Safe Passage approached me several years ago to design their 2008 annual report. When Safe Passage asked me again to take on their 2010 Annual Report, as well as design a custom email newsletter and blog, it made sense to bring them on as a Might & Main client.
Black Tie Company approached us late last year with a simple goal: create a strong, memorable identity for the company and apply it to collateral, signs, vehicles, uniforms, and all the other places that the company has historically been logo-less or inconsistent.
In a world where every product is thoughtfully packaged, every message carefully crafted to sell us something, we often can't tell what to believe, and we increasingly look to real people to help us make decisions.
We don't take on a lot of personal identities; the budgets for these projects tend to limit the in-depth discovery and strategy work we think is so important to a rich and authentic brand. But when comedian Karen Morgan approached us to help her hone and focus her brand identity, she came with very clear goals and well-defined expectations that let us keep our research and concepting time to a minimum and helped us quickly understand her audience and her tastes and preferences.
None of us were working in the fabled 90s boom of big offices, big bonuses, and lavish expenses. A decade later, we each weathered the more recent economic downturn as freelancers, seeing once seemingly endless work slow down—sometimes to a trickle. That we approached the idea of incorporating carefully and with great consideration of sustainability should be no surprise.
Inspiration boards, otherwise known as mood boards or idea boards, are an important part of the research phase of almost every brand identity project we take on. When compiling an inspiration board, the goal is to collect and arrange bits of imagery and design that explore and illustrate a specific creative tone.
It's extremely rare to show a client a first round of identity concepts and have them immediately choose one without changes, but that's exactly what happened when we presented logo sketches for the Slovak-American Foundation to CIEE (Council on International Educational Exchange).
In the past, attorneys traveling to trade shows and conferences would drag a heavy set of customizable panels with them—the standard trade show fare: bulky, blocky, and easy to overlook. Preti wanted an updated look that would be eye catching and easier to transport.