The Pitch

Here's some of the (many) event graphics I did for this year's Microsoft Ventures The Pitch event happening which happening last week and was organised by the wonderful folk at Forgather...

Here's the final logo

And here's some initial concepts showing how it might be used on promotional material...

Corporate Identity Case Study: 100TB

I thought some of you might be interested in the process of designing a corporate identity. In this case study I'm going to concentrate purely on the visual side of things, and ignore the equally important positioning side - the 'who are we and how do we say what we want to say' stuff...

Please bear in mind that this is a dramatic oversimplification and that the work shown shown below only represents a tiny fraction of the actual work involved!

Competitive Analysis

This basically involves looking at their competition and seeing how they fit in with them. One of the most important decisions any brand needs to make is whether they want to blend in with the rest or stand out from the pack.

The first steps would be to collect and compare logos and other brand assets such as palettes and websites.

Initial Design Concepts

Once this process has been completed and discussed and some decisions have been made it's time to start coming up with some logo concepts. Obviously there's no end to how many ideas a client will want to see but you have to start somewhere, so it's a good idea to come up with several 'routes' and work from there.

It's also helpful to visualise how some of these routes might be expressed later on and to give an idea of what the logos might look like in situ...

It's normally not a good idea to worry too much about colours and typefaces at this point as they can distract from the 'bigger picture' and can easily be changed later...

Hopefully something will catch their imagination (in this case the infinity symbol) and act as a catalyst for the next stage.


Once a logo has been chosen it's time to start polishing it, or as I like to think of it, 'variations on a theme'. It's incredible how tiny changes can make the difference between something that looks wrong or right.


Next, it's time to think about colours and mock up some examples of how they might be used in the real world. Typically this would involve the development of a primary set of colours for the actual logo itself and a secondary palette that will work with it.

And finally...


RIP David Bowie

Yesterday the world lost David Bowie. I've been listening to my Best of Bowie playlist pretty much constantly since then which has just bought home how great a musician he was, let alone a visual icon. He did more than anyone I can think of to influence the look and feel of music during my life - and I didn't know how much I'd miss him until he was gone...

Here's an old painting I did of him many years ago

Apple Pencil test

I grew up up drawing the old fashioned way - pens, pencil and paper. Then the Mac came along and over the years less and less of my work involved 'real' illustration as everything has become digital. But still my desk is strewn with sheets of paper covered in notes, doodles and sketches. Every website design, every logo, everything, starts with a piece of paper and a pen.

In an effort to save the planet's trees and declutter my desk, I've tried just about every digital stylus available: Wacom, Adonit, Pencil by FiftyThree etc. You name it and I've wasted my money on it. But finally something has come along that might just change that...

Apple's imaginatively titled Pencil (thank God it wasn't the iPencil) combined with my iPad Pro has effectively replaced my real pad and pencil. I just create a page in the Notes app for each project and store all the relevant notes, sketches, links etc. there - much easier to manage than a pile of post-it notes and scraps of paper and it's available to me wherever I am.

To prove that Apple's Pencil is a capable replacement for a real pencil and paper (and that I'm a true geek at heart) here's a little something I prepared earlier - a quick drawing of Batman progressing from initial sketch to slightly more finished sketch. The pencil is responsive, the palm rejection is awesome and best of all, there's an undo command.