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[archived] thoughts on design and other things

Thoughts on Design

How to Build a Better Presentation

Let’s face it—creating presentations that are exciting and engaging is difficult, if not impossible, and depending upon the subject matter. These techniques can help you build a better, more powerful presentation.

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All that glitters…is good?

After a World Series victory, the Kansas City Royals donned new opening day uniforms sparkling with gold: from the logo to the players' numbers. Is all of this shiny gold necessary?

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Carolina Blues.

Brands “own” colors within the marketplace. In soda, Coca Cola owns red; in shipping UPS owns brown; in telecommunications T-Mobile owns magenta. In college basketball, North Carolina has its own blue.

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Average Bowl 50

The Super Bowl is known as much for its commercial advertising as it is for its football. Whether or not someone tuned into the game for the commercials or the game, the trend of viewers’ preference has dramatically changed, but what’s causing this?

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Google Gets a New G

In September 2015, Google unveiled an updated brand. It was not because they felt like it was time for a change, or that they felt it was out of date. It was the result of the direction in which business is heading...and that path leads to smaller and more prevalent screens.

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Nest’s Next Big Thing? Water Conservation in the home

Is the next Nest product a device to monitor and inform us how much water we use at home? My bet is that it is, and here's why.

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Of Kings and Cows: How the Royals Got Their Name

The Kansas City Royal’s name has absolutely nothing to do with royalty, as many fans and team members might think. It has everything to do with bovines and barbecue, and the city’s heritage in the livestock industry.

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A–plyed Design: Leatherman Bunk Bed

Indicia's creative director was looking for ways to apply design principles throughout his non-digital world while working with his hands. Here is what he built.

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OK Joe’s, Say it ain’t so!

In September 2014, the iconic "Oklahoma Joe's" became "Joe's Kansas City Bar-B-Que," causing backlash from loyal fans. The reason was because they couldn’t own the old name. Having exclusive rights to the new name is the first step toward franchising their restaurant concept throughout the nation.

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Google Doodles For the Win!

Google Doodles are the fun changes made to the Google logo to celebrate holidays, events, and individuals. The company has dedicated a team of talented illustrators (or doodlers) and engineers who create new doodles to refresh the Google homepage.

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Much Better Milk Packaging

After designing beautiful, but confusing milk cartons for its organic milk, Starbucks updated the design less than a year later to better inform customers what product they were purchasing.

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Twitter Goes Visual

In a continued effort to move away from the straight text filled timeline, Twitter announced a complete redesign of their profile pages, with photo tagging and the ability to upload more photos per tweet.

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Nations Need Branding Too

Can you tell the difference between Australia and New Zealand's flags? Why this is a problem and some possible idea for solving it are explored.

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The Tonight Show Goes Full Circle

The new identity for "The Tonight Show" features a full moon—which is a big change from the crescent moon that had been in use since 1962, when Johnny Carson became host of the popular late night show.

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Take a Taste of Safeway’s Snack Brand

It's not uncommon for a private label brand to have good design, but Safeway’s house brand has a different overarching theme with clever names and interesting doodles.

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7-Eleven: A Healthy Rebrand

7-Eleven has shifted its target demographic to health-conscious women and millennials. With an updated logo, new interior design, and restocked shelves with healthier options, 7-Eleven is continuing to transform its retail stores.

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Power Your Mornings

CreativeMornings is a breakfast lecture series for creative people. Attendees are treated to breakfast and a short talk one Friday morning every month. Today, it has grown to 58 chapter cities.

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Stanley’s Renovation

In 2013 Stanley merged with Black & Decker, creating Stanley Black & Decker. The combined company partnered with Lippincott to preserve the brand's essence across all customer touchpoints.

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Coming Soon to your iDevice: User i[OS]nterface 7

When Apple introduced iOS 7, they flattened the look and feel of the user experience, making it “work and look beautifully,” according to the company's press release.

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Why is Adobe Scuttling Their Brand? (how customer perception helps your company sink or swim)

Adobe users are fiercely loyal to the creative tools and software the company provides. When they changed their business and pricing model to one that is subscription-based only, they pissed off many of those fans—this one included.

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How Pinteresting! Popular Social Network Updates Look

Three years after its launch in 2010, Pinterest embarked on a redesign to make the site easier to navigate, without drastically changing its look. As an avid Pinterest user, one of Indicia's designers was excited to try out the new look and features.

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All The News That’s Fit To Click

In March 2013, The New York Times announced that it had been working on a complete redesign of the NYTimes.com, their first since 2006. The big focus was on user experience across all platforms, that correctly displayed different media.

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The Tea on Your Cup

Tazo's branding had been largely unchanged since Starbucks purchased the brand in 1999. In 2013 a new logo and packaging were introduced, incorporating refined visuals and witty humor.

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Houston, We Don’t Have A Problem

The Houston Astros revamped their look and feel after much insight from their loyal fans.

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A First Class Rebrand Takes Flight

American Airlines’ new contemporary look symbolizes their plan for progress and improved customer service by incorporating colors and symbols that the public has come to connect with America, and with the brand.

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Road to Ironman begins with Partnership

When Josh Christie, former partner at Indicia, decided to take on the challenge of competing in an Ironman in 2013, he immediately saw a connection between and benefit for some of the firm’s clients

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Let the Games Begin

Designed by International brand consultants Wolff Olins, the London 2012 logo has undoubtedly made an impression. The branding project, started in 2007 for a mere $800,000 has caused some to wonder how a logo such as this was so expensive.

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Nets & Hoops to Brooklyn

When the NBA team formerly known as the New Jersey Nets moved to a new home, they got a new brand as well.

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Responsive Web Design

With the steady growth of mobile devices, having a mobile-friendly version of your website is paramount to the user experience.

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Best Made in America

Best Made Co. has turned a simple chopping tool in to a strikingly sought after product, and with it, a great brand.

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“Wipe” with a Towel.

These are heavy-duty wipes and have a pretty hefty claim—taking off anything from adhesives to lipstick, tree sap to permanent marker. If I heard these claims and saw the previous package design, I might have laughed.

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A Cheerful Tear

The midnight blue Cheer bottle that made one of our designers do a double-take.

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Animated GIFs are back?

What is it about the repetitive motion that captivates us? We, as humans, seem to enjoy a continuous rhythm in music, a monotonous movement of the rocking chair, a captivating frame progression of an animated GIF.

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Schlotzsky’s is the Schit

An identity that is 'Lotz' better.

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Nice digits.

People focus on many different aspects of their home, but forget about the style they can inject into their house numbers. This simple typographic selection is the first 'branding' of sorts that visitors will see upon arrival.

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Brand Experienced

With some of our clients, it is rare that we would have the opportunity to experience the true brand message in play. Josh Christie, former partner at Indicia, had an opportunity to visit Elite Physical Therapy after hurting his back while playing with his kids.

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CooperVision: Almost Seeing 20/20

Although they haven’t enjoyed the mainstream popularity of brands like Acuvue or Bausch + Lomb, CooperVision contact lens have maintained a high reputation with optometrists and eye care professionals alike.

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A Clean Start to the Day

For the first step on the path of daily info web-quest, we prefer for it to start some where clean, clear, and direct. Like Google.

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HTML 5 point oh!

It may seem a little strange to be branding a publicly available, open source markup language, but the World Wide Web Consortium doesn't see it that way.

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Go ahead, laugh it up

The strength in the new Comedy Central mark is its simplicity and its memorability. The humor in it may be a bit dry, but the backwards "C" and flipped "Central" provide just enough absurdity to give the mark relevance. Who said being funny can't be sophisticated?

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[Insert brand name here]

In a world of screaming brands vying for the world’s attention, I think the understated has a place. But a brandless brand? It sounds like an interesting conundrum (and perhaps a distant cousin to circular reasoning).

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Captain D’s reelin’ it in

While I’m not a fan of fried fish, I’ve always been familiar with Captain D's restaurants. That's why the new brand peaked my curiosity.

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Goodwrench

As cars become more like computers, we know even less about how to fix them. know I can rely on Goodwrench to fix it—especially with an identity like this one.

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Walmart’s logo refresh safe or smart?

Walmart may have made an intelligent move by taking the safe route: a generic logo that is in line with current trends; but I do think the new logo could be drastically improved by removing the tacky sun/asterisk/flower element, allowing the logotype to do the talking.

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Do you know Jack?

"Thinking outside the box" when it comes to recreating a brand identity is generally a good idea; however, jumping completely outside the “jack-in-the-box” may not be so beneficial.

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Young, Hip and Bounce

Many people might not care about getting a slick, modern-looking box of dryer sheets…however, this new package design is effective at “bouncing” into shoppers’ field of vision and subsequently off the shelf.

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SyFy: imagining greater opportunities

As we approached 2010 (“The Year We Make Contact”) SciFi became SyFy. One thing we miss about the old logo is the distinctive planetary mark.

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What’s so funny Pepsi?

Pepsi could have done a simple redesign of their packaging without changing the logo with excellent results. Take Coca-Cola for example, who kept the classic “Coca-Cola” script, cleaned it up a bit, and created beautiful new packaging.

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Why RC?

Representing the marriage of the two companies, the new YRC logo incorporates the Swamp Holly Orange from the old Yellow Corporation, and blue from Roadway. Overall, the new logo says very little about transportation or shipping.

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Speak of the Devil

Re-designing a franchise identity can be risky (costing lots of money), however, much money can be made from a good brand. In this respect, the Rays new brand can be considered successful—merchandise sales were up this year throughout MLB, but considerably more for the Rays.

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Meet the Bread Man from Down Under

This new identity for Atlanta Bread Co. looks like it is straight out of an aboriginal cave painting, and more appropriate for an Outback Steakhouse.

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Optima Won’t be Running for President

Will new, "improved" campaign identities help Presidential Candidates connect with younger, more sophisticated voters?

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Ribbons, How Brands Take Shape

The new ribbon element that MeadWestvaco (sorry, MWV) uses is graphically interesting, and is a definite improvement over the much-dated look of the typeface that constituted the old logo.

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Prescription: Clarity and Focus

The original Sunglass Hut International logo was not a complete travesty — but with the new brand is being rolled out at separate times and in different geographic areas, this is one brand update that needs some definite clarity.

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A Fresh Identity Tue Impress

I am impressed with the work of DJ Stout and team from Pentagram, Austin. The new RubyTuesday identity represents a more sophisticated eating establishment, and features some great brand extensions.

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A Bogey for the New LPGA

The "swinging lady" identity for the LPGA reminds me more of an Olympic Games logo than that of a professional golf association.

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The Softer Side of… Shopko?

Shopko, a department store chain with approximately 135 stores, recently shed its very masculine image in favor of one that softens perceptions about the retailer and appeals to its primary customer base — women (much like the Sears campaign of yesteryear).

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Short, Sweet and to the Point

Three-letter cable channel identifications seem to be all the rage lately. CNN, TNT, TBS, TLC, TNN, A&E are just a few. Now we can add Bio to the list (formerly the Biography Channel).

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A Tale of Two Campaigns

XM Satellite Radio "Are you on?" vs. Sprint's "Sprint Ahead" marketing campaigns. Which one works? Which one doesn't?

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From Marauder to Squeaky Clean

ArmorAll's brand embodies the essence of both cleanliness and shine, but perhaps there is too much emphasis on “clean." Is that Mr Clean or a viking defending your car's interior?

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A Revolutionary New Brand for Payless

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Unum Goes Human, Sort of

Unum, a leading employee benefits provider in the United States and the United Kingdom, unveiled a new identity in 2007 in an attempt to better communicate the company’s core competencies and focus.

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The Bright Side of LaQuinta’s New Brand

Every so often there comes an updated brand identity that demands attention and immediately engages the viewer.

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Baskin Robbins serves up a scoop of something awful

As part of its 60th anniversary celebration, Baskin Robbins launched a new brand identity, one that is “an innovative concept that offers a fun, contemporary experience and …captures the fun and energy of Baskin-Robbins.” Not sure we agree.

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Garmin’s new identity is on the right track

Garmin, the market leader in consumer global positioning system (GPS) products, introduced a new look for its brand in October 2006.

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The sun sets on Merriam’s new logo

If a municipality is to undertake so bold a design challenge as develop a new brand (like Merriam did), then something more unique than a rising sun and the tagline “just right” is necessary.

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The intelligence(?) behind the new Intel identity

The new Intel identity attempts to solve the problem of having two highly effective brands, the corporate logo from 1969, and the widely utilized "Intel Inside" mark found on the outside of almost every computer on the planet.

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Sprint’s New Brand

In September 2005, Sprint and Nextel completed a multi-billion dollar merger and launched a new Sprint brand. How does this new brand stack up against other cellular phone companies?

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The “new” look of Kansas City?

In order to change the so-called "cowtown" perception of Kansas City and make it look young, hip and more urban to visitors, a new logo and tagline was developed for the Convention & Visitor's Bureau.

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Gateway’s Identity Crisis

What happens when a company's identity lies in a state of constant change? Find out what happened to Gateway, one of the first mail order computer companies.

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Buzz

Indicia New Hire

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Indicia Comings…and Goings.

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Jewish Community Foundation Wins Philly for Outstanding Informational Brochure

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We’ve got the Info on Branding

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Flushing out ideas for new storm drain covers

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Holiday Dinners on Us

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Road to Ironman Update (Part Deux)

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Indicia’s Partners Featured in Leawood Lifestyle Magazine

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Road to the Ironman Update

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Paint the Plaza Orange with Indicia (not literally, please…our insurance won’t cover it)

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Indicia’s work for Olathe Convention & Visitor’s Bureau wins top awards at 2011 TIAK Conference

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Indicia in HOW Magazine

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Indicia in Kansas City Business Journal

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Recent Indicia identities featured in new Rockport publications

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Indicia Design Wins Four American Graphic Design Awards

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Indicia Design Wins Six American Graphic Design Awards

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Partners Speed Up Growth

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Indicia Design is one of two Kansas City firms to be featured in the Type Director’s Club annual, Typography 26

Indicia Design’s brochure for The Buckley Group, LLC included in Type Directors’ Club annual book, Typography 26.

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Indicia Design is one of four Kansas City design studios to be featured in HOW Magazine’s Self Promotion Annual

Indicia Design’s invitation for Friends of Battered Women and Their Children of Chicago is one of 160 pieces featured in the October, 2004 issue of HOW Magazine.

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Non-Perishable Work

Striem Brand Identity

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Union Horse Distillery

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Go Topeka Website

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Hallmark Art Collection Website

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Jetz Service Co. Rebrand

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Wagstaff & Cartmell

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Jewish Community Foundation

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Indicia Holiday Promotion

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Safety Made Simple

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We Create Kansas City

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Pride Mechanical

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Fulcrum Business Advisors

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Center for Architecture & Design

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Dark Horse Reunion Rye Whiskey Barrel Strength

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KC Marathon 2013

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WestGlen GI Rebrand

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INMED Web Site

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EPR Properties

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Intréis Animation and Motion Graphics

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Dark Horse Reserve Bourbon and Reunion Rye Whiskey

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Peanut Wings Brand

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Rye Restaurant Branding

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Long Shot White Whiskey and Rider Vodka Brands

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Rouse Hendricks German May Website

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HOS ePrism Tour

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The Kansas City Marathon Brand

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Dark Horse Identity

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Quantum Health Professionals

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Simple Six

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Grace Hospice Kit

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Berkowitz Oliver Stationery

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Battle of the Brains

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Jetz Laundry Guidebooks

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Kauffman Foundation

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Kansas City Economic Development Council

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