horizontal stripes.

Jamie was known as a creative type. This meant that he could get away with wearing odd socks and inappropriate shirts. In the office he was indulged – though he wasn’t the only creative type there. Andrew and José were pretty creative too. Their boss relied on them for the bright ideas that drove his design business.

“Hi boss, what’s happening?” said Jamie as he breezed in with his first double-shot macchiato of the day.

“Got an urgent one for you, Jamie,” said the boss. “My vitamin client got into hot water over its labels, and needs some new ideas, like, yesterday.”

“Woah. Boring. Vitamins, Yawn,” said Jamie. “How can that crap get anyone into hot water?”

“No, no, it’s serious,” said the boss. He always felt nervous when he was dealing with Jamie. On the one hand, he didn’t want to antagonise the talent; on the other hand he often wanted to kick the little prick.

“Their current label is green and yellow. Got some standard swirl designs and a regular font. But it seems that it’s too close to some other vitamin company’s colours and design. There’s been a lot of lawyers’ letters back and forth, which we don’t have to worry about, thank God. But my client’s agreed to change, and do it quickly. Time for us to make some money as well as the lawyers. They need something new, just not green and yellow.”

“Ok, ok,” said Jamie, setting his coffee down next to his screen and closing his palm over the mouse. “I’ll do a coupla mock-ups for you. Shouldn’t take long. Nothing else in the brief?”

“No – except nothing too out there, y’know what I mean? This is vitamins we’re talking about. Think health – trust – reliability – purity.”

Jamie rolled his eyes. “Yo – purity!”

The morning wore on, Jamie in front of his screen, flicking through webpages, dodging to his second screen to work with the design software. He was waiting for that moment of inspiration, after which it would just be routine work to get the mock-ups ready. But vitamins! They were so goddamn boring.

Mid-morning, Jamie wandered to the kitchen to make another coffee. Passing the office window he looked out at the park below. Spreading across the grass was a great splash of red and white. A circus was erecting a big top.

“Got it!” thought Jamie. By noon he was ready to present his proposals to the boss. The boss looked through the mock-ups of vitamin bottles – vividly covered with red and white horizontal stripes.

“Whaddaya think, boss?” asked Jamie. “That’ll liven ‘em up a bit. And you can betcha it’s original.”

The boss put his hand over his eyes. His kicking foot was twitching again.




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