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05 : 11 : 20

Humanising healthcare with Aiki, TikTok buys into commerce with Shopify partnership, and freelance designers set to earn more despite Covid-19.

Aiki is an empathetic object for hospital procedures

Aiki by Josephine de Fijter in collaboration with Charlie Braveheart Foundation and Bibi van der Velden, The Netherlands

The Netherlands – Aiki is a sensory, doll-like object that is designed to reduce trauma and fear for children receiving medical care.

Created by designer Josephine de Fijter in collaboration with the Charlie Braveheart Foundation and studio Bibi van der Velden, the conceptual object is able to ‘cuddle’ the child and produces rhythmic breathing exercises to help them relax as they receive treatment. Aiki also changes colour to match the breathing tempo of the patient, providing doctors and nurses with visual cues to better understand the patients’ current emotional state; for example, shorter breath would indicate an upswing in stress levels.

While helping to offer a sense of relief during medical examinations, Aiki's design also aims to increase trust and empathy between children and and their doctors. 'The main aim is to bring autonomy back to the child by giving them a method of expression,' explains de Fijter.

With its cushiony shape, Aiki shows how integrating sensorial aesthetics can humanise healthcare, something we explore further in Soft Aid.

A fresh identity for at-home beer brewing

The Greater Good Fresh Brewing Co rebranded by Studio Blackburn, London The Greater Good Fresh Brewing Co rebranded by Studio Blackburn, London
The Greater Good Fresh Brewing Co rebranded by Studio Blackburn, London The Greater Good Fresh Brewing Co rebranded by Studio Blackburn, London

London – Design agency Studio Blackburn has rebranded The Greater Good Fresh Brewing Co to reflect a shift away from traditional ideas of beer brewing.

The mail-order brewing company offers an at-home brewing device dubbed the Pinter, alongside postable bottles of ingredients comprising flavourings and yeast that allow users to produce their own IPAs, lagers and ciders at home. To better explain the product and its processes to customers, the rebrand takes a typographic approach with clear statements and questions presented in monochrome. These are broken up by flashes of bright red, yellow, blue and grey – the colours of its Pinter devices.

While The Greater Good is tapping into the homebody and DIY mindsets arising as a result of the pandemic, it also sees the rebrand as a chance to promote the concept's long-term potential. 'The previous design had it very much in the world of novelty beer, but [...] we wanted to do something different with it,' explains Paul Blackburn, founder of The Greater Good.

With more consumers enjoying the convenience of dining and entertaining at home, brands like The Greater Good are elevating the experience of drinking away from physical locations.

TikTok buys into commerce with Shopify partnership

Global – The short form video app is adding an e-commerce layer to its platform through a partnership with Shopify.

Now, vendors that use Shopify and have a TikTok for Business account can create shoppable video advertisements that will appear in users' feeds. To make the creation of these ads simpler, Shopify provides ready-made templates for brands, meaning sellers can generate automatic video ads for specific products. To launch the partnership, Shopify and TikTok are seeking to highlight black-owned businesses launching the in-app #ShopBlack challenge.

‘As social commerce proliferates, retailers are recognising that TikTok's creative and highly engaged community sets it apart from other platforms,’ explains Blake Chandlee, vice-president of global business solutions at TikTok, adding that the platform provides a channel for Shopify merchants to reach new audiences and drive sales.

Discover more on how social media-driven e-commerce is transforming the way consumers buy and interact with products in Shoppable Social.

Shopify in collaboration with TikTok

Stat: Freelance designers set to earn more in 2020

Pure & Wondrous Sounds Collection by SoundCloud and GRVTY, US Pure & Wondrous Sounds Collection by SoundCloud and GRVTY, US

The outlook for the global freelance creative industry in 2020 is largely optimistic, with many designers anticipating higher earnings than last year.

According to research by freelancer platform 99designs, which surveyed people across 147 countries, some 49% predict an annual income increase. This ties in with workers having to adapt during the pandemic; about 81% of freelance designers have learned new professional skills this year, up from 60% in 2019. Among this group, 72% taught themselves using YouTube tutorials and over a third (36%) used online courses.

‘As the global workforce adapts – and adopts many of the traits that freelancers have nurtured for years – it has become clear that out of the chaos of this year, significant opportunities have emerged for remote creative connections and the freelance design community at large,’ says Patrick Llewellyn, CEO of 99designs.

While Covid-19 has ushered in mass uncertainty for employees, it has also brought in new opportunities for the working landscape. For more, explore our Workplace vertical.

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