Card description: Business cards for graphic design studio. Letterpress printed at Studio On Fire, Minneapolis. Size: 3.5″ x 2″. Paper: French Poptone Starch White 140# cover (has visible paper fibers in it). Colors: 3 Pantone spots (805, 629, Black 7) + spot varnish. Finishing techniques: Custom hexagonal die cut; Fronts and backs were printed separately, then custom duplexed for total weight of 280#.

These cards were designed to compliment the aesthetic I’ve established for my art and graphic design studio’s visual identity. I define the ATOMICvibe as the “a-HA!” moment of clarity in the creative process. Like nuclear fusion, it’s when tiny ideas coalesce, and then explode into beautiful design. The logo visually depicts this creative reaction. Forming abstract A & V shapes, the converging hands cradle the tiny beginnings of a big idea, fusing them until they discharge a shockwave of creativity. The custom type, designed to perfectly integrate with the mark, is meant to symbolize the path of electrons. The mark is inspired by retro imagery from the Atomic Age such as science, the Space Race, Sputnik, and the iconic George Nelson Ball Clock.

The design of the cards further emphasizes this scientific, nuclear-inspired theme by depicting the logo and “information nodes” as elements that spring forth from an interconnected hexagonal pattern evocative of chemical equations or the visual representation of some sort of chemical reaction.

To help set these elements off, the pattern takes on a “there, but not there” effect with its treatment as a heavily-impressed spot varnish, while the extremely bright, red-orange fluorescence of Pantone 805 really reinforces the nuclear fusion theme.

To add another level of uniqueness, the cards feature a custom, hexagonal die cut, which is inspired by the shape of the logo. And finally, to preserve the deep impressions on either side, the fronts and backs were printed separately, and then custom duplexed together. This gives each card some serious thump factor.

Since the card uses a logo and other elements designed with intentional misregistration, and a paper stock flecked with visible fibers, I chose letterpress over offset specifically because its imperfect printing process lent itself perfectly to my retro-inspired aesthetic.

Designed by: ATOMICvibe