I have created many types of catalogs, from three-ring binders acting as furniture makers’ printed showrooms, to stapled or bound catalogs, price lists and technical manuals with hundreds of pages of photos or illustrations. Catalog design is an artform and a process, and each has a unique solution.
Every catalog tells its own story, but some have stood out as more memorable experiences to me. For the past 28 years, I have been designing catalogs for California-based, Labcon International, one of the leading laboratory plastics manufacturers in the country, creating pipet tips, culture tubes, microcentrifuge tubes and storage racks for science labs around the world. From a two-color 32 page catalog full of my hand drawn illustrations in 1990, to the current catalogs full of 100+ pages of “laboratory-tech fashion”, we have developed a long term client/designer relationship that has had mutually beneficial results. When I starting working with them, my office was a few miles away from theirs. But for 25 years, I have been over 600 miles away. Yet the relationship has been strong enough to stay intact, thanks to a mutual design sense and trust that developed between us.
This past year had the special distinction of bringing my business and personal lives/loves together on their latest catalog. My son (mad scientist Travis shown at left) is a student in micro-biology at Portland State University, and he mentioned to me that Labcon products are used throughout the university virology lab where he works and studies. We received permission from his professor, Dr. Kenneth Stedman, PhD, head of the Archaea Lab of the Center for Life in Extreme Conditions to use an electron microscope image of a Sulfolobus spindle shaped virus 2 (SSV2) on the cover of the latest Labcon catalog. Perfect symbiosis.
The catalog turned out great. But, I’m saving that story for another time, probably after its conversion to interactive PDF form. In the meantime, thanks Travis. You’re almost finished. Hang in there, buddy. Thank you Dr. Stedman for your viral cover model, and thanks always to Tom Moulton, director of marketing and sales at Labcon International. You are the best, Tom. A team effort that was just the right solution for this year’s beautiful cover. Go science!
There aren’t enough years left for me to start any new 25 year business relationships. But whatever the length of the connection, the art and trust will always be delivered together. My clients get me. Always.Share this: