2015 Studio Update

We’re guilty. Guilty of relying on the quick and easy method of using social networking to update folks on what we’re up to. You can see the cobwebs on this very site. I don’t think we’ve updated our work section in over a year. But I can feel it in the air … 2015 will be the return of the blog and long-form reading on the web. No? Well, we’re going to attempt that when we can. Personally, I miss it. I miss putting together (and reading) content that you could spend more than 2 seconds staring at. We’ll continue to Insta-tweet, but I don’t want to rely on that …

To be honest though, we have been busy. Very thankful for that. But, now is a perfect time to wipe the dust off the site and let you guys know what we’ve been up to for the last 9 months – and we also want to share some new things we’ve got cooking.

1. Our buddy Zac Schwiethale has joined IC to take on a few important roles, but mainly he’ll be overseeing our film and animation projects, which we are extremely excited about. If you know anything about Zac, you know that ‘whiz-kid’ doesn’t quite describe him well enough. He’s a mad genius. We are beyond stoked to welcome him back to the fold. And I am writing this about 7 months late. See what Insta-tweeting has done to me?

2. Thanks to the VSCO Artist Iniative, our first documentary film about artists (specifically what drives us and connects us all) begins production in July! We will be hitting 6 cities and interviewing numerous artists from many different industries and walks of life. We’re excited to tell this story … more on that here. We’ll be documenting and journaling the entire experience on our VSCO Grid.

3. Last fall, we had the opportunity of a lifetime come our way: To re-imagine the historic Cinerama Theatre in Downtown Seattle – our favorite movie destination since we landed here in 2001. We created 2 massive murals that completely altered the corner of 4th Avenue and Lenora Street. The mural art made its way into a re-brand of the theatre, inside and out. We are currently working on our short film, ‘Re-Imagining Cinerama’ that takes a closer look at Cinerama’s grand re-opening last November – and the art that went into it. We’ll also have prints of the mural (and more Cinerama art we created) for sale when we launch the film this summer. Photos above by Benjamin Benschnieder.

4. Stack And Scare! is coming to Shanghai in a massive way. The Shanghai Times Square Mall will feature a large Stack And Scare! exhibit next month. Giant sculptures, play areas, toys, posters, etc. Curated by APPortfolio. We are very excited for this – much more info coming soon.

5. Wine Meets Design. We are thrilled to be the inaugural designers partnered up with the talented winemaker Aaron Pott for Bare Bottle’s first release. We were first approached for this project a few years back from our friends Katie and Nathan at Eight Hour Day. We’ve had a blast working with them, Marta & Josh Harding – and Corey Miller, the man who dreamed this extremely cool idea up. A quick bio from their site -

Bare Bottle curates the pairing of winemakers + designers and provides them with a blank canvas through which to create. Each unique collaboration opens a window into our makers’ creative processes, their inspirations, and their worlds.

The dedication to craft, quality and presentation comes across so clear with Bare Bottle. If you love wine … and design … it’s worth every penny. I was floored when I saw the finished shipped piece …

6. Blast Off! After a 2-year hiatus, we are back with our good friends at Sasquatch! Music Festival. We had the pleasure of creating all of the Festival art, merchandise and even the Lineup Video this year. As per usual, the lineup is amazing (Kendrick!) and happens to be going on THIS weekend. We’ll have an in-depth look into all of the assets we created (including another collaboration with Ebbets Field Flannels and Theo Chocolate) soon …

7. The amazing opportunity to illustrate my first Children’s Book came up last September. We had gotten book offers in the past, but nothing quite felt right and some of the projects just plain fizzled out. When our friends at Crossway approached me about a Bible Story by Kevin DeYoung, it was a big decision. In the end, It was a project I wanted to personally see done right … and one that I wanted to see on the shelves myself. The Biggest Story was the most intense project I’ve worked on to date, and also the most fulfilling – in ways I could never have imagined. I cannot thank Josh Dennis and Crossway enough for allowing me to run with my vision and aesthetic for Kevin’s beautifully-written book. The Biggest Story is hardbound, 10 chapters and 132 pages. Available in August and up for pre-order on Amazon now. Below are a few sample spreads from the first two chapters.

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8. Our Odd Galaxy wooden toy line with Uncle Goose is finally in full production mode and will be released in the next few months. There will be 3 products to start: Cosmo Kid, Moon Rover and Lunar Rocket, each sold separately – but of course much more fun when you own all 3. We have some fun OG launch (get it?) projects that will be released around the same time, including a window display at our favorite space store …

9. Two years ago, we bought a 10-acre ranch, turned a 50-year old barn into our studio and then made a toy out of it. OK, so that’s the short version. We’ll have a nice process post on this (way over-budget and panic-attack inducing) project on our new … well, see #10. For now, you can check out some great photos of the shop by Joshua Harding over at Bare Bottle.

10. Last, but not least, we are finally working on a new website. One that we will update. One that will work nicely on your phone thing you carry with you. We promise.

IC Farm League

Long before music and design (and almost everything else), there was … baseball.

In the eighties it was our hometown pride and joy – The Bend Bucks – who would later become the Portland Rockies. The Bucks were a single A farm club for the (now) Anaheim Angels. We’d love to hit the games with Dad and grab autographs from the retired major leaguers who were acting coaches for the team. $5 tickets and cheap popcorn didn’t hurt either.

Between Bucks games, the best movie ever created, our own little league games (where I told all my teammates that I was related to this guy), watching the Braves (lose) every waking moment on TBS and our unhealthy addiction to baseball cards (wish we still had this), there was time for little else. In 1989, our family moved to Sacramento and our love of the game got even stronger - thanks to the Giants and these guys across the bay. RIP Candlestick Park.

Fast forward 25 years later. After visiting the beautiful new Ebbets Field Flannels storefront in Seattle a few months back, we came up with a crazy idea to fuse a few of our old passions into one: Baseball, art and … people. People who are making really cool things in the world of baseball – and beyond. We even commissioned our Humble Beast bros in Portland to create some knickerbocker-era music to bring it all together. After coming up with a dream team list (and it was hard to stop at 6), we had our roster.

Enter: Invisible Creature Farm League.

We’ve partnered with Ebbets Field Flannels from Seattle, Mitchell Bat Co. from Nashville, Leather Head Sports from New Jersey, Oxford Pennant from New York, Curtis Clark Woodworks (or, Dad) from California and the uber-talented and undisputed aesthetic king of baseball himself, Jon Contino from New York to bring you IC inspired game gear for your closet, wall, shelf, desk … and even the field.

Have a look around our rookie season and click some stuff. A HUGE thanks to all of our collaborators for an amazing experience. We hope you enjoy …

 

Stack And Scare! At Nordstrom

Stack And Scare! is available at Poketo’s Pop-In Shop at Nordstrom until August 3rd!

Firestarter Leroy C.

Just in time for those blistery cold and lonely nights – FIRESTARTER Leroy C. is here! He’ll warm your soul – and toy shelf. We have a super limited run of these, so be sure to get your hot little hands on him quick …

Gift Maker Toys For PNC

We are excited to announce the launch of a fun new project we just finished up with the kind folks at Deutsch NY. Deutsch commissioned IC to create 12 unique character toy designs based on the classic song “The Twelve Days Of Christmas” for PNC’s infamous annual PNC Christmas Price Index. Beyond the task of creating 12 original characters based on the song, we also designed multiple interchangeable parts for each character – over 100 pieces in total. Partridge In A Pear Tree, Turtledove, French Hen, Calling Birds, Golden Rings, Geese-a-Laying, Swans-a-Swimming, Maids-a-Milking, Ladies Dancing, Lords-a-Leaping, Pipers Piping and Drummers Drumming.

The PNC Christmas Price Index site is loads of fun and allows you to create your own toy by selecting various heads, legs, arms, bodies and accessories. When you are done creating your character, PNC calculates the total cost of what your selection would be in 2013, as well as how much it has gone up or down since 2012.

But the coolest part? For 12 days, PNC is selecting 24 lucky winners per day to receive a 3D-printed gift in time for the holidays! Using Makerbot desktop printers, winners will be chosen randomly and selected each day. The more gifts you build, the more chances you have to win. Read more about that here.

We had so much fun with this project, now it’s your turn!

More about PNC Bank’s Christmas Price Index:

The PNC Christmas Price Index® shows the current cost for one set of each of the gifts given in the song “The Twelve Days of Christmas.”

It began 30 years ago when the chief economist at PNC Bank decided to figure out how much it would cost to buy each of the gifts. Little did he know, he was starting a holiday tradition that continues to this day.

The PNC Christmas Price Index® is similar to the Consumer Price Index, which measures changes in prices of goods and services like housing, food, clothing, transportation and more that reflect the spending habits of the average American.

The goods and services in the PNC Christmas Price Index® are far more whimsical. And most years, the price changes closely mirror those in the Consumer Price Index. It’s a fun way to measure consumer spending and trends in the economy. So even if “pipers piping” or “geese-a-laying” didn’t make your gift list, you can still learn a lot by checking out how their prices have gone up and down over the years.

Deutsch Credits:

Partner/ Chief Creative Officer: Kerry Keenan
SVP, Group Creative Director: Jeremy Bernstein
Senior Copywriter: Matt Moyer
VP, Creative Director: Qian Qian
EVP/Director of Integrated Production:  Joe Calabrese
SVP/Director of Digital Production: Suzanne Molinaro
VP/Executive Digital Producer: Jennifer McBride
Senior Art Producer: Hillary Jackson
Producer: Jillian Cornette

Production Companies:

MediaMonks (creative digital production)
Invisible Creature (toy design & packaging)
3D Printer Experience (3D printing the toys)
ShootersNYC (intro/outro video production)
Director/DP: Craig Needleman
Executive Producer: Jim Huie
Senior Editor: Anthony Marinelli
Account Director: Amy Sweeney

Stack And Scare!

We’re extremely excited to announce that our first line of toys with Uncle Goose is now available! Over a year in the making, Stack And Scare™ is a series of 4 stackable wooden monster block sets. Each Roar! set contains 14-18 pieces in various shapes and sizes. Featuring eyeballs, teeth, horns, arms, rounded shapes for shoulders and eyes, monster heads, hands, feet, legs, torsos, patterns and more. Mix and match shapes or combine with other Stack And Scare™ sets to unleash endless (and taller) creature combinations! Beautifully and meticulously crafted by our friends at Uncle Goose in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Made from FSC certified basswood, using non-toxic inks. Purchase Stack And Scare™ from us, Uncle Goose or independent toy stores everywhere. We designed Stack And Scare™ for everyone at any age. We can’t wait to see what you do with them. Share with us at #stackandscare.

And of course … we thought it would be fitting to create a short “IC Filmmercial” featuring our wooden critters in action. We enlisted our friends in Portland, Beautiful Eulogy, to create a score using the blocks themselves and the result is pretty fantastic. Scroll to the bottom of this post to see how we (and they) made it all happen …

Roar! Set One:

Roar! Set Two:

Roar! Set Three:

Roar! Set Four:

… And check out how we (and Beautiful Eulogy) made the film … Then go grab their new album Instruments Of Mercy, out today.

Missed our original teaser? Check it out.

IC Partners With Uncle Goose Toys

We are extremely excited to announce our new partnership with Uncle Goose Toys. Made in Grand Rapids, Michigan for the past 30 years, Uncle Goose is the world’s premiere manufacturer of wooden blocks. We’ve partnered up with their amazing team to bring the highest quality and most creative wooden toys and playsets to the market. With new products and creations lined up through 2015 and beyond, we couldn’t be more thrilled to work with such a passionate company dedicated to their craft.

Hot off their debut at the NY NOW International Gift Show, our first product is titled Stack And Scare. Crafted from replenishable basswood and printed with non-toxic inks, the Stack And Scare series contains four stackable block sets that allow children (and you!) to create and configure hundreds of possible monster options. Before we let too much out of the bag (or box), we’ve put together a teaser film announcing the new line.

Stack And Scare will be available in retail locations worldwide and through our shop beginning in October. Stay tuned for the big launch …

We were in the big apple for their debut at the NY NOW show …

… and we visited the UG workshop in Grand Rapids this month to check out the progress.

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Target Build-A-Plane!

Our latest product for Target is in stores now … and it’s a fun one. Captain Bullseye’s Build-A-Plane! Gift Card is a whopping 21 pieces of snap-together awesomeness. Complete with accents of metallic silver, a spinning propeller and a display stand that doubles as a cloud/Gift Card holder. See more here and purchase here. As always, big thanks to our A.D.’s Ted Halbur and Brian Holt. You are now free to move about the toy shelf.

 

Eye Creature

We love our clients. We love Lego. So why not combine the two? For our annual Client Holiday gift this year, we decided to design a custom Eye Creature Lego kit. Edition of 6 sets. 444 pieces. 4 instruction booklets. 8 different mouth combinations –  and a hinged top that allows the owner to store all kinds of fun items (as shown below). We even found 2 extremely cute kids from 1972 in my house that wanted to participate in the box design. Disclaimer: This product is NOT affiliated with Lego, folks – this was a gift. Oh, enough already. Check out how we made it below:

Formubung 1.0

Our friends Klaus & Erik over at Toth Construction commissioned us to design a set of wooden architectural nesting blocks for their top tier clients this holiday season. Each hand-signed and numbered set includes a sliding laser-etched Russian birch wood lid and 19 individual sugar maple blocks. Special thanks to Jonathan Cowles over at Patronus Design for meticulously handling the production of each set. We also collaborated with Rachel Brandzel to create hand-made letterpressed cards to accompany each box. Oh, and do yourself a favor by perusing one of Toth’s latest works of art, designed by Jim Olson.

Print Regional Design Annual

Honored to be featured in Print’s 2012 Regional Design Annual. Gigantic thanks goes to our favorite clients over at Target inHouse.

Target Draw & Go

The Holidays! Drawing! Toys! Cars! Dogs! Flying goats! Some of our very favorite things are all wrapped up in our latest Gift Card for Target, Bullseye’s Draw & Go. Unfold the map, flip the switch and watch Bullseye cruise along! Or better yet, turn the map over and draw your own track (using the complimentary marker) – Bullseye follows along the path you’ve created! Pretty cool, right? To see him in action, check out our latest Unboxing episode, embedded above. Extra special thanks to Ted Halbur, Brian Holt, Brian Bennett and Kelly Gray at inHouse for the amazingly fun project. Grab one (or ten) here.

GiftCard Stats

A Bullseye View has a few fun stats on the popularity of GiftCards. We’re honored to have worked on last year’s top seller.

Unboxing, Episode 1: Hexapillar

We’re excited to announce ‘Unboxing‘, a new video series where we open, unpack and showcase the latest products we’ve worked on. First up: Our Hexapillar Gift Card for Target, another fun project from the creative folks at inHouse. We had loads ‘o fun creating Hexapillar and as you can tell, the metamorphosis was successful.

Stay tuned for Episode 2!

ABOUT

Founded in 2006 by Don & Ryan Clark, Invisible Creature is a
multi-disciplinary design and illustration studio based in Seattle, WA.

NEW IN THE SHOP

  • Sasquatch! Music Festival

    2015

  • Blast Off!

    Pennant

  • Cirque du Soleil

    Kurios Gas Works

  • Cirque du Soleil

    Kurios Ferris Wheel

NEW WORK

  • Invisible Creature

    Farm League

  • Stack And Scare!

    Stackable Monster Blocks

  • Captain Bullseye's

    Build-A-Plane!

  • Keys To The City

    South Lake Union Mural

LIL'HAPPY CLUB SUBMISSIONS

FROM THE BOOKSHELF

FROM THE TOYSHELF