Golden Camera: A Brand Identity for the German Oscars

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Winning an Oscar may represent the pinnacle of Hollywood success, but in Germany, a gold plated camera is the top prize. When the organizers of The Golden Camera (“Die goldene kamera”) award show wanted to make a good impression, they knew they needed a brand identity that would be as eye-catching as the award winners on stage. Luckily, they knew who could make that happen: Paperlux, a Hamburg design firm whose creations for the event were possibly the biggest winners of the night.

Paperlux crafted several elements for the 2015 show that were meant to tease the audience and drum up excitement, such as the invitation, winner’s envelope, program booklet, menu, ticket, seating card, and even a stamp.golden camera brand identity4

Steeped in tradition, The Golden Camera Awards have paid homage to the year’s top actors, musicians and entertainers since 1966. And having worked on the Golden Camera campaign for nearly a decade, Paperlux understood that it had to not only honor this rich history, but also give the materials a contemporary feel.

Balancing old and new

“The challenge with the Golden Camera is to always start afresh,” says project creative director Max Kuehne. Paperlux used two type styles prominently on all printed materials. “We chose a very eye-catching and modern sans serif font—the Walsheim by Grilli Type.”

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golden camera brand identity

The campaign also casts a look back to the beginnings of the Golden Camera with the lettering “Fünfzig” (“fifty” in German), imprinted as a hot foil stamp. “We opted for hot foil to clearly separate the two levels, old and new,” Keuhne explains. The Ballpoint font used for the stamp is reminiscent of the ‘60s. “It is elegantly wrapped around the modern sans serif, which [was] used extensively and consecutively throughout all elements.”

Paper played a major role in the quality of the project. Paperlux chose a golden paper with a soft-touch coating as well as an “Ultra Black” sheet. The stamp’s colors were black, white and gold, and the program was designed to resemble gold bullion.

“To find a golden paper which is neither too swanky nor too cheap was quite a task,” Kuehne says. The solution: Arjowiggins Curious Cosmic, Gold Ray, 360 gsm. “It has a very elegant golden tone plus a very soft coating.” It also served as the perfect contrast for what is billed as “the blackest paper on the market”: Sirio, Ultra Black, 360 gsm by Fedrigoni.

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It was also important that the different elements of the campaign have a consistent feel, he maintains. “The binding element was, of course, the typography. The very obvious use of it and the limited amount of font sizes creates a togetherness throughout all elements. When you put them all together or next to each other, the [typography] even creates a kind of pattern.”

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While there were many striking elements in the campaign, “for me, the stamp is always the highlight of the whole invitation package,” Kuehne says. “It is unique both in its form as in its layout. Also, in real life, there hardly ever is a hot foil used on a stamp.”

An element, perhaps, worthy of an award in itself.

Creative Credits:
Creative Director: Max Kuehne
Art Direction: Max Kuehne, Daniela Gilsdorf, Thomas Korf
Final Artwork: Daniela Gilsdorf
Photos: Michael Pfeiffer


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