It’s Nice That’s Ones to Watch shines a light on 12 emerging talents who we think will conquer the creative world in the coming year. Over the coming months, we’ll be catching up with creatives from our 2019 selection to see what they’ve been up to. Ones to Watch 2019 is supported by Uniqlo.
Started in 2011 by Oliver Shaw and Tom Pratt, and by no means strangers to It’s Nice That, Catalogue is a studio that specialises in graphic design, editorial and book design, web design and development, art direction and visual identity systems. A studio just as well known for its publishing arm Catalogue Library as for its slick work with top brands, it recently relaunched its site with a full design overhaul and an update to the showcased work, for the first time in three years.
Whether or not to bother with a website nowadays is an interesting question. In the age of the Instagram portfolio where clients can browse your archive of work quickly and easily in one place, with just enough information, in a tried-and-tested format, you’d be forgiven for thinking that spending an hour plus figuring out how to centre a div using CSS is a waste of time. For Oliver and Tom, however, this couldn’t be further from the truth.
“Admittedly, one of the reasons we haven’t launched a new website in three years is because of Instagram,” they begin. For the past six months, it was here (or directly to a website they’d made) that they’d send potential clients, with a note that their site was under construction. “It seems to work OK,” they explain. “But in the past few months we have been referred for work and the people who were referring us held back on it because we do digital and print work, but the digital side to our portfolio was old and out-of-date. This is what gave us the kick to launch the site ASAP.”
This, coupled with the fact that two-and-a-half years ago Oliver and Tom launched their NYC office, and they wanted a home to showcase the work they make there as well, meant now seemed like a good time. The result is an image-led, simple to navigate site which places Catalogue’s work at the forefront. “We have found with our websites in the past that overcomplicating them and convoluting the work with a mass of information and details hasn’t worked in our favour,” they explain. This website, instead, is easy to digest and bold with big images, and a description that only includes a client, discipline, year and an extra credit if necessary. “This gives us the means to be able to update it regularly and keep it mainly visual,” they continue.
The work uploaded as part of the site overhaul includes a project for Brilliant, “an amazing brand out of LA”. Catalogue has produced the visual identity and art direction of the brand which is true to its ethos: “Loud and brash logo and slogans, with clean design and layout work”. There’s also work for Nike x Virgil Alboh. Initiated by Thomas Pregiato from the sportswear giant, Catalogue worked closely with the creative director and Virgil to produce a book, as well as “a bunch of brand design and collateral for events”. “All-in-all it was an amazing three-month project, where a bunch of good work was made, relationships were established and we have been collaborating and chatting with Nike Brand Design in NYC ever since (thanks Thomas!),” they add.
With their new site firmly visible at www.thisiscatalogue.co.uk, Oliver and Tom are hoping to continue to update it with new work, and 2019 is already looking busy for the pair. Starting with the Printed Matter LA Art Book Fair in April, they’ve also got “digital stuff early this year, the next issue of Brick Magazine in April, a book with an amazing photographer supported by Nike SB,” and much more. If you’re anything like us, you’ll be refreshing that page in anticipation of the next Catalogue update on a regular basis.
About the Author
Ruby joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in September 2017 after graduating from the Graphic Communication Design course at Central Saint Martins. In April 2018, she became a staff writer and in August 2019, she was made associate editor. Get in contact with Ruby about ideas you may have for long-form stories on the site.