menu isn’t just a list of dishes – it’s an important piece of marketing material. As the saying goes, the first bite is with the eye, and therefore a menu design says a lot about a restaurant, creating an initial … Continue reading
Reality can be a bore sometimes, which is why most of us are grateful for the creative sparks generated by artists like Victor Nunes. Nunes stretches his imagination, and yours, turning everyday objects like pen caps, biscuits and rubber bands into caricatures of life – well, part of it, at least.
(Image Source: Victor Nunes Faces)
As an expert on creativity, Victor Nunes has been mashing 2D drawings on paper, together with common, everyday objects to give it a twist. Here we’ve selected 12 of them to show you what we mean, and how fun things can be when imagination comes to the surface.
Rubber Band. The is a perfect first example to showcase the artist’s capability – he can bend the rubber bands and his creative nerves to make all sorts of playful art (except for the noose, of course).
Bottle Cap. To have fun with everyday objects, you just need to imagine all of the potential functions of it, like how a simple red bottle cap can be turned into an ON button.
Cork Plug. What can make with a cork plug? Apparently, a lot of wine-related creative mash-ups.
Pen Cap. Next time you are bored in class, maybe try to make have some fun with your pen caps. Here are a few ideas.
Razor. Isn’t it impressive how the artist can come up with both a cool racer and a snail using the same razor?
Clothespin. Turn a regular clothespin into a duck bill or a crocodile, or more.
Popcorn. Think popcorn is too random to be turned into art? Who would have thought popcorn can be turned into faces. Check these out.
Dried Apricot. Never expected to see so many drawings made with dried apricots in my life. Talk about boundless imagination!
Walnut. A personal favorite, as they fit the artworks almost perfectly. Particularly the BBQ chicken. Yummy!
Breadstick. Now you see the artist’s trick – think of the breadstick as part of bigger entity.
Biscuit. Proof that you can play with your food (that’s right, mom) and there’s nothing wrong with it.
Chips. You cannot unsee chips for what they can be now. Is that a face on the potato chip?
These days, a tree house design is much more than just a playhouse in the backyard. We’ve seen creative concepts from HemLoft, an egg-shaped tree house, to TreeHouse Point, a charming bed and breakfast nestled in the trees. Another incredibly unique construction is this Yellow Treehouse Restaurant, developed by New Zealand based Pacific Environment Architects in collaboration with Yellow Pages.
Located north of Auckland, the unique concept is an eighteen seat cafe suspended around a large redwood tree and approximately 130 feet above the ground. The entire structure spans more than 30 feet wide and almost 40 feet high, with kitchen and bathrooms located on the ground below.
Timber trusses form the main structure, the curved fins are glue-laminated pine, and redwood milled from the site are used in the walkway balustrading. Plantation poplar slats wrap around the tree and create interesting textured spaces that allow natural light to radiate throughout the interior. The circular concept is also designed to be weather resistant, with acrylic sheeting fixed to the roof and vertical roll-down blinds on the interior. Visitors are welcome to come and venture high up in the trees to enjoy a delicious meal.
Christopher Boffoli does what was strictly forbidden when I was a child; he is playing with food. His miniature men explore eatables out of a new, unknown perspective. Thus an applecake becomes a building site, noodles become a viewing platform and a cornet is reconstructed to a tent.
Marion Luttenberger collaborated with a friend to create a series around ‘food, and a whole lot of love’. The pictures were commissioned by thegoodforks.com based in Vancouver. They set focus on the authenticity and transparency of markets while believing that good food has the power to change the economic viability of communities.
Food Photographer Beth Galton and Food Stylist Charlotte Omnès collaborated for the series ‘Cut Food’. A fun idea to provide a peek at food in a way that defies gravity- slicing it right down the middle in whatever container it’s normally found in.
It all started with ‘The Scream’ by Edvard Munch. This ‘Scream made of ham’ inspired Karsten Wegener, Silke Baltruschat and Raik Holst to look for more examples in art they could reinterpret with sausages and bologna.
A while back designer David Schwen had the idea of making Pantone chips out of real household objects—sponges, cardboard, and the like. Though when he was taping two of the Pantone chips together to see how they looked next to one another, he instantly thought of how people pair food together, and the Pantone pairings were born.
By dropping different foods manually onto bendable plates, Esther Lobo created her series ‘Rorschach’. Inspired by the well known psychological Rorschach test she creates a mosaic of colorful patterns made of ice cream, tomato sauce and many other foods.
In this fun series of painted objects named ‘It’s not what it seems’, artist Hikaru Cho transforms common foods with deftly applied acrylic paints into something else. A banana gets to look like a cucumber, a tomato becomes a mandarine and even an egg is made into an eggplant.
Hong Yi is a Malaysian artist and architect, who is working within the confines of a plate with various eatables, creating animals, landscapes and other objects only using food and a plain white plate as a background.
Elena Mora examined the deconstruction and the basic ingredients of our typical food and how certain ingredients combined give us our favorite dishes. She says: “The unbalanced situation of ingredients is directly connected to our stereotyped idea of a ‘balanced diet’ , what is better than one of grandmas home-cooked meals to finally have a balanced diet!?”.
How cool would it be if your mom made you these bento boxes? Bento is a home-packed meal common in Japanese culture. A traditional bento consists of rice, fish or meat, and one or more pickled or cooked vegetables as a side dish. These bento boxes have just that extra kick – they take you back to that old school video game or anime movie – for a brief second, before you devour your food. So long Wall-E, it was nice knowin’ ya!
Harvest Bento. A well-designed bento that looks like the Sun Maid Raisin girl. (via: Sakurako Kitsa)
I Wanna Rock & Roll All Nite. This was made by Susan Yuen. She chose Gene Simmons of the popular band, KISS (via: Susanyuen)
Lovely Bento. Yaoi is one of Ramachan’s favorite manga. Yaoi is a Japanese word, which is in fact itís an acronym. It comes from “Yama nashi, Ochi nashi, Imi nashi”, which means “no climax, no point, no meaning”. (via: Ramachan)
Camping Bento. Perfect lunchbox for adventurous people specially going camping bento. (via: Lillergy)
Meta Knight bento. This Meta Knight bento was made of a rice ball with plastic wrap, and Anna put some seasoned seaweed inside. Meta Knight is dark blue with a gray mask, so I put ground black sesame seeds around the bottom half on the side of rice ball for the blue part. (via: AnnaTheRed)
Sony Playstation. A bento made by a gamer. (via: Markpascua)
Star Wars Bento. A star wars-inspired bento showing the planet Tatooine’s twin suns, Tatoo I and Tatoo II. (via: Vingt Deux)
Spidery Monster Bento. MisterMan, as the creator call it, gets a salmon salad sandwich on whole wheat thin with lettuce and cheddar. Guarding it is fanged tomato spider with baby carrot legs. (via: Sherimiya)
Starbucks Bento. Starbucks’ marketing department can borrow this idea for their future print advertisement. (via: Ricoco)
Kanda Bento. Here’s another anime-based bento design. This is the face of Yuu Kanda, one of the best D.Gray-man character. (via: S-in-C)
Ouendan Monkey Magic Bento. This is from the Monkey Magic segment of the sequel to the Nintendo DS game Osu. (via: Kickintheheadcomic)
Lost Bento. A Bento made by an avid viewer of popular TV series, LOST. (via: Aibento)
Nekobus Bento. Anna truly made an art out of frozen meatballs, broccoli, egg, cheese, snowpeas, asparagus and seaweeds. (via: AnnaTheRed)
Geisha Bento. In all the Bento design listed here, this one is really unique. It’s like a sculpture placed inside a bento box. (via: Sakurako Kitsa)
Konata Bento. This is Konata from Lucky Star Anime Series. (via: KandiKawaii)
Koi Pond Bento. Cathryn explains that he stones surrounding the pool are soy-braised button, bunashimeji (beech), and tiny enoki mushrooms. The Koi are kamaboko with red bell pepper and nori details. (via: Cathryn3)
Bioshock Big Daddy. Here’s another game-based Bento. Meet Bioshack Big Daddy and the little Sister. (via: Kickintheheadcomic)
Mokona Bento. Mokona is the pen name of the lead artist of the all-female manga-creating team Clamp. Mokona here is made of a giant rice ball (via: Nikoleart)
Power Puff Girls. Fans of power puff girls will surely love this. (via: Luckysundae)
House of Bento. This house looks yummy from the outside. I wonder what’s the inside. (via: Lillergy)
Goju Ryu Suparinpei Bento. The Karate girl is made of mozzarella, smoked ham and nori. The backgraound is made of mushrooms, green onions, mozzarella, pepperoni and turkey. (via: )
Frog Bento. Awesome tree frog sculpture. (via: Sakurako Kitsa)
The Oz-Man Cometh. Another excellent artwork by Susan Yuen. (via: Susan Yuen)
Bento of Super Smash Bros.. Featuring Pikachu and Mr. Game & Watch! (via: Kickintheheadcomic)
Spongebob Bento. Spongebob is made of a whole grain bread with mortadella and cheese. (via: Lovebones)
Death Note Bento. Death Note is another popular Japanese manga/anime series. (via: Kickintheheadcomic)
Phoenix Suns Bento. Kawaiikiki made a bento about her favorite NBA team, the Phoenix Suns. (via: Kawaiikiki)
Spring Picnic Bento. This is an entry bento design by Laura for the Spring Contest sponsored by Bento & Co. (via: Laura Bento)
Wallace and Gromit Bento. Wallace and Gromit is one of the creator’s favorite British animated films. Susan use rice stuffed with barbeque chicken to create Wallace and kamaboko for his eyes and teeth. (via: Susan Yuen)
Sea Bento. Ironically, there’s no seafood in this bento. (via: Liloaznangel)
Patapon Bento. Patapon is a rhythm game for PSP. You push the buttons to make the Patapons march, attack and defend from enemy. (via: Kickintheheadcomic)
Xmas Bento. Kids will surely love this even though it’s not Christmas season yet. (via: Nonochan)
Creative menu design is an integral part of any high-end dining experience. Check out these 15 brilliantly creative examples.
A menu isn’t just a list of dishes – it’s an important piece of marketing material. As the saying goes, the first bite is with the eye, and therefore a menu design says a lot about a restaurant, creating an initial impression before the customer has even seen any of the food or drink on offer. Here are 15 brilliant examples of restaurants that got it right…
01. RAGU Cafe
A team of Russian based designers were responsible for the entire identity of the RAGu Cafe but it was the menus that really caught our attention. Using minimal, yet colour-packed photographs, customers can actually see what their food will look like before ordering it. We don’t know why more restaurants don’t do it!
02. The Pelican
This illustrated menu delight comes from Singapore based design agency Foreign Policy. They explain, “The graphic of mixing human characters interacting with sea-inspired animals is inspired by the dual functions of the Pelican restaurant & bar. As the evening progresses, The Pelican transforms from a dining space to a groovy bar to club and wine deep into the night.”0
3. Hubbly Bubbly
Florida based designer Mark Unger created this fun and adorable menu design for a new falafel restaurant in Orlando. Using bright colours for every page, the child-like aesthetics are perfect for a small and local business.
Mexican based agency Anagrama are well-known for thier excellent branding. For the Montero restuarant, they explain “the project was developed inside an edification from the colonial period considered national patrimony. Our job as brand developers was to create a personality where we could glorify traditional kitchen values making the most of regional raw materials.”
05. Holly Burger
Designed by Manuel Astorga and Rodrigo Aguade, they explain “The idea was to create a real american-style brand with a fresh mix of style references. Our first inspiration came from various vintage, hand-drawn American typographies present in old shop windows and a banana leaf wallpaper that had been originally designed in 1942 by decorator Don Loper for the Beverly Hills hotel in Los Angeles.”
06. L’Encant, Spain
The menus at L’Encant sushi bar were created by Spanish design agency Nuria Vila. Designed to reinforce the restaurant’s blend of Japanese and Catalan culture, the team developed this concept, which pays homage to Japanese folding fans. Inside the wooden cover, menus are printed on stone paper.
07. Fade St. Social, Dublin
Illustrator Steve Simpson is the man behind this vibrant menu design for Fade Street Social in Dublin. The gorgeous drawings conveys the restaurant’s quality food and fun, relaxed atmosphere and showcases the unique Irish character and sense of humour brilliantly.
08. Mr Brown, Mexico
Jerome and Zimmerman create and renew brands. And that’s exactly what the creative duo did recently for Mexican restaurant Mr Brown. Instead of just acting as a source of information, the pair redesigned the menus to become part of the restaurant’s decor, creating wooden boards with menu pages attached and letters on the reverse spelling out its name.
09. Smith, Toronto
Smith is a restaurant and club located in Gay Village in downtown Toronto. Its unique menu design resembles a newspaper, featuring a large, easily readable font and black-and-white photographs of the food on offer. Created by graphic designer Tracy Ma, who currently works at Bloomberg Businessweek, the menu is set to change seasonally.
10. Eleven Madison Park, New York
This minimal and elegant menu design appeared on the tables of New York-based restaurant Eleven Madison Park until late last year. Created by designer, educator and author Juliette Cezzar, the 28-word food menu featured 16 principal food ingredients for customers to choose from.
11. Fat Cow, Singapore
Fat Cow is a beef-speciality restaurant that follows the Japanese method of cooking and serving beef. Inspired by the Japanese notion of ‘Wabi Sabi’, an aesthetic based on underplayed modesty, creative agency Foreign Policy came up with the concept of delivering its menus on wooden planks. The menu design also captured the style of the restaurant’s food perfectly, with the laser etchings on the wood reminiscent of the branding of cattle.
12. Cafe Kafka, Barcelona
Creative studio Lo Seinto created these gorgeous menu designs for Mediterranean food restaurant Cafe Kafka in Barcelona. The menu covers feature beautiful illustrations, each of which tell a story as to what is held over the page. And the insides are just as impressive, featuring illustrations and type that showcase the restaurant’s rich and vintage character beautifully.
13. Maddigan’s Freehouse, London
Art director and graphic designer Aaron Kitney was the man behind this eye-catching menu design for traditional British pub Maddigan’s. Kitney comments on his website: “The main focus for this project was to revamp the identity to draw in additional clientele, while maintaining loyal patrons. To achieve this, the existing atmosphere and experience was enhanced by using sophisticated type in a traditional setting. The combination of modern and gothic faces alludes to the past without sacrificing legibility.”
14. Aroma, Menorca
This minimal menu design was created by Barcelona-based graphic designer Eren Saracevic for Spanish gastro lounge Aroma. Wanting to develop a totally distinguishable menu, Saracevic concentrated entirely on the food, dedicating a whole page to each dish and using the Gotham typeface to describe it. He also decided to feature a simple illustration of a nose on the cover to give more importance to the content.
15. 13 Wives, Singapore
This unique drinks menu is one of our favorite concepts. As well as being the name of specialty cocktail bar in Singapore, 13 Wives is the fictional story of the 13 women who inspire each drink found in this little black book. Another design from creative agency Foreign Policy, the team hand assembled and printed 35 copies in total.