Dept. Of For God’s Sake Stop It: Badly Designed Pink Nightmares Bring Shame Upon Regina

Over the lunch hour I picked up a copy of one of the ugliest advertising flyer/brochure things I’ve ever seen. It has a tacky Photoshop spray-can pattern. The typography is cliched, clueless and stupid. There’s an incoherent film strip doohickey that serves no purpose. And this thing’s pink. And not even a NICE pink.

The whole package is a design calamity. It is, in one all-caps word, UNPROFESSIONAL. Every business that bought an ad in this eyeball-searing monstrosity has a right (and, I’ll argue, an obligation) to complain to the crapulent barbarians who crammed this pink turd through whatever 15-year-old desktop publishing software is popular with visigoths these days.

(Publisher Morash says the company perpetrating this graphic infraction, Steedman Publications, has been publishing ’em for years. He also said I should ignore it and do some actual work. Ha ha, Terry’s funny.)

I realize that every city has free advertising brochures for tourists and residents. I have no beef with the format — they’re handy guides to local businesses. But come on, Regina–professional design is important and this amateur-hour crap makes our city look really bad. This isn’t something we want to put in front of tourists and new residents who have heard Saskatchewan is now a place to be.

There are Regina companies that produce excellent design. This firm,  for instance, is fantastic. There’s also this firm and this firm. And there are independent freelancers out there who are pretty good, too (although  there are also terrible ones, so be careful). And if you want to go out of province? How about these guys? They rock all the casbahs.

Good design is important. Bad design makes Regina look like a stupid place full of no-taste imbeciles. We’re better than that. So have some pride, Regina businesses, and don’t work with clueless morlocks.

Thank you.

Author: Stephen Whitworth

Prairie Dog editor Stephen Whitworth was carried to Regina in a swarm of bees. He's been with Prairie Dog since May 1999 and will die at his keyboard before admitting his career a terrible, terrible mistake.

12 thoughts on “Dept. Of For God’s Sake Stop It: Badly Designed Pink Nightmares Bring Shame Upon Regina”

  1. I would take this pink cover over an internal government brochure I received at work this week. On the front page, both the heading and sub heading contained spelling mistakes! And, don’t get me started on how much one of Bradley’s friends, who composed this thing, receives as a salary. In case you were wondering, government standards no longer exist! And, spell check must not either!

  2. While I started to make a comment, then forgot to finish and press submit, I certainly didn’t lose any sleep over this. True, it looks Yorkton-quality, though we in Regina have much to be ashamed for in the ways of bad design and no-taste. Just look at our skyline, and our groundline, and elsewhere, our rigid dedication to purely functional, cookie-cutter design.

    No, as for this thing, at first I thought “Golden Girls, circa 1987,” colours I’d see adorning a bathroom cleaning product in an institution. Then I made peace with the totally arbitrary cover (random, non-meaningful colours, a film strip despite having no film industry left, pictures of gawd-knows-what…) But then as inside-page border, the frothy, bubbly candy-coloured pink almost started to grow on me. So anyway, while I remain generally biased against Regina and Moose Jaw and my belief there’s actually nothing interesting to do that could show up in a brochure like this one, I give it a 51 out of 100, and a place beside all those other awesome local white water rafting, mountain-climbing, heliskiing brochures we got going (not).

  3. That is to say, its strength lies in its lack of pretentiousness. “Clean & Crisp” it’s not. On another note, you gotta remember some human created this. I’m guessing it’s someone who doesn’t have a background in the fancypants design industry. Probably someone with a husband who drives a truck for a living who would take very unkindly to this entry. Or what if it’s someone trying to pull themselves out of poverty or off the street, who got a work placement with this firm? Man, you would’ve just crushed their dreams and sent them back to the street.

  4. Sometimes dreams need to be crushed for the public good. My career as a globe-trotting male model never got off the ground. I was sad but it was for the best.

  5. That’s true. Dreams are crushed every day. But I think the more-advantaged amomg us have found ways to stretch the crushing into years, thereby diffusing the pain and shock, allowing us to make other arrangements, as well as excuses. I think there’s always a kernel tho, of truth, when you embark upon certain adventures. I’m pretty sure out of high school, I knew damn well it was all a lie (meaning university), but I went anyway, thinking the ride would be worth it, or at least better than the alternative, which was to become a short order cook and run a food truck, which was actually 15 years ahead of its time, which I knew at the time, but like I say, you stomp the kernel, pursue some other dumb line of work or study, and end up “educated” tho not int he real-life way saddled with tons of debt. (Tho for the record I paid off my debt thru inheritance, which is likely the same way I will fund my ‘retirement’.) Not to say that university is a sham, but for most middle-class kids who pulled off a C+ average doing the absolute bare minimum amount of work cuz really they always hates everything that came after Grade 6 anyway, years and years of school is pretty dumb. So maybe graphic design is a terrible choice for this frothy pink person; maybe they should get serious about beading, or soup-making. You’re right.

  6. They should stay away from food preparation. Just to be on the safe side. I wouldn’t want anyone to get pink nightmare botulism.

  7. You want PROFESSIONAL results, from people claiming a real fancypants background? Try a certain municipal candidate’s PR team proudly advertising that he would “repel 22 stories”. Airheads.

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