Ideapaja (1988)

Jokke Toivonen is a multitalent who thinks, searches and implements the craziest ideas in his Ideapaja company. Ideapaja produces special effects, mini and large-scale models, sets and professionally acquires all kinds of props needed for filming and TV production. My task was to design a new look for Ideapaja.

I was first thinking about the logo. Emphasizing the “paja” part of the name did not feel natural. The initial idea of the name strongly suggested an image, what could it be and how could it best describe the company's special skills? I took a simplified human figure as a starting point, which was made up of several limb-like parts. By assembling the parts together in different ways, I was able to create dozens of figures in different positions. The head is sometimes in its right place, sometimes in the armpit. Instead of choosing one character to represent the company, I decided to try a solution with multiple figures. Gradually, almost all options became available. The company image began to find its shape. There was also more than one colour, so almost every form, card or sticker had its own colour. This way, the entity strengthened Ideapaja's versatile expertise. I produced the following corporate identity elements for Ideapaja: letterhead, invoice form, envelope, order form, business card, gift card and stickers.

The following year, I attended an international design congress in Nagoya, Japan, with a few colleagues. Naturally, I met several Japanese graphic designers at the congress. I told them we were going to Tokyo next. Would it be possible to visit one of the frontline designers there? Our interlocutor promised to call a few candidates at short notice. And it wasn't long before we had time to visit the Yusaku Kamekura office in Tokyo. Kamekura is one of the most respected designers in the world.

The meeting took place in a pleasant atmosphere. We had tea and discussed Finnish and Japanese design with the help of an interpreter. I had my pocket portfolio with me, an A4-sized folder in which I had compiled a dozen recent examples of corporate design. There was also a page on the Ideapaja's graphics. Kamekura took a closer look at this example and finally asked me if I could send him the full version.

When I returned to Finland, I immediately sent the package on its way to Japan. At the same time, I wondered if Kamekura had a particular reason for requesting this material from me. The answer came in time, when a new book GRAPHIS LETTERHEAD was published by an international publisher. The book is a representative collection of corporate image solutions from around the world. And on pages 112-113, the look of Idea Workshop was presented. I was the only Finnish designer who made the publication.