Reflection on Brand Identification (Mast/ Sub Branding)

When conducting research into a specific brand, I was really interested in finding out more about Apple. I previously have watched a documentary that spoke about Apple and the history. We also touched upon it again in one of our design sessions. Apple is a very luxurious brand and one of the most recognisable logos in today’s society. Apple plays a significant role into how a simple yet smart design can grab the audience. This means there is a huge following and also there to be a level of brand loyalty.

Originally Apple started producing and selling desktop computers but as the times have evolved they moved into selling a whole range of laptops 1990’s. It was noted that it took apple a lot longer to get more items onto the market. 20 years after the laptops started flying off the shelves, apple started to release a new product line. The items included;

  • Ipod (2001)
  • Iphone (2007)
  • Ipad (2010)
  • Apple Watch (2014)

And now the Apple Pay.

The Apple brand is evolving and made promises to the consumers. These included, bringing easy to use products, focusing on individual needs. Apple prides themselves on delivering exceptional customer experience, through there interfaces. For instance features like the touch screen and simplicity of use.

In 1976 the very first logo of apple was released. The design was elaborate featuring comparing it to the modern day design. In the 1976 logo it appears to be Isaac Newton sat underneath the tree. This representation is incredibly interesting as he is widely recognised as one of the most influential scientist of all time. He discovered gravity and the laws of motion. He was a pioneer of his time and helped to shape science, history and designs. Isaac Newton was an English physicist and mathematician.

In my opinion the 1976 logo is very fitting for the brand identity as Isaac Newton was one of the most influential people of the time. It has ideologies of what the brand wants. “All knowing, all thinking” However, I don’t believe the aesthetics of the design were as well designed and executed. It looks too busy and old fashioned. I guess at the time it would have been amazing. Branding is incredibly important and as the design is elaborate it wouldn’t have the same affect or appeal in small product placements. For instance, banners and icons. The logo in my opinion doesn’t stand out and really had to change for the company to have success. The typography is a serif font. Serif fonts are good as it uses thick and thin strokes. Those typefaces are good for legibility.

The design of Apple soon changed to a much simpler logo in 1977. It is obvious that the marketers felt the same way. It was very loud and in peoples face. It was designed like a rainbow. I believe that they did this to attract more people to the brand and increase the popularity. They focused on the rainbow and forgot about the professionalism of the branding. When designing a product I always think less is more, and that only a maximum of three colours should be used. This is because designs can be over worked and not send the right message about a brand.

I really liked the next logo that was brought out in 1998, it followed the last design of the apple. However, instead of been the rainbow effect it was just plain black. This made the design of the logo much more professional looking, sleek and something that people would see and think high class. Having it black means that marketers for the company can use it more effectively as it would appear the same whatever size it needed to be. The development from the last two designs are drastic but make a whole lot of scene moving forward to the 20th century. Design is becoming much more simplistic as they seem to be more effective.

There were other designs like the 2002 design which was baby blue. Personally I don’t like this design as it seemed like apple where trying to play copycat with their competitors Microsoft. Apple took a step backwards in my opinion in design as they stopped been individual and tried to be more like other companies on the market.

Apple got their individuality back in there latest sleek designs. It is minimalistic and fits in with the modern day market. It is so professional looking and evokes confidence within the buyers. The apple design still has the same history and ideologies behind it but in a more subtle way. The bite taken from the apple represents the Gigabytes.

The changes apple undertook show companies can and have developed into what it is now.

As a journalist it has made me much more aware of the importance of a brand identity. If I do my own brand to a high standard then it will reflect well on me. It will allow me to come across professionally and get a brand loyalty.

 

THEORIES IN TYPOGRAPHY & DESIGN PRINCIPLES

As a part of my research I wanted to develop my understanding of typography and design principles. I came across some theories that was really insightful. A theory I learned about:

Gestalt theory

This theory explains the ideas of how powerful the mind is. This focuses on cognitive behavior’s and explains how the mind deals with a lot of visual data. Visual confusions is seen in our everyday lives. People sub-consciously tries to make visual data much more simplified and easier to digest. The mind efficiently simplifies the parts by making it into a single object.

For instance, if I was to say to someone explain to me what a human face looks like. They will be able to depict the key shapes and parts. Such as; eyes, nose, ears, mouth etc. It makes a design stripped and much more generic. The mind designs a face by bringing them together and manages to register a face.

Five design principles derive from the Gestalt theory: proximity, similarity, continuity, closure and figure/ground.

  • Proximity – the space between objects. If close together can be seen as one or a group. If too far away then will be perceived as separate pieces of data. My example below.

proximity.jpg

  • Similarity- this part of the theory that explains if there are elements that have similar characteristics on the same page then there will be a relationship built. My example is of two different breeds of cats. Even though these are a different breed of cat they don’t have a lot of similarities.

similarity.jpg

  • Continuity – The ideas that type follows in the same direction until it comes across the next piece of design. My Example

direction.jpg

I really think this theory is incredibly important to me within my chosen career as designs are apparent in everything we see. Simplifying things is key when designing something as it allows the information to be digestible and understood. If I apply this theory to my own practice then I will be able to create unity within the piece. I will gain better communication of the piece if the relationship between the shapes/elements are strong and come together. This theory helps the designers influence, how the design is viewed by the target audience. This is the preferred reading. It is up to the viewer to decode the piece.

Bibliography

Gestalt Theory of Visual Perception. 2016. Gestalt Theory of Visual Perception. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.users.totalise.co.uk/~kbroom/Lectures/gestalt.htm. [Accessed 20 March 2016].

Principles of Design – Graphic Design Theory. 2016. Principles of Design – Graphic Design Theory. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.slideshare.net/EngineeroBono/principles-of-design-graphic-design-theory. [Accessed 20 March 2016].

Design Principles: Visual Perception And The Principles Of Gestalt – Smashing Magazine. 2016. Design Principles: Visual Perception And The Principles Of Gestalt – Smashing Magazine. [ONLINE] Available at: https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2014/03/design-principles-visual-perception-and-the-principles-of-gestalt/. [Accessed 20 March 2016].