Brand Lab is a creative workshop to explore and articulate the essence of a company.

We examine how organisations think, what they care about deeply and the qualities they possess that propel them forwards. For many firms, Brand Lab feels like the moment in which – after many years of struggling with identity – the threads start to come together. 

Alantra are a global investment banking and asset management firm who arrived with a website that needed a complete overhaul in terms of structure, brand message and aesthetic approach. 

1. Unpack

Alantra’s website briefing was very thorough. They let us lead the thinking on brand and we devised a brand brief through our research and discussions. They knew they wanted elegance, white space and something that wasn’t literal or vanilla.

Tagline. Create a tagline for the brand that speaks to the aspirations and spirit of the firm

Animated motif. This is for the home page and potentially other collateral.

Brand Messages. Identify an authentic tone of voice and portray this visually and bring to the copy messaging  of the firm. Tie fragmented elements of the brand together visually.  

“What happens when we put subtle elements at the centre of our attention?”

It struck us there was commonality in the cultural premise of Alantra and this exhibition: Sensing Spaces, Royal Academy, 2014.

Alantra’s printed literature was elegant and raised interesting questions about banking, society, culture and conduct.  There was also a palpable energy or impetus of possibility that was not present in digital form. We wanted to show something that suggested both this spirit of possibility but also a sense of clear-mindedness, integrity and intelligence.  

The Threshold | Growth | Innovation | Possibility | Momentum | Entrepreneurialism | Always on the edge of something greater | Human potential

2. Distil

We ran the Brand Lab with Marketing, C-suite and Corporate Services. We come with a series of questions, thought experiments and visual references.  We had a few strong hypotheses and worked with the firm trying these ideas out.   Some of these included the Fibonacci spiral which reflects exponential and ordered growth in numbers, can be found in patterns in nature, and is used for calculating time zones and in architecture.

A Fibonacci spiral approximates the golden spiral using quarter-circle arcs inscribed in squares derived from the Fibonacci sequence, 0,1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21,34,55,89,144 …

Illustration. We worked with graphic artist duo Ulla Puggard & Henry Obasi. They create illustrations which are pithy and often tell a more complex story. They took the Fibonacci spiral and began to design out variances of forms that could create animation paths.

3. Evolve

We reached a form that felt the most suitable to be used across a brand. The illustrated form contains 42 strings which each have an individual movement path. Our movement reference was a kinetic flow that you might find in contemporary dance. We wanted to create a sense of organic on a digital canvas.

Tagline. We worked in Brand Lab with PR and copywriter Shahla Haque whose tone of voice and conceptual thought suited that of Alantra. Shahla evolved a tagline and copy that would speak to Alantra’s vision and spiritedness.

Towards the end of the project, we republished Alantra’s end of year reflections and analysis found in the annual reports within the new History page and used detail of the final Fibonacci form for each article banner (above).

The Homepage Complete. We worked with our creative developers, to code the animation rather than use video or motion graphics. We wanted the animation to run fast on the Home page so coding it was the solution here. We used Bezier curves to create the organic flow in the form which ebbs and flows on land and fits seamlessly with the tagline and functional links.