David Doran's Rich Cultural Brew for Nespresso
Coffee is a finicky plant. It requires very specific conditions, and minor variations result in different flavor profiles, textures, and consistencies. As a result, coffee is imbibed in as many different forms as there are varieties, and to celebrate a culture’s way of drinking coffee is to celebrate their people. This year Nespresso is celebrating the unique tastes of Brazilian and Columbian coffees and invited David Doran to help. Through a huge range of illustrations, David created a veritable library of imagery that Nespresso used for packaging, social media, advertising, and in-store installations. “It’s really nice to see. It’s good to walk into a coffee store and see people talking about the coffee, to search the hashtag and see everyone enjoying it,” says David. “And it’s really exciting to have a brand like Nespresso trust me with the illustration.”
To offer a fair representation of these cultures, David needed to understand them so he could translate them into a visual language. He couldn’t make the trip to Brazil or Columbia, so he grabbed as many references as he could. “I’ve was given loads of reference material, and the ad agency that I was working with was visiting so they were making a video,” says David. Those visual references gave him cues that he used to bring an honest depiction of these places. “Picking up on the small details, the small nuances in the buildings, the way the roofs were tied in with all the small lines inside the buildings... that makes it very distinct,” says David. The personality of a culture is locked away in their aesthetic details; David uncovered those details and placed them at the soul of his work.
Often when a brand approaches an artist like David it’s to create an image or two that is repurposed across the brand's messaging. That kind of project can be limiting since every concept needs to be jammed in a single composition. David was liberated by the sheer volume of work he had to provide. It was a lot, to be sure, but it ended up creating a better context for the story he was helping to tell. “It was really nice to have the opportunity to work on so many pictures. It’s kind of another world and I think that comes across in the whole campaign that they’ve invested in creating something,” says David. “The project itself is just trying to be genuine and respectful to the people and what inspires them. Hopefully that comes across in the pictures.”