Introducing An Old Friend

When a company comes to us, hoping that we can not only create a website but also create an entire identity from scratch, I am eager to pull out pen and notebook and start sketching.

Creating an identity for any client is a daunting task, calling on the most creative and concise ideas a designer can muster. The pressure to create a visual brand for a company — one that will hopefully stand the test of time — is exhilirating and somewhat frightening, especially when you’re trying to create something unique.

How much more exciting (and frightening) it is when the brand that you’re creating (or “refreshing” in this case) is based on a well-worn identity that carries with it countless memories and associations that you could never fully understand.

So began the exhilarating journey of taking a historical publication, Brown’s Guide to Georgia, and re-launching it as a web-based state guide. For those unfamiliar with the magazine, Brown’s Guide to Georgia was a staple publication for Georgia tourism that featured everything Georgia had to offer from artists and culture to hiking, biking and the outdoors. Anything and everything about Georgia could be found in Brown’s Guide.

I’d really love to wax artistic, discussing how interesting it was to take the original Brown’s Guide logo mark, set in the 70’s-era Windsor font (which, if you’re a movie buff like me, you’ll notice is the font Woody Allen uses almost exclusively in all his title credits), and update it with something contemporary while retaining all the personality of the former. Not everyone is a typophile…or a design buff…and I understand that.

However, the average user is going to be excited about the future of the Brown’s Guide website. We’ve only just launched the site (and a “soft launch” at that) and there are some 3,000 listings already, all searchable and categorized, with more listings and details to come. In addition, we’ll be adding some blog features to the site, where many Georgia hiking, biking and attractions experts will give the lowdown on places to go for your next trip in the Peach State.

We’ve also made sure to include some of the original magazine artwork in the masthead, and hope to add more original Georgia artwork throughout the site as time passes. We’re hoping that visiting will be a trip down memory lane for all the readers of the original magazine, and that the new version of this old friend will be as valuable as it ever was.

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