Ken Deckinger was born to be an entrepreneur, it was most likely coded in his DNA. After re-branding his innovative dating start-up, Jess, Meet Ken, we’ve often discussed collaborating on other ventures. Beyond being a loyal Alphabet Arm supporter, Ken just happens to be a peach of a dude. So, when he asked if I would be willing to participate in his new VLOG series – I agreed, with one exception – we create a logotype for the series. He immediately proposed the idea of revealing the logo treatments as the basis of the episode. Plus, he gave me asparagus (okay, he hand picks vegetables or fruits to share with all his guests). You will just have to suffer through the 4:19 minutes to see which logo he selected.
Here are a few of the other proposed logotype options:
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Alphabet Arm was engaged to design the packaging for the eBumper 4, which is developed by our client Panoptes. After designing the eBumper logotype and overseeing a photo shoot, we worked closely with a terrific packaging printer regarding the box logistics and finishing options.
The eBumper packaging design draws inspiration from the thoughtful integration that the product itself employs. Pairing that inspiration with a restrained, simple layout, a pop of branding color palette and a lovely matte varnish. In short, we’d like to think this packaging delivers (take that Amazon!)
Panoptes engineers products that provide collision protection to unmanned aircraft. Named for the Greek mythological being who could see with one hundred eyes, the Panoptes initial technology product, eBumper, uses a sophisticated set of sensors — or eyes — to keep the aircraft out of harm’s way in a windy or cluttered environment. Pretty awesome stuff, we were just shocked to learn most drones don’t already have this safety feature included within their native GPS system, yikes. Fly those drones safely people!
Rider is a contemporary bistro located in Williamsburg, Brooklyn launched by James Beard Award-winning chef, Patrick Connolly. The menu at Rider will focus on a variety of innovative and soulful dishes. The interior space is a stunning balance of natural and industrial materials, high design and inherrant warmth. The name “Rider” comes from the idea of a ‘hospitality rider’ that recording / touring artists submit to a venue prior to their arrival. The name is a nod to the restaurant’s relationship with National Sawdust, the new music venue and artist incubator space with which Rider shares its location. Chances are you’ve heard the legendary tales of (the late, great) David Bowie, Brittany Spears and Van Halen’s riders?
The Rider logotype consists of a family of custom type forms that embrace the bold, minimal and industrial attributes of the physical space. Part of Patrick’s creative brief to Alphabet Arm was to “avoid all the commonly used logo trends of Brooklyn at the moment”. That of course played nicely into the Alphabet Arm mode of thinking. The final visual identity system is a modular set that can be atomized down to a simple R icon. The logotype itself – featuring no counters within the letterforms – naturally lends itself to double as a stencil.
After developing a tertiary color palette and rules around complementary typography for the business card suite, Patrick and his team have taken the branding & application guidelines and run with them! Check out their Instagram feed for the latest and greatest and hold the dog gone brown M & Ms!
Seven Hills Farmstead is a specialty food business located in Rutland, Massachusetts. They select the freshest, most wholesome, locally produced ingredients from neighboring farms and use them to create their traditional, rustic Italian recipes.
The Seven Hills visual identity and branding system needed to reinforce these principles. Hand-crafted, rustic and simple. Early within the design process, we realized the lock-up (typography + graphic elements + exterior shape) itself, needed to flexible and modular. Being able to “atomize” the lock-up down to the root logotype, would only add to the identities’ usage. The final system:
Seven Hills Farmstead has committed themselves to providing customers with simple, clean, and savory specialty foods… sign us up!
Do you know a simply fantastic lady searching for an equally impressive fella? Using the Jess, Meet Ken dating site + app women recommend the great guys they know to other single women. What could be more powerful than that?
Given the unique backstory and decidedly different approach of the dating site, it felt appropriate we take an equally unique approach to the visual identity and branding. Avoiding the pitfalls of commonly used design aesthetics within their industry, we opted to let the doe + buck represent the service. Imperfect, human, and quirky, just like true love!
Last March, I was in an Uber headed to the airport leaving the frigid winds of Boston behind for a week in California. As one typically finds while riding in an Uber, the conversation was inspired and interesting. Turns out, the driver was a savvy, Haitian entrepreneur biding his time until he launched his coffee + produce import company.
As he handed me his business card, he immediately apologized for the quality of printing and paper stock (note to budding entrepreneurs, it doesn’t make for the most confident, first impression when you apologize right out of the gate for your branding + materials). As you might imagine, the conversation quickly changed once he asked what my chosen profession was. He mentioned his need for packaging design, and by the end of the trip we had plans to scrap the existing visual identity (and business cards) and develop an entirely new aesthetic. After learning more about his vision for the company and what differentiates them from the competition, we decided to add “Naturals” to the company name. Here is the updated Horizon Vert Naturals visual identity and business cards:
You always want to root for clients, colleagues and friends who are doing good things and care deeply about their craft (especially when it involves beautiful coffees). Such is the case with Gracenote Coffee Boston. Launched by the powerhouse team behind Gracenote Coffee Roasters + The Coffee Trike, these guys are masters of their trade. If you haven’t been there yet, drop whatever you are doing immediately and head to their mod bar at 108 Lincoln Street in Boston.
Note: Although Alphabet Arm designed their identity, packaging, signage and collateral, the ALPHA roast was not named in honor of us (doesn’t make it any less delicious though).
Another notch in the logo belt… presenting the new mark and business card we designed for Curl Simitis Architecture + Design. From their website: “With a deep appreciation for New England’s long tradition of craftsmanship and a love of contemporary design, Curl Simitis Architecture + Design’s work is unapologetically eclectic.” This brand identity was a great chance to revisit our roots of strong geometric design principals. The underlying grid structure is composed of 4 modular squares. At first glance the rectangular forms are a beautifully balanced abstract design. However, upon further investigation, the rectangular shapes reveal the negative spaces of the initials of C and S.
Family owned and operated for over 50 years, the Murray Design showroom showcases a variety of bath and kitchen appliances from top industry brands. The Murray Design marketing team felt the previous identity and branding were no longer representative of the products they offer. Furthermore, they were concerned the branding didn’t connect with their changing demographic.
Alphabet Arm set out to create a clean, sleek identity to reflect the beauty of Murray Design’s product collection and honor their talented team of designers. Drawing inspiration from the curvature of the many fixtures and appliances found in the showroom, we rendered a mark that embodies both a faucet and an M that embraces a sophisticatedly, minimal aesthetic. For the color system, we utilized a calming blue and a metallic silver, naturally representing both water and the reflective finish found on many of Murray’s products.
Previous logo before Alphabet Arm got our hands on it:
It is the duty of the court reporter to record spoken word in the form of written language. This documentation process is invaluable in a courtroom setting, as well as for live captioning for broadcast television. Reporting companies – more often than not – bare rather lackluster branding, but Jones & Fuller Reporting decided that it was time for Alphabet Arm to give them a new look to stand out from the pack. The process began with a conversation regarding the company name itself.
In order to depict the note-taking nature of Jones & Fuller’s business, it was important that the mark featured both the appearance of a “verbal” graphic element to imply speech as well as an element based in writing. By dividing the form of a speech bubble in two and making one half representative of a transcript, we create an opportunity to visually explain the responsibilities of court reporting itself. Once the logo re-brand was complete, Alphabet Arm developed the system of office materials and marketing collateral.
Logotype + naming prior to Alphabet Arm’s re-branding: