2017 was pretty amazing in regards to branding projects I had the honour of being part of.
I pride myself in specializing in typographic wordmarks, and this past year truly lead to some of my best brand work yet. I worked with clients who trusted my process and understood the investment it takes to build out or fully re-brand a business. I had a chance to get really nerdy about typography, research type foundries and ensure that my clients end up with a fully custom brand that represents them and speaks directly to their audience.
Below is a roundup of some of my top branding projects for 2017.
1. JBS Contracting
2017 started off with a slightly more corporate brand than I usually work with, however I am so excited with how this came together. JBS Contracting provides engineers and their CAD teams with drafting support, including modelling information such as pricing, material types, structural supports, timeline information etc. Working primarily on large-scale industrial buildings the design was very much inspired by the structural steel skeletons of construction, which is reflected in the brands icon and various graphic applications.
2. Lover's Tempo
I first worked on a re-brand for Lover's Tempo 5ish years ago. At the time we updated the logo and expanded on all the branding assets, but stayed very close to its original roots. The Vancouver based jewelry brand has been going through some major growth and expansion lately, so it was time to re-visit the logo mark. Striving for effortless styles and clean minimal designs we simplified the logo and narrowed it down to one sophisticated sans serif.
W&CO, short for Wagner&Co is the wedding film company by Tomasz Wagner, a friend and previous client of mine. With Tomasz' wedding video services expanding and growing team, he wanted to separate that side of his business from his wedding photography, resulting in the W&CO brand. The wordmark and type choice was very much inspired by swiss minimalist design. The new brand is bold, playful and effortlessly cool, just like all it's stylish and artful wedding clients. Stay tuned for the launch of the brand new website happening early 2018.
BeEco is a fashion blog that raises awareness of the importance of eco-fashion in our society, featuring informative articles and ethical brand spotlights, with plans of opening up a brick&mortar location, as well as it's own fashion label. BeEco emphasizes fashionable styles that, while being sustainable and ethical, are also modern and trendy, without breaking the bank. The logoicon is my favourite part of this brand: it's an abbreviation of the name and encompasses the core of the brand; Be. Be fashionable, Be kind to the plant, Be mindful, Be the change you want to see.
5. Tehya Mackenzie
Ok, so I kind of cheated on this one. I worked on the brand for Tehya Mackenzie in 2016, but never got around to sharing it, so I'm sneaking it in here. Tehya Mackenzie is a Vancouver-based visual artist specializing in fine art photography. I've worked on various custom hand type projects and brands in the past, but this one was slightly different. The above logo icon TM, as well as the full logo wordmark is Tehya's signature. I had her write out her name various times, with different materials, which I then scanned, choose the best option, and expanded on the brand, colour story and type hierarchy from there on.
6. Gabriel Cabrera
Gabriel Cabrera is another very talented friend of mine. While originally starting out in food styling for photography he's since become the photographer himself. Gabriel has a unique eye for artistic compositions and works with a variety of large brands such as West Elm, Suntory Whisky and more.
Gabriel needed a proper brand in place, something that is sleek, sophisticated, timeless and combines his background and style of mixing art and photography in his work.
7. Artful Desperado
Along with designing Gabriel Cabrera's new studio brand we decided to piggyback his blog off of this new brand and give it a bit of a make-over. All typefaces, colours and styles are now consistent across the two brands, creating a seamless transition from one site to the other.
8. The Focus Journal
While working on the design for The Focus Journal I also got a chance to fully built out the brand, developing a logo, icon and colour story. The logo icon in particular encompasses everything the journal stands for: simplicity, focus, efficiency, and minimalism. The abstract F monogram is made up of the main graphic elements in the journal; a carefully laid out grid of lines and dots to make your planning effortless and successful.
And lastly, I finished off the year by wrapping up a brand new look for Vancouver based event planning + design brand Filosophi. The goal was to create a new branding experience that makes clients feel excited, trusted and at ease during the overwhelming process of wedding planning. The new brand feels high end and experienced, creative, approachable and professional, with little quirks, hinting at the personalized process Filosophi goes through with every single client. This brand hasn't officially launched yet, so stay tuned for a brand new site launching next year.
If you are unsure of what exactly goes into a branding project, are curious to learn more about it and might be interested in exploring this for your own business, head over to my new branding + logo design service page, outlining all the nitty-grittyness of it all.
I'm currently booking into February 2018 and would love to chat with you about your brand!
The other day I went to the mall and felt pretty nauseated by it. Too many people, too many sales, too much materialism. With the holidays approaching (cough, Black Friday, cough) I think it's important to think about shopping local and supporting small businesses. It's like that one quote goes "when you support a small business there's a human doing a happy dance for every purchase".
I have so many talented friends who have little online stores and create their own amazing products, the holiday time is perfect for supporting them. I figured I'd put together a little gift guide with a few of my current favourites.
Being self-employed I often times feel like a freelance worrier instead of warrior. Aiming for the latter I created these tall notepads to make you feel boss as you write down your daily tasks and to-dos. Cause being organized and crossing things off of my to-do list, now that makes me feel like a warrior! Excited to have finally launched my mini etsy store with this notepad, and also a "getting shit done" one.
I am obsessed with all of Alexa's photography work and recently had a chance to design the catalogue for her brand new Solstice Series collection. This is a limited edition collection available until early December so you can get all your holiday orders in. The above solstice print is definitely my favourite and I only wish I had more wall space to buy it for myself!
Chipper Things is a super fun online store by my friend Becky Simpson. I have quite a few of her prints hanging throughout my house and select thank you, wedding and birthday cards of her's handy for whenever an event comes up. This "nope" tote is my top pick from the store, it's large and my go-to when I'm heading out of the house. And just because I can't share just one product from Chipper Things, make sure you also check out these amazing modest pinup girl card set.
This is a biased pick, since I was the designer behind this product! The Focus Journal is designed to increase productivity and help you achieve your goals while balancing work, happiness and well-being. All journals are currently in production and shipping out in December, just in time for the holidays. Plus, who wouldn't want a brand new task-focused journal to start off the new year as productive and organized as possible?
The Five 15 is another local store and I've bought more products than I'd want to admit from her, both for myself and friends! Her selection of pins, patches, keychains and more make the perfect gift or stocking stuffer. I proudly wear my All The Feels pin around town!
I feel like I don't wear necklaces too much anymore, but my Marlowe Beads piece has been a consistent go-to piece throughout the past year. I love the colour combinations Fiona comes up with and how the necklace can easily be worn to dress up even the plainest of outfits. Perfect for gift giving and I believe she may even make custom orders!
I didn't mean to post two journals in one gift guide round-up, but when I saw the design for this new moon journal I got kind of excited. I don't really know much about mooon phases or zodiac signs, but I am in luck! This journal is perfect for both the moon-curious and the seasoned moon-enthusiast alike.
How cute is this little elephant mama and baby? I have two of the paper lamps myself, a penguin and a turtle, and am super happy with them. Especially during the darker winter days they make my living room feel much livelier. These origami-inspired paper lamps are shipped flat, as DIY kits. Yes, that means you have to put together your own product, but it's super fun and makes it feel extra special.
I first discovered Uno+Ichi on instagram and fell in love with their little nina y chico planters, available in two sizes. As an aspiring potter myself I loved the detail the girls were putting into their various products. I also have to say that watching their instagram stories is the best thing ever. The girls are super down to earth, hilarious and silly, with super contagious laughs. Besides recommending their shop I'd say you should definitely follow them on instagram as well.
Just in time for the holidays Emma has launched her little online shop with a bunch of beautiful handmade products. All are either hand-lettered or painted patterns on tea towels, cards, and prints. I'm especially loving the patterned tea towels, they look much nicer than my current ikea ones, plus, you could creatively wrap a present in it! Win win win!
Hope these little online shops inspired you to support small businesses this holiday season. Keep in mind that christmas is right around the corner so you'll want to get your orders in soon. What are some brands that are inspiring you or you are enjoying lately? Where will you be doing your holiday shopping this year?
As another year comes to an end, it's nice to take a quick pause and look back. It's easy to get caught up in the day to day of running a business and designing all the things, you quickly forget all the amazing things you got to design during the past 12 months.
This year was one of immense growth for my business, with plenty of ups, and equal, if not more, downs. I guess every year kind of is, but this year especially, I was really strict with myself, saying no to a handful of projects that didn't seem in-line with where I want to take my business, and instead, actively seeking out projects I wanted to work on.
Ever since graduating from design school I have been incredibly passionate about layout and editorial (preferably print!) design. But truth is, I haven't done much of it over the past few years. Last year, as I was deciding on what kind of projects I want to do more of it was clear to me - more layout design. I put myself out there, shared similar projects that I had done in the past and finally put it front and center on my new site " I specialize in typography and layout design".
After much trial and error, attempting to figure out pricing structures, proper processes, and plenty of mistakes I am now finishing off 2017 with over 10 layout based projects I am happy to show off. Most of these have since made it into my portfolio, but there are a few more recent ones which I haven't shared yet.
Below is a roundup of some of my favourite layout based projects for 2017. I hope you enjoy them!
The Nickersons reached out to me to help them put together a print and web inquiry package for potential clients. This mini-magazine is an extension of their portfolio, showcasing their work, but also does so much more. It's a warm and friendly introduction to The Nickersons, outlines their process and various photo packages and add-ons, such as connection shoots, custom albums, and photo booths, as well as an extensive FAQ and ultimately, what steps to take to book them.
2. Fashion Linesheet
I've been designing for Vancouver based jewelry brand Lover's Tempo for a handful of years now. For 2017 we decided to give the brand a bit of a re-fresh, in particular, the logo and packaging pieces. And as always, I got to work on the Lover's Tempo Spring/Summer 2017, as well as the Fall/Winter 2017 lookbook and product linesheet which goes out to all wholesalers and is extremely handy for tradeshows.
After Alexa launched her new brand and website she contacted me to design a digital and printed magazine style booklet she could send out to inquiring clients. Having been a fan of Alexa's work it was such a pleasure to design this for her.
In Alexa's words:
"Working with her (Alicia) was collaborative and thorough. She was patient and attentive and really got my brand. Since implementing what we created together I've doubled my bookings. The catalogue exemplifies professionalism, trust, and answers many common questions."
4. Printed Journal
This was basically a dream project come true. Sabrina and Matej did a bunch of research and came to me with the idea of the Focus Journal: designed to increase productivity and achieve your goals while balancing work, happiness, and well-being. Together we established a visual language for the journal, thoroughly tested it and ensured that the design was minimal, making planning and getting organized easy and intuitive. The Focus Journal ran an incredibly successful Kickstarter campaign over the summer and is currently in production for its first print un! Stay tuned, as I'll be adding this project to my portfolio as soon as the final journals arrive.
5. Magazine Design
Earlier this year I had the opportunity to lead the design team over at Flurt Magazine. Previously just an online magazine the publication expanded into print this fall. Besides a few key colours and typefaces, the magazine was really lacking in visual hierarchy and brand consistency. I had the chance to re-design the whole magazine for the fall issue and will be involved in the design of a few of the following issues into 2018.
After successfully working together on the Nickersons inquiry package, we then moved forward with the design of a mini-magazine that couples who have booked received before their wedding. Based on the previous design, this mini-magazine covers everything from wedding timeline, to general photo tips, a whole section on helpful lighting suggestions, how to handle a potential rainy day more. All content is written by Sarah Nickerson from her years of experience, not only getting married herself, but also shooting a number of weddings over the years.
This summer I worked with the creative team at Simon Fraser University to design and layout this 40-page printed research report for the Centre of Dialogue SFU. I worked closely with the editors to create various visual assets, complex graphs, source photographs and more, to visually complement the research and concepts throughout. These type of projects are oftentimes my favourites, corporate documents don't need to look boring!
As the year came to an end I got to work with Alexa Mazzarello once more. Just in time for the holidays Alexa launched her limited edition online print shop, Solstice Series. As part of the collection, I got to design an interactive product catalogue, featuring beautifully styled images of the prints, their names, sizes, prices, and even suggested frames for each print from Ikea! Perfect way to make your holiday gifting easy.
With the holidays right around the corner, I am already booking into 2018. I am so happy with how all these layout projects turned out. I've had a year of experimenting with various types of layout projects for both print and web and am excited to take on more of the like for next year.
I'll be putting together proper layout packages for next year, outlining the processes, content briefs, pricing and more to make the process easier for my clients and myself. If you want to take advantage of my current 2017 pricing please get in touch before the holidays and let's chat!