“Sight snacking” is a play on the word sightseeing. Rather than visiting other countries, one can experience other cultures through food, snacks being the most accessible in international food markets. A randomized and fun way to try these snacks could be through blind boxes. This first series is based around East Asian snacks, specifically China and Japan.
Collecting blind box figurines is popular around the world. Combining the mystery element of blind boxes with cultural snacks gives the audience an opportunity to learn about other cultures, specifically exposing them to flavors they would otherwise not try. I went to the Asian market and picked up snacks that I enjoyed: Yan Yan, White Rabbit, Hello Panda, and red bean buns. I wanted to develop character designs for each snack, and I drew inspiration from each snack's flavors, cultural facts, and branding elements within their packaging.
Yan Yan is a Japanese snack consisting of biscuit sticks and a flavored dip. The biscuit sticks are printed with an animal and a phrase. For example, the fox stick says "Beware of Lies."
White Rabbit is a Chinese chewy milk candy wrapped in rice paper. I characterized the candy with a bunny wrapped in the wrapper design like a blanket.
Mantou | Manju
Red bean buns are in both Chinese and Japanese cultures. I specifically chose a monkey since at the Jigokudan Monkey Park in Japan, monkeys are often found in the hot springs.
Hello Panda are Japanese bite-sized panda-shaped biscuits with a flavored filling. I chose matcha to highlight specific Asian flavors. The panda is sitting in a matcha bowl called a chawan.
Because the goal of the blind box is to expose more people to foreign cultures, each box contains a card corresponding with the mystery snack figurine. The card gives information like how to say the snack in its original language, the cultural importance of the animal characters, and specifications of any unique flavors or ingredients.
Typical blind boxes are in a standard six sided box. For my cultural snack blind box, I wanted to incorporate the supermarket aspect of these snacks, so the shape of the box resembles a mini milk carton. The color palette is inspired by the colors of the earth to represent the international aspect of the snacks.