91.1FM Radio Station Identity

Identity Rooted in Urban Vernacular

This Project was a Collaborative Effort
STUDIO: Firebelly | DESIGN TEAM: Nick Adam + Will Miller
CLIENT: Vocalo + Chicago Public Media

Over my five years at Firebelly, it was a distinct privilege to lead several projects for Chicago radio station Vocalo, 91.1FM. A favorite of mine was an identity, system guidelines, campaign, and collateral that I collaborated on the direction, design, production and hand lettering with Will Miller. Brush and bézier in hand, we went to work.
PROJECT CONCEPT:
Chicago is a city of neighborhoods, each filled with independent shops supported by the surrounding community. From the supermarket to the the muffler repair shop, many speak in the urban vernacular.
Bold sign painted words and numbers scrawled across neon papers fill our peripheral vision on every main street. Perhaps there is nothing more ubiquitous and authentically representative of our urban neighborhoods than this expression.
Sign painting is a style of lettering, a method of constructing letterforms with speed and accuracy. This brush-in-hand technique provides endless unique variations in style and form while conveying an approachable honesty with street smart confidence.

The Vocalo wordmarks were created by following traditional sign painting methods. The two variations were structurally refined on the same grid to ensure perfect production and to unite their horizontal and vertical relationships. 

This identity includes two logo styles with three core color pallets, aligning with the sign-painterly execution where variation can occur. Utilizing a variety of form, color, and at times brush texture, we embraced the hand-done aesthetic without looking pastiche nor cliche. While the colors and styles change, they were designed in accordance with one another, thus creating a gestalt that repeats in the public’s mind.

Project Deliverables:
Re-branding, Identity System Design, Strategy, Creative Direction, Brand Guidelines Manual, Advertising Campaign, Stationery, Print + Digital Collateral, Graphic Design, Signage, Media Planning, Media Buying

This Project was a Collaborative Effort:
STUDIO: Firebelly | CLIENT: Vocalo + Chicago Public Media
DESIGN TEAM: Nick Adam + Will Miller
BUYING NEIGHBORHOOD BILLBOARDS: Outfroont Media
BUYING BUS BENCH ADS: Wright Advertising