Friday, March 13, 2009

Using Fonts and Color to Connect

Many times, we as communities spend so much time thinking about the picture in our logo, that we forget the power of both font selection and a uniform color palette. To illustrate this, we are going to hop over to West Memphis, Arkansas. West Memphis is part of the Arkansas Delta, and in 2006 we were there and helped their Rural Heritage Development Initiative (RHDI) create a marketing identity.
We created a system there with a rich color palette of earth and river tones with an emphasis on blue because of the connection to the Blues. We also introduced a second font, Thuphap (now known as Weidower ), for the tagline- Soil & Soul.

This identity covers a 15 county region, but West Memphis is truly their front door, and serves as the gateway to the delta from tennessee travelers. When we were in West Memphis in
October of 2008, we knew that the goals that they had and the built environment there were ripe for a system that was more contemporary and progressive. I had been amazed by how much good, hard work had gone into Downtown West Memphis in the 2 years since I had been there. In fact, it looked like a different place. The ice plant was still there, but now
so was a beautiful streetscape. One of the biggest things that we had to deal with was the fact that their Main Street was not Main Street, but Broadway. We created a logo system that could work for both Main Street as an organization and Broadway as the destination. And our graphic inspiration was the Rhythm created by the banners that line this very wide Boulevard. We also introduced a tagline in WM- Wide Open, connecting the physical street with the attitude of the Main Street, volunteers, and City Planning staff. Keep your eyes open and expect great things!
Needless to say, we were thrilled when we were asked in Feb 2009 to Create an identity for a local concert series that would bridge the WM brand and the Ark Delta brand. The series is made up of four different events, so we attempted to create an umbrella identity and identities for each of the four events. Between the color palettes and the font choices, along with strategic design cues, we are really excited about the system that ties two brands together!

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