This Week's Challenge: I'm Drawing a Blank

I'm Drawing a Blank by David Sherwin - Picture 1

White space … the final frontier.

These are the voyages of the graphic designer. Our mission: to bring balance and grace to an otherwise overloaded layout. To seek out opportunities to pare away excess and focus on what’s necessary. To boldly convey the appropriate conceptual idea to our audience. Our quest for bold use of white space is what makes the following challenge so difficult—and the results that come out of it so rewarding.

The challenge: You were recently hired by a paint company to help them with a rebranding effort. For your first project, they would like you to design a 9″ x 12″ (23cm x 30cm) folder that will hold a revamped press kit and other supplementary collateral. Your client has given only one mandatory direction: the folder must have at least 90 percent white showing in the overall design. You have 60 minutes to complete this challenge.

In a twenty-minute brainstorm session for this challenge, I sketched out this idea for a paint-by-numbers cover for the fictional Kingston Artist’s Supply catalog. The reader can flatten out the folder, purchase the paint colors noted in the legend on the back cover, and start on their first masterwork.

I'm Drawing a Blank by David Sherwin - Picture 3

I'm Drawing a Blank by David Sherwin - Picture 2

Every week, I’ll be sharing with the design community a creative challenge, alongside sample solutions from working designers and students. The above challenge is from my forthcoming book for HOW Design Press, Creative Workshop: 80 Challenges to Sharpen Your Design Skills.