Pentagram partner Natasha Jen has rebranded the Google-owned GPS app, introducing a whole of host of cute creatures that mimic the many moods of drivers on the road.
Pentagram partner Natasha Jen was commissioned to create a new visual identity based on Waze’s crowdsourcing roots and collaborative spirit, working in collaboration with the app’s head of creative Jake Shaw.
At the heart of the rebrand is the updated Wazer symbol, which now features a rounder, more upright form to emphasise its speech bubble shape and the app’s focus on communication. The accompanying refreshed logotype is based on Boing, a sans serif typeface with rounded corners designed to give a friendlier look.
Jen’s team also developed a new visual language for the app called Block by Block, which is inspired by the modular design of city grids and road systems. The geometric grid ensures consistency across everything from infographics to email templates, featuring a flexible array of colourful block-like shapes.
Illustration has always been a big part of Waze’s visual identity. The new branding brings greater clarity to this style, with Jen and her team redrawing existing icons and establishing a style guide for new illustrations going forward.
QULA is a brand of kombucha tablets that contains live probiotics and hydration-boosting minerals that dissolve in regular water. Unlike most kombucha on the market, QULA is not pre-bottled, reducing its environmental footprint both in the reduction of packaging per serving as well as the reduction of distribution-related greenhouse gas emissions and fuel consumption. Available in four flavors, QULA is a fizzy, slightly funky, soda alternative that is healthier and contains less than 1 gram of sugar per serving.The packaging is dominated by one of four vibrant illustrations that range from namaste to funkadelic, with each flavor sporting its own design and every illustration with a color palette inspired by the kombucha flavor. Orange Mamba, QULA’s blood orange and rosemary flavor, features orange, red, yellow, and green against a sky blue background. Pink Sunshine, a raspberry cucumber flavor, makes use of purple, blue, pink, and green and gives off some very serious psychedelic vibes. Upriser, a mango pineapple mix, features green, yellow, and red. Finally, Queen of Cups, their guava rose variant, is dominated by purple and pink, with orange, yellow, and green in supporting roles. Other visual assets on the packaging are similarly tied to the kombucha flavors.
Life has been turned upside down by the coronavirus outbreak even for those who haven’t suffered a loss at the hands of it. The news has become an ongoing source of despair and the general public is rapidly tiring of life under lockdown. However, the crisis has seen a pushback of positivity, whether through the nationwide Clap for our Carers initiative or the sense of solidarity seen across the creative communities and the wider public.
Flatten The Curve is a new compilation video embracing the positive, with animators from around the world contributing over 90 uplifting clips based on their time under lockdown. The first film in the series has just been released, with two more to follow.
The project was initiated by London-based animators Kathrin Steinbacher and Emily Downe, who together run Studio Desk. Steinbacher and Downe asked animators to submit a clip that would “highlight something positive they have experienced in these difficult times”, and the outcome is a diverse array of colourful takes on the new normal.
Pentagram took a colorful approach with a rounded and organic linear pattern as the base for the logomark. The design found inspiration in the natural ingredients that comprise the sparkling water, as well as the brand’s name, creating a virtual wellspring of CBD goodness. The cans are only partially draped in color with the top and bottom exposed, showcasing the naked, natural aluminum.
The linear art is extensible and expressive, and that versatility gets used to exceptional effect in their promotional materials, packaging, merchandise, and social media. The line pattern can also get molded to almost any shape, in countless color palettes while giving off a chill, retro vibe that’s on-point for a CBD-infused brand.
Today, Seven Brothers (stylised as Seven Bro7hers) has taken its unusual business formation and run with it in terms of the concept behind its zingy new branding. The refresh was led by Manchester-based creative branding agency Creative Spark, and centres around the idea of the lucky number seven.
Creative Spark wanted to ensure that the cans stand out on the shelves, and key to this was a vibrant colour palette that helps to distinguish them from other brands. “We did some initial research with [insights agency] Humanise into what new and current customers wanted from the Seven Brothers brand,” Marra says.
The insights informed the brighter approach to the palette, though the brand still maintains its original core colours of black, white and yellow too. “Crucially the colour combos had to stand out on the shelf, and the colours also make the flavours recognisable to the customer while enabling us to have some fun with packaging.”
Key to developing recognisability was the prominent use of the number seven, which is presented in different yet uniformly punchy 3D typefaces across the product variants. “The unique sevens we created allow each can to have its own look, but will still be recognisable as a Seven Brothers can,” says Marra.
It’s an unusual approach to alter what is essentially a logo across a product range, particularly for a nascent brand. However, it certainly feels as though the seven is locked down as a core emblem, giving the brand room to breathe in terms of the type choices.
The organisation provides free cancer support and information for people with cancer and their family and friends from support specialists, psychologists, nutritionists, therapists and benefits advisors in centres across the UK and online.
“Maggie’s was looking for a brand identity that was more visible than before, and would help them stretch from just campaigning to caring and supporting,” says Willer. “They needed to express their point of difference more clearly from lots of other voices in the charity world.”
The team started the identity project by “helping define or articulate the unique perspective a client brings to the world” – in Maggie’s case, being the “everyone’s home of cancer care”, says Willer. It then helped Maggie’s to create a new website and explored how the brand could work across multiple platforms – from print to social media and internal touch points.
“The colours are inspired by the spaces themselves,” says Willer. “Instead of the clinical lighting or materials that are often found in a clinical environment, the centres have very warm natural colours, tending towards tones of orange. In the same way that the new house logo has multiple shapes, we felt that a range of warm colours was more suitable to represent a family of spaces than just one. Each centre is quite individual, but all are extremely welcoming and ‘home-like.’”
A bespoke typeface was created, along with a “human and practical wordmark” set in entirely in upper case to resemble an architect’s handwriting (and avoid any possible confusion with the charity’s founder’s personal signature). Pentagram also redesigned Maggie’s magazine to give it a more lifestyle-like feel – and avoid the “institutional and unappealing” feel of many charity publications. The redesign extended to communications for hospital noticeboards and Maggie’s centres, which are again designed to feel human – rather than cold, clinical or impersonal.
“We collaborated with Art of Play, producers of some of the finest playing cards in the universe, to bring you one strange deck. These cards feature a completely custom design in typical Messymod fashion which can be described as minimal, modern, graphic, quirky, stylized, grotesque, delightful and just plain weird.
We designed this deck so that each card has its own presence and personality, making them ideal pieces of artwork that can stand on their own. Each card has patterns of suits within suits for endless fun.
Packaged in a premium letterpress-printed tuck box both inside and out. Printed by the U.S. Playing Card Co. on Art of Play’s trademark thin-stock preferred by cardists.
Oliver Jeffers announced he would be reading one of his books every day until people are able to leave their homes. Readings take place at 6pm UK time and are broadcast via Instagram Stories, meaning viewers in different time zones can tune in and watch any time within the following 24 hours. All broadcasts have been recorded and will also be added to Jeffers’ website.
Mac Barnett – the author behind the Jack Book and KidSpy series – is also broadcasting live readings via Instagram at 12pm Pacific time, which are available to watch for 24 hours. In a post announcing the readings, Barnett said he had around a month’s worth of picture books – “and if we run out I might read some chapter books”, he wrote.