Russell Fox
Heart & Sole

  • 2020

    Submission # 194

  • Output

    Self-initiated – Tāku kaupapa

  • Kaupapa

    Innovation – Technical

    Wildcard – Unique Projects

  • Location

    Auckland, Tāmaki Makaurau

Project Overview:
Finding a role as a graduate often seems impossible.
You constantly battle the catch-22 of needing experience in the industry in order to enter it. When the rare internship or junior role does pop up, everyone guns for it. Competition is fierce, and every applicant is faced with the challenge of standing out somehow.

Being memorable is difficult when you follow the same format as everyone else. When you're just another email in an inbox it’s difficult to separate yourself, and while you can write whatever you like about yourself, where’s the proof?

I sought to seperate myself from the pile of digital applications and provide tangible proof of my capabilities. I didn’t just want to state who I am as a designer, and the passion behind what I do, I wanted to prove it.

In response, my brief was to create an introduction package that faithfully demonstrates my skill-set: a piece that showcases skill in copywriting, design craft, strategy, creativity, problem solving, and dedication in its execution.

To present myself through a piece of design, I have to consider what I'm made of; the skills, tendencies and philosophies that find a home in my work:

1 - Typography is a staple for the majority of graphic designers, but having skill in creative copywriting, narrative and storytelling as well gives me an edge in most projects.

2 - Curiosity is ultimately what drives me from project to project, and I hope to appeal to the innate curiosity in everyone by crafting engaging and playful experiential outcomes.

3 - Love for tactility and material has directed me to print, sculpture, and all physical aspects of graphic design, defining my tastiest and tendencies along the way.

4 - Thinking big and straying out of my comfort zone is something I embrace, while sound strategy allows me to navigate that challenge.

All of these aspects define my design identity, and while they would always be present in my underlying process, my challenge would be making them visible in the outcome itself.

Heart and sole is a twist on the old cliche, replacing soul with sole to create two distinct halves.

"Heart" is poetic, passion and emotion, a poetic pitch of who you are and what you're about.

"Sole" (as in shoe) represents hard work, effort, practicality, and physicality.

Where "Heart" takes shape as a letter of intent speaking of my personality and skill set, "Sole" seeks to provide a demonstration of those attributes.

To demonstrate passion for the craft, dedication to concept and stepping out of my comfort zone, I set about making a sculptural cardboard shoe from scratch. I tore apart an existing shoe to create a packaging net, and iterated to produce a polished outcome that shows care through its details (a hand braided miniature shoelace for instance).

Creative copy and playfulness were demonstrated through the application of the shoe theme across the whole package. The packaging itself is presented as a shoe box, with flavor text following the same theme - "a foot in the door", "if the shoe fits", etc.

Narrative and experiential design are demonstrated first through custom packaging designed to reveal each stage in sequence as it unfolds.

Finally, "Sole" provides a call to action, asking the viewer to pick up the shoe and check the sole to see "if the shoe fits". At this point the shoe is revealed to be a business card, reinforcing its role as a representation of me, and encouraging the viewer to “take the next step”.

Credits & Collaborators:
Creative Director - Russell Hooton-Fox
Photographer - Russell Hooton-Fox, Case Dakota

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