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Green People: Lifecycles + Lifestyles

Sustainability continues to exert a powerful impact in design decisions. A vast majority of designers say that sustainability is an important factor in their design assignments and solutions. In our June 2012 Print Design survey, nearly eight-in-ten GDUSA readers specify eco-friendly papers sometimes, and one third specify such papers more often now than a year ago. What do readers mean or expect when they refer to “green” papers? The leading attribute is still “recycled content.” But a more holistic concept of sustainability has clearly taken hold: responsible forest stewardship, clean and green energy, mill and brand reputation, third party certification, taking into account the impact of the digital infrastructure ‒ all are seen as an integral part of responsible and sustainable design.

As Gage Mitchell of Modern Species, the green design firm pictured above, states: “We think about the whole lifecycle, call the recycling centers, examine the supply chain, research materials, maximize the press sheet.” And, says Corbet Curfman of Riverbed Design: “Sustainability has been a benefit because we don’t consider it an add-on service but one that is standard practice within our portfolio of design, branding and communication offerings.” Cynthia Gale of BarberGale adds: “We strive to go beyond green design: we broaden our fields of vision to include not only environmental responsibility, but also fiscal and social responsibility; which for us are the 3 components of sustainable design.”

Another interesting survey finding is also reflected in the following profiles. When asked what drives the decision to “go green” with regard to a project or campaign, the designers’ personal beliefs are a leading factor along with the nature of the client’s brand. As you will see, personal passion plays an important role in how these firms succeed as providers of sustainable design; it informs the way they frame the design challenge, structure the design solution, educate and persuade the client, organize their businesses, attract new clients; and integrate their jobs with their lives. Tania Kac of Designarchy states: “As designers, it is important to understand the connections between our creations and the world around us, and to extend our eco-friendly lifestyle principles and values to the workplace.” Conclude partners Alex Kobylk and Natasha Kramskaya of RB design + interactive: “Green thinking is incorporated into every part of our lives.”

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modernspecies rbdesign riverbed
modern species rb design + interactive riverbed design
fireleaf aespire lentini
fireleaf design aespire lentini design
barbergale uptown designarchy
barbergale uptown studios designarchy