‘We Own the Hell Out of That Bell’

Mike Monteiro on the Liberty Bell as an icon for Philadelphia, which Brand New’s Kosal Sen called “uninspired and obvious” in an aforelinked piece today:

The issue here is on Mr. Sen’s use of ‘uninspiring and obvious.’ By which I believe Mr. Sen means it was not a ‘clever’ choice. And I’d agree with that. It’s not clever, but neither does it have to be. The goal of design is to nail the problem, not showcase the cleverness of the designer. There are times when the solution to the problem is such a ridiculous slam dunk that cleverness only gets in the way of good work.

The problem with the new Philadelphia brand isn’t the bell. It’s the crap execution.

Seeking out the best solution, even if obvious, rather than the solution that makes the designer look the most clever or original, is a sign of maturity. Don’t run away from the obvious, run with it.

Tuesday, 8 December 2009