The Little Heart Beats So Very Fast
The downfall of Saville's Burberry branding, digital-first branding for Playboy, creature-inspired wigs, and much more
I’m not gonna lie, the last few weeks have been a lot.
I’ve been wrapped up in a lot of big creative projects lately, I had a test in my Spanish class last week, Kyle and I are working on extending our visas, and trying to plan some mini-vacations to get away and unwind our brains for a minute. Also, I somehow, mysteriously and without incident, hurt my back. The first two days I could barely walk! Thankfully, with a lot of rest and the help of my new Pilates teacher (who just so happens to deal with spinal injuries!?!?) I’m doing a lot better now. So this week I’m keeping the intro a bit shorter in order to dig into all the rad things I found this week.
Hope things are good in your part of the world, sending love 💙
📌 — The day has finally come! The reign of Peter Savile being paid to create unnecessary logos for fashion brands may be coming to an end! The internet was buzzing last week around the bold new vision for Burberry under the thoughtful watch of new creative director, Daniel Lee (who I’ve been writing about, he helped make Bottega green a thing). Burberry has been languishing under Riccardo Tisci for a minute now, and paired with the not great Peter Saville rebrand, many folks have been feeling like Burberry has lost it’s way, especially in a time where authenticity is key.
The clearest change has come in the form of their branding, with the introduction of new wordmark and a newly polished logo. Let’s start with the wordmark. It’s a departure from the sans-serif world we’ve been living in, with the gently rounded forms in the bowls of the B and R, and the subtle bracketed serifs. I like it because of it’s subtlety and casual elegance. These kind of forms represent what couture fashion is about.
Then there’s the return of the “Prorsum Knight,” a logo that was originally unveiled in 1901. The logo was nicely cleaned up from it’s original version and really works as this bold, graphic element. I really like how they’ve placed the logo haphazardly, really saying that this is a more authentic, human-feeling brand. I hate that I’m writing this, but it does give me a “punk” vibe, which in turn, does tie back directly to British culture. Also, the fact that they brought this logo back, and that the word “prorsum” means “forward,” is soooo shady and I’m living for it.
The final element to all of this is obviously the photography and models they chose. Back in December, Daniel Lee told Vogue Runway that, “Burberry flies the flag for Britishness and for the UK and for culture. So, we have to use our platforms because we have a responsibility to communicate those things.” The photos were taken by Tyrone Lebon, who you may know as the director of Frank Ocean’s “Nikes” music video. And the models they chose for the campaign is encapsulates both the newer and older generations of British talent, featuring John Glacier (if you haven’t listened to her album SHILOH: Lost For Words YOU MUST), Shygirl and Skepta, actor Vanessa Redgrave, models Lennon Gallagher and Liberty Ross, and footballer Raheem Sterling. It’s an eclectic crew that shows a progressive look at what the brand wants to represent and how to grow their market.
Ultimately, Daniel Lee and the marketing team he’s working with have successfully brought the brand back to it’s British roots. Everything nods back to iconic elements of Britishness without feeling cliché or contrived. In contrast, when I look at what Riccardo Tisci and Peter Saville, it evokes an over-the-top, Italian aesthetic, that really made no sense for the brand. And on 20 February, Daniel Lee’s vision will be unveiled at London Fashion Week, so we’ll see how new vision all comes together on the runway.
📌 — Tomohiro Kono is an artist with a unique medium: hair. Though he doesn’t do your average styles, Kono makes outlandish creations that adorn the heads of folks such as, you guessed it, Björk. His upcoming book Fancy Creatures highlights his creations from 2020 to 2022, when he started constructing his ‘creature waves’ wigs. These imagined creations were inspired by various microorganisms on Earth, ranging from deep-sea animals to furry moss and endangered moths. I need to see a collab between Tomohiro Kono, Hungry, and Iris Van Herpen ASAP.
📌 — It seems like I haven’t seen many people talking about this brand new redesign Decade created for Playboy. I feel like their ask gives an interesting insight into the why behind this redesign:
As Playboy transitions from an editorial platform to a consumer brand, and shifts from print to digital, Decade was asked to craft an evolved identity to meet these new challenges.
Decade created a new brand identity for Playboy, built around its iconic original logo. We developed brand guidelines, design templates, and two campaigns to launch the refreshed brand in Fall 2022.
I forgot that the magazine had shuttered, so the above is a rather interesting pivot for the brand. Decade has done some interesting work with their branding and typography (not pictured, you’ll need to click above!). Why I didn’t showcase it is because it feels to me a bit too on the nose, like what you’d expect from a Playboy redesign. It’s not bad but not surprising.
What I am digging is the campaign they did titled ‘Back to Campus’, which is giving me Popeye editorial spread meets typography that feels in the vein of something that M/M Paris might create. It doesn’t make the most sense when I think of brand cohesion but it doesn’t stop me from liking it.
📌 — I came across the paintings of Carla Petelski on TikTok where she posts a behind-the-scenes look at her artwork. She’s currently working out of Vienna making both figurative and abstract pieces that look like they’re heavily inspired by nature and the natural world. I think her sense of color is absolutely beyond, it’s really what drew me to her work, with lots of contrasting choices that make her pieces so dynamic.
🍃 — I was curious last night what digital tool do people use for their creative work, so I put up a poll on Twitter. Feel free to add your vote if the poll is still active ✅
🍃 — Spotted this new branding project from the folks at Young Jerks for The Wonder Brothers, which I had to share because I was so impressed with how incredibly well the words stack together. And that cute icon ✌️✌️!
🍃 — Damien Correll, creative director at Figma, recently shared a Twitter thread on some of the changes and improvements they’ve made with FigJam, including a lovely handwirting script from OH no Type Co. Trigger warning: he does use the word synergy at least once in the thread 😹
🍃 — Mildly obsessed with these incredibly made bags from HOSOÏ-PARIS. Mr. Hosoi is a Japanese craftsman working in Paris making bespoke leather goods. This is what a designer bag actually looks like.
🍃 — The Harvard Business Review has an interesting piece from Rob Cross and Karen Dillon on the hidden toll of microstress. I kinda balked at the title at first, then I read the piece and… yeah, I’ve experienced the rippling effect of microstresses, especially in my last job. You may find it relatable.
🍃 — Cory Schmitz, king of video game/futuristic branding shared a new typeface he made called Dad-Sans for the new Netflix show, My Dad the Bounty Hunter. It’s remarkable how well it maintains legibility at such small sizes!
🍃 — Very into the new collab from Bianca Saunders and At.Kollektive, who worked together on a number of leather goods. The star in my eyes is that Sleeper Chair, though a white leather chair would last zero minutes in my household.
🍃 — If you haven’t listened to the new Kelela album ‘Raven’ you should probably stop everything and do so. Literally on repeat in my apartment all weekend long.
Get well soon!
Do you have a playlist on AM? I get a lot of reccs from you!