Join Sean Adams for an in-depth discussion in this video Patterns and materials, part of Branding for Designers.
- Patterns are often forgotten as a tool to build a visual system for a brand. But they can be incredibly successful, creating a unique and proprietary look. The 1968 Mexico City Olympics graphic program is one of the most successful examples of this. Lance Wyman created a system to brand these Olympic games with patterns and colors taken from Mexican culture. The repeating and radiating stripes emulated Aztec iconography and the vibrant tones reflected a Mexican color palette.
The use of pattern was repeated consistently. The broad and bright color palette provided consistency without becoming dull. If the goal of a strong visual system is to identify the brand quickly, without being told explicitly, this system succeeded incredibly well. We identify certain brands with pattern. The Burberry plaid, IBM stripes, or Lilly Pulitzer flowers. The McCord Museum branding system, designed by Cossette, is based on a series of lines that echo the letter forms.
The system maintains a cohesive identity by employing a similar cropping of the stripe pattern. Paper, or special techniques like metallic foil, is another element that affects a brand's personality. Paper that is silicon glossy says something quite different from raw and rough. Automobile brands go to great expense to print brochures on high quality paper and varnishes that display the product best. How it feels in the hands of a customer is as important as its appearance.
On the other end of the scale, a brand committed to sustainable practices will choose recycled paper, perhaps in different colors or tones. The bottom line here is that every detail adds or subtracts from a brand's image. From the logo to the paper on the packaging, each visual and physical element will communicate the brand attributes.
- The history of branding (pre- and post-1950)
- The elements of branding
- Conducting research
- Solving problems and presenting solutions
- Creating logos and identity systems
- Building a visual system with color, typography, and more
- Communicating branding with manuals and vision books