Simple Packaging Design Inspiration 2018

Simple but Sweet Packaging Designs that are Making us Smile

Simple Packaging Design Inspiration 2018

When you are designing packaging, you want your customer to feel like they are opening a present on Christmas day. But over design and you’ll take away from what’s inside. Here are some simple yet pretty sweet looking packaging designs that are making us smile today.

If you’re looking for packaging design services, look no further than your friends here at Go Media! Please get in touch with us today.

From Need Supply Co.

From Lately Lily

From Hubble

From Milkbarn

From Princess Polly

From Aura Box

From Justessence Perfume

From Chokolat Pimienta

From Parasol Co.

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset
Bold Packaging Design by James Prunean

From Birchbox

From Cafe Tontuu Tea

From Kokeshi Matches

From Teavana

From Soul Spice 


From this corn

From Minerals

From Lucienne Day tea towels

From Babbee’s Honey

From Space.NK

Happy packaging everyone!

Monday Morning Motivation: Talks that inspire us the most

Every so often, we all need to pull up or YouTube and find a motivational talk to give us the strength we need to get through a challenging day or simply for a breath of fresh air. Today, we’re sharing some of our favorites with you. Please leave a comment below and let us know which speeches light that spark for you. We’d love to check them out.


Graphic Designers Favorite TED Talks

The surprising truth about what motivates us
adapted from Dan Pink’s talk at the RSA


Graphic Designers Favorite TED Talks

Stefan Sagmeister’s
The power of time off



Joe Smith’s
How to use a paper towel



Andrew Solomon’s
How the worst moments in our lives
make us who we are

Malcolm Gladwell’s
The unheard story of David and Goliath

Simon Sinek’s
How great leaders inspire action

Robert Waldinger’s
What makes a good life?
Lessons from the longest study on happiness



Amy Cuddy’s
Your body language shapes who you are

Monica Lewinsky’s
The price of shame

Margaret Heffernan’s
The dangers of willful blindness

These Are Things’s
How we learned to stop worrying and enjoy the ride

Ira Glass
…On Storytelling



Ira Glass on Storytelling from David Shiyang Liu on Vimeo.

Michael Pollan’s
Edible Education 101

Dan Gilbert’s
The psychology of your future self

Dan Gilbert’s
The surprising science of happiness



From TED’s Radio Hour:
Brand Over Brain

graphic designers favorite ted talks

From TED’s Radio Hour:
The Power of Design

graphic designers favorite ted talks

Distressing Techniques in Adobe Illustrator

Distressing Techniques in Adobe Illustrator

Hey designers, attend our all-inclusive soul-fulfilling three-day design retreat, WMC: Off-The-Grid, this October 5 – 7th. To learn more, head to

Simon from Studio Ace of Spade here. Jeff Finley asked me to compile a list of some common distressing techniques as a supplement for his eBook “The Designer’s Guide to the Apparel Industry.” Distressing graphics is a pretty integral part of designing t-shirts. This tutorial will demonstrate three easy to understand and easy to apply techniques for adding a distressed or grunge look to a design using Adobe Illustrator.

Be sure to check out some other tutorials the graphic designers at Go Media have whipped up as well!

Adobe Illustrator Technique #1: The Grunge Brush

For the first technique, we’ll learn how to take advantage of Illustrator’s brush tool and of some of the brushes that come bundled with it. Our subject will be a vector of a blimp I created a few weeks ago and used for one of my Studio’s entries for Signalnoise’s retro poster competition, “Air traveling”.

The Step 1 is easy: open your vector file.


Step 2 is easy as well: make sure your vector object or group is expanded.
To do this, select all (CTRL+A or CMD+A, depending if you are using a Windows or Mac box), then go to the menu “Object” then “Expand”. You might be prompted to select what you want to be expanded. Check all the boxes.

Once this is done, we’ll move to step 3: select the brush tool and get the brush that interests us. Don’t forget to de-select your vector art or else you will apply the brush to it.
Open the brush panel from the left toolbar (or with F5), then click on the menu icon at the lower left corner.

Make your way through the menus to pick the “Artistic – Chalk / Charcoal / Pencil” brush set.

Then pick the first brush and the brush tool.

Step 4
Now, we’ll have to pick a random color that is not used at all in the design element we’re planning to grunge out. The reason for this is because we’ll use the magic wand tool later to select the brush strokes we are about to make, and we don’t want anything else but these brush strokes to be selected. Here I picked a really loud blue (something like #3FE6FF).

Now it’s your call. Play with the brush tool and make a couple brush strokes in order to cover your vector element. In my case, 2 strokes were enough.

Experiment with different thicknesses, placements. You should play with how you position/draw the paths with the brush tool, with the stroke thickness… For instance, I was hesitating between a 2 pt. thickness and a 4 pt. one before settling on 3 pt., because it looked the best. I would also not be afraid of editing the paths afterwards with the direct selection tool (keyboard shortcut: A) to modify their directions.
You want to cover most of your design, but also make sure that you won’t go overkill with it. Also, watch how I tried to leave out of the blimp the big chunks at the top left of the top stroke. These would have been over the top in my opinion, and wouldn’t have looked so realistic.

Quick tip: to quickly toggle the brush stroke on and off,  switch the stroke color to your background color by tapping the X key repeatedly.

Once you’re satisfied with the result, time to move towards step 5.

Here, we’ll expand the brush strokes like that we can merge them with the design using the pathfinder tool. To do so, select your vector object and your brush strokes (I used CTRL/CMD +A since these are the only things I have in my art board).

Then, go again to Object > Expand in order to expand everything.

Step 6: the pathfinder. Now comes the time to merge everything.
Go to the pathfinder (Shift + CTRL/CMD + F9 by default in Ai CS3) and click the merge option. Depending on the complexity of your design, that can take a few seconds.

The 7th and last step is to use the magic wand tool (shortcut: Y) to get rid of the blue we don’t need in our final design.

Click anywhere on the blue strokes to select all of them. Delete (DEL key) and…

… And it’s distressed! Victory?

No. Ai sometimes leaves some transparent elements that need to be cleaned up too. To see them, select everything (CMD/CTRL +A), then use the magic wand once more (Y) to click on one of these left over points. Once they’re all selected, you can delete them.

And here it is, our distressed blimp.

Adobe Illustrator Technique #2: the grunge vector element

The grunge brush technique is easy and convenient (the brush comes with Illustrator), however it might not look very realistic — especially if you have to make the brush really thick, big or to repeat it a lot to cover the design. Real distressing looks more or less random and doesn’t repeat itself.

One of the tricks we have up our sleeve then is to use resources that are specifically made with the distressing purpose in mind. Head over to the Go Media Arsenal and grab some grunge vector resources.

For this one, I’ll use a texture of the Destroy I vector pack (first one of the preview actually). It’s subtle enough, yet you can duplicate it for more intricate effects (as will be demonstrated).

Step 1: Open the files you will need: the blimp vector and the grunge vector. As I explained previously, the grunge vector is from the Go Media Arsenal.

Step 2 is similar to what we did previously with the brush strokes: change the color of the grunge vector to a color that has not been used in the element you want to distress. Again, I choose a bright blue.

Step 3 is where it becomes fun: it’s sizing and placement time. I chose to center the vector, then to size it big enough to cover my vector blimp. But then I realized that the single instance of the texture wasn’t enough distressing for my taste.

So what I did as a 4th step was to copy the texture and then paste it in front (CTRL/CMD +F)

After that, I just had to rotate the top copy a bit to accentuate the grunge feel. I rotated it of 90° for that tutorial, but remember that experimenting is the key and that you should find what suits you.

Step 5: Expand the vector grunge elements (Object > Expand).

Step 6: Merge using the Pathfinder palette.

Step 7: Cleaning out. Like earlier, we are going to delete the grunge vector(s) used to distress the blimp in order to keep just the distressed blimp in the final art.

Here I used the magic wand (Y) to select the blue grunge vectors…

And deleted them selection (DEL)…

Selected the transparent leftovers, deleted.

And there you have it, another distressed, grungy looking, blimp!

Adobe Illustrator Technique #3: using a texture

Like in Photoshop? No, no. We are going to live trace it.

For this distressing last technique in Illustrator, I’ll use one of the free textures from Lost and Taken. The texture I’m going to use is taken from his 20 subtle and simple grunge textures post.

(Don’t grab that one, go grab the high resolution file, it’s going to look much better)

It’s going to be really simple and share a few common steps with the previous techniques. Our experimentation subject is going to be this vintage radio vector I did a few weeks ago as part of another entry to Signalnoise’s retro poster competition.

Step 1: open your file.

Step 2: let’s place (File > Place) that grunge texture in our document. The process is really similar to opening the file.

Now, our 3rd step is to live trace it. It’s going to be easy, as when you place and select the texture, the live trace button appears on the top toolbar of Illustrator. We could use some of the presets, but I believe we can get better results by experimenting with the values a bit. So instead of selecting them, click on Tracing options at the bottom.

I always set Path Fitting, Minimum Area and Corner Angle to 1 when using Live Trace. It’s supposed to give the most details from the object I’m using as an input. I also checked Ignore White since I just want the grunge of the texture to come out. Then I also check the Preview box to see what those settings are producing.

I bumped the Threshold to 160 in order to get a darker texture (more pixels are converted to black). Once you’re happy with the result, click Trace and don’t forget to hit the Expand button.

Then, step 4 is to place, size and change the color.

Step 5: Expanding. It’s crucial to be sure that it’s correctly done, or else it simply won’t merge.

Step 6: Merging.

Step 7: Cleaning up!


Hey Designers, make sure to check out our Arsenal Membership, which hooks you up with our huge product library for only $15 per month. Yes, seriously.

Go Media’s Flickr Pool Showcase – September 2010

Hello there! My name is Simon. You’ve probably met me electronically through the links I post on the Go Media and Arsenal Facebook pages: I sign ^SBH. Anyway.

The good folks at Go Media and I were thinking that there’s a need to showcase all the goodness that the contributors of the Go Media Flickr Pool are creating. After a non satisfactory attempt using the RSS feed and some automatic posting on the Arsenal’s Facebook page, we decided to settle on a showcase/roundup that would be monthly published on the Zine (as it used to be done before). And they asked me to write it, which is pretty awesome. Anyway.

There are no real “rules” as how to be selected. Just post good work :-) When I select stuff, I try to be as diverse and eclectic as possible.

Baetulona | Carpe Noctem
Baetulona | Carpe Noctem by MikeFr

Knowledge by freshfauxx

MF Skull poster
MF Skull poster by MikeFr

Dont Sleep
Dont Sleep by Beadlerworks

Time for a change
Time for a change by Beadlerworks

Monster of The Month 10 Monster of The Month 10 by #rua309

Pool Balls
Pool Balls by Jordan Kauffman

OtherSpace by hiDobrado

Hitler by jeff_finley

tri-tri again baby
tri-tri-again baby by dillill

unclesam by visual80

Echo Echo
Echo Echo by designbyrds

I really hope you liked that “Chapter #00” of the Go Media Flickr Pool showcase. See you in September for the Chapter #01!

15 Over-The-Top Business Card Designs

Business cards are one of the elements of corporate design that should be pushed beyond just graphics, and converge with several processes to become what they should be: a memorable, collectible and impressive piece to be carried away everywhere. The following are perfect examples, and have overcome the graphic-only component of the piece by using different materials and techniques. A recognizable pattern in all these designs is the use of die-cuts.

One heavy piece: A print-sticked application directly on a metallic-emboss treated plate, Duffy And Partners business card. Duffy

Print applications on inset embossed paper; multiple textures in one piece.

Print with golden / silver special inks. You can feel the texture of this piece just by looking at it. Design by NothingSomething NY

A soft-looking print applied on top of printed hard-paper for Photographer John Bragg. Design by Funnel.

Inset embossing; die-cut with application on-top of it. Design by Luke Dorny.

Print application applied to a lapping-treated acetate. Easily modified for multiple employees and and their job description. Design by Catalyst Studios

Speaking of heavy, this business card has completely re-thought the concept into a metal token reflecting the goods of the product design company: Dashdotstudios

Showing the love towards former racing Greyhounds and the issues revolving around them, this dog-tag metallic embossed plate + tampography for the business cards of the National Greyhound Adoption Program is quite an achievement. Laurie DeMartino

Each of these card is unique, the result of a hand-made process by Ethan Martin

Barkley Evergreen & Partners developed this multi-textured, thick business card for 40 Sardines Restaurant. Delicate inset embossing and on-top applications.Barkley Evergreen & Partners.

Die-cut, soft foil emboss for the logo with printed paper application and a even subtler background pattern for the business card body. Design by Honest Brothers

Patterns and thickness are the main visual elements in this business card for Le Club Fez; again, a label die-cut applied to the body of the card allows for easy replacement for new data. Design by Hook USA.

A very unique design created with die-cut paper and a wrinkle texture. Design by the Michael Strauss himself.

Art with an industrial approach to a corporate field; very experimental business cards with different and unique results. Design by Sonner Valle

Space150 is recognized for their well-designed and executed business cards. Dry cuts, neon inks and inset emboss makes part of the main ingredients for this pieces. Design by Space150


Another examples of business cards well-executed, with lots of textures and alternative printing processes helping stand out from the common:

122 Raster & Vector Wings

Lately I’ve been reading a lot about lucid dreaming, keeping a dream journal, watching Waking Life, and generally trying everything I can to take control of my dreams. The first thing I’m going to do in a dream – FLY! Us ground dwelling humans seem to be pretty consumed by the idea of taking flight – there’s just something immortal about it. So, there’s no wonder that wings are a perennial favorite design element.

Good news is that there’s lots of resources out there to help you incorporate some wingage into your designs. I’ve divided the resources up into three categories: Photoshop Brushes, Vector, and Texture / Reference Images. Most are free, but be sure to read each resource’s usage blurb before you use them on the next cult hit tee.

Photoshop Brushes

Here’s a nice set of Sumi-e style wings from wab-sabi-ways

Falln-Brushes on Deviant Art has a great collection of Brushes, and features Wings in quite a few. Here are few winged highlights. Just click the previews to go to the download page.

Pretty Brush and punksafteypin also have some very nice winged brushes. Click the image to download.

Here’s a few more deviant art winged brush sets to feast on if you’re still hungry.
Wings Photoshop Brushes by Debi Chiru
Wing Brushes 2
Wing Brushes 3

While Brusheezy is an awesome collection of Photoshop brushes, it could definitely use a few more wings. Here are the only wings on the site,some cool bat wings: mixes grunge and wings in a messy set of Splatter Brushes.

Vector Wings

Vector Wings are even harder to come by than Photoshop brushes, and harder to make. They’re also a lot more useful! Vector wings have more detail and enjoy all kinds of vectory goodness like subtracting, intersecting, etc. Here are some of the juiciest vector wings we could round up on the web.

Well hey, this is Go Media’s blog, so we’ve got to include our very own vector wings. While not free, we think you’ll agree that the quality is way beyond what you’ll find out there free of charge. Go Media has two wing packs from Set 1 and Set 2. There’s also a really badass wing included in Ornate from Set 7.

Unfortunately you can’t really see all the detail in these wings from the previews. Check out the mad detail by trying out our sample pack, which happens to have 4 pretty sweet wings.

Ok, ok, on to the free stuff. Jimiyo posted some nice free vector wings on his blog last month:

Chemist2dio Labs made some simple but very usable wings. There are four different wings, two solid silhouettes, and two with outlines.

I Heart Vector has some cool wings and a few birds (which are close enough) for free.

Again, trusty Vecteezy needs more wings! Ben Blogged has the only good wings on Vecteezy with the Wings – Coat of Arms with a ton of downloads.

Textures & Reference Images

Here are some references images that could be used as textures. When you get brave enough to fire up that pen tool or wacom and start making some of your own vector wings, these photos will come in handy! Also, if you want to use these images as low-res brushes you can make your own brushes in Photoshop. Just go to Edit > Define Brush Preset with the image loaded.


Well that rounds out this collection of winged design goodness. Share your best spots for finding wings in the comments. I look forward to revising this list with your suggestions. Take care!

12 Sources of Inspiration for Creating Your Own Lettering or Typeface Designs

This is an article written by guest author Sean Hodge from AiBURN, a blog about design, creativity, inspiration, tutorials, and vector graphics.


Lettering and Typeface design is a creative endeavor that requires constant sources of motivation, influence, and inspiration. If you dream of painstakingly designing the next amazing Open Type Font, desire to craft beautiful Hand Drawn Lettering, or feel the urge to create original Typeface Designs then this article is for you.

1. Bring Your Analysis to the Process

Learn how letters function alone, as typefaces, and in real world design systems. Logic can take you a reasonable way when analyzing. Though more formal tests are tools that can be used as well. Analyze letter-forms for functionality. Looks for faults in typefaces and ways of improving them. This will develop your visual eye, appreciation for the details of letters, and understanding of the totality of a typeface design.

Platelet is a font released by Emigre. This typeface design was inspired by California license plate systems. The font solution gave greater legibility to a monospace typeface design.


Consider how the letters work within the typeface itself. What isn’t working? Try analyzing a free font. The time it takes to design a polished font is remarkable. So, download a free font and

Great site for Shirt Design Inspiration


There’s a cool new site out there called Emptees that’s showcasing the art of t-shirt design. There doesn’t seem to be a commercial slant like Threadless, and it’s more of basically a hub for inspiration. Some great artists are posting their designs there and it seems to be taking off. The site was created by the fine folks at Big Cartel so if there would be a commercial slant, it would be to try to get these apparel designers to sign up for their own Big Cartel store which is cool by me.

But anyway I’ve signed up and posted a few of my own apparel designs. I plan to post more eventually. There are lots of new designs posted every day by all the different artists and they are awarding the most favorited designs. I think it’s a great idea! If you’ve got some of your own shirts you’ve designed, might as well post them up so the community can give you feedback.