"Working in-house, we typically deal with corporate branded material with tight brand guidelines, so the opportunity to work on a project with complete creative freedom was exciting, though it was daunting as well," explains the 'F.I. Anonymous' team. "We felt the pressure of being the first in-house team to create an issue of Wayward Arts, which motivated us to create a unique issue that would surprise people when they learned it was created by a team like ours. We also lacked the dedicated roles of a typical agency (creative director, copywriter, photographer, etc.) so we needed to discover the strengths of each team member to develop a hierarchal structure for the group."
'F.I. Anonymous' contributors were scattered among different teams across a large organization, many of whom had never met prior to the project. This created a challenging environment for developing a cohesive publication. Collaborators say it took a few tries before landing on the final concept.
"We originally worked on an entirely different idea, but couldn't design a cohesive magazine from the variety of artwork we collected. We ultimately decided to scrap everything and start from scratch. We hit on the new concept of creating the journal of a man who is obsessed with building the ultimate cell phone. We developed an entire backstory and team members were tasked to create artwork from his perspective for different sections."
For subject matter, the creative team considered both the positive and negative consequences of the cell phone's prominence in modern life and the device's effect on how society interacts. "The feeling of constantly needing to stare at your phone to check emails, Facebook or Twitter seemed to tie in perfectly with the obsession theme."
To execute the journal idea, 'F.I. Anonymous' chose to focus on hand-made creations, which meant a departure from the modern everyday design practices. "We needed to unchain ourselves from our computers and actually create everything by hand. The spirit of the magazine became about drawing, photographing, painting, hand writing, carving, laser-cutting, ripping and building all the artwork. Our final files didn't contain any fonts or vector graphics – something quite different from 'typical' graphic design. We hope that this issue will inspire people to put down their cell phones and create something."
On working with Flash Reproductions, the team emphasizes their appreciation for the support provided throughout the creative process. "We owe an enormous amount of gratitude to the entire team at Flash for not only providing guidance, but for also having a huge amount of patience with our team on this creative journey. After handing off the files, it was fantastic to see Flash passionately work their magic to bring our issue to life. It was a blast collaborating with them."
'F.I. Anonymous' also invites readers to visit www.cell361.com for additional photos, videos and behind-the-scenes material.
About Wayward Arts
Wayward Arts is a monthly publication printed by Flash Reproductions, with paper provided by Unisource Canada in conjunction with their mill suppliers. A different design firm is invited to curate each issue, changing the design, layout, colours, mood and paper to reflect their interpretation of the year’s over-arching theme.