Second prize has gone to Katherine Pei Pei for a design that merged the barcode into the visual representation of a portafilter (the part of an espresso machine that holds the grounds when coffee is being made).
The competition was introduced in 2009 to encourage design students to learn the technicalities of barcode design and how to incorporate barcodes into packaging graphics harmoniously. Students are encouraged to see the barcode as a potential design feature rather than as a compliance requirement that clashes with the look and feel they try to achieve.
GS1 Quality Service Manager, Owen Dance has been involved with the competition since its inception. “Designers can make or break a barcode from the outset,” he says. “So we launched this competition to teach them what a correct and workable barcode should look like and how they can add to it in ways that will be pleasing to the eye without interfering with the scanning performance.
Every year we see some wonderful ideas from the students and it’s encouraging to think that the old ideas of barcodes as just black and white rectangles are slowly being overcome.”