The team threw around many ideas when it came to packaging designs, from a "library-slip-like" check-in system on the inside of the box to a set of post its to leave messages for future owners. Nonetheless, a large part of the project is simplifying and leaving the right amount of room for interpretation. When it came to the camera's instructions, we kept them simple and limited to three steps for a reason. We believe in the power of the platform, the importance of leaving enough whitespace.
We opted for a simple white cardboard box fitted with a number of clear sticker labels (all printed on my own inkjet and cut out by hand with the help of an astoundingly committed collection of friends). The top of the box features a short welcome message so the camera can be easily passed off (and even found if once lost).
The back panel has the Common Camera Project address and spots for the three stamps included in the camera's tear-open package. All the last person needs to do is apply the stamps, seal the box, and drop it in the mailbox. Nevertheless, the cameras were also designed to have all pertinent information on the cam itself in case they become separated from the box.
The top panel's visual design plays off of the shape of the box, inviting users to open the main flap to see what is inside. Printed on the inside flap is the phrase, "Feel free to decorate this box." We've already heard some interesting anecdotes about individuals drawing on the boxes as well as leaving things inside for the next owner.
Common Cam relies on each person to re-pitch the project every time the camera is passed on. Hence, we aimed to create box that would characterize the camera as a gift through a packaging design that was inviting, easy to understand, and easy to use… Even if that meant cutting a tiny notch in every box just so it could be opened more easily :)
Learn more about the Common Cam: