The Demise of Unique Brand Design
Sadly these days unique and fresh brand identity design is the exception rather than the rule. As more brands seek to become global, the trend has been for the visual language of their brand images to become more and more similar. Global branding firm Landor’s recent 2010 Trend Forecast agrees that ‘A global homogenization of design is taking place, with design blogs and online portfolios as the major culprits.’ They say ‘Companies need to rely less heavily on testing and research, which tend to nullify originality. Brands can’t just follow the herd and hope to succeed.’ And they predict ‘We’ll find larger companies willing to take risks, break the rules, and appear imperfect. Shaking up the status quo will be considered far better than disappearing into oblivion.’
A Rare Combination
There are still some brands who achieve a unique identity design, and some which are beautiful. However, it is the combination of beautiful and unique that is rare to find. Beauty remains as powerful-a-force as ever when it comes to capturing the heart. Recently I came across a beautiful piece of typographic imagery by Andrew van der Merwe that transcended brand design to be more like an artistic expression of mood, culture and nature. I was immediately struck by how powerful it would be for a brand such as a five star eco-beach resort to be able to harness and associate itself with imagery such as this.
Andrew’s images were a great reminder for me that beyond the evolving visual code of global brands and the current trends of visual language, the timeless power of beauty to capture the hearts of a market remains unchanged.