Not Enough Info

FOR personal reasons I’d rather not discuss here, I found myself this past week at a Philippine government agency seeking financial assistance for a surgical procedure I need to have done but cannot afford. Prior to going to this agency, located a good hour or so (over 200 pesos) away from where I live, I wanted to ensure that once I committed to making the trip, I’d have all the required documents for my grant application. 

It goes without saying that government offices here aren’t necessarily the most citizen friendly places (memory: spending 12 hours just to have my picture taken for my driver’s license years ago). I figured this to be especially true at a place where citizens present were of the desperate sort, needing money for medical bills, just like me. Accepting the notion that my entire day may just very well be spent at this agency, I wanted to make sure that it would be worth it, that I didn’t have to go back there on some other day with so-and-so’s signature or this-and-that document.

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You’re not an artist…Your client is.

AT our studio, Toolbox D, we have a saying.

“We are not artists.”

Our calling cards have that line saying “Not an artist” and it often causes people to ask us what it means. After all, we do graphics and layout and writing and that’s most likely the reason we’re showing our card to these people in the first place. It’s a conversation starter and it allows us to talk about a very important distinction about how we see our work and how we believe all of our peers in our industry should too.

Below the line are our official designations. And most of us have the designation “graphic designer.”  

We are not artists. We are designers.

Are they different? Yes.

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Duh! #1: “Copy”

story by Martin Villanueva
art by Kenneth Umali

Page 1

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Don’t Forget Books

I’M a creative writing major, and I teach CW at my alma mater two days out of the work week, when I’m not at my copywriting job with a design studio. Needless to say, I’ve pledged my allegiance to the concept of the physical, printed-and-bound book countless times, even amid having students who admit to doing most of their reading online.

I’m equally fascinated and hesitant about the Web, more so about notions that it will be the primary venue from which we consume our literature and attain our knowledge. The hesitance has something to do with the democracy of it all, the cliched (yet very dangerously true) idea that it’s all there, the good and the bad, collectively making what for me is often white noise. Because of this, I was quite excited when I chanced upon an article entitled “Publishing in the Age of the Internet” by Adrian Shaughnessy this morning. I’m drawn to the desires of its author to pursue publishing books about design in this age of Web.

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Hello World

Welcome to StapleD, a site that celebrates the design life, one that is dedicated to solving practical business and communication problems. StapleD is maintained by Toolbox D, a full-service graphic design studio based in the Philippines.
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Through this venue, we hope to share our experiences as a growing studio and to also raise discussions about various aspects of this kind of work that we feel strongly about. StapleD is our way of reaching out to other designers and design enthusiasts, a venue by which we further imbibe what we believe is the spirit of what a good designer is: a problem solver.
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We will have reoccurring types of articles on this site. InformeD is a regular comic created by Toolbox D design manager Jamie Bautista that illustrates various how-to’s related to the professionalization of designer-client relationships. ProcesseD charts the start-to-finish story of Toolbox D design projects. ResearcheD subjects contentious design decisions to market testing. And lastly, Duh! humorously defines pertinent terms in design, communication, and business.
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This site will also post sketches, studies, and notations for various in-progress projects of Toolbox D, and it will also occasionally feature musings on interesting topics raised during our weekly meetings.
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Be sure to follow us on Twitter and on Tumblr. We are very much excited to expand our network, especially with other designers, and we hope to explore various ways dynamic linkages can be created.
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