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The Sophistication of French Design

Over the past few years we've seen a plethora of French designers picking up Pencils at the D&AD Professional Awards. Below is a selection of the most refined, sophisticated French graphic design in recent times.

LESS

Agency: Landor Associates
Client: Jérémie Normandin
Award: In Book / Branding / Branding Schemes/Small Business / 2014

LESS is a minimalist identity that quietly communicates the brand's desire to provide only what's essential. The mark has a special quality: it exists in the negative space. It is either sandblasted on bottles or cut out on recycled paper, meaning it only appears by removing material.

The packaging experience becomes bespoke with the purchase of the Unique Drop gift bottle, whose label is customized by a drop of the wine it contains. The branding system fully embodies all the attributes of this sustainable brand: less sulfites, less packaging, less ink, less money. Buy LESS, get more.

The Sophistication of French Design
The Sophistication of French Design

Roman d'une Garde-Robe

Agency: Mucho
Client: Paris Musées, Palais Galliera
Award: In Book / Book Design / Entire Books / 2014

This catalogue for Paris’ Museum of Fashion retraces the life of an early twentieth-century Parisian fashionista. The cover opens like a wrap-over top and, within the book, a folded model of a dress allows readers to study the designers’ craftsmanship, enabling them to learn from it and even remake the garment.

A detailed profile of famous shopping districts like the Rue de la Paix and the Place Vendôme also offers an insight into the layout of top designers’ shops and locations. The typography, designed by the studio Art Out, is a tribute to Didot – a font deeply associated with France and fashion.

The Sophistication of French Design
The Sophistication of French Design | D&AD

Voies navigables de France

Agency: Apeloig Design
Client: Voies navigables de France
Award: In Book / Graphic Design – Posters / 2014

The Voies navigables de France (VNF / Waterways of France) exploits, maintains, and develops French waterways. In 2013 VNF commissioned Apeloig to create a new design that would enhance the existing logo.

Inspired by light reflecting from the surface of water, the sign is composed of horizontal and softly angled particles. It appears in three sets representing long, mid-range, and close-up views. The design has multiple connotations: the geographic disposition of rivers and canals; the navigation of boats; the light-reflecting qualities of water; and the fluid movement of rivers.

The Sophistication of French Design | D&AD

Greeting Card 2013

Agency: Havas Paris 
Client: Havas Paris
Award: Nomination / Graphic Design – Moving Image (Graphic Design) / 2014

For their 2013 greetings card, Havas decided to use the agency’s new name, and also highlight the fact that “Paris” is now part of their name. To achieve this, they created a logo for each district. The character of each district is reflected in the letters that make up the logo.

The most beautiful logos are those that can be drawn in black and white – and luckily for us, this also applies to the city of Paris, which is never more beautiful than in black and white. The logos were drawn and animated by hand, frame-by-frame, then assembled and finished using compositing software.

Nördik Impakt Festival

Agency: Murmure
Client: Arts Attack!
AwardNomination / Branding / Branding Schemes – Medium Business / 2014

Nördik Impakt is a massive electronic music event in France. It renews its visual identity each year. For the third consecutive time, the management entrusted Murmure Agency for the branding of its 15th edition.

Murmure created an ambitious visual identity. The desire was to realize an artistic direction that evoked electronica by associating it with the elegance of the Haute-Couture. Based on a group of geometrical shapes combined in a textile style pattern, it creates a vibrating sensation while evoking a rhythmic deeply linked with the festival spirit.

The Sophistication of French Design | D&AD
The Sophistication of French Design | D&AD

If you think you have a campaign that deserves a Pencil, enter your work into the D&AD Professional Awards and see if our judges agree. When it comes to awards, nothing matters more.

For more creative inspiration and the opportunity to get up close and personal with the world’s best design and advertising, join us at D&AD Festival.
 

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