Writing Bug are a Nottingham-based partnership who specialise in creative copy writing, editing and blogging. They approached me to revamp their visual identity which was several years old an in need of modernising.
The Design Problem.
After a number of years building their business from scratch, Jim and Cathy from Writing Bug felt that they were in need of a new visual identity to reflect the high quality of their service. Their original logo was well-meaning but very basic, and one that was easily overlooked. They were concerned that it made their business look cheap, especially as they had worked hard to build a client base of high-profile and prestigious businesses. On seeing this, it occurred to me that nothing about their original brand identity made them stand out as leaders in their field.
My Design Solution
During the initial consultation, they gave me a list of words which they felt they reflected their vision of Writing Bug. "Elegant", "Timeless", "Human", "Quality" were among the virtues they wished to express. This suggested to me a visual identity that needed to be both contemporary, yet would stand the test of time; a brand that reassures their clients that they would be in safe hands; that Writing Bug deliver a personal, bespoke service that is of the very highest standard.
Writing bug are a high-end service, and so wished to attract a higher level of client.
My branding solution aimed to showcase their level of quality and craftsmanship, and make Writing Bug stand out as among the very best at what they do.
The Nott Forgotten challenge was created by the Nottingham & Derby Society of Architects (NDSA) and will focus on five less cared for spaces in the Lace Market – located at St Mary’s Gate, Wing Walk, Hollowstone, Adam’s Walk and High Pavement. Open to all architectural firms, universities and schools in the East Midlands, the society aims to inspire and involve the region’s creative minds – no matter what age or discipline. Participants will submit designs to transform an existing site and the winning designer will see their work made into a reality.
The Design Problem.
As this was a brand new concept, there was no design template in place. I was therefore required to create a visual identity that appealed equally to serious professional architects, enthusiastic artists, students - basically everyone and anyone who might be interested in the project.
A number of items were required for the project: a logo mark, promotional brochures and posters, social media identity, etc, all of which needed to be easily recognizable and easy to read.
My Design Solution.
Taking the nature of architecture as a starting point, I felt that the logo, as well as the overall identity, should involve clean geometric lines and solid colours of a modern yet almost neutral palette, as if to suggest stability and reliability. The logo mark is comprised of five coloured vertical sections - each representing the one of the five sites in the challenge - brought together to create/construct a whole object. essentially the fundamentals of building. This colour scheme was carried through the entire project to act as an identifier for each site. I also felt that it was important to have a unifying theme throughout and to make sure that each of the items I created connected visually.
"Working with Dan is a pleasure. He will listen with care, then offer back to you much more than you expect. Almost without instruction, Dan gave us everything we needed and more. We will definitely use him for the next project." -ANDREW KING / NOTTINGHAM & DERBY SOCIETY OF ARCHITECTS
I get asked to do a lot of posters for gigs and events. Nottingham has a fantastic creative scene, and so there's no shortage of fun stuff to do. I've been lucky enough to be given free rein with how I put these posters together, and I'm usually pretty happy with how they've turned out. Here are just a few of them.
Photoshop, Illustrator and multi media collage.
At the tail-end of 2016, I was approached by the writer Adrian Reynolds to produce a cover for his latest comic book "Fam". Illustrated by the hugely talented Danny Flores and inked by the enigmatic TAMO, I jumped at the chance. It was a great collaboration in the truest sense of the word and a project I enjoyed immensely.
The cover image and description/biography pages are by me. The main comic pages are by Danny Flores and TAMO.
The rainy city backdrop was painted in Photoshop using a variety of freeform shapes, textures and brushes. The "collage" image of the man and dog where created in Photoshop and Illustrator, with the final text overlay also created in Illustrator.
The Dust On The Moth is a superb, creepy, hilarious, depressing, and sexy Sci-Fi fairytale book by the Nottingham-based writer Darren Simpson. It was published by Bees Make Honey Press who approached me initially create the cover. However, after several meetings and even more bottles of cheap red, we came to the conclusion that such an imagery-rich novel deserved illustrations and photographs too. So, after a lot of planning, myself, Darren, photographer Phil Formby and Bees Make Honey head honcho Kirsty Fox collectively gave birth to this absolute beast of a book. And what a book it is too. (Available from wherever it is sold)
Cover created in Illustrator. Additional illustrations created in both Photoshop and Illustrator.
Sometimes a man's gotta doodle what a man's gotta do.