Design: Joanna Shuen
Project Type: Student Project
School: University of Technology, Sydney
Packaging Contents: Rice
Packaging Substrate / Materials: Paper packaging
Printing Process: Digital printing
Rice is a fundamental part of the Japanese way of life. The cultivation and consumption of this grain have given fruition to customs, festivals and proverbs that shape Japan’s identity. As such, the packaging aims to capture these deep-rooted connections through folding style, pattern design and typography. Research into the forms of the rice plant and patterns found in rice paddies inspires the brush illustrations; each pattern is unique to the type of rice and its specific culinary use. For example, hakumai (white rice) is shown as a light pattern while mochigome (glutinous rice) features several dense and heavy strokes to reflect the pounding actions involved with preparing mochi.
The calligraphic brush illustrations on the pouch itself is hand-painted and reflect on the natural forms of the rice plant and paddy fields. Each of the patterns are custom to the type of rice it packages. Sustainability is a key consideration in the design as the pouch, once empty, is designed to be reused as a gift bag. This idea of recycling the packaging relates back to Furoshiki, which is a traditional wrapping technique using cloth. As to not ruin the integrity of the pattern on the pouch, the belly band is glued at one contact point, ensuring a clean removal.