There are some aspects of the brief that have really stood out for me. The mention of not wanting to look like a country garden has steered me in a direction very well away from what you’d traditionally consider soap and feminine cosmetics’ branding to look like. Certainly I know what not to design.
Not that there’s anything wrong with any of the above – they certainly have their place in the market, and certainly in the branding of cosmetics, but myself and the client want to stay away from words like ‘pretty’ – like saying something looks nice, but with more perfume.
Staying with the Welsh theme, and not because the brand is particularly preachy about their Welsh roots, but it feels appropriate to delve into the Welsh theme to see what I can pull out. Certainly not dafodils or dragons, but I think tying in the often dramatic Welsh landscape and sublime views and nature with the branding of Sebon could be the perfect answer to the ‘unexpected’. It just depends on where I end up! So far I’ve been looking at the wonderful Welsh weather, something I’m only too familiar with. Jet black skies against bright green hillside is a personal favourite – you know when the sun’s trying to come through just after a thunderstorm and for a few moments everything looks like the contrast has been wapped up to 100%? Yeah, that stuff. It’s pretty good.
Also in the ‘Welsh’ theme, I’ve started doing a little bit of research on coal (of course). I’m pretty sure in a thesaurus if you look up Wales I’m pretty sure coal is a synonym… But again, something about this powerful jet black material and it’s qualities in the cosmetics world are something I’ve explored. Charcoal soap is a thing. Ideal. I really want this branding to pack a punch, which has also absorbed the product and packaging design role too.
I stumbled upon these pictures of coal miners’ hands and they’re amazing. They have so much history and so much to tell, and the coal stains and dark palms are almost mesmerising to me. I’d started in my sketchbook by throwing ideas around about coal, handprints, mining and the use of a hand motif throughout the brand, so finding these images was a defining moment. I need to have a better look at what this brand is going to actually look like…