The Italian Edition?

Charles Brooks

For my first post of the semester, I came across what I originally thought was a unique Italian design for a Red Bull can.

In regards to packaging design, Red Bull is a very recognizable brand. Most people know the slogan “Red Bull gives you wings” and would be able to identify their logo. This is because of their comprehensive advertising campaign that produces commercials and sponsors almost every action sport imaginable. The original can design, or the one we normally relate with the brand is blue and silver with red writing. The logo on the original can is red and yellow and very small compared to the type.



(The Red Bull “Red Italian edition” can) While looking at the can I can immediately recognize at least two separate typefaces with varying weights. The logotype is separated into two sections, the physical type “Red Bull” and the logo itself. The logo is enlarged, angled at around 30 degrees and extends past the edge of the can. In comparison, the type is much smaller and rotated 90 degrees to be read vertically. The design is simplified by using two colors, red and silver to create higher contrast. I would say that the typeface used is something close to Futura, perhaps modified for the logo itself. Using all caps for THE RED ITALIAN EDITION, clearly gets its point across, “Buy me cause I’m special”. It uses four different weights, and 4 different font sizes and treats the information using a hierarchy. With the most important (based on font weight) being Red Bull followed by The RED Edition. There is also a fair amount of negative space used throughout the design which helps create more contrast.

Originally, I thought this design was unique to Italy because is says “The RED Italian Edition”. After reading the can, If it truly is an Italian edition shouldn’t it be written in Italian? Simply writing the Red Italian Edition doesn’t make this an Italian Design. Its written in english! I looked online and found that there are currently red, blue, and silver editions identical to this one in the U.S. market already. After further inspection, if they translated the phrase “Stimulates the Body and Mind” (stimuli corpo e mente), why not translate “The RED Italain Edition”? Shouldn’t that read Il Rosso Edizione Italiana? Maybe I am over thinking the design process, or maybe we have a lazy designer on our hands, who knows.


Overall I think is is a interesting interpretation of the original Red Bull can design. It incorporates the original logo’s color, uses scale, rotation, negative space and high contrast. However, the only Italian in the design is mixed case and the smallest font size on the can. At the very least, it should have translated “the Red Italian edition” into Italian. I still find it comical that it says Italian Edition in English in Italy. Even reading my last sentence sounds weird.

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