• Paper Plane Consulting

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PAPER PLANE embarked on a journey that would refresh the Cultural Center of Cape Cod's brand to honor the organization's maturity while keeping our friendly voice and the accessibility inherent in their core ideology: All the Arts for All of Us.


We started our process with internal and external listening sessions that guided our priorities and fundamentals. Beginning with a renewed color palette that reflects the colors of Cape Cod with a modern twist, the jewel-tone palette represents the Center as a jewel within the community, something we heard from so many constituents. We have moved to a deep peacock blue, brought in a teal reminiscent of Cape Cod waters, a yellow that reminded us of sunrise, and burgundy depicting the famous local seafood, lobster. We rounded out the palette with a marsh green and deep hydrangea purple.


We paired down and simplified the font collection to make materials more comfortable to read and incorporated those into a refreshed logo, which now always includes the tagline.


The redesign moved throughout digital and printed collateral materials, including way-finding signage throughout the campus, and creating a brand for the weekly e-blast, THE WEEKLY MUSE. We developed unique artwork templates throughout social media to apply the new color palette to different subjects or content to create a subconscious road map to ease navigation.


With deep backgrounds in the cultural sector, PAPER PLANE creatives were eager to give the Center a new website that presented its programs and exhibitions in a clean and user-focused way.


Among the Center's new website's goals, encouraging and enabling class and event participation ranked highest. PAPER PLANE's strategy for inspiring visits focused on creating a digital experience that guided users through content using onsite photography, primary and secondary menus, and connecting the user to search functions utilizing the current CRM system.


Web design for cultural institutions necessitates more emphasis on the visual browsing experience than linear narratives. Principals at PAPER PLANE know that visitors rarely read a museum's homepage from top to bottom: instead, visitors scan for the images that resonate with them the most and then click to see more. Is it part of an upcoming exhibit? Is there a lecture I can go to? We're not trying to tell a story about the Center. We want people to experience all that the Center has to offer.

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Photograph: Ratno Sardi/Griffith University


If for any reason you find yourself on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, climb up a particular dusty, meandering track on the edge of a steep hillside. Scramble around the rocky outcrops close to the top, negotiate a bamboo ladder, and step into a cave system that was once underwater as part of an ancient coral reef. Welcome to the world’s oldest art gallery.

Look above your head. In the rough, uneven surface of limestone rock, splintered with age and masked by mineral deposits [affectionately known as ‘popcorn’ by geologists], you will see the faint lines of a painting created at least 40,000 years ago. To date, this is the oldest known painting of figurative art anywhere in the world. There are many paintings in this cave, and many more still in similar locations nearby, all thought to be around a similar age.

Some depict simple human outlines, carrying what appear to be hunting tools, others show distinct animal forms, and others still show the silhouetted shapes of human hands, presumably belonging to the artists themselves. Their relative simplicity takes away none of the thrill of knowing they are the earliest examples of creative art made by humans.

Whatever the reason they were painted - to glorify a hunt, to express spiritual or early religious sensibilities, or made just for fun like an archaic graffiti – it’s compelling they were not made out of necessity but for the sake of creativity itself, using our imagination to tell a story.

These paintings are an extraordinary snapshot of our distant past, demonstrating that creativity and artistic expression have been part of what it means to be human for a lot longer than we previously realized. We humans have been making tools for around 2 million years, and since this in itself is an expression of creativity, perhaps the artistic expression that drives us to create art today is equally old.

We may never know exactly when our creative flame was lit, but the next time you start a new painting, sketch out ideas for that new bathroom, or even dream up a recipe for ‘omelet ice cream,’ remember – we’ve been doing this kind of thing a very long time.

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We all know what to expect when we go to an art gallery. Hushed rooms, white walls and low lights; the sound of the polite murmur of us humans sharing opinion. Written text is small and subtle, giving snippets of information without disturbing the eye. And punctuating this serenity, unique pieces of art, carefully created and presented for our pleasure. But there are other art galleries with an altogether different atmosphere. Loud voices, louder music, bright lights, and large words. The art is everywhere - stacked up in quantity, like supermarket shelves. In fact, like supermarkets themselves.


When we are there, we rarely think much beyond the food we need to buy. But look past the hard sell and the production line surroundings and take a moment to do something different. Stop amongst the pickles, pause at the soups, or take a moment at the cereals and take a closer look. Suddenly there’s a new world of imagination to behold - the art of packaging is creative and intriguing.


In a conventional art gallery, each artwork is uniquely created, drawing you in and sparking your emotions to tell you a story or take you on a journey. The artist works hard to convey their feelings to the viewer. This gallery is perhaps no different - with each bottle, tin, and box trying to convey many of the same sensations, albeit with different objectives.


Look at them as a piece of art. The materials are pleasing and familiar, their shape sculpted in a multitude of satisfying forms. The typefaces are enticing and exotic, suggestive of another time or place. The drawings, paintings, and photographs take you further still – somewhere desirable or captivating. And an endless palette of colors and shades unite everything into a single work of art.


This is not to say supermarkets are somehow superseding the art gallery, or packaging designers replacing the artist. Still, there’s no harm in enjoying all forms of artistic expression, even when we discover it in unlikely places. So next time you are grocery shopping, assume you’re in an art gallery and enjoy what you see for its own sake. Andy Warhol did.

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