I did this art for Mrs. Fields' cookies. You can buy it here (24-ct Tin, 12-ct Tin, or Gift Box), though I don't get anything other than personal satisfaction when someone appreciates my art. Maybe I should consider licensing and royalties? Mrs. Fields makes good cookies, so it's a win/win for you especially since the tins are on sale.
Do reindeers fall under "prehistoric"? Yes, definitely, after a quick trip to Wikipedia to look up Megaloceros. I think my reindeer look very similar, and I had already decided to post them since I think they're of the season and offer insight into the package design process.
A new banner for this blog was long past due, and I have lots of art for the holidays because I've worked years on Christmas projects, or Hanukah, or whatever holiday you'd like to celebrate -- which is pretty ironic since I'm not a holiday kind of person. (I'll just delete my ranting so it doesn't compete with the PBS soprano, Country Music Christmas, or kids singing Rudolf...)
Packaging is planned far in advance of the holiday. I showed my original design to the client at the end of February, and it was already too late for that year's catalog. My boss and account manager hated it. (Now I'm deleting my tirade about office slugs making design decisions...) Maybe it's my anti-Christmas sentiments, but I liked the graphic black with red and green. Luckily, the creative director at MF has taste and vision, or maybe I just think that because he often agrees with me, but in any case, the project moved forward the next year when I resubmitted it.
The original design only had 1 reindeer. Blue was deemed friendlier than black, and 2 reindeers deemed friendlier than 1. But wait! Maybe red was better after all? I was partial to my original design, but meetings were held, executive wives and the UPS guy were consulted, catalog layouts were revised, and I made changes accordingly over the next months. I'll admit some of these changes were even my ideas, and good direction from the CD yielded great results.
Final art was sent to China. This was a pretty straight-forward project except for my pleas to the Chinese printer for metallic silver ink and explanations to the customer that gradations of silver would be iffy at best, if not impossible. All of this was made more difficult due to a power move by the account manager, who instigated an in-house policy preventing artists from talking to clients. The policy was reversed after complaints by the customers, but reinstituted when a new guy was hired. (I'm sure you're already onto the fact that I'm deleting some more choice observations here...)
I, of course, handled all of this with grace and courtesy since nobody in Utah or China could hear my muttered profanities or how hard my fingers were striking the keyboard.
Printing samples came in the summer. You know how it goes by now. There were more meetings and more secretarial consultations. To tell the truth, I think this is a good time for secretaries' opinions because they can hold the product and represent the buying public. They understand objects better than layouts, and the questions to ask are "Would you buy this?" and if not, "Why not?". There's still time to adjust things if necessary, but usually things proceed with approval and final directions to the printer.
Real samples come in late summer, and hopefully everything is perfect. Once I hear everything is approved, I forget about the project until I actually see the catalog. Other people jump into a flurry of photo shoots, copywriting, and domestic printers. I've done that before, but this job was all about the packaging for me. I spend a blissful October looking at fall leaves and attending Halloween parties -- until November when they start with those incessant carols and holiday specials again.
-- Special note -- My friend Geof is in the hospital. He and his wife Korki are 2 of my favorite people. Prayers and healing thoughts for both are much appreciated. Thanks!!