Employee Stories

Behind the Packaging: An Interview with Chris Kernel – Digital Prepress

To conclude our “Behind the Packaging” series,  our last interview is with Chris Kernel, a digital corrugated prepress team member. Chris has been with Great Little Box/Ideon Packaging (GLBC) for 3.5 years and has been a graphic designer for 5 years.  

Like fellow digital prepress team member Brett Priest, Chris conceptualizes visuals that inspire and can communicate those ideas through graphics on packaging and labels. To learn more about Chris and his design career journey, keep reading! 

Behind the Packaging: An Interview with Chris Kernel - Prepress
Behind the Packaging: An Interview with Chris Kernel – Digital Prepress

Why did you choose a career in design? 

I have always loved and appreciated art and design from a young age. I also have enjoyed working with grids, solving puzzles, and thinking analytically – so a career choice in design seemed like a perfect fit for me. 

What was your most successful packaging design and why? 

Behind the Packaging: An Interview with Chris Kernel - Digital Prepress
Behind the Packaging: An Interview with Chris Kernel – Digital Prepress

One of my most successful custom design projects would be the Tribe ACV, Sparkling Apple Cider Vinegar Drink Display. It is bright, playful, and has a unique custom die-cut header that is really eye-catching and stands out from most displays. 

As a designer, what catches your eye that makes a product pop from the shelves? 

The biggest thing I notice are products that are made thoughtfully and utilize strong underlying grids and layouts. Other than that; bright bold colours, unique style, and consistency over multiple products that really tie a brand’s design together grabs my attention and stands out to me. 

What brands or design products do you admire the most? 

I really admire a lot of the craft beer companies that have been popping up locally. Most of them are making a similar product, so creativity and style are a huge driving force to set them apart. It makes for some amazing and unique designs. 

Where do you get your packaging design inspiration from? 

I follow a lot of design companies and artists from a variety of industries and different backgrounds that constantly provide me diverse perspectives and ideas. 

How do you approach a new project? 

RESEARCH! Custom projects require a lot of learning and then applying that knowledge. I always take the time to go through the company website, social media channels, and any past projects that have been done to really understand a product or company before getting started on any designs or ideas. 

What do you like most about your job? 

Generally, being able to be creative is awesome but I also love to collaborate. I don’t think good designs are made by one person. Having a supportive team to bounce ideas off and brainstorm elevates all of the best creative designs. 

What is the most fun part of your job? 

Custom designs are definitely the most fun.  

Going through the process – from beginning the research to an idea, creating the design, then seeing a fully printed real-world sample is extremely gratifying. 

We hope you enjoyed our blog series and getting an opportunity to meet our design professionals at GLBC. We have linked all of the interviews below, so be sure to check them out! 

If our team has inspired you and you are looking for custom labels or packaging (or both!), feel free to reach out, we would love to get you started on your project!


Links to Other Interviews: 

Graphics: Chase McNabb 

Prepress: Jim DavisonVick Kumar, Chris Kernel , Brett Priest 

Structural Design: Cody Kendall, Toby Harper

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