March 13, 2008


Since it seems like I bitch a lot about corporate redesigns where companies kill or alter a classic logo unnecessarily, I thought I'd feature a couple recent redesigns - or as we often refer to them, "refreshes"- that do a good job of updating a brand without destroying what worked about the original. The redesigns of Camel Cigarettes and Boost Mobile were recently featured on the website "Brand New." Camel cigarettes are an iconic brand that have changed little since 1913. And the new packaging makes few changes to the main elements of the brand. Yes a gradation has been added to the type, but the color change also makes the 'fill' of the type primary and the 'stroke' surrounding the type secondary - a good thing. The use of pattern and shape in the surrounding elements strengthens and emboldens the layout of the package, while still giving a nod to the longevity of the brand with its treatment. My favorite part of the whole package is the beautiful layout of the text in the band underneath the camel. (One amusing "shiny" update, as Brand New notes, is that the camel seems to now be standing on a shiny desert surface.) In a very different example, Boost Mobile has updated its logo. Now Boost certainly is not a major brand of any kind of iconic status, but their refresh is a great example of taking a logo that seemed clunky and dated and nicely cleaning it up without adding unnecessary 'stuff'. I guess because of the nature of the company and the target audience (14-34 "multicultural" consumers), this stands out to me because I would just expect them to add 3D edges and bevels, shadows, gradations. Thankfully, they didn't. In the refresh, designed by Attik, their icon has been refined and given more action and tension. And the old typography, which seemed to fight their old icon, has been replaced with a sharp, clean, tightly-set bit of type that could stand on its own without the icon. Both brand refreshes are nice examples of reworking existing brands, without junking them up.

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