The internet is a miraculous place – you can find just about anything these days. Recently, we stumbled upon this amazing Bell Labs corporate film produced by one of the founding fathers of modern graphic design, Saul Bass. It’s an amazing look back at the creative process behind the iconic Bell Labs/AT&T logo that served that corporation until the big break up in 1984. Even today, we can still find remnants of “Ma Bell” (got the ill communication) on all kinds of objects throughout America. Just goes to show the kind of impact great branding can have on a culture.
While our work as designers is well-documented, our activities outside of the Braizen offices is not as well known. So, we’re changing that … like, now. To start, we thought we’d head up to the farm with Tyrie and his labor of love at Glory Seeds, a 41-acre, non-profit, organic farm located in the Northeast Georgia Mountains. Tyrie and his partner, Elaina, came upon Glory Seeds during an evening jaunt through the mountain roads around Clayton, GA. Seeing the farm from the road, they decided to stop and see if they could get a tour. They got more than they bargained for, as Kim and Larry Jensen not only welcomed them to the farm, but also handed them each a newborn baby goat and a kitten to hold. Yes, it was a friggin’ cuteness overload. Since that day, Tyrie and Elaina have taken on a number of roles at Glory Seeds, including official beekeeper, part-time goat milker, fence mender and general handyman, animal groomer, cat feeder, weed block installer, harvester, goat wrangler, turkey wrangler, official donkey nose and ear scratcher, and many more.
Glory Seeds is more than just a farm (as if that wasn’t enough). Glory Seeds’ mission is raising awareness about nutrition and sustainable farming practices, enriching and empowering spiritual growth and faith in Christ, and growing food for needy families in the surrounding communities. 50% of the produce grown at Glory Seeds is donated to another project created by the Jensens, God’s Abundance. Through these two organizations, the Food Bank of Northeast Georgia, and numerous volunteers, Kim and Larry help to feed some 150 families in need every week.
Yes, they are incredible people doing incredible things – doing incredible things with not a lot of financial support. So much of what goes into making Glory Seeds work is Kim and Larry’s own money, the generosity of others through donation, numerous grants, and a whole lotta prayer. As such, we are beginning work on a little donation of our own – a rebrand of Glory Seeds and a new blogsite. Helping spread the word on their wonderful mission is the least we can do for two people so selfless and dedicated to helping others. So, stay tuned … and, if given the opportunity, hug a goat.
Jill Smith is amazing. She is incredibly talented, genuinely sweet and kind, and just one of our favorite people in the whole, wide, big damn ‘verse. We have been working with this incredible designer and letterer for over a year and we are finally, happily able to show off her amazing brand as it was intended. Jill recently sent over some images of the various pieces of collateral she has been ordering over the past several months (the lovely photographs courtesy of Brooke Schwab). We are blown away by how amazing everything turned out. As our brands are often strong reflections of the wonderful people we work with, it should be no surprise that Jill Smith’s brand has translated so beautifully to a number of different mediums. Check out these beauties and then read Jill’s too-kind words about her experience with Braizen.
“I had been dragging my feet on entering the social media/blogging world for a few years. Truth is I am not great at sharing my world. I can be pretty private. I am great at sharing with my friends, like the ones who I have their phone numbers and I visit their homes and snuggle their kids. But outside of that, even to facebook ‘friends’, I just hardly could do it. So trying to put myself out there in a big-world-website-kinda way kept getting pushed lower and lower on my to-do list. That, and being a designer myself, I wanted it to look really good. So I found myself at a complete standstill.
I’m finding it a bit tough to write a testimonial that speaks highly enough about how pleased I am with Braizen. I’m so incredibly happy with my re-branding and website. They created something so sound, so witty, so different from everything already out there, and so perfect for me. They completely captured me and my aesthetic. Narwhals and Rhinos! Rainbow raindrops! Incorporating my handwriting! Oh yes, thank you. And that is just the end result. Working behind the scenes with them was very easy and organized. They did an amazing job, on a schedule, with no surprises. And we had fun doing it. They are both professional and personal and not afraid to share their true opinions. They helped me personally find a way to put my business out there and just enough of myself out there too. I couldn’t be happier. And dare I say proud. I smile like a complete idiot whenever I look at my site. I am so grateful that I found them!” ~ Jill Smith
In May of 2013, Ashley and Tyrie were invited to present at the Pecha Kucha creative conference in Atlanta. The presentation was titled “The Importance of Awesome” and focused on how we met a very real need to work with people whom we like and jibe. The presentation narrated our very real journey of self-discovery and how we came to the realization that the people we want to work with are people who act and think and view the world very much in the same ways we do. Narcissistic? Maybe. But, honestly, working with like-minded people is just easier, more fun, and generally a better experience for everyone involved. So, we just kinda ran with it.
The importance of working with awesome people (people like us) is something we talk to our clients about all the time. We help them to achieve the maximum client-to-awesome ratio (ideally, 1:1) in a number of ways; but, put simply, we help them develop a brand identity and strategy that is equal parts them (the business owner) and the people they want to work with (their clients/customers). Here’s our short list of how to up your awesome client ratio.
Identify Your Client.
Identify the Red Flags.
If you follow us on Facebook and Instagram then you’ve probably already met our new little six-toed office mate. If not, say hello to Hemingway, aka Hemi. Born with a congenital abnormality (genetically inherited), Hemi is a polydactyl cat. These six-toed sweeties are most often found in the Southeastern United States, especially in the Key West area since Ernest Hemingway had an affinity for these mittened kittens. Fun Fact: the those extra toes make polydactyls excellent designers.