Category Archives: creative review

Waterford rebrand

The original logo was monochrome, cast in a serif typeface, which felt a little old-fashioned. To update it, the agency has redrawn Waterford’s icon and work mark, inspired by the brand’s signature Lismore cut, which references the battlements and windows of Lismore castle in Waterford. The new logo uses these cuts as letterforms as a nod to its craft, with the original Waterford cross section of the W still retained. 

The clean cut of logo creates a contemporary interpretation and this was one of Identica’s biggest tasks: to reframe the brand as “desirable and relevant to a younger audience”. In the past the brand has actively built the perception of being saved for special occasions, but now wanted to create the idea that Waterford is a beautiful product that can “transform everyday moments to make them truly special”. 

The new colour palette also helps to modernise the brand, as it combines a dark moody green with a molten orange. The combination is a tribute to the “elemental starting point” of each crystal piece. Waterford’s famous seahorse also got a makeover, with Identica redesigning the character to feel like a “modern shorthand” of the brand. 

“The brief was one that many established brands have faced; how do we retain the essence of Waterford’s rich history, craftsmanship and Irish heritage but ensure that these feel relevant, compelling and desirable for a younger audience?” says Richard Clayton, Identica’s creative director. “I was hugely inspired by walking around the workshops, in awe of how the craftsmen were shaping the molten crystal using simple wooden paddles, how the crystal cutters manipulate small and huge crystal pieces over the diamond cutting wheels creating complex and delicate patterns.”

Coca-Cola doing thing differently

In an attempt to spread some happiness and hope following an appalling year, this new campaign by 72andSunny Amsterdam sees the creation of a set of limited edition packs of Coca-Cola Original Taste, Zero Sugar and Diet Coke/Coca-Cola Light where customers can write their positive messages for what will hopefully be a better year ahead.

In addition to buying the packs in-store, consumers in Europe can buy a personalised can of Coca-Cola Original Taste or Coca-Cola Zero Sugar through a new online store, which can be sent direct to loved ones (or to your own home, natch). Shoppers can also buy cans featuring the resolutions of celebrities including Katy Perry.

Kia unveils a new signature-inspired logo

The logo design features a parallel between the stem of the K and the diagonal stroke of the A, which now has the appearance of being italicised, arguably costing the wordmark slightly when it comes to legibility. Although the symmetry of the wordmark loses it some of its handwritten look, there’s a clear rhythmic quality – like a waveform or a heart rate graph – that taps into the idea of movement at the centre of the new strategy and slogan.

Burger King rebrand

The fast food giant is showing no signs of slowing down as we enter a new year, however, having just unveiled its first major rebrand in over two decades.

At the heart of the rebrand is a reimagined version of its existing logo, which ditches the reflective burger bun for a more stripped back design.

“The main difference now is that we adjusted the colour to make it more vibrant and more like the colours of food. And we adjusted the proportions of the bun to look more like the products that we sell.”

Meanwhile, a more in-your-face photography style using dramatic close-ups to communicate the fast food chain’s recent emphasis on its fresh food credentials, plus a new illustration style, adds a playful touch to the overall look.

Hand Sanitiser ads

Thanks to coronavirus, a new creative category is on the rise – hand sanitiser advertising. As more and more of us stash bottles in our bags, brands are going to be under increasing pressure to get noticed in a crowded category. So it makes sense that both Dettol and Lifebuoy have invested in major ad campaigns, but it’s interesting to note the different directions each has taken.

Lifebuoy’s Bish, Bash, Bosh campaign , which comprises a flm and outdoor ads with illustrations by Dan Woodger.

It’s fun, and God knows we all need some of that after months of frightening news and warning notices about social distancing. Making hand sanitiser playful and engaging must have been a tough brief, but Mullenlowe and Woodger have pulled it off in impressive fashion.

The illustrations are punchy, and work as well as static outdoor ads as they do in a gross-out animation that reminds us why we all need sanitiser in the first place.

The Body Coach

Joe Wicks became the nation’s PE teacher during those early months of national lockdown. And as a second lockdown descended upon England last month, again Wicks was there not only with his daily 30 minute PE sessions, but he also released a new YouTube series to get us exercising. The Body Coach brand has carved out a space of unrelenting energy and positivity, and it’s continued to flourish during a time where moving and exercising has, for many, been the only light in a very dark year. 

To help bring the app to life, Nikki enlisted the help of design and tech studio Ustwo and design agency Koto, who’d already worked on the rebrand of the Body Coach earlier in the year. “It was vital the work we did captured [Joe’s] infectious energy, the positivity which makes Joe the success he is,” says creative director and founder of Koto, James Greenfield on the key features of the rebrand. “So we took the bright colours the brand already used and then added a graphic layer built around this, with every element feeling like it moved. From a logo that is active, warm and approachable to a graphic language that utilises ‘hites’ (the active lines used in animation and comics to denote movement) to typography that isn’t just a standard cold typeface.” 

Fuchs says the project was more than the product for them as it was also about establishing a sense of longevity. “We worked to shape a business model and proposition both for now and the future, we created the back-end system for ‘support heroes’ to manage subscriptions and a website to communicate the mission and vision,” she says. “Alongside this we are helping Joe build his digital capability.”  

“I love some of the features in the app, but for me the design has been so important in making this product feel fun and accessible,” says Nikki. “The rebrand work that Koto did for us really captured Joe’s energy perfectly, and Ustwo has done such an incredible job of bringing it all to life in the digital experience. We can’t wait to share it with the world.”  

Pantone’s 2021 Colour of the Year is… grey and yellow

After a relentlessly horrible 2020, Pantone has opted for a double colour of the year, selecting grey and yellow to convey “a message of strength and hopefulness”, as the press release states.

Pantone 17-5104 is described by the colour company as “solid and dependable”, akin to pebbles on the beach, or weathered natural elements that have stood the test of time, while Pantone 13-0647 is described as “sparkling with vivacity, a warming yellow shade imbued with solar power”.

Spotify 2020 wrapped campaign

With its annual campaign, Spotify recognises and celebrates the stories from the artists, creators and listeners who helped us make it through this year.

The music industry has been hit especially hard by the pandemic this year, with strings of cancelled gigs, venues struggling to stay open and live performances having to adapt to the virtual world

For 2020, Spotify’s flagship annual Wrapped campaign aims to honour this struggle, and “recognise and celebrate the human stories of the year”. From artists to podcasters, families to frontline workers, plus the playlist creators who’ve beavered away, this year Wrapped is all about gratitude and resilience, with a little bit of its trademark humour thrown in too.

As well as the personal rundowns of most-listened tracks and stats that individual users can tap into, Spotify is splashing the campaign across social and outdoor advertising to find “beauty in the chaos” and say thank you to those who made it happen. The campaign’s visuals include a salute to Cardi B’s “invaluable wisdom and philosophies” for her track WAP with Megan Thee Stallion, as well as billboard placements in artists’ hometowns, like Glasgow where Lewis Capaldi’s Someone You Loved was streamed over 706,000 times. 

Best book cover designs of 2020

During the eight months since the UK declared the first of its nationwide lockdowns, writers have still written, publishers have still published and book designers have continued to produce an ever-varied range of covers for new titles. Yet there’s no denying that, as with pretty much every job in every sector across the country, the worlds of design and publishing have had to change and adapt accordingly throughout most of 2020.

Pentagram identity for a new craft platform

Maker Mile by Pentagram

Astrid Stavro’s team at Pentagram have unveiled the new typographic identity created for Maker Mile, which launched as part of Venice Design Week 2020. The new platform (not to be confused with the east London initiative of the same name) aims to promote the tradition and development of craft in the platform’s home city of Venice, with subsequent editions set to spotlight cities around the world.

Although the identity appears simplistic at first glance, the execution is quietly playful. The horizontal bar of the L is dramatically elongated, cleverly containing linear detailing within the wordmark itself that stretches along posters, signage, book spines and even adds an enticing spin to wayfinding.

The concept is brought to life in animations, where the L is stretched out like a tape measure, shunting the E along to the edge of the image. Another variation sees the horizontal bar form the outline of various objects that allude to the platform’s spirit of all things craft.

Expanding the wordmark evokes the idea of forward-thinking direction, while also creating the sense that, like a physical strip or ‘mile’ in many cities around the world, the platform is a destination worth visiting.

Maker Mile posters