What started as an idea in 2000 has been a great two decade journey. Twenty years in which we grew from a graphic design studio into a full-fledged creative agency for branding, design and communication.

Wim Crouwel & Michael Klok at studio opening — 2000

Portfolio brochure — 2000

Eurosonic Noorderslag event identity — 2000

Martinair rebranding — 2000

Martinair rebranding — 2000

Skets visual identity — 2000

Asito annual report — 2002

Asito annual report — 2002

It was back then that Grafisch Komplot and Grapha merged to form G2K designers. Grafisch Komplot, founded in Groningen by brand strategist Michael Klok. Grapha, the Amsterdam based studio of designer Anne Stienstra who was part of the illustrious Total Design in the 70s, alongside renowned Dutch designers including Wim Crouwel and Friso Kramer. Stienstra, in the 00s, and more recently Klok have since moved on, but have strongly defined the agency’s DNA.

Krezip album cover — 2001

G2K studio (top floor) Hereplein Groningen — 2002

Artis annual report — 2003

Ex Libris stamp — 2004

Gasunie visual identity — 2005

Groningen Airport Eelde visual identity — 2007

Johan Cruyff visual identity — 2007

G2K was shaped after a fairly simple but effective idea: bring together creative talent, strategic expertise and staff support. Allow creatives to focus 100% on creation in close collaboration with smart strategic thinkers and support them with a project management team that takes care of organization and process. Obvious, but at the time quite unique in the Dutch graphic design sector where designers often performed all tasks within their practice themselves. Today we still work that way.

Poster for Irma Boom lecture — 2005

University of Groningen visual identity — 2007

Poster for De Designpolitie lecture — 2007

Brand Rules seminar — 2008

Maven Publishing visual identity — 2009

Mini — Top of Mini campaign — 2009

Brunel campaign — 2010

Numerous designers and colleagues have worked at our studio since then, one thing has remained the same: a constant pursuit and drive for clear concepts and solid design. Yes, we do think less is often more. Clarity is a necessity to create effective communication. And well crafted, solid design adds value to a brand. Period.

Reblog @ Clear Photo Festival — 2011

VMI visual identity — 2012

Grand Theatre Groningen visual identity — 2012

Van Gogh Museum campaign — 2013

Dierenpark Emmen app — 2013

New studio at Ubbo Emmiussingel Groningen — 2015

Q-link visual identity — 2015

Two decades. We won some, we learned some. The 00s saw growth, new media and a worldwide halt to the party. We’ve lived — and worked — through it. The 10s brought a renewed focus on the core competencies required of a creative agency today. In 2017 we fused with young creative collective PIT, adding new creative skills to seasoned experience. It proved a healthy combo.

TedX Groningen event identity — 2017

G2K x PIT launch party — 2017

G2K x PIT launch party — 2017

AM/PM exhibition @ G.R.I.D. — 2018

Forum Groningen visual identity — 2019

20 years in 2 minutes

This is where we’re at. Set and ready. To create new futures. With you.

Lettering on blind door in hallway Groningen studio — 2018

20 things we learned

In twenty years you pick up on some things. We have learned a lot. About ourselves, our profession, about doing business. About people and the world. What makes them tick and what makes it go round. Below you will find twenty insights that we’ve casually gained over the years. It is not an exhaustive list, nor is it intended to be. Still, we like to share it. It may bring you to something. Have fun, pick what you can use.


G2K x PIT party — 2017

Invitation new year‘s party Amsterdam studio — 2012

Red Dot Award — 2020

If there’s an opportunity to cake it, take it. However big or small the occasion.


Studio snapshot Groningen — 2020

D66 campaign — 2009

Keep it simple. It’s the number one rule we follow. It’s literally on our studio wall. It’s what we demand of ourselves, it’s what we ask of clients. No matter how complex the question or problem, break it down, separate main and secondary issues, make it simple. This creates clarity, makes room to talk about the essentials to find, create and communicate an effective answer. If you can’t explain it clearly to yourself, how would you ever explain it to anyone else? Simplicity truly is the ultimate form of sophistication.

Scare Yourself

Dressing room liquor wrapper for Grand Theatre Groningen — 2011

Drunk on Life party totem — 2019

If you really want to get ahead in whatever you do: don’t be afraid to scare yourself. Whether you’re a designer, marketer or whoever, dare to let go of what you know. Embrace the unknown, be willing to fail forward. Real progress is often found by venturing into unknown territory. That’s how we like to remind ourselves and our clients. And hey, in reality, you can often turn around if you need to. As long as you don’t hit the brakes too early.

Pay peanuts,
get monkeys

Stationary for Dierenpark Emmen — 2010

This one’s really simple: any quality work needs attention, giving attention takes time, time costs money. Do the math. Whether you are the buyer or the seller. Being penny wise and pound foolish is what is expensive. We are not.

Question everything

Custom typeface for Game On exhibition — 2021

We’ll credit Virgil Abloh for this one, but we have been taking it to heart for twenty years. It relates to the K.I.S.S. principle. We should hang this one on our wall too. Take nothing for granted. Re-examine. Ask for why (and why and why). Not to be annoying but to find better answers. Also: don’t forget to question what you yourself think or believe. The mirror can be your best friend.

Please don’t trend

Custom silkscreened G2K totebags — 2017

Postcard — 2013

We’ve lived through some design eras: the 90s fallout of curved everything, the 00s Silicon Valley beveling of every button in sight, the 10s post-modern mix mash all the way to pastel flat design and the current resurgence of serif font use. Ok, we get it, you have to dance to the music. Our clients do and oftentimes have to. We do too. But always try our hardest to not let trends stand in the way of original and well crafted work.

Change is good

Visit Wadden visual identity & campaign — 2019

We are in the business of change. As designers we have the tools and skillset to help formulate and communicate change. To help tackle the wicked problems of our day and age. It is most rewarding to be part of creating something new, something better. Use us.

Re-invent yourself

G2K x PIT team — 2017

llevell light — collab with Han Koning — 2014

Also: change yourself in time. We had to. Everybody has to. Whether you like it or not. Google Schumpeter’s theory of Creative Destruction if you don’t want to take our word for it. Analyze where you really add value, whether your services and skillset are up-to-date and relevant, and steer in that direction. This applies to your brand, your company, the company you work for, your personal career. Possibly even your romantic relationship. Ask your partner if you don’t want to take our word for it.

It’s cool up North out West

Afsluitdijk – Shot for TRIP Advocaten Notarissen — 2021

Our Northern Netherlands office has an outpost in Amsterdam. The Amsterdam office has a retreat in Groningen. Back/forth. Having dual focus fuels creativity, keeps us on our toes. It prevents obvious blind spots of either habitat. A wide-eyed view makes you look clearer and further. We heartily recommend it.


Martinair livery — 2003

Visiting Kontrapunkt, Copenhagen — 2004

Visiting Copenhagen Contemporary — 2019

Take it a step further: cross borders, meet, invite, be ruthlessly eclectic. Inside and outside of your profession. Inside and outside of your head. There is unlimited creative oxygen out there. We have traveled and welcomed colleagues and interns from around the globe. It taught us a lot.

What branding is not

We have been asked several times to create a nice piece of wrapping paper around a shaky business model or a half-baked idea. It did not and will not help, no matter how award-worthy the brand design. Sorry.

Team upward

AM/PM nightclub poster exhibition curated by G2K — 2018

Custom poster — Biggie Smalls — 2015

If you want to get better at what you do: work, collaborate, team up, surround yourself with people you consider better than yourself at what they do. It will up the ante and quality of your work and will help you grow. And keeps you humble as a bonus.

Do not brainstorm

Studio snapshot — 2018

Of course you should brainstorm. But not to find the solution to a problem during one session. Instead, discuss the problem. Review it 180, 360, 540. Kick it, crunch it. Then stop. Have your team think about it, individually. Let (sub)consciousness do its thing. Get back together, another day. Review each and every solution, pick the most promising ones to develop further. Pixar taught us. It works.

Own it

Custom Holy Water Gin label — illustrations: Rueben Millenaar — 2018

Own your work. Work with people who own their work. Ownership means dedication. It’s a must have of all your partners: your clients, project collaborators, suppliers, colleagues.

Sail easy

Maven Publishing covers — 2007/2010

In service industries like ours, if people know you, like you, like what you do, they will come to you when the time is right. Don’t blow your own sails too much. Direct sales, cold calling, pushing that sales button really hard? Often a waste of time, annoying and counterproductive. Instead seo, sea, network in person and focus on your work. It will get noticed if it’s any good.

Stick to you

Teddy's Last Ride identity visual — 2019

Trust yourself. Prepare, know what’s up, form an opinion, have a vision, be on a mission. Tenders, pitches, competitions, we’ve probably all been there, whatever your profession. There’s no reason to try to be someone you’re not, change tactics or strategy all over the place. Work on your own thing and do just that.

Ideas, ideas, ideas

TedX Groningen event identity — 2017

Han Konig editorial — 2015

Tools change. Media landscapes change. They did, they will. The smell of fresh offset ink, anyone? What didn’t change and won’t change is the need for ideas. Big ideas. Know your tools and channels, focus on your ideas.

Creativity is fun

Studio snapshot — 2018

No it’s not. Not always at least. It’s hard, structured labour. It’s full of doubt, options, possibilities. It’s Flaubert’s quote “I spent the morning putting in a comma and the afternoon removing it.” It takes time, perseverence, a touch of genius and strong willed grit to get where you want to be. Yet it is the most rewarding thing when you arrive there.


34Piepjes fundraiser visual identity - 2012

Noordhoff identity system — 2016

For those who never laugh, learn how to harness the powerful benefits of laughter and humor here.


Care visual identity — 2008

Studio snapshot — Groningen — 2017

We love. We care. Tenderly. About ourselves, our work, our team, our clients, the world. We hope you do too.

2000 thank yous

To all the people we worked with and that inspired us. Thank. You.

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