18 Mar Start Something! | 14 Independent South African Design Studios
As part of our Graphic Design Month celebrations on 10and5 this month we’re compiling a few themed lists to explore what South African creatives are doing in this varied field. Last week we shared 8 up-and-coming designers and illustrators whose work points towards a very exciting future for the industry they’re just entering. Today we’re paying attention to 14 independent South African design studios or collectives who are setting high standards and whose work proves that bigger is not necessarily better. Here’s to starting something yourself!
CLRS&Co. is a multidisciplinary design collective based in Cape Town and becoming known for impeccable branding. Founded by Marcii Goosen, CLRS&Co. is made up of four permanent art directors, three copywriters, an interior designer and a long list of creative contributors. Drawing on the strength of their conceptual ability, CLRS&Co. produces clean and minimal work across the disciplines of graphic design, photography, visual merchandising, copywriting, illustration and installations. Once a month they host Club Collage, inviting anyone whose interested to join them for an evening of collage-making.
Jana + Koos
Jana + Koos is a conceptual design and art studio made up of creative duo Jana Hamman and Koos Groenewald. They work with brands to build brand identities and create brand experiences, recent examples being the Simon and Mary SS15 campaign, the branding for Darling TV and the British Council’s Connect ZA identity design. They’re always juggling their commercial work with a few side projects and last year their City of Gold Diggers, JHB Hates You work was shown in New York City. Their fresh perspective always surprises us and we can’t wait to see what they do next.
Chocolate Sauce is a brand new multidisciplinary design studio headed by Taariq Latiff. So far they’ve created their own CI and worked on a Gentleman’s Travel Kit for the Farewell Co., but if their name is anything to go by we’ll see some sweet things from them in the future.
Founded by Richard Bolland, Studio Bolland is made up of a small team of illustrators and motion designers. They work with local and international clients on various creative outlets, including animated ‘explainer videos’, TV commercials, web videos, illustrations, cartoons, corporate identities, logos, animated gifs and more. Watch their latest showreel.
Nicework is a small Creative Communications Agency in Johannesburg specialising in branding, graphic design, presentations, websites, video, animation and tea with baked goods. Living up to their name, this agency produces a variety of beautifully crafted work and at a rapid pace. They also have a curated feed of creativity on their own blog and produce a semi-regular digital magazine called NICE Magazine which features design, illustration, photography and art from all over the world. They also run CreativeMornings in Johannesburg once a month.
Since they’ve opened in 2011, creative studio MUTI have been producing fresh and bold work consistently. Specialising in illustration, design and typography, this studio is headed by Miné Jonker, Brad Hodgskiss and Clinton Campbell. With an extensive list of local and international clients and collaborators already on their portfolio, we’re pretty excited for what’s yet to come.
Albino Creations is an animation, illustration and design studio started by long-time friends Werner Burger and Louis Minnaar. Their combined skill set is incredibly versatile and they’ve worked on 2D and 3D animation as well as print-, static- and interactive design and illustration.
Amicollective is a design studio in Cape Town started by a group of illustrators who decided to pool their talents back in 2006. Today they’re still producing illustrations, but also create branding, graphic design, custom lettering and quite recently animation for a range of clients and agencies across the world. In between all of this, the collective also manage a variety of self-initiated projects like Illville Hotel, the Am I Coloring Book and their free wallpaper downloads.
Kinsmen is a multi-disciplinary studio founded in 2014 by partners Fred Viljoen and Gideon van Lill. This collective specialises in print design, branding, packaging and the work they’ve produced thus far is as simple and clean as it is dynamic. Their clients include, amongst others, the Spier Secret Courtyard and a brand new distillery in Cape Town called Hope on Hopkins.
Born out of requests to license the fonts he’s designed for various other projects over the years, Jaco Burger founded BTW Type (Burger Tipografie Werke) in mid-December last year. This type foundry designs typefaces that are graphically rich, characterful and versatile enough to work well in identity, branding and publishing environments.
Creative studio Radio specialises in illustration, iconography, lettering and motion. Rumour has it that they’re planning a re-launch soon, so keep your eyes peeled. “The main goal of Radio’s animation style is that design and illustration must always come first, and motion second,” Radio’s lead animator told us.
Craig Keown and Frederick Peens are the designers behind MARK. This a multidisciplinary design studio’s portfolio covers graphic design, illustration, identity, logos, packaging and conceptual thinking, tied together with a passion for craft and a keen attention to detail – all created in their beautiful Cape Town studio.
Mister Walker is the design and branding consultancy founded by Garth Walker in 2008. This studio works across the corporate, public and private sectors for many local brands – on both large and small projects – covering a wide range of design disciplines. They’re also responsible for the well-known experimental graphics magazine ijusi.
Monday Design is a small, independent, multi-disciplinary graphic design studio that works on branding, graphic design, art direction, websites and newsletters. They’re pretty serious about simple solutions but pay attention to detail, a combination that results in the clean and effective work they’re known for.
Who else should we know about?