What’s in a name? Your “brand” is your ultimate identity. It may begin and end with a logo design or your profile photo on your Facebook page. Your brand is how the world sees you. Your brand tells your essence. Your brand is sacred. To compete in today’s world your brand must stand alone, be easily remembered, and associate specifically with your personae, product or service. Your logo is an excellent place to start and is perhaps the single most important element of a brand. But your brand doesn’t end with that logo. Consider as part of your brand your color palette, your style of photography or imagery. You or your product should be recognized effortlessly in any of your visual communications. Consider some of these examples. When you see two interlocking back to back letter C’s you instantly recognize that as CHANEL be it a fragrance, clothing, eyeglasses or handbag...when you see the simply lit studio photo of a tot or teen you may recognise a GAP ad without actually seeing the small unassuming logo centered near the bottom of the page. A combination of a specific red and blue may suggest a certain cola product. If you are an entertainer your hair style, and attire can be an integral part of your brand. The Rolling Stones"hot lick" logo designed by Milton Glaser in the 70's certainly represents Mick Jagger’s lips. Today there is so much visual stimuli available to us that being succinct with your branding has become more essential to success than ever before.


The following is an example with explanation of a recent branding effort for the company Nina Canacci. This formal dress company was bought out by a partnership of four fellas who have worked in the prom dress business peripherally for many years. While there may have been some existing brand recognition for Nina task was to reinvent Nina Canacci for 2010 and expose them to a new generation of teenagers.

I can’t say for certain if there is actually a namesake for Nina Canacci but our goal is to create the perception that she does exist and is a formidable, established and internationally renowned dress designer.

Beginning with a new logo design for Nina Canacci an elegant yet trendy approach was employed. Helvetica was chosen as the font choice because of the history and domination of that font family in the fashion industry as well as most other industries...perhaps upwards of 80% of the most recognized words in print are presented in some form of the helvetica family of fonts. The ultra light weight and lower case letters were selected to appeal to feminine sensibilities. The flourishes behind include the initials N.C. with additional flourishes that might loosely represent a flowing ball gown.

I firmly believe in the subconscious ability to notice and retain details. The approach for Nina's re-introduction catalog was approached like this: The "theme" for the catalog (I believe a catalog should have a theme) was simply to resemble Vogue magazine editorial...and to do this simply with the look of the images via lighting, background and model’s poses...

Patrick Demarchlier is undeniably the most famous living fashion photographer today and his work is printed every month in Vogue, Harpers Bazaar, and top fashion magazines... My studio wall was painted with a subtle warm grey modeling to resemble that of Patrick’s NY studio. Posing is another notable style or “brand” of Patrick's work...he consistently gets those kind of semi-contorted but cool poses that transcend modeling to high fashion. The marketing plan being that people (especially young girls) seeing these images would subconsciously associate Nina Canacci with the many designer’s work they had seen in the pages of their (or mum's) Vogues.

One particular dress design seemed to work exceptionally well and we spent extra time allowing the model to jump and move. I had the good fortune of meeting Elite London Agency model Cassie the weekend before the shoot and believe that was kismet...she had the chops I was trying to re-create and totally rocked the shoot with very little direction. This photo was one of the resulting images and was the obvious choice for the catalog cover, As part of the branding effort it was also used in magazine ads appearing in Seventeen, Teen Prom and as well on p.o.p. and tradeshow banners, postcards, company business cards and facebook and other social media avatars,

Today’s young women are shopping for their dresses on their i-phone...when they’re not otherwise engaged on social media sites like Facebook and My Space. Producing a website that works well on smart phones was the top priority...many of the prom dress competitors were using home pages with Adobe Flash animation as there central imagery. Unfortunately neither i-phones or Android phones currently support Flash technology. Being a new and budget consious company it just wasn't affordable to develope an i-phone specific site. We instead employed a smart-phone friendly image rotation protocol to provide an animation that works well on the phone. We wanted the site to be simple, clean and most importantly easy to navigate. Our objective to show both the fronts and backs of entire line(s) without having to leave the page. This was achieved by click to change thumbnails yet if you click on the image another window will open with bigger pictures to see details...these pages disappear when you click away from them. The page also provides links to Facebook, Myspace, Nina’s blog, and You Tube. Plans to produce short videos have been back burnered by the client for now but our intentions are to have full internet presence.


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E-mail Chris Jensen * Tel 805/653.6731 * Left Coast, USA

©Chris Jensen 2009 * All images herein are copyright protected, are not public domain, and may not be copied without permission

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