Designers Who Are Better Than Me

Parallax Design wants you to know that they sell imagination, (personally I prefer to only lend mine out on weekdays and make sure it’s back by six) it’s a good thing they have plenty on offer because at these prices you’d be crazy to shop for your imagination anywhere else. Parallax is run by ‘pal ‘o mine’ from my Uni days Matthew Remphrey and after a few years in business he’s finally put up an honest to gosh website for us to all ooh and ahh over (and you will!)

I’ve probably talked about Matthew’s work on this blog more than anyone’s, particularly his work on the recent Adelaide Festival of Arts, hopefully he doesn’t want to punch me in the face next time I run into him, but Parallax are producing some very recognisable and awarded work at the moment, right from the heart of little old Adelaide.

A little history on Matthew from my perspective, he went through the Illustration stream at the University of South Australia’s Bachelor of Design course at the same time I did Visual Communication (proof that in the final analysis, it probably didn’t matter which stream you chose to follow). After graduating he formed a design/marketing company called Punch! with fellow graduate Andrew Rice which lasted for a couple of years. Andrew decided to move interstate and Matthew moved onto IK Design where he quickly began to produce some impressive design work that earned him many national and international design awards as well as being featured in all the big graphic design publications such as Graphis and Communication Arts. An overseas trip to the US contributed to the inspiration to go out on his own and form Parallax.

I think you can still see some of the influence of those IK Design years, especially in the SA Tourism ‘Brilliant Blend’ mark, but if you look at the identity work he did on Mexican Burritto outlet “Burp’ there’s a definite growth away from anything I could imagine IK Design producing. This identity is a perfect example of the ‘simpatico’ that parallax seems to manage with their clients, not only is it extremely appropriate and well produced, it’s also a lot of fun and light years away from your typical fast-food outlet identity, this is a piece that respects the intelligence of both the client and their customers.

In a recent article on Parallax, Matthew held that the idea is central to the core of what Parallax produces, if the viewer can’t immediately grasp your idea then it’s failed in it’s purpose, I suspect he holds a little more leeway in that regard. The work he has produced for the Epilepsy Association, Adelaide Festival of Arts and Living Cell Technologies seem to leave some room for the viewer to explore and discover, some trust that they’ll grasp to the concept, and to me, they are all the better for it, being some of the standout pieces in his portfolio.

The Epilepsy Association identity in particular is a great example off effective communication on what I imagine was a fairly tight budget and for a difficult and delicate subject matter.

So take a look through the site’s portfolio section for a dose of inspiration, I’m sure you’ll be seeing a lot of it in the upcoming Australian Graphic Design Awards.