Friday, 1 May 2015

Spring roundup


Get the streamers out folks and blow up the balloons because we're celebrating our Silver award at this year's IDA Awards for our work on Twitter's London office! It's a great accolade to have and a fantastic way to finish off what was an exciting project for us.

We would like to thank Twitter for the great opportunity and say congratulations to all those people involved with producing such a fantastic workspace environment. Now if you need us, we'll be celebrating with a well deserved drink. Pass the champagne please!

Environmentally Friendly

We're increasingly becoming more involved in workspace environments as time goes on, so it’s always good to stay ahead of the game and see what new and exciting innovations we can bring to our clients.

This short video is a great example of how 'durable and functional' doesn't have to be dull, or sterile! The designers of spaces, from cinemas to airport lounges, discuss how they brought a feeling of home to their space. The spaces are so robust yet welcoming, you'll even be allowed to put your feet on the sofa!


Firstly, don't panic. Many of you will already know the big digital news this month (and no we don't mean the release of the Apple Watch), Google have released rules aimed at down-grading websites that aren’t mobile friendly. 

The new Google algorithms are currently spidering through the world wide web with gusto, knocking off points for sites that don’t cut the mustard. Doom-sayers have been telling readers that their websites will disappear, never to be seen again, if they don't tow the line. But let us repeat, don't panic! Google aren’t the monsters that everyone’s making them out to be. Firstly, it takes a while for search criteria (and internet content changes) to take effect, this can be weeks. More importantly, this addition to Google’s ‘points system’ is just the latest addition to many design and content features that Google (and other search engines) look for to measure quality of content and usability of websites. 

Your site may not be responsive, but if you have killer content you should perhaps worry less than someone with a responsive website where content needs a review. Also, these new rules only apply to searches from mobile devices.

In short your website should be responsive, well constructed and well written, with accessible and relevant content.

Click here to try Google’s mobile friendly test tool (try saying that fast) to see how your site fairs. If you’re still concerned, then get in touch with us and we’ll see how we can help.

 And whilst we're on the topic of digital self-improvement, the folks over at SME have compiled some handy hints to ensure you're engaging with online visitors (most of which we've been harping on about for years!). Online users are a fickle bunch, with 55% of visitors spending less than 15 seconds on a page, so it's important to grab their attention with infographics, visual content and stunning images (why not check out this months story on how our client SeaBird use photography to bring their annual report to life).

Time for fun

Another Bank Holiday will be rolling up at the end of the month, and if we were to say you could experience a wonderful mash up of the Crystal Maze and Indiana Jones in real life you may think we'd been celebrating our IDA win a little too hard.

But no, we are talking about Time Run, an exciting new "escape the room game". Now we're not entirely sure what that means but we've signed up to find out, so watch this space! You'll be transported back in time and given tasks and mind-bending puzzles to solve across three rooms, as you try to find the Time Run lost artifact. This takes immersive theatre to the extreme, we think the only thing missing is Richard O'Brien

A picture perfect report

The importance of good imagery can often be overlooked during the quest to perfect your copy when creating a piece of collateral. However, our long term client SeaBird Exploration has been steadily commissioning and building a bank of beautiful photography over the years we’ve been working with them.

SeaBird’s vessels are often out exploring the seabed, however when they are required to dock for maintenance, the team take it as an opportunity to commission photography of the vessels and crew at work, with some art direction from us.

The 2014 annual report’s main job is to communicate the performance of the company, but it also acts as a showcase for the scale of the SeaBird operation through imagery, bringing to life the work of the crew and shore based team. Using a mix of black and white and colour photography we add interest throughout the document, and both large scale and smaller images keeps the pace exciting.

The SeaBird annual report helps highlight the difference strong imagery can make. It is true that a picture is worth a thousand words!

The voice

ISBA, or the Incorporated Society of British Advertisers to their friends, is the voice of the British advertising industry and has been working with advertisers in various ways since 1891!

Of course ISBA’s offering, and their look and feel, has changed a lot since 1891, but they felt it was time to refresh their marketing materials. Our work started with their Annual Conference, however from the very beginning the plan was to create a contemporary suite of materials that reflected ISBA as the voice of a modern industry.

We wanted to use ISBA’s strapline “The voice of British advertisers” as the grounding for the concept as it embodies their offering perfectly. We created a graphic that reflected a collection of different soundwaves, or voices, using transparency to bring the concept of layers of voices to the fore.

We’ve also tailored the layouts of each document to better suit its audience and use. We’ve used colour and layout more functionally for the schedule based Training and Capability Programme and used shapes and typography more freely to create a more editorial look for the new business focused “Join Us” brochure.
We agreed a square format for the Join Us brochure, which elevated it beyond a standard brochure. We also recommended a change from a coated stock to an uncoated, creating a more premium and contemporary feel, whilst being more environmentally friendly.

Finally, for the Annual Conference, we also created a short animation that could be used on the website, throughout the event and during talks. The use of moving image added a really exciting dimension to the "voice' concept, even if it was a challenge to animate!

ISBA-Animation-sponsors from to the point on Vimeo.

We’ve thoroughly enjoyed adding more volume to ISBA’s voice, and with more projects on the horizon, it’s only going to get louder over the coming months.

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

A Point In Time

Time has been playing on our mind recently, not in an existential crisis way, but because we’ve been working with CBRE, the world’s leading real estate services company, on a series of clocks that will help bring their One Team behaviours to the fore.

The project started with a series of focus groups comprising representatives across their UK business, to explore their five One Team behaviours, what they mean to them and what the solution needed to communicate.

From the focus groups it was clear that client service, collaboration and face-to-face interactions were key to all of the rules, which focused our thinking towards concepts that could be used within the shared spaces, especially meeting rooms.

Our solution was to create 40 bespoke clocks, which have features that highlight some of the One Team behaviours. For instance the markers between 11 o’clock and 12 o’clock are emphasised in CBRE green as a reminder to finish or leave five minutes early to ensure you’re on time for the next meeting. Branding is kept subtle across all of the designs, with the CBRE green used as an accent colour.

The clocks are now hung in meeting rooms and break out areas across CBRE’s UK offices.

It was a project with a solution that required experience and knowledge outside our usual work but we were unfazed and ready to jump out of the printed brochure.

March - Drum-roll please

Drum-roll please
We’re thrilled to announce we are ranked no.1 in the UK for our financial performance, in the top 15 in the peer poll and just outside the top 30 in the client recommendations! The Drum research report reviews the UK design industry, showing growth in the design sector. Agencies are ranked based on financial performance, client satisfaction and peer recommendation, the results are categorised by staff size. We would like to thank The Drum, our clients and peers for their support!

Box Park Croydon
If you’re sporting a rugged beard, ride a fixed gear bike or sport a pair of dark rimmed specs then you’ll already be aware of (and visit regularly) Box Park in Shoreditch. But what you may not know is that there are grand plans to bring Box Park to Croydon. Gavin Elliott is the designer behind the alternative mall, which will sit just outside East Croydon Station. This is good news for our friends at Croydon Bid who we are working with to help communicate how they are helping to transform Croydon into a more vibrant and buzzing place.

A T-what now?
Here at TTP we love a bit of nostalgia, so when our design team stumbled across a short video remembering design pre-computers, it became quite the talking point. The phrase 'In my day….' was used, people looked baffled and Simon gave the team a brief history of design with his T-Square as a prop - for the younger readers a T Square is a technical drawing instrument used to draw straight lines. Take a look yourself here and see if you can stir up some fond or not so fond memories.

Challenge Charlie: 3 Peaks
Challenge Charlie  is back! The lads of Oxted Hockey Club will soon be taking on the gruelling endurance event that is the 3 peaks challenge, but not in the balmy Summer months-too easy. They're undertaking the challenge in a few weeks while the peaks are still snow capped!! Here at TTP we have lent a designers helping hand with the logo, t-shirt design and website. The funds raised will help to build a much needed clubhouse for the club, the funds are also being shared with the RNLI. If you would like to show your support here is the just giving page. To find out more about Challenge Charlie visit the main site here.

It’s The Climb
This month our studio manager Will, embarked on a quest to conquer one of London's iconic structures, the 02 Arena. Here are a few little fact-lets he picked up; the 02 is exactly 365 meters in circumference representing the days of the year, the dome is at a height of 52 meters representing the weeks of the year along with 12 spires on the roof for the 12 months of the year. Interesting huh? And it hasn’t stopped him singing Miley Cyrus ‘The Climb’ ever since.

Winchester Geese
London is full of little secrets and our home of Borough is no different. Nestled just off Redcross way is the Crossbones park, a post medieval burial ground for Winchester Geese' (otherwise known as ahem “ladies of the night”). Now the space is being re-developed by Bankside Open Spaces Trust who are turning the site into a garden for all to enjoy. If you would like to support this wonderful project then you can donate here. If you would like to find out more about the history of the area then you can read 'The Southwark Mysteries' by local author John Constable who was inspired by the spirit of a Winchester Goose!

April Fools 
Don't worry we have not played any tricks on you..... There have been a few flying round the office, from icons swapped round and giant cursors on screen. Some people take April fools seriously take a look at a few of these crazy pranks.

Celebrating with a bang

Not too long ago the Transport Systems Catapult launched the All Aboard Competition, a national school competition challenging children and young adults to make it easier for those with a visual or hearing impairment to travel by bus.

We branded the competition with a quirky and vibrant take on the existing TSC IM campaign, using hand-drawn icons and the trademark TSC blue to create something a little more “down with the kids” as they say.

The competition featured on national TV, with Baroness Kramer; Minister of State Transport, helping to drive the competition forward.

The deadline crept up (just like it used to with homework) and before we could say “accessible transport” it was time for the finalists to exhibit their work at the Big Bang Fair. We equipped the TSC team with everything from roller banners to silicon wristbands (which went like hot cakes!), adding to the excitement of the event and giving the finalists the platform their hard work deserved.

Baroness Kramer took to the stage to announce the winner; congratulations to Daria Butza with her ingenious idea for a vibrating wristband. Our on screen graphics provided the perfect backdrop for the presentation and prize giving.

The competition may now be over but there’s no rest for the Transport Systems Catapult, ever the busy bees they’re now gearing up for their second Imagine Festival, which will bring together some big names in a series of talks, events and workshops exploring the future of Intelligent Mobility. We’re already working on an update of the website we designed last year, so watch this space!

Monday, 2 March 2015

Je ne sais quoi!

Bonjour! Et voici notre infolettre de janvier! And for those of you less au fait with the language of love we said "Hello! And here is our January newsletter!". Our love of language has been sparked through our recent work with L’Ecole Internationale Franco-Anglaise (EIFA), London’s premier bilingual school for children aged 3-11. This unique school's curriculum is taught equally in both French and English, which is something they were keen to reflect in their new branding.

The logo incorporates two traditional symbols representing England and France - The Lion Rampant and the Fleur-de-lys - both commonly recognised with the heritage to each country. Our illustration uses clean lines and block colour to give the two traditional symbols a more modern twist.

The layering of the colours not only show the combination of the two countries but also create the richer purple. The colours themselves are sympathetic to the current building (which is an exquisite listed building!) but are bold enough to establish a unique brand for EIFA beyond this confine.

We have then used the layering of the colours in a range of stationery templates for the brand which helps to unify the designs and strengthens the identity.

Once the logo was complete we created brand guidelines, outlining logo usage, typography and colours. On all projects we recommend guidelines as it keeps consistency and defines rules and regulations for the brand.

We have also created adverts for the prestigious French magazine Ici Londres the Educational supplement in The Guardian and Tatler magazine, to promote EIFA’s new secondary school opening in September. We have used the brand colours as a strong theme, creating bands to structure the page and build recognition.

See below the old EIFA logo and our design:

3D Reid - Hot off the 'Word'press

Award winning architects 3DReid came to us last year to elevate their website. They wanted a site that mirrors the quality of their work whilst still retaining a simple and clean style.

The site is uncluttered and gets straight tothepoint (see what we did there!) with an impactful homepage showcasing a full screen carousel of their choicest projects.

The site includes an extensive project library with a responsive masonry style layout. Dynamic filters let the viewer shuffle the deck down to their chosen category with minimum fuss and maximum effect.

With a simple menu system that allows you to reach any page in three clicks it is easy-to-navigate for users and simple to update for 3DReid. The site is also optimised for mobile so looks just as good no matter what phone or tablet you are using.

Graham Hickson-Smith, Head of Marketing & Business Development, said:

We’ve worked with tothepoint on our branding initiatives for over a decade, which means they understand the culture of the practice implicitly. The design team, led by James, quickly assimilated our vision into a practical and workable solution that delivers exactly what we wanted on day one. A clean, timeless site that is easy to update and looks fresh. It shows off our work perfectly. They continue to be a joy to work with - we don’t view the tothepoint gang as an agency, but as mates who are great at what they do.”

All built around the Wordpress framework, this site shows how the popular CMS can be a solid base for innovative web layouts and functions. And that’s the beauty of Wordpress. With the right minds behind it, a global newtwork of developers, plug-ins and support, it really can be bent to your will. It provides a malleable, future-proof system that can be moulded to suit most people’s website needs.

Visit to see the site for yourself. And if you are looking to refresh or reinvent your digital communications, give James a call or drop him an email.

Flippin February

Flipping Heck
As Shrove Tuesday descended upon London so did the sporting event of the year. That's right, you guessed it; the annual pancake race in Borough Market. Glenn, Charlie, Sarah and Will were the fortunate team that gained the honour to represent TTP (Tip Top Pancakes). The race had it all, thrills and spills and victory (sadly just not for us!). Even though we didn't win, the event was a great success and our friends at Better Bankside raised a lot of money to support Painting for Hospitals. If you want to donate here is the link

Valentines day quiz
This month's competition has come to an end. It's been emotional and we all feel that we have grown as people. The winner by a landslide is Stephen Young from The Drum. Stephen was the only person outside of this office to score the perfect ten. Look out for more updates from the quote bank in the future! The quizzes are still here if you'd like a go for fun... no more prizes...

Peas in a Pod
This month there has been a large amount of coverage regarding driverless cars coming to the roads (and footpaths) of Britain. It's good to see that our friends over at Transport Systems Catapult are championing the Lutz Pathfinder Pod, even asking us for a hand with the livery design. The Pathfinder is built in Coventry by engineering firm RDM Group and is due to hit the pedestrianised streets of Milton Keynes in the spring. Putting great innovation back into Britain has led to this design creating a lot of global media and government interest, and the designs are now being shown in Singapore this week.

Jem's Half Marathon
As you may know from our 'Challenge Charlie' events last summer we have quite a few runners here at TTP. One of our senior designers and Brighton resident, Jem, took part in the Vitality Half Marathon on the Sussex Coast. He didn't manage to beat his PB, but he did manage to overtake a runner who was competing on his 80th Birthday! 

Tweets to make you Titter
Bringing brand personality to workspaces is what we do best; most recently we've been branding offices across the pond in the Big Apple.

The use of clever typography play on the tweets' subject. By using cut vinyl it is a cost effective way to bring life to bland walls and add interest to a space. To see our work on bringing personality to the workplace, click here.

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

New for News UK

The long sunny days of August seem a distant memory as we march our way through January amidst rumours of sleet and snow, however August for us marked the start of an exciting new project with the Technology and Operations team at News UK.

Technology and Operations were looking to inject some of their personality into their new space on the 6th floor of 1 London Bridge, which sits directly opposite the Shard and is part of the same London Bridge Renzo Piano Scheme.

Each team within Technology and Operations relate to different sectors of News UK’s business; ranging from digital, print, customer management and logistics, and prior to their move to 1 London Bridge they operated as silos. There was a desire for a more responsive, dynamic and communicative environment that encouraged the exchange of ideas. This gave us the hard task of creating something that could help unify the teams without loosing their independence.

The concept is grounded with the humble pixel and line. These two devices work hard to convey the technology involved in the teams, and also their collaboration. A pixel can work alone or be one part of the bigger picture, equally a line can work alone or to connect any number of people, things, places or anything you like!

To keep a sense of identity each team (there are ten in total) was associated a colour; which was applied to one of the pillars within their workspace, and a meeting room that would reflect their core message or USP. Through a series of meetings, doodles and brainstorming sessions we got to know each of the teams and how they wanted to be represented – from the customer focused CMP team to the process driven Infrastructure team. When combined the whole floor would tell a visitor the story of Technology and Operations and what they offer.

The coloured team pillars not only offered effective signposting, but also broke up the repetition and neutrality of the floor to provide a little bit of colour and personality to the work place environment.

The project is split into two stages, the first was the application of the concept to signage, pillars and meeting room exteriors to instantly provide a visual identity that held the floor together and complemented the modern interior office space with all its restrictions and many, many pillars. The second stage will look at the individual teams meeting rooms, and how their core message can be expressed.

Stage 1 is now complete and we’re poised ready for the start of stage 2. The feedback so far has been very positive from both the teams and those at higher levels, and has had the initial desired effect of creating a core concept that integrates the teams and provides a sense of identity to the floor. Stage 1 was very much about glass manifestations and vinyls whereas stage 2 will be more about bespoke artworks and installations, watch this space!