Monkey Monday - January 6th, 2020

Branding and stylescapes

Communication | Branding | Monkey Mondays | Graphic design

Happy new year, Monday people! We’re back in the studio ready to take on a new year of exciting branding and communication projects.

In today’s video, Matt and Chris are talking about stylescapes. These are pieces we put together to help our clients develop their visual communication from a logo to a complete brand concept. Each stylescape tells the story of the brand, and delves into some of the detailed elements that make up a coherent brand.

When working on a branding project, we usually present three different stylescapes, each designed to a single brief and a set of key descriptive phrases. We’ll then help the client choose which one best represents their idea of their brand.

The stylescapes Matt and Chris talk about in today’s vlog demonstrate how a brief can be interpreted in three very different ways, and how this creative process helps us to arrive at a brand scape that’s right for the client.

If you’d like to have a go at designing your own stylescape, check out our free template download!

Want to see your stylescape?

Transcript Show / Hide

Have you been playing on your iPad, Chris?
I have, I’ve been playing Pong.
Pong. Or Q*bert.
Up to date. Hi, I’m Matt!
Hello, I’m Chris. How’s it going?
It’s another Monkey Monday.
Mm, and this week we’re gonna talk about branding and stylescapes.
Yeah, so I think we’ve probably chatted a little bit in the past about the difference between a logo and a brand, so we just wanna expand that out a little bit, and give you an idea of how you could have one logo or an idea of a logo and have that develop into three very different feelings of a brand that could represent the same thing.
Yeah, so we’ll show you a brand that we’ve worked on, a company called Avila Herbals - and what do they do, Matt?
They grow hemp!
Do they? Medicinal hemp?
Yeah, well they do a variety of things, but one of their core products is herbal teas and things like that. So they also sell the seeds as well to other people. They’re based in the US.
Ah, okay.
And, yeah, it’s a herbal product, it’s designed to help people relax and unwind and deal with - I guess - rheumatic pain and things like that.
So they already had a logo that you’d started to develop?
Yeah, our designers here - they needed something very quickly so we put together a very quick logo and a bit of packaging for them, because they needed something to go to market with really really quickly. So we put something together for that. And then we needed to take a little bit of a step back and develop the wider brand conversation together.
And we do this through stylescapes. It’s probably best if we show you one, for a start. So we came up with three different concepts for the brand, and three different styles. And what we do is we put them in a long panoramic kind of view, and that is a stylescape. So let’s have a quick look at the first one, which is under the heading ‘Relaxed’. So the colours here are all sort of muted and…
Calming you would say, wouldn’t you, I suppose. So again these stylescapes, they’re really designed to kind of bring in a bit of imagery, a bit of personality, so you kinda wanna get some of the customer in there if you can, get a feeling of how they fit into your marketing. We use it as an opportunity to start thinking about how the brand might work in certain situations, so how it’s gonna look on a bag, or on the tea label, for instance, and how the colours work together and communicate the whole vision. So you can see this whole thing gives a sort of one whole feeling really. Which is, I guess, about being very relaxed.
And we’re not designing finished items here, we’re just giving a flavour of what you could get if you went down one route.
Yeah, customers find this really useful because you can use words to describe the brand that you want, but until you start putting those into this kind of feeling you can’t always envisage exactly what it’s going to be. So doing two or three of these treatments against a brief helps you properly envisage how that’s going to look.
So let’s have a look at the second take on it, which is called “Organic”.
Yeah, obviously with the product it’s an organic product, so the sort of feeling of the leafy nature in these watercolours - again it’s quite a relaxed kind of feeling to it and a fairly muted palette. But the words you’d probably use to describe this wouldn’t be hugely different from the words you’d describe the first one. But you can see how the application of those descriptive parts of the brief can be done in a very different way.
Yeah, it looks completely different. And if we move onto the third one, that’s different again, with bolder colours.
Yeah, so I think we really wanted to try and focus on the fruit flavours and the product as a whole. So we were a bit bolder with the colour palette here, and how we did the packaging, and this is the one that they’ve gone for actually in the end, which we really agree with actually. It really has a statement around the flavours and the - but it still feels relaxed, doesn’t it. It still has those terms. So what we do when we talk to the customer as well, putting these three different treatments in front of them and then asking them to score them against the original brief and the phrases they wanted it to stand for, is really key. So this one scored really well for all of the things they were trying to communicate.
So I think the big difference between your logo and your brand is hopefully what these stylescapes have demonstrated for you. Because if you look at the logos between those three stylescapes, they’re very very similar, it’s maybe just a bit of font treatment, but the logo is the device that helps you remember the brand, that whole mood board, if you like, really communicates the core things that you want to say. So I guess that’s the point we’re trying to make, isn’t it. That when you look at your brand identity, and your visual communication, your logo is just the little hook that you hang the rest of the brand on.
Yeah, it’s really a tiny part.
Yep. So we hope that was useful for you, and we certainly hope it’s gonna be useful to some of our customers, when we try and explain what a stylescape is and how it looks.
Yep, cool, okay. We’ll head off and we’ll see you next week.
Thanks very much!
Seeya later!
Get back to your game.
Boop boop, boop boop, boop boop boop.
You’re just making those noises up.
Yes… Boop boop, boop boop boop.
I’m outta here.
Boop boop, boop boop boop.

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