There is a special place in my heart for any design project that allows me the to work with my local community. The ability to help the people I know best, makes this project that much sweeter. And what really put this project over the top, was that it was for a fundraising event, called The Rising Tide of Progress.
The Rising Tide of Progress is a fundraiser hosted by Minnesota’s Second Congressional District DFL. This organization is made up of volunteers, my mom being one of them (hi, mom!), from across Minnesota. Since my mom is a volunteer, she mentioned my name as a resource, and the rest is history.
Today, I’m going to walk you through the entire process, so let’s get started!
Since this project was for an event, the details are a little different than my average brand project. Typically, it starts with an inquiry, from a stranger, who is in need of a well-crafted brand and/or website for their business. This project, was nothing like that.
It was a Saturday and my mom called me to let me know she’d mentioned my name to Darcy, who was organizing a fundraiser. She told me that Darcy was waiting for a call from me to talk over the details and name my price. Again, not typically how I run things, but when your mom tells you to call someone, you call them.
After all the details were determined, I jumped into design mode.
Step 1 | Inspiration
Each project begins with inspiration.
Since, I had talked over most of the details with my mom and Darcy, I never sent over a questionnaire. Again, I was breaking my own rules. It’s hard not to, when you’re working with people you know. But, it’s even harder when you already know quite a bit about the organization.
Enough excuses, let’s talk inspiration.
I pulled out the CD2 DFL branding and pulled my biggest takeaway. I considered how I could modernize this event without straying from their existing brand.
After playing with a few ideas, I landed on this inspiration board.
Step 2 | Initial Concepts
Next, I went to the drawing board and played with a few sketches and design ideas.
This phase always starts in a notebook with chicken scratch and half-ideas. The more I sketch, the more I refine my idea into something that “fits”.
Then, I open up Adobe Illustrator and start bringing it to life.
With a project like this, there are a lot of people involved, which means a lot of opinions, so in an attempt to streamline my process as much as possible, I presented them one concept.
They loved the initial concept. The wave represented their mission, the event and the existing brand.
But, they wanted one refinement, brighter colors.
Their brand uses a more vibrant color palette and I was happy to oblige. With a little playful adaptation, I returned with this refinement.
Once this concept was approved, I moved forward with creating logo variation and the additional design elements.
Step 3 | Logo Variations
With any logo, even if it’s just for an event, you always want to have more than one.
To best capture the event, offer ample flexibility and increase the vibrancy up another notch, I created two additional logo variation. The first, pair the circle with the name and sub-heading of the event. The second, uses the pattern from the circle as a background. And, it’s easily my favorite.
Step 4 | Design Collateral
Once the foundation of the fundraiser was set in stone. We worked on the design collateral.
While for a brand, this tends to include brand patterns, business cards or icons… it’s a little different for a fundraiser. For The Rising Tide of Progress it included invitations, save the dates and menu cards.
Each item helped them become recognizable and appear polished to their attendee’s and those little touches can make all the difference!
Are you looking to hire a brand or web designer for your creative business? I would love to take your passion-project on and design a brand that reflects your mission. Visit my "Work With JPD" page for package information, frequently asked questions and to get in touch!