8 festivals, vivid colors, one country and all the creative freedom a designer could ever want, this is the branding project of Croatia Music Festivals.
Behind this branding project is VBG (Visual Brain Gravity), a creative agency from Slovenia, the brain child of Gregor Žakelj. And because I have been stalking Gregor for some time now (Gregor, I know what you did last weekend), I approached him with some questions on his new branding project for the Croatia Music Festivals.
1 .What is Croatia Music Festival?
CMF will be the main getaway into Croatia festival scene. There are around 8 big festivals happening this summer, which are dispersed all around Croatia. It will capture all the festivals in one place and all what is going on in the backstage of them. Of course, you will be able to buy and reserve festival tickets and selected accommodation near the festivals. So you could say it will also work as a boutique agency specialized in festivals.
2. Why did they approach you?
When setting up a new brand you need to make sure you are doing something good. Something solid that can be easily adapted and will last a long time. That is where we come in. We are able to created an adaptive identity that works on all mediums from print to motion and web. To be able to build a brand from ground up within one team is becoming more and more important to the brands. This way the branding stays focused and the same people that actually made the identity make the adaptations.
3. What was the problem/problems they were having?
Every festival has its own design. And we are talking about 8 different design directions that are not bad. Working for festivals gives designers so much creative space they really create good and positive things. I worked on a few festivals before so I know how hard it is to create something good while having a complete freedom of art direction.
This is where all the hard work comes in, to be able to create a visual identity with a story so different it will work as a cower for all those festivals.
4. What is the idea behind this new design?
Croatia is a land with beautiful coastline where people can indulge good life, sun and the waves. A pure Mediterranean fantasies with sapphire waters and positive music vibes. We wanted to capture that positive atmosphere into identity – filled with good vibe, waves and vivid color.
Of course we had to explore that first. It is hard to do a brand just on paper, the result is so much better if you actually live it.
5. Talk a little about the color pallet. How does it fit in the hall picture?
I wanted something as vivid as it can be. Imagine summer, fun, the good times. Colors should bring on the happy face. These combinations do the job and we really had a great time discovering where this identity can go.
6. What is the idea behind the logo?
The idea is as simple as it can be. We wanted to merge everything in to one simple story. We combined music, dancing and the waves into this custom topography.
The fact that logo moves and dances when you scroll, like you would be, if you would visit one of their festivals, just empathize that even more.
7. I have to know, what’s up with the models? They take a lot of space out of the design. What is their role?
There is actually only one model. We connected with this girl merely because she actually goes to most of these festivals. We wanted someone who is part of it and knows the unique lifestyle and the fashion
of the festivals. On the photos, made by my good friend (RIIBA), she easily adapts to different rolls breathing in the vivid colors and pure joy.
And that is her role in terms of communication. She is actually a unique festival ambassador. One of the main reasons she looks so natural in the combination with the identity.
8. Who is Gregor Žakelj?
Well, I started out 15 years back focused on web and motion design. And since I am a self-thought I had to work twice as hard. I really did not know much about design but all along I was reading and learning from Netdiver magazine, which still keeps my motivation to learn and evolve at high level. Even as I became a young creative/art director the growing love towards illustration, typography and graphics design drove me out of the agency world.
I started my own design studio – Visual Brain Gravity and in the same time became a Young creative of the year and presented Slovenia in Cannes. We received numerous international and domestic design awards (Volvo Design Award, SOF, Brumen, golden European Design Award, golden Golden Drum) and besides occasional lectures and exhibitions I enjoyed being a jury member for several times. 10 years later I was selected as one of the 10 creative from Europe to speak at the ADC*E festival in Barcelona. Currently we are having fun by building brands for a verity of industries ranging from music to product design. And enjoying my daily rides since I discovered importance of studio side-project with my brand of longboards where I emphasize my claim that good design is for good clients.