At Stephens College I had the complete privilege to take the package design class my senior year. To this day, it has been my favorite class that I have ever taken. I had never realized or thought about package design before. I didn’t understand that there was a science and an art to it and it was more than just designing boxes. I feel that every project that I completed for that class will stay with me and will be some of my proudest accomplishments even 10 years down the road. I learned an incredible amount of knowledge about design that I didn’t know before.
My favorite project from that class would have to be the chocolate/candy project. My teacher tasked us with coming up with a line of candy or chocolates. We were to come up with three variations, branding, and to physically execute our ideas with mockups. Because this class was known to be incredibly challenging and this was the first big project we had, I had a really hard time coming up with an idea. Also, previously, the project had been a coffee/tea project so I had already come up with an idea for that not knowing that it changes every year. I basically had to reroute my brainstorming and thinking to gear up for candy.
Because I had no clue where to start, I decided to conduct some research. I knew that I wanted my candy or chocolate to have international appeal,
I interviewed some of my international friends all
over the world. I asked them questions like what their favorite memories are associated to candy/chocolate. What candy was their favorite?
A recurring memory that kept popping up was that
a lot of people had good memories connected to being able to share it with someone else.
They liked that aspect of candy and the connection and thoughtfulness that comes along with gifting it to someone else. Then, I understood the direction
that I needed to take this project. The next step
was to decide what the context was and pick a
As for the name, I am a lover of puns and a lover of clever titles or names. I don’t think it took me too long to come up with the name Chocol-art after the concept was fully conceived. But coming up with the 3 variations was proving to be somewhat difficult. I think if I could go back and change something about this project, it would be to go back and re-develop my variation concepts. The three flavors were each inspired by one “department” of art. There was one chocolate bar dedicated to fine art paintings, another dedicated to iconic book covers, and the last being graphic art illustrations. I also kept in mind that there could be endless variations and flavors. I imagined that if there were a special artist exhibit at the museum, Chocol-art could collaborate with the artist and come out with a special edition chocolate bar that featured only their works of art.
The packaging, I wanted to exactly like a book as well. I have seen some really great chocolate bar designs, but I hate having to rip open the paper to get to the chocolate and then the design is ruined. I liked the idea of packaging that opened like a box and then within that you have tiny book-shaped chocolate. I wanted there to be a place to properly credit all the artists, so I listed that within the inside front cover. In order to hold everything closed, I chose a slip cover design. The slip cover design features a marble texture because I thought that complemented the cover designs and seemed to fit within the art museum theme.
For the cover designs, I created 2 of the 3 covers.
The 3rd is very obviously a Monet painting, and I most certainly did not do that nor try to replicate it. For the flavor honoring literature, I merely found a handwritten font and wrote some quotes on top of
a parchment paper background. And for the flavor honoring graphic design, I came up with my own version of a geometric piece I had found during my inspiration search. In terms of coming up with
flavors, I didn’t want them to be too strange.
So I thought of some popular flavors and flavors that
I would want to find in a chocolate bar other than
just milk or dark chocolate. I believe I also surveyed some friends and family to see what flavors they would want in chocolate.
In addition to having to mock up our chocolate bars and present all our research and findings to the class, we also had to take our own product photos. My teacher wanted to teach us how to take our own product shots in a mini studio/lightbox. She felt that it was an important aspect of being a designer and I think she is right. I think it’s important to have good photos of your work and to go through that whole process. I have always loved taking photos of interesting compositions and angles, so I had a lot of fun with this part of the project. I also never have taken photos on such a professional camera before, so it was all a great learning experience for me.