Food is one of the most visceral elements in human existence and culture. It’s our strongest connection with each other and our sense of identity as human beings. It allows us to define our health, our culture, our pleasure, and ourselves. Design is a construct of the human desire to feel and connect. These two forces in society fluidly work to not only provide a service to society, but to enrich our lives. When food and design are combined, we not only receive a striking message and impact, but a more significant and transformative experience. The emotion received through the unity between food and graphic design gives us a stronger connection to being human.
Design is a force so strong in food that it almost goes unnoticed. Spoons. Chopsticks. Menu designs that influence what you order. Color and vibrancy. Everything down to the plating. Design, when applied to food, brings us such pleasure and enhancement of our daily, otherwise apathetic eating habits. If there wasn’t an implementation of design in every interaction with food, we would consider eating a chore or requirement rather than a delight. You can’t have food without design, and I believe that graphic design should be able to say the same about food. And I’m not just talking about transient design, but design that makes an impact on the future and makes a difference.
One example of food allowing users to really engage their design is the Hälssen & Lyon Tea Calendar, designed by Kolle Rebbe, Hamburg (Food Player). Kolle Rebbe created a brilliant solution to encouraging consumers to have Hälssen & Lyon tea not simply just for special occasions but everyday by cleverly innovating one of the world’s oldest forms of advertising: the promotional calendar (Parrack). Through this, they allowed users to delightfully try a different cup of tea a day. Not only does the calendar beg to be used and interacted with daily, but leaves an impressionable mark on the company’s presence of sophistication and regard for the consumer.