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Zambia Book DONE

May 8, 2011


Now only the thesis book to design out. Good lord.

ANYWAYS. I’d say that after all that, it turned out well. I don’t think it’s confessing too much to say that logos are not my strong suit, but this logo is pretty workable. I think in context it does alright for itself.

What can I say, I secretly and not so secretly am quite interested in branding. I actually suspect that it’s quite fine that I am not a logo-meister for branding, but it does worry me that my portfolio is a little weak in that department.

So anyways, the first thing I did was articulate the idea. I did the verbal illustration on the left fresh for the book and at the risk of being blinded by how long it took me, I think it’s quite nice. I think it’s really nice that the first three bolded items are essentially the brand idea.

zambia brand board articulation

Actually the first thing I did was articulate why Zambia needed a brand. This was clearly more for me than for anyone else looking at this; but I find branding a bit depressive-making (hence my interest in it?) and I think it’s important for me to keep in mind why it’s necessary. The smartest thing I did was choose Zambia, whose visual identity truly is atrocious. (Just try dealing with their website for a second.)

Examples of Zambia color scheme with the logos in color. On the page like that they look a little bit depressing, but I think in context they really begin to work.

I actually love the color scheme, though I find it funny that it’s very similar to the color scheme I developed for the alphablocks a mazillion years ago. I guess I feel very convinced about the reds, greens, yellows and blues that are actually attractive. Anyways the  chitenge cloths in the background really prove my point I think. I tried to stay not psychotic and didn’t photoshop the cloths, but please do note the blue in the background is essentially the same as I chose.

Also this may or may not be the blue on my nails.  Anyways the blue is a big deal because it’s water and nobody knows the Victoria Waterfall is in Zambia. But it is and there’s all these riverways in the country. And there’s all this great fishing. And in all their own materials, you’ll see some version of the blue coming up again and again. So I’m really pleased with the blue.

zambia colors

The website. Colorful.

zambia website

zambia ad.

more zambia ads.

Psychotically I had to go in there and make sure those damn bars align on the bottom. Ugh. I guess I am a designer after all.

And this is the brand extension. Ok, I’m sorry, I do shill a lot and try to make sure I come off good on this blog etc, but THAT IS A BAG I ACTUALLY WANT TO OWN. (The small text is not advertising but the name of the park  for which this is a proposed souvenir.)

AND I really do think that this is beginning to speak an authentic language to Zambia as well as something a little more Western/designed out. So of course, hilariously enough but as always, the bag is the thing I love most and spent least time on. But it’s always like that — it was such a natural extension of what I was doing that there was nothing to go back and forth on. It was just making. zambia commemorative bagI could have done a bit better on the front but I was very firm on pushing this thing out tonight.

The classic Betsy back:

zambia brand book back cover

All in all, this is a bit rough. I think the book came out well and shows how I’d tackle such a problem. Unfortunately, the logo is too weak and Zambia itself is too remote / bizarre to really be able to actively use this in my portfolio. Well, it’s all about the process…. right? or at least the credits!

Ok I am always a transparent player so the book itself, with all the brand shill in it(!!) is up on issuu.

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