Form + Meaning


Pedro Carvalho de Almeida’s Workshop

We were asked, for the first part of the workshop, to bring all the visual research we had, in stamp size format, so we could create a visual mapping of our Major Project’s field of study with the intent; as we add, search and subtract; of creating links between all the groups and subgroups within the field of study.

To create those links, a visual conversation was designed by dividing the field of study in three main groups: Branding, Câmara de Matosinhos and Matosinhos and by organizing the information in a rational disposition: the search about Matosinhos on the left, containing images from buildings, iconic places, industry and people from Matosinhos; the Branding search on the right, with bibliography and branding examples that have characteristics that are wanted for the Major Project and in the center, where this two fields intersect, we placed on the top center images from other city hall’s identities, on the center graphic representations from the city of Matosinhos and its city hall and on the bottom center, images from regional identities to contextualize and that could appear in graphic supports next to the identity to be worked in the Major Project.


In the first day’s afternoon, Pedro Carvalho de Almeida gave us the free afternoon so we could gather the information we thought it was missing, advising a special attention towards bibliography with an interesting tip: choosing our references as we were choosing them for a big debate on our Major Project or a series of lectures on the field of study. As it was the main gap on the branding research, it turned out to be the biggest concern while researching, and it paid off, the bibliography references went from two to fourteen, including books and dissertations.


In the second day, Pedro spoke individually with all of us, and after explaining how the mapping was firstly thought and organized, not only his conversation helped the structuring of the next steps for this work in progress project but also the actions, the definition of new groups and subgroups, their proper naming and a better organized disposition.


After this review, the field of study’s three main groups were divided in this subgroups:

Benchmarks on City Branding
Direct References for the Major Project.

Benchmarks on Cultural Branding
Characteristics/Values References.


Câmara de Matosinhos’ Official Graphic Representations
Coat of Arms: Heraldic.
Logotype: Drawing.
Map/Topography: Silhouette.

District: Porto
(Secondary Information)
Strong proximity between Matosinhos and Porto:
Sectors: Academic, Cultural, Public Transports…

Graphic Representation of Entities from Matosinhos
Contribute for the city’s promotion externally and internally.

Personalities related to Matosinhos
Part of Portugal’s Culture.

Place / Territory
Iconic Places: Architecture, Design, Events, Gastronomy, Geography, Industry…

The Idea and Importance of a City Brand
(Analysis of Formal Questions)
Brand’s Context/Function: City Hall, Commercial, Touristic…
Graphic Questions: Color, Expressive Grammar, Shape, Typography…

Pedro’s main advise was to not see this project as a final piece but as the work in progress it is, and for that we should keep adding information and shape shifting the visual mapping as we discover new references, in order to create better visual conversations that can formulate new groups/subgroups, links and lists to prioritize content to a better contextualization of the Major Project.


In the last day, we were asked to design a typographic diagram, organizing the groups/subgroups and the respective links we discovered in the previous exercise and through the outline stroke and size, we should illustrate their importance.


In the end of the workshop, the main objective of connecting and identifying the various categories of information that compose the field of study is obviously not yet completely fulfilled, but it was a big help, this starting point can possibly project an orientation for the structure of the Major Project, an hypothetical index.

Pedro left us with a gift in the form of Seidel’s Quality Data Analysis:
Collecting – Noticing – Thinking.
Noticing – Thinking – Collecting.
Thinking – Collecting – Noticing.

A big thank you to Dr. Pedro Carvalho de Almeida, for his knowledge and time!