1.01.2012

Personal rebrand case study


Recently it became very apparent that I needed to reevaluate my personal brand, portfolio, extensions and website. (I even gave myself away with a post a while back.) A good portfolio should always be maintained and kept recent, professionally and personally—so now is the time to update myself.
So I began the considerations for how to introduce my name. I don't go by any sort of moniker, just "matt yow", always. With that I decided to explore single marks for the letter M to possibly sit above my name. I'd previously used Supria Sans for my logotype, I loved the simplicity.
Previous mark:
M explorations:
I followed up on the mark explorations by extending the mood and brand to icons. This is a small set of icons displays my character and personality. These may never be put to use but their creation helped develop the direction for goals on color, shape, & form.
This opened up the color palette to a solid set of blues: neutral but confident. Alongside the blue is a simple series of greys. This is a limited color palette but opens up options for arrangement and layout within site design and print collateral. I edited some of the CSS of this blog to include the blues:
::selection {background: #3AAFBD; color: #FFF;}
::-moz-selection {background: #3AAFBD; color: #FFF;}
That is the middle, minty blue. This bit of style is also included in the CSS of the site (re)design.
Highlight text and the selection will appear this specific blue—rather than the default pale blue.

I also needed to create small elements for final application—specifically some sort of image for an about section of my site's (re)design. I have a few good photos but decided to go with a more stylized version of myself. I might lean towards using a basic photo in the end, but this is still a great mood-setter for the brand and personality.



In keeping with the style of the icons and the personality, I went with the profile (bottom right), with the laurel leaves. Still seems kind of self absorbed but it received fairly positive feedback on dribbble. I'm still playing with the idea of this application or using a photograph, a bit more to the point.

Of course supporting typography is a large part of the brand as well. Part of my decision was based on the fact that my brand will mostly be on the web. Print collateral will most likely never extend beyond a basic resume or business card. So in regards to a web safe font I went with Open Sans. (see the font here.) From Google:
Open Sans is a humanist sans serif typeface designed by Steve Matteson, Type Director of Ascender Corp. ... Open Sans was designed with an upright stress, open forms and a neutral, yet friendly appearance. It was optimized for print, web, and mobile interfaces, and has excellent legibility characteristics in its letterforms.
To maintain simplicity and straightforwardness I decided to use only two weights of the full family (consisting of five weights). I'm using the regular (400 weight) and the extra bold (800 weight).
I should also point out that I've switched to Open Sans on this blog recently as well.

For additional typography, for print and for images on the web, I'm going with Eames Century Modern by House Industries and Freight Sans by Darden Studio. Each family has plenty of variation in weights for use across many platforms with allowance for hierarchy and colour.

With the palette arranged, the icons set out and the mood established, I honed in on the mark itself. I decided to abandon the idea of a single M mark and just moved towards making my name look good. The final product is a logotype of custom type design.







Now time to live up to it and publish my new website with new projects and updated material. I'm working with my good friend Josh Bielick to get the site up & running. I'm sure I'll make some noise once the site goes live but check back for updates periodically. And this blog header will change with the site launch to synchronize the rebrand.

No comments:

Post a Comment