What's All This Then?

This site is edited by Coudal Partners, a design, advertising and interactive studio in Chicago, as an ongoing experiment in web publishing, design and commerce. [Next]

What's All This Then?

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Monday Edition

Writers George Saunders, Jonathan Eig, and Andrei Codrescu
review experiences at Field-Tested Books.

Coudal Partners

Leaving well-enough alone

What We Talk About When We Talk About Work

When we first started Coudal Partners, we were known for long headlines with pointed punch lines. No one remembers why, although a few of them can still make us chuckle.

These days we're all about stripping away. Fewer words in our copy, fewer lines in our designs. No one remembers when that happened, either.

The web had something to do with it, of course, or maybe it was just the last ten years or so in general. The scope and breadth of information suddenly available on demand required a new approach to its presentation. Cleaner, simpler, easy to use. And pretty. We reject the idea that ugliness is the price of usability. That's just dumb.

Our logo and brand design work is more focused and less fussy.

Our web designs are simpler and less strewn with gimmickrey.

Our television ads are more visual and less chatty.

Our radio ads are still pretty chatty, however, radio being what it is.

We like our tone conversational, whether it's in an ad, a presentation, or an annual report. The clearest, most concise communication is between individuals. Great advances have occurred when technology that had been only available for military or commercial purposes could be harnessed by the everyday consumer. Our traditional media--print, radio, and television--came to us from the top down. On the web today, however, great leaps in communication are being made by the individual, under the radar of big businesses, which still try to reach people with the media equivalent of a bullhorn.

Whether we are creating a company like Jewelboxing or The Show, designing a brand identity, writing a consumer ad, or building a web site or app, our practical inspiration is always the same. We believe that everyone can learn a lesson about communication simply by understanding the ways in which regular people speak to each other.

We suppose there are a lot of reasons people don't say what they mean. We just can't think of any good ones.

Find a Job

More @ We Work Remotely.

A Thing We Made:
Jewelboxing

We hated the options available for custom packaging DVDs and CDs so we created a brand that gives creative professionals and hobbyists the tools to make great stuff.

Another Thing we Made: The Show

Limited-edition, professionally mixed and mastered, custom-designed live performances on CD. That's The Show. With partners like The Pixies and Dead Can Dance. Lots more news soon.