Design Annual 2014
Platinum Winner Spotlight: Vanderbyl Design


Vanderbyl Design – Simplicity

A Platinum award winner in the Graphis Design Annual 2014Vanderbyl Design’s recent Screw Wine Label understated design epitomizes Vanderbyl’s philosophy of simple elegance. The bottle’s elementary minimalism incites an easily identifiable brand image for Stratus Vineyards. Michael’s favorite thing about designing for a winery? A justification to get drunk while working.

Michael Vanderbyl is a Graphis Master. His work has been represented in Issue 282, Issue 278, Issue 342Issue 309 and Graphis Typography 1. His Teknion Chicago Showroom was awarded a Graphis Gold award in our Design Annual 2014, in addition to a slew of Graphis Gold and Silver awards for other work.

A self-professed modernist, Michael has become a sort of jack of all trades. Since establishing San Francisco-based Vanderbyl Design in 1973, he has attained international prestige as a designer, interior architect, educator and advocate. Michael has designed for many highly acclaimed clients, including Baker Furniture, Bernhardt and Esprit.

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Perhaps the greatest tribute to Michael’s work — beyond the work itself — are the recollections people have of him. Chris barnett recounts in Issue 309:

“Ties to Commercial Fortunes Audrey Talbott, chairman of Robert Talboott, Inc., America’s premier maker of hand sewn men’s ties, may zip around Carmel, California in a crimson Aston Martin, but the vibrant, ‘seventy-something’ co-founder drives her company cautiously. So when Michael Vanderbyl was commissioned to create a new look for Talbott’s first retail store in Manhattan, it gave her great pause. ‘I’m a hard-core old retailer, and it was very tough for me to turn it over to him,’ she says. ‘I designed the old stores right down to the window displays.’

‘Michael came in and asked a million questions about our business,’ Mrs. Talbott says of their initial meeting in 1991. ‘Then he came back with radical presentation. I just stood back and watched. Believe me, it was the best thing I ever did.’

What Audrey Talbott and her management team did was use design not to rescue a sinking ship, but to further build a brand that already enjoyed a sterling reputation for quality and customer service.”

For quick reference, a low resolution pdf of Graphis 282Graphis 278Graphis 342, or Graphis 309 is available free to Graphis Members in our store. A high resolution digital copy of Graphis 304 is available for iPads and iPhones from the Graphis App found here: Graphis on iTunes. To see more of Schwab’s work, click here.

Author: Rachel Lowry

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