencefrom perfect packaging to simplefunctionalityand customer service.Every brand has its own story andattitude it needs to convey and on thesurface of it all is the visual statement.What you see always comes beforewhat you get, which itself must be athing of beauty.My aim is to put a compelling andstrongly tailored feel into the apparentsimplicity of all the branding andgraphics that I do, rather than blindlyfollow in the footsteps of competingbrands or that which the brand hasdone before. I get a feel for the brandand its intentions, and without muchin the way of forethought translate thatfeeling into visuals. A rough, off-handidea goes through varying degreesof tinkering to end up as a refinedtreatment ready for presentation.The way I see it, in a world of wildtypefaces, boundless color andendless Photoshop possibilities, thatclarity, control and confidence I got ahandle on in 1999 shines through.This book represents my picks frommy career in print to date. It is noteablethat a fair chunk of that career hasbeen publishing and designing nichemagazines, which brought with themtheir own specific limitations: time andmoney.Producing one hundred pages amonthincluding photo editing, imagescanning, repro and even thinkingup a title for most of the articles andsectionsusually put a challengingcrimp in the amount of time I couldgive to anything. Toss into the scheduleother in-house work, be it video motiongraphics, website building, luggingboxes of magazines in from a truck orjust day-to-day business running, andI was really down to a hundred work-hours for those hundred pages.I only point this out because it alwayssurprises people who dont work inmagazines.Its for you to judge how well I spentmy time, and how well I could spendit working with you. I, for one, knowI could work wonders.*An American publication also named Ride BMX Magazine launched at the same time, in cooperation. Our magazine became known as Ride UK BMX Magazine and later, to avoid confusion, that named was officially adopted.Were all brands here 4. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BMISC 5. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BSimple custom folder to hold media information and magazines Cover photo and 2012 Sketchup mockup (reskinned in Photoshop) by CN 6. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BReader profile for media people; four folds, actual size: 700mm long Amusingly innapropriate but better-looking use of line graphs, where bar or pie chart would be the norm. Photo (and 2012 Sketchup) by CN 7. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing B1 Launch Party invite 2 Postcards for insertion into advertising trade magazine 3 Business card 4 T-shirt iron-on offered with Level magazine 01 5 Paper publicity fly-stickers on a roll for plastering everywherelevel.MAGAZINE:UKpeople style music Film travel liFe adventureAll thINGs Good www.4130.com | pHoto: spiKe JonZelevel.MAGAZINE:UKpeople style music Film travel liFe adventureAll thINGs Good www.4130.com | pHoto: spiKe JonZe15342 8. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BAnd Forks box (for BMX bicycle forks) and 50% scale dummy (made by CN) 9. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BDeluxe BMX packaging for seat/post combo: packaging concept, engineering and designShown: artwork, digital mock-up (Adobe Illustrator), final product 10. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BJuly 2009Deluxe BMX company: swing tags and packagingDeluxe BMX handlebar grips and packagingAllows shopper to grip grip without removing it from packaging 11. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BDeluxe BMX tradeshow giveaways: introductory brochure (2008), a water bottle, mug, and a double-sided poster 12. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BDeluxe BMX advert treatments from 2008 brand intro ad onwards 13. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BDeluxe BMX company: promo T-shirtsWeb ads (banner and 300x300 GIF slideshow)Rip of an 80s classic designfor Rockville BMX store,hence retro back printFrom Mexico 68 Olympicsposter, a concept thatalso cropped up later inSnowboarder magazineLotus logo (of Esprit S1)remade to say DeluxeCollaboration T with quote froma Deluxe team magazine article 14. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BSeries of T-shirt designs for Judo brand(For and in collaboration with James Holder, pre-Superdry) 15. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BMagazine promo T-shirts, offcut sticker, zip-up sweatshirt, knickers 16. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BBook and DVD covers For the books, eBook size-optimized artwork also produced for Nook and Kindle Fire 17. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BCorporate logo Factory was a coming-together of three companies; the logo is made up of three equal,stylized boxes (denoting a factory process) in perspective, forming an FOnline/corporate logos The heart denotes vitality. Heart icon reformed to make the back of a skateboard, a BMXtyre and a motocross exhaust pipe 18. chris noble portfolio email index Miscellany: from Branding to Packaging to Marketing BCorporate logoFactory didnt use the logo (choosing one an in-house buddy did), but then a BMXdistribution start-up my brother was helping out needed one, and as it was a freebeeLines beefed up, boxes now represent distribution (of bike parts)Brand logo for a proposed but now-shelved yoga product companyTop: First concept: shadow on legs in lotus position and belly button (the hot spot in yoga) wouldhave looked good in wood floating above a Kerry B store doorBelow: Purity, life and b