Mecca Wants to Empower Women, Inside and Out
By: Theresa Christine
“Empowering women to look and feel their very best underpins everything we do,” explained Paul Troon, Head of Design at Mecca Brands.
Indeed, Mecca offers any- and everything one could possibly want when it comes to beauty and cosmetics, including skincare, fragrances, and hair products. But their dedication to giving women confidence doesn’t stop with the products they offer—they bring the ethos into their business practices as well.
This past holiday season marks the third time Mecca partnered with the National Gallery of Victoria and a talented female artist to develop limited edition packaging for the special season.
“We’re all about empowering women through these kinds of initiatives and focusing on female artists,” Paul said. “We can’t think of a better way to express this by supporting women in the arts made possible through our proud partnership with the NGV.”
The brand turned to Claudia Moodoonuthi, an artist whose work reflects her experiences in remote communities and Aboriginal roots.
“The parts of my culture which I brought to the packaging are the bright colors of the Bentinck Island landscape,” Claudia said. “Lines of significance and a close-up of country and story places.”
After conducting thorough research on the Mecca brand, she began to develop the different designs. “I used a limited palette and referred to my country’s mapping. I also drew inspiration from parts of paintings I had done during the year, and I referred to my elder’s works.”
“We used macro lens photography of her canvases to capture all the beautifully detailed strokes,” said Paul, “and made each of these small vignettes the hero on our packaging.”
The packaging is a refreshing change from what you’ll usually find around the holidays. In lieu of snowflakes, the traditional red and green pairing, and candy canes, Claudia’s design pops with invigorating colors and carefully crafted shapes.
“The holidays mean different things to each of us, so we wanted to create something universal that addressed the exuberance of the season,” added Paul. “Holiday packaging can skew very northern hemisphere, but we wanted something which was distinct and unique in terms of its color palette.
“Claudia’s artwork brims with color and joy, sentiments that tie in beautifully with the spirit of the holidays.”
Mecca selected Claudia to work with because of the richness of hues she uses in her work. Their brief, in fact, was a simple one: “color and celebration.” Beyond that, the brand trusted her and gave her space to create the designs organically—the same way she approaches her art each day.
Once Claudia felt the colors were right and she saw the final designs, she said she was incredibly pleased with the way they turned out. Nailing those colors for the final products proved to be the biggest production challenge, though.
“We really push the limits with quality for our customers and our packaging involves the full gamut of processes: 7-color print, raised foiling and texture embossing,” Paul explained. “We really go all out, which can present technical challenges for separating the artwork. It can be educated guesswork as to how CMYK and spot colors work together on complex artwork, so there’s always a breathless moment when the production samples come back to us for inspection.”
On top of this, Paul added they were on a tight deadline, which the artist handled with ease. “Claudia is an incredible talent who was onboard from day one,” he added. “What made the process special was seeing the incredibly fine detail in her work and really amplifying and celebrating it.”
Despite time constraints and a dedication to getting the hues just right, they never lost focus on the heart of the project: to empower women. Using their holiday packaging as a canvas, Mecca has brought an outstanding female artist’s work into the hands, homes, and hearts of people all over Australia. It wasn’t just about “color and celebration,” but also about women, art, and a rich Aboriginal culture.
“I loved working with a team of highly experienced Mecca creatives,” mentioned Claudia. “I realized they would do the best to make sure my art was authentic to me and also my elders, and my family would be proud and happy.”
Theresa entered the world of design through The Dieline. With a background in writing and journalism, she has a passion for discovery and cultivating human connections. Her work for The Dieline is a constant journey to deeply understand all facets of the design process and to investigate what makes designers tick. Theresa's writing has taken her snorkeling in between the tectonic plates in Iceland, horseback riding through a rural Brazilian town, and riding an octopus art car at Burning Man with Susan Sarandon as part of a funeral procession for Timothy Leary (long story). When not writing, she is planning her next trip or taking too many pictures of her cat.