Case Study: WEED Inc.
Creating a visual brand for a start-up takes a lot of research and sketching. Branding WEED Inc was a challenging case – a start-up run by a unique CEO who wants to use his long personal experience to bring the benefits of cannabis to the rest of the world.
The CEO of WEED, Inc. is building a listed company with subsidiaries, and with research led by top scientists in Arizona, Australia and Israel who are respected veterans in their fields.
The CEO of WEED, Inc. has a very strong affinity to the colorful aesthetics of the psychedelic 70s, and not the modern minimalist look that global cannabis brands today tend to embrace. After weeks of trying to convince him to simplifying his logo choices, to exclude Israeli icons and a map of Australia from his branding, I finally realized that in order to make him happy I needed to fully embrace the retro look that he wanted.
My challenge was then to create a brand design that:
While many small agritech brands choose to utilize the neo-vintage style (grungy logo like an ink-stamp in earthy tones), I created a retro look that reflects the personality of the company CEO and his authentic 1970s roots.
I started out going pure retro, with a look that was totally influenced by Milton Glaser’s iconic poster of Bob Dylan.
I realized that this look seemed too much like an ad from the ’70s. Literally. One that was saved in the attic. So, I took it down a notch and brought it into the 21st century by brightening up the colors and taking out the lines between them, allowing text to overlay an image, and sharpening the text boxes.
This look more closely resembles a brand that you are more likely to see in the fine print on the back of the box of a prescription drug, or emblazoned across a recreational drink, without compromising on brand recognition.
In this last brand concept, I offered the CEO a neo-vintage look that would reflect his preference for “going back to your roots” and included two logo versions.
I love the aesthetics of the bold word WEED that is visible at any size, while other people prefer the clear round shape of the seal. To be honest, the seal actually works better because, at the end of the day, it looks more a logo that can represent a serious company and not only just people who like smoking grass!
As of now, the final logo hasn’t been chosen yet, but I eagerly await the chance to refine and perfect one of these options for the client. Which visual brand would you choose?