Whether it’s a sports brand, alcoholic beverage or a range of accessories for your barbershop;
it’s hard to find a visual sensibility that represents this sense of alternative culture while having commercial sensibility. After all, businesses don’t exist if they don’t appeal to anyone.
Though how do we tick these seemingly incompatible boxes of appealing to an alternative culture while having some kind of commercial appeal? After all, we know the alternative lifestyle naturally reject anything that’s perceived as being set up for a commercial purpose.
How do we appeal to a target audience that has such an insane, strict and unwelcoming criteria? It can be hard to try and characterise our individual tastes and sensibilities while striving for broad appeal. It is hard to then dismiss our inner voice to try to fit the standard and dull mould around us. Though as a graphic designer and illustrator; it’s our job to try and make this dream come to life. It’s our responsibility to help your personal vision spread and reach the world.
To have a successful brand, we start by picking a figurehead that our audience respects on a standpoint of values.
To have a successful brand, we start by picking a figurehead that our audience respects on a standpoint of values. We try to use a visual language that our target audience admires and respects. Notably, a venomous and aggressive looking snake might not sound like a commercial asset, rather a deterrent in scaring people away. Yet it’s how we position our imagery visually to our target audience that something like a venomous cobra can have broader appeal.
This Cobra is intended to be utilised for a brand that had similar personality attributes to such an animal. Those being; wisdom, a protector and a sense of royalty. Bigger then just the visual it’s imperative to create brands that represent a standpoint of values. This way clients, customers, employees and stakeholders alike can get on board with this brand and support it.
When dissecting and sketching through concepts for this design, it was vital that this logo had it’s place visually in alternative culture while having the commercial appeal to be used in a business context. This was achieved by choice of linework and the colour palette.
We try to use a visual language that our target audience admires and respects.
As the set intention of this design was to be better suited to an alternative audience the choice of a cobra was used due to it’s contrasting symbolic references. On the one hand, snakes can be represented as a vicious, venomous and evil creature. And in Egyptian culture, a cobra would be served as a protector to the pharaoh which obviously has very noble traits.
The more sinister and evil side is quite appealing to alternative culture. Though a lot more trust is ensured in something that has a nature of protection, service and nobility. Which is why a Cobra was the perfect representation to appeal to an alternative culture.
What makes design and art the most interesting is a sense of conflicting and contrasting ideas to harness something more unique. On paper commercial and snake don’t really go together. But when we find an appropriate figurehead our intended market will vouch for is when we can create unique and distinctive artwork.
If you’re wanting to collaborate on a similar project and have yourself visually represented in such a way for your brand, by all means, please get in touch. As important as it is to come up with something pleasing visually it’s more important to develop something that resonates with the intended audience.