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© Tessa Scott

der kleine Sprachsalon // Language School Identity

The multi-talented Stintje Hüllsiek is the brains behind a language school with a difference; der kleine Sprachsalon (the little language salon) was conceived by the languages and theatre specialist while on a break from full-time teaching. At the kleine Sprachsalon, students enjoy the benefit of Oxbridge style tutorial sessions in groups of between 3 and 6 learners in a relaxed, lounge-like situation. Alongside the launch of the website Stintje has big plans for her brand; currently working towards the inaugural kleine Sprachsalon Language Tour. First stop – Italy.

SCOTT. Design + Text created the logo and website which features a basic web-based CMS. Site editors log-in and update content from whenever, wherever. Nice!

Daniel Matzenbacher’s favourite ice-cream* flavour?

A republish from the archives in memory of Daniel, a truly great illustrator, and ice-cream connoisseur, who passed away recently. He’s missed by everyone who knew him.

* You won’t find this nugget of information in the online interview I translated for Daniel back in 2016. What you will find is a chronicle of a restless, brilliant mind and a complex character riffing in an only slightly jaded, thoughtful, lucid rant about the whys & wherefors and also the craft of being a successful illustrator.

Over 25 years Daniel’s body of work has graced the pages of some of Germany’s most illustrious news media, so he’s in a position to pontificate. Think ‘Die Zeit’, ‘Stern’, ‘der Spiegel’ and you’re on the right track.


Q1: Daniel Matzenbacher, thanks so much for your time, we’re really excited to have you and your agency with us as guest ‘creative of the week.’ Could you please tell us a bit about yourself and give us a potted history of your career and training?

A: I’m one of those late-blooming autodidacts. I was born on the left bank of the lower Rhine and I always loved drawing, but in my youth I was way too flakey and unfocused to turn it into any sort of viable career option. At that time all I wanted to do was make music. When I when I turned 30 things really started to take off. After a couple of years freelancing as a graphic designer, I was picked up by the representation agency Becker/Derouet (formerly of Hamburg) who all of a sudden started chucking loads of work my way. Until the mid 1990s I did conventional illustrations for ad agencies and magazines. Even from the get go I worked for top-notch addresses; Stern, Spiegel, Zeit Magazine and such like. In 1995 I bought my first computer, just on a whim, to see what would happen. I very soon realised that the apple was the ultimate collage machine. That’s how I still use it today.

Q2: What’s the primary focus of Matzenbacher Illustration and what special services do you offer?

A: The central focus of my work is without a doubt the digital collage. I work with a, by now, vast back catalogue of found and self-made source imagery, including for example old advertising illustrations, photos, text snippets, old paper. Any old found objects. A completely soaked and filthy fragment of paper found in a gutter somewhere with the barely legible print ‘Control’ is a real treasure! I quite often take my camera out and photograph anything and everything; structures, surfaces or physical spaces, I scan dead flies or mouldy bits of pizza. There are absolutely no limits in terms of my imagery. By the way, I often use my own hands for the hands of my figures. And of course I use online picture archives.

Apart from colour tweaking and the occasional filter, I pretty much never work with computer-generated imagery. Any 3D bits and pieces that pop up in my work are built, not rendered. My way of working is always intuitive, for the most part without a plan and lives or dies by allowing the space for coincidences to occur. Beyond the key ideas in the manuscript, it’s about the little details or a certain ambience that just happens or becomes evident through the process of the work – now that’s really exciting! By the way, this principle pretty much applies to all other areas of my life!

*  Read the rest of the interview, filed under ‘trivia’ at

BERNHARD RITSCHARD Violin Maker // Website Relaunch

Bernhard Ritschard is a peripatetic, polyglot violin maker of the traditional Italian school. Born in Interlaken at the foot of the Swiss Alps, he learned his craft at the tradition-rich International School of Violin Making in Cremona, following in the footsteps of Antoni Stradivari.

In his northern German workshop near Lübeck, Bernhard creates and restores repertoire-specific instruments and bows for Early Music specialists and Music Schools from all over Europe.

A catalogue of these hand-built string instruments is now online at:



brwebsite_1200-x-800-copySCOTT. Design + Text designed and translated the website which features the wonderful photography of Nina Strugalla.  Johannes Zapotoczsky programmed the site to function beautifully on a desktop or tablet. Thanks guys.

© Tessa Scott Design

HFBK Choir // Identity Design and Concert Marketing Material

The HFBK-Chor is a choir consisting of a collection of rugged individualists who are graduates  from the visual arts, design and architecture faculties of Hamburg’s most respected Fine Arts Institution the Hochschule für bildende Künste. In reality, it’s been a few semesters since most of the singers graced the halls of that august institution but that’s a mere detail. Arguably Hamburg’s best looking choir the HFBK-Chor’s ever-evolving repertoire encompasses a range of styles and eras; from heart-wrenching Madrigals full of metaphysical yearnings to heady contemporary pieces with lashings of German Romanticism thrown in  for good measure.

© Tessa Scott

Plätscher Poster 2013

 SCOTT. Design + Text created the HFBK Logo and the marketing material for a series of concerts including Chor + X, Plätscher! as well as the collaborative performance of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana Fortuna Digitalis with Elbtonal Percussion and Realitäten Revue at the Miralles Saal in Hamburg.

Maedchenchor Hamburg // Hamburg Girls’ Choir

The Mädchenchor Hamburg (Hamburg Girls’ Choir) is a choral school for girls between the ages of 4 and 20 years old. Since 2003 the choir has enthralled audiences from Switzerland to Swaziland with their nuanced sound and polished performance style.

cd_insideMaedchenchor Hamburg have now served up a slice of their unique sound to CD: Song of Hope presents key studio repertoire and live recordings from the Hamburg Laeiszhalle and the Weimarhalle in Weimar.

olgaSCOTT. Design + Text created the CD and translated the sleeve notes. Panorama shot of the Mädchenchor performing in the Kulturkirche (Hamburg, Altona) by kind permission of photographer extraordinaire Martin Zitzlaff – thanks Martin!

The Urbanimals

Dingodabulous and his mates Crocoriffic and Goannagogo reveal the magical world of Urbanimaland, a place that exists in the cracks of the big city where, unseen by adult eyes, the Urbanimals dance, make magic, art & music. A funny, silly set of rhyming verses with collage illustrations and adventurous language for readers between 5 and 8 that celebrates the diversity of urbanity.

Was mein Leben reicher macht?

Someone, somewhere, once said that we become the books that we read. So, if we read happy books, we get happy, right? Well, now you can experiment on yourself with the nicely produced volume Was Mein Leben Reicher Macht from Knaur Verlag. These collected musings of Die Zeit reading Germans are now available in hardback form. Turn to Page 161 to see my contribution in visual form! Was Mein Leben Reicher Macht by Wolfgang Lechner is available from Amazon and directly from Knaur Verlag.