Brian Collins (designer)

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Brian Collins
NationalityUnited States
Alma materMassachusetts College of Art and Design
OccupationDesigner • creative director • educator

Brian Collins (born 1959/1960)[1] is an American designer, creative director, and educator.[2] He is the Chief Creative Officer of COLLINS:, an independent strategy and brand experience design company.[3][4] Previously, he served as Chairman and Chief Creative Officer of the brand and innovation division of Ogilvy & Mather for ten years.[4]

Early life and education[edit]

Collins grew up in Lexington, Massachusetts,[5] and graduated with a BFA from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design in 1982.[6] He also studied at Parsons School of Design in New York City, where he met artists such as Larry Rivers and Antonio Lopez.[7]


After graduating college, Collins started his own studio in his parent's garage, working with clients including the Digital Equipment Corporation, John Hancock Financial, and Perkins School for the Blind. The company grew to a team of 20 and relocated to Concord, Massachusetts.[8]

Collins's interest in working on global brands led him to sell the business, and he spent a summer in London before being hired by The Duffy Design Group in Minneapolis,[9] whose clients included Giorgio Armani, Jim Beam Brands, and Porsche.

In 1995, Collins moved to FCB in San Francisco to work on Levi Strauss & Co.,[10][11] Amazon,[12] MTV,[13] and The Walt Disney Company.[13]

Ogilvy & Mather[edit]

In 1998, he became Senior Partner and Chief Creative Officer for the new design and brand identity division at Ogilvy & Mather in New York.[14] At Ogilvy, he worked for clients including The Hershey Company,[15][16] Kodak,[17] IBM, The Coca-Cola Company,[18] BP,[19] Motorola,[20] Mattel,[21] Vera Wang, American Express, Kraft Foods, Unilever, and New York City's bid for the Olympic Games, NYC2012.[22]

When Hershey's hired Collins and his team, they initially requested a billboard design in Times Square, but Collins expanded the project into a retail store in New York City's Times Square that has remained open for over 15 years.[23]

In 2004, Collins's team launched the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty in North America. The campaign won the Media Image Award from the National Organization for Women.[24]

In 2007, Collins's team collaborated with Office dA in the design of BP's Helios House gas station in Los Angeles.[25] The project is included in Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum.[26] The project also won the I.D Magazine Annual Design Review Award for Environments, Design Distinction; AIA Los Angeles Design Award; and the 2009 Grand Clio Award for Design.[27]

In July 2013, Collins was appointed to the Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide Creative Council,[28] the council that oversees the agency's work globally.

Other Projects[edit]

After the September 11 attacks, Collins and his team published the book Brotherhood, which became the basis of an exhibit at the Museum of the City of New York.[29] It was a tribute to New York City's firefighters that reached The New York Times Best Seller list.

Collins also produced The Ecology of Design,[30][31] a handbook on environmental design thinking, published in 1996 by the American Institute of Graphic Arts.


In 2008, Collins founded COLLINS:, a strategy and brand experience design company.[3] The company's first job was working with The Martin Agency to design an ad campaign on global warming[32] for the Alliance for Climate Protection.

The company designed The CNN Grill,[33] and led the brand and design development for the new Microsoft stores in partnership with The Martin Agency and Gensler.[34][35]

The company' 2015 global redesign and identity system for Spotify[36] was cited as one of the year's most notable designs by Fast Company,[37] Wired,[38] and Design Week.[39]

Honors and Awards[edit]

Selected works[edit]


  1. ^ Parpis, Eleftheria (23 August 2010). "Brian Collins: Dream Designer". AdWeek. Retrieved 23 August 2015.
  2. ^ "Brian Collins". School of Visual Arts. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  3. ^ a b "About". COLLINS. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  4. ^ a b Schenker, Jennifer L. (16 July 2018). "Interview Of The Week: Brian Collins". The Innovator. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  5. ^ Debbie Millman (17 September 2018). "Design Matters" (Podcast). Design Observer. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  6. ^ "Distinguished Alumni Award 2004". Massachusetts College of Art and Design. Summer 2004. Archived from the original on 2008-03-12. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  7. ^ Rogers, Bruce (4 March 2019). "Design As Change Agent: Interview With Brian Collins". Forbes. Retrieved 2019-04-08.
  8. ^ Debbie Millman (17 September 2018). "Design Matters" (Podcast). Design Observer. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
  9. ^ Tischler, Linda (1 June 2005). "Blowing Out Advertising's Walls". Fast Company. Retrieved 2019-04-08.
  10. ^ "Levi's Jeans for Women Shop". SEGD. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  11. ^ Elliott, Stuart (8 October 1997). "Levi Strauss campaigns become pieces at an exhibition". The New York Times. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  12. ^ Cuneo, Alice Z. (14 April 1997). "Cyber Bookseller Taps FCB". AdAge. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  13. ^ a b Kattleman, Terry (1 May 2000). "A Huge Connect". AdAge. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  14. ^ "Brian Collins". ADC. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  15. ^ Bertrand, Kate (1 August 2006). "Brian Collins In Conversation: Reinventing Brand Design". BrandPackaging. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  16. ^ Brill, Louis M. "Hershey's How Sweet It Is: The Eye-Candy of Times Square". Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  17. ^ "Kodak logo". Archived from the original on 2007-11-20.
  18. ^ "Sprite posters and Times Square billboard". AIGA. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  19. ^ "Bp Corporation Of North America Retail Fuels/Energy: Bp Helios House". Adeevee. 1 July 2008. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  20. ^ "Motorola". COLLINS. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  21. ^ "Mattel". COLLINS. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  22. ^ "Design for NYC's Olympic bid: NYC2012". Archived from the original on July 19, 2011.
  23. ^ Tischler, Linda (1 June 2005). "Blowing Out Advertising's Walls". Fast Company. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  24. ^ "NOW National Conference: 2006". NOW. Archived from the original on 2007-08-07. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  25. ^ Carranza, Luis. "Brian Collins, Helio House & Design". Adcentered. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  26. ^ "Helios House". COLLINS. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  27. ^ "Helios House". MPdL Studio. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  28. ^ Nasi, Theresa (29 July 2013). "Ogilvy & Mather adds three inductees to the Worldwide Creative Council" (Press release). New York: Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide Communications. Archived from the original on 16 August 2013. Retrieved 2019-04-08.
  29. ^ ""Brotherhood" exhibition". AIGA. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  30. ^ "The Ecology of Design: The AIGA Handbook of Environmental". AIGA. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  31. ^ "The Ecology of Design: The AIGA Handbook on Environmental Responsibility in Graphic Design". AIGA. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  32. ^ "We". AIGA. Retrieved 2019-04-08.
  33. ^ "CNN Grill graphics". Commarts. Archived from the original on 3 May 2015. Retrieved 23 April 2014.
  34. ^ AIGA Design Archives - Microsoft Store Identity
  35. ^ GeekWire: "Admit it, Apple fans: Microsoft's stores are pretty darn fun"
  36. ^ "New Identity for Spotify by Collins". Brand New. 19 March 2015. Retrieved 2019-04-08.
  37. ^ Tischler, Linda (12 March 2015). "Spotify Unveils A Bold New Brand Identity". Fast Company. Retrieved 2019-04-08.
  38. ^ Rhodes, Margaret (28 December 2015). "A Look Back at the Year's Freshest Logo Reboots". Wired. Retrieved 2019-04-08.
  39. ^ Dawood, Sarah (13 March 2015). "Spotify undergoes colourful brand refresh". Design Week. Retrieved 2019-04-08.
  40. ^ a b "Brian Collins". Massachusetts College of Art and Design. Retrieved 2019-04-08.
  41. ^ "Distinguished Alumni". MassArt. Archived from the original on 2008-03-12. Retrieved 2007-10-23.
  42. ^ "Blowing Out Advertising's Walls". Fast Company. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  43. ^ "2006 National Organization for Women, Image Award". Archived from the original on 2007-08-07.
  44. ^ "Art Center College Of Design Summer, Honorary Doctorate 2008". Archived from the original on 2011-07-16. Retrieved 2009-04-07.
  45. ^ "The One Show Gold Pencil winner 2009" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2010-06-26.
  46. ^ "Clios". Retrieved 2009-04-08.
  47. ^ AIGA Design Archives
  48. ^ "Graphis Master: Brian Collins is Reshaping Branding in the 21st Century". GraphisBlog. Retrieved 2019-04-07.
  49. ^ "Brian Collins, "The future of design: What we desire"". Nokia Bell Labs. Retrieved 2019-04-08.

External links[edit]