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Idealog—in the ideas business

From Apple to Coke – Jobs tribute student flying high

Hong Kong design student Jonathan Mak shot to fame last year for his logo tribute to Steve Jobs. And now he has another feather in his cap with an ad for Coca Cola in China.

The 20-year-old was contacted by Ogilvy and Mather China and offered an assignment with the brief "Sharing a Coke."

The design is part of Coca Cola’s Open Happiness campaign and the logo's depiction of two hands was designed to encourage users to ‘share’ the drink. 

The ad premiered last weekend on bus shelters and elevators in Shanghai.

"It has been half a year since my image went viral, and it never ceases to amaze me how much the incident has affected me," Mak wrote on his blog.

He is said to be undecided about his future and whether a path in advertising lies ahead but says he hopes to work with Ogilvy again.

Stephen Drummond, director-content and creative excellence for Coca-Cola in Asia Pacific, told Ad Age that Mak's design had "unusual, intriguing stopping power".

“Everyone’s responded with a sense of, ‘Wow, that’s a different, intriguing spin on something so iconic and so familiar.’ Just for that reason it engages people. Of course the message of connection and friendship with the brand at the center comes through very clearly.”

According to Mak, he approached the Coke brief much like he tackled the Steve Jobs Apple logo.

coke11 220x294 Hong Kong student behind Steve Jobs Apple logo tribute lands Coca Cola ad project“I enjoy making visual puns. … I don’t want to say it’s my style, but I do enjoy combining elements together to create a joke almost,” he told Ad Age.

“These kinds of images are quite appropriate to advertising. It takes a second to get, and then there’s an ‘aha’ moment.”


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