Responses by Caleb Kozlowski, creative director, Hybrid Design
Background: The purpose of this project was to make the connection between inspiration and making. We set out to close that gap with the Make with Mohawk campaign, focusing on a progression of three things: inspire with a series of print sets that connected process and material; create an opportunity to act on that inspiration with an online print shop that lets you try out that process with your own design; and celebrate the work people have been doing on Mohawk Paper with the launch of The Mohawk Show.
Reasoning: Most of us have a thing we want to try, but the opportunities we have in front of us are limited. This is endlessly frustrating—especially to young designers getting their start. So, we wanted to create something that gave designers an opportunity to make something outside of all the restrictions—clients, directors, briefs, mediums—that hold them back from making work that gets them excited. It was important we carried this thinking through to The Mohawk Show by changing the way we think about “prizes.” Every award given by The Mohawk Show will be some kind of making—not just an accolade. What better way to reward great work than with the opportunity to make more of it?
Challenges: The logistics of this project were pretty complex and there wasn’t any template to follow. The core idea always remained the same, but the way we executed that idea had a lot of iteration along the way. No one piece was so challenging by itself, but tying them all together required a lot of adjustment.
Favorite details: I love the idea that we are giving people the opportunity to make something they might not have otherwise. If we can impact people like that, it means so much more than inspiration. Making is a catalyst. It gets your ideas out into the real world where they evolve. If we helped you get just one of your ideas out of your head and on to paper, who knows what wonderful place that one act of making might lead?
Visual influences: The graphic inspiration came from piles of work in our studio. We looked down and saw a mash of styles and colors and ideas and thought: “this is us in a snapshot.” Because it all overlapped, we saw only a hint of each piece, which added a touch of mystery and possibility. We thought we could represent inspiration like this—nothing complete, but hints at the places you might want to explore.
Time constraints: Time constraints made us work fast, but they also forced us to get practical and make decisions. This project needed that.