STARMEN’s Integrated Branding Campaign is Recognized by the Davey Awards

 

Winning the Davey Awards’ Silver for Visual Appeal is thrilling, but the visual appeal of our “Live Your Luxury” campaign for Linda May Properties — a top 1% international luxury real estate team in Beverly Hills—is only the tip of the branding-berg. Nine-tenths of the campaign lies is in its cohesive strategy, designed to compel people to feel Linda May Properties expertise within the luxury real estate industry, along with their personalized care and “always on” mentality.


STARMEN Wins Summit International Awards’ Platinum for Marketing Effectiveness

 

We’re deeply honored to have won Summit International Awards’ Platinum for Marketing Effectiveness in the website category for our branding of Anoush Catering, Southern California’s premier Mediterranean caterer.


Our Story Featured In The Los Angeles Business Journal

 

Our Story Featured In The Los Angeles Business Journal

MARKETING: STARMEN ditches fixed-rate jobs for retainer relationships.

Story by Subrina Hudson, Staff Writer

Armen David was working at his father’s Sun Valley shoe manufacturing business when he hired his friend Anthony Wiktor to help design the company’s brochures and fliers. David quickly decided the two should branch out and start their own marketing firm, STARMEN Design Group Inc. in Hollywood. They sold their services to family and friends – even door to door – mostly designing business cards and direct mail. Then one day, only three months in, they got a call...


Re/VISION: A Night Of Celebrating New Ideas

 

Re/VISION: A Night Of Celebrating New Ideas

Since our office is located in Hollywood, we're aware that you don't always need an excuse to party. But sometimes you have a solid reason to celebrate, and here at STARMEN, we certainly do.

After scoring over 12 design awards this year, we wanted to pause and thank the people who made it all possible- our clients and creative team. Their support allows us to do what we love and take risks. To show our appreciation, we hosted a private event for a night of Re/VISION - a chance to celebrate the past and preview our future with the people who matter most.

Keep reading to see our remodeled office.


Apple's New Interface Design is Not New but "Borrowed"

 

Apple's New Interface Design is Not New but Borrowed

Apple's WWDC event held yesterday revealed some new products like the gorgeously redesigned Mac Pro, the dramatically updated iOS 7 and new 'killer' services like iTunes Radio. Yet with all the recent competition noticeably affecting Apple's brand image and market share, was this enough of a spark to re-ignite the once powerful flame that allowed Apple to torch the tech industry for years? Probably not.

This is not a 'bash-on' Apple piece, nor is it a design critique on iOS7, there are plenty of good ones out there. This is simply making a point of what happens among brands when you're no longer the "Big Fish". See Apple was always known for being a "mindshare leader" in everything from their ideas, to products, to design and even marketing, but now it's become very clear that Apple is now a 'challenger brand', they've lost some market share and they're slowly losing "mindshare" - thought leadership in design and marketing. The image of their new iOS (above) represents how Apple is feeling threatened and how Joshua Topolsky editor-in-chief of The Verge summed it up perfectly by saying, "Apple is showing that it can adapt, borrow, and tweak ideas from the competition". Look there's nothing wrong with what Apple has done, in fact, they've been doing it for years. I'm just use to Apple really pushing the boundaries of innovation and design. They've certainly played the "safe card" on this one, only time will tell if it will payoff or hurt them more.

Keeping reading to see how Apple borrowed design cues from the competition, with just one screen.


STARMEN Scores 7 Trophies from International Marketing Competition Communicator Awards

 

STARMEN Scores 7 Trophies from International Marketing Competition Communicator Awards

It’s been a warm summer and things are hot over here at STARMEN. Right on the heels of the Horizon Awards, we cleaned up with some serious hardware in the 19th annual Communicator Awards! The competition receives entries from both small and large agencies and creative firms from all over the globe. Self touted as the “the largest and most competitive awards program honoring creative excellence among communications professionals,” the Communicator Awards received over 6,000 entries this year. Winners were chosen based on quality of the entry, regardless of company or agency size and project budget.

The competition is overseen and judged by the International Academy of Visual Arts, an exclusive organization comprised of 600+ executives from marketing, advertising and media firms. IAVA members include professionals from Conde Nast, Coach, Disney, MTV Networks, Sotheby's Institute of Art, Time, Inc, Victoria's Secret, Wired, and Yahoo. Another detail about the awards competition that caught our eye was the fact that the trophies are made by RS Owens, the company that produces the Oscar and Emmy awards.

We were also psyched to see our integrated design efforts score some recognition. We won silver trophies for corporate identity, in the logo and package design categories, as well as brochure design. Creatively designed touchpoints like packaging and brochures help make brands more memorable, and it’s great that both our interactive and traditional branding efforts earned a spot on our growing list of award-winning achievements.

Read more to see the winners!


STARMEN Earns Multiple Wins from Horizon Interactive Awards

 

STARMEN Earns Multiple Wins from Horizon Interactive Awards

After winding down an exciting 2012 with 12 trophies from the W3 Awards and Davey Awards, we are gearing up for summer on a bright note. We took home 4 wins from the 11th annual Horizon Interactive Awards! The international competition was created to recognize excellence in the interactive media field.  This year, there was some tough competition, as the Horizon Awards received thousands of submissions from nearly all 50 states and 25 countries. 

We’re particularly thrilled about this recognition, not just because the statuettes are shiny and handsome, but because this competition embraces a unique approach to judging. The panelists aren’t just design experts — they’re our peers, other digital media professionals, with varying skillsets and capabilities. In addition to an end-user panel, the judging crew included Creative Directors Chris Nation of Hitcents and Flavio Masson of 10012.com. That meant the designs couldn’t just look nice, they had to function well and with purpose. Here at STARMEN, we always consider functionality during the creation process. Aesthetics are meaningless unless they offer a creative and strategic solution.

Keep reading to see the winners...


Beyond Roulette: Rules For Winning At Conventions

 

Whatever day you go to Vegas, you'll find a lot of action in two places: a business convention and a roulette table. Unfortunately, too many visitors think the same strategies apply to both.

We were in Vegas a couple of weeks ago, hitting the Consumer Electronics Show and a few roulette tables. (Just a few.) In both cases, if you don't play, you can't win. That is pretty much the only similarity – well, that and the engaging hosts and dealers to get you to stay and play. 

The key difference is that, with a convention, it's not enough to be in the right place at the right time — which is the fundamental rule of roulette.


Winning Streak Continues With 3 Awards

 

daveyawards


STARMEN Wins 6 Web Design Awards!

 

What an honor! We're excited to share that we've taken home 2 Gold Awards and 4 Silver Awards from the 7th Annual W3 Award Competition!

Check out the winners inside!


Branding Lincoln - The Movie

 

Lincoln Movie Branding

As an Illinois native and history buff since the 3rd grade, naturally I've had a fascination with one of the greatest political figures in American history, the 16th President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln

When I found out Steven Spielberg was planning to make an epic film on the last days of his intense life, I knew it was going to be something big, iconic, something I wanted to be a part of, well... I got my chance. Entertainment Weekly released this first photo of Daniel Day-Lewis as 'Lincoln'. First, I was amazed at the resemblence of Day-Lewis' as the commander in chief and then excited because it was exactly the iconic image I knew would make for a great movie poster.

Click below... see the "one-sheet"! 


Defending London's Olympic Logo

 

We've all heard what people have been saying about London's 2012 Summer Olympic logo...

It's no news that London's 2012 Summer Olympic logo has received quite a bit of backlash. No we're not talking about this one, or even this awful one, but THIS one. A recent New York Times article titled, "There's Little to Love" even goes into detail about how the official London logo all went wrong.

Check out the article to see what we think...


Armen David speaks as panelist at AIGA's Professional Series

 

The sold-out Professional Series talk, ‘The Importance of Studio Culture & Identity,’ was held at Continuum’s work-space in Venice Beach. Bringing together Armen David, Braven Greenelsh, Candice Brokeshire, and Michael Stinson, and moderated by Eduardo Braniff, CEO of Imagination the Americas.

Continue below to see photos from the event!


The End of An Era...

 

The inevitable as arrived... and with it, an end of an era too. As Apple's creative visionary, Steve Jobs steps down as "leader" a sense of loss is felt throughout the 'tech' world and more importantly the business world. The man who has pioneered so much innovation and ideation that fundamentally changed the way we live, has also been credited with rising a struggling computer company from near bankruptcy to become the world's most valuable company. Now it has come to end, and for that... we can't say anything more than Thank You.

Steve himself published the following letter:

I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple's CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come.

I hereby resign as CEO of Apple. I would like to serve, if the Board sees fit, as Chairman of the Board, director and Apple employee.

As far as my successor goes, I strongly recommend that we execute our succession plan and name Tim Cook as CEO of Apple.

I believe Apple's brightest and most innovative days are ahead of it. And I look forward to watching and contributing to its success in a new role.

I have made some of the best friends of my life at Apple, and I thank you all for the many years of being able to work alongside you.

    -Steve

UPDATE: Gizmodo.com just published this awesome timeline of 'The Life of Steve Jobs - So Far' great read!


Logos Define Candidates, As Well As Businesses

 

2012 GOP Canidates

In celebration of Independence Day, here's a look at how the 2012 GOP candidates are treating their brand like a business.  

Could you imagine if George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, or Abraham Lincoln had a campaign logo? They ran for political office in the early age of marketing, when a good campaign slogan would literally make or break a candidate.  It would certainly be hard to create a logo that matched Lincoln’s catchy slogan “Don’t swap horses in the middle of a stream.” 

The end-goal for any politician or business, for that matter, is to build awareness and ultimately win – whether it’s a vote or a sale.  And to accomplish that goal, voters and customers alike must be able to quickly and effectively communicate their brand offering.  These days, a great logo may be the first, last, or only thing someone remembers.

A recent CNN article provided some great insight into the importance for political candidates to choose a memorable logo.  This reality also holds true for any business.  To be effective, it is critical that a logo resonates without offending.  It should make a statement without turning off potential clients. A thoughtful, expertly-designed logo can set a business apart from the rest of the playing field.  Accomplishing this strategically and creatively is the most difficult part.

Interestingly enough, it may have been Obama’s creative but risky 2008 campaign logo that helped him with the election.  His eschewing the use of his entire name was a bold statement.  Early on, many joked that the “O” logo was a nod to his friend and supporter Oprah.  Surely, the association with Oprah didn’t hurt him either.

You certainly don’t have to be a politician to hire a professional team to design a logo.  In fact, because this vital component of your brand identity may be your first or only interaction with a customer, it’s simply a smart decision to make sure it’s both memorable and impactful.  By working with experts to create a logo that represents your brand in the best possible way, you will make your brand “pop” and get it working for you. To learn more about how a logo can help take your business to the next level, contact STARMEN Design Group today!


TIME Reveals The Iconic 'X' Cover

 

Osama Bin Laden 'X' Factor TIME Magazine Cover

Ad Age confirms that TIME Magazine will continue tradition and run a special edition of its iconic 'X' cover, marking the demise of Osama bin Laden. (illustration by Tim O'Brien)

Time magazine has rushed together a special Osama bin Laden death issue that’s set to hit newsstands on Thursday. The symbolic red X has been used to denote deaths of past leaders like Adolf Hitler and Saddam Hussein on previous issues. Time.com

As news spreads, social and traditional media unite. 
A look at how New Media and Old Media are brainstorming inventive ways to package together breaking news information about bin Laden. AdAge.com

Twitter explodes, can it keep up?
How Twitter helped speed up the news process alerting the masses about Osama bin Laden’s assassination. Forbes.com

Here's a look back at TIME magazine's use of the "X" cover.

For more stories and pictures of Time covers past and present, read SPD.com's Thinking Inside the (Red) Box category.

BUY THE TIME SPECIAL ISSUE HERE.


New Year, New Face

 

STARMEN on Facebook

We're making the most out of Facebook and sharing the experience with you! Check out our new Facebook page and see how we've made it easy to engage with us by using custom applications that allow us to connect with our friends, showcase our talents, and share our thoughts in more ways than you can imagine.

Join us on Facebook!

Make sure to 'Like' our page, we know you'll love it!


Nike's World Cup 2010 Commercial

 

'Write the Future' Has Arrived

The new 3-minute Nike advert was released earlier this week with much anticipation. To sum it up... it's an adventure that will take you on the field and into the lives of the world's most popular football stars and how their play has a global effect. The spot even has cameo's from some of Nike's other global stars like Kobe Bryant and Roger Federer.

Nike's VP-Brand and Category Management Trevor Edwards went so far to declare this ad "among the best we've ever done," no small statement from a company renowned as a master of the form.

This is just the beginning to the battle of the creative campaigns ignited by the enthusiasm building up to the World Cup in South Africa. From the looks of it, it's going to a wild ride... Enjoy!


Hugh Hefner Saves The Hollywood Sign

 

Hollywood Sign Saved

It's an iconic landmark we at STARMEN see everyday outside our window, the Hollywood Sign is truly one of the most recognizeable symbols of the California dream. A symbol that coined the phrase, "The land of opportunity". Well today, thanks to Hugh Hefner, Playboy magazine founder and iconic Hollywood figure himself, the peak has been saved!

The sign is Hollywood’s Eiffel Tower, this sign represents the dreams and aspirations of people around the world. Mr. Hefner said on Monday."

The landmark Hollywood sign will stand, unobscured, on scrub-covered slopes overlooking production studios and palm trees here, thanks to a $900,000 donation by Hugh Hefner in the ninth inning of a yearlong effort by conservationists to protect the hilltop around the sign from developers. The gift from Mr. Hefner, the founder of Playboy magazine, closed the gap in donations to meet the $12.5 million price that the Trust for Public Land had agreed to pay for the 138-acre parcel on the hilltop, called Cahuenga Peak. Million-dollar donations came from the Tiffany & Company Foundation and Aileen Getty, and hundreds of thousands of dollars were raised online and at bake sales and lemonade stands. The deadline was the end of this month.

The Chicago Connection

Ironically enough the Hollywood sign you see today exists because Hugh Hefner raised the money in 1978 to re-build it. The land was originally bought in 1940 by industrialist Howard Hughes and after Hughes died, his estate sold the property in 2002 to a group of Chicago investors who intended to use the land to build luxury residences. Hugh Hefner is originally from Chicago, which is also home to the Playboy headquarters.

More info go to savehollywoodland.org


CONFIRMED: Apple 4G iPhone Unveiled

 

UPDATE: Gizmodo Editor Jason Chen Arrested, Home Searched And Computers Seized. The lost iPhone investigation begins...

UPDATE: Yes, it has been confirmed by numerous sources in news and media including online that Apple lost the next iPhone, in a bar.

Is this real? Could it be, that one of Steve Jobs secret service agents was sleeping in Cupertino? How did this slip through the cracks? Easy. Disguise it with a Belkin 3GS case. Though it's unofficially unconfirmed, there's a strong chance this is the next iPhone. Gizmodo, a high-reputable online source and popular blog for all things technology, recently posted this discovery.

You have to see to believe! www.gizmodo.com


Adobe Creative Suite 5 Launches Today

 

UPDATE: Preview the latest features in Adobe Creative Suite 5 Design Premium. What is Design Premium?

We've been invited to attend the online global launch event taking place right now. Check back with us a little later has we'll have all the latest, up-to-date inside features and news regarding your favorite Adobe programs... for now here's a sneak peek.


Happy St. Patty's Day!

 

You may have caught it already as today’s CREATIVITY Pick of the Day, but here’s another stellar outdoor idea for McDonald’s out the ad agency Leo Burnett, Chicago.

This installation was placed on the banks of the Chicago River, which is dyed green each year in celebration of  St. Patrick’s Day.  A perfect way to promote McDonald’s seasonal Shamrock Shake! See more pics of this annual tradition here.

Happy St. Patty’s Day! Be Safe! Now, time to get ourselves a Shamrock Shake!


Couture Glamour Returns to Hollywood

 

Before Angels became synonymous with lingerie, Hollywood’s elite wore Juel Park Lingerie. Started in the Roaring Twenties, Juel Park designed lingerie for women like Elizabeth Taylor, Marilyn Monroe, Ava Gardner and Katherine Hepburn.  Over the years, the Juel Park has passed down through the ranks of talented women; and now, the youngest partner is ready to make a comeback.

STARMEN found their history very engaging and applicable in our day and age – all can be revived!  We’re excited to help Juel Park sponsor their new launch and showcase the growth of their company! To honor the many proud survivors and to remember the family and friends lost to breast cancer, proceeds from this event will benefit the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation.

For event details, please visit: http://www.juelpark.com/launchevent/