Working on your own Corporate Identity seems like a dauting task in the beginning, mainly because you have to face yourself with some hard (read: interesting) questions.
For example :
- Will my message come across to prospective clients/the target audience?
- Does the branding reflect myself as a designer? Is it too personal?
- Where do I want to position myself as a designer?
The hard part here clearly is the admitetly schizophrenic situation in which you'll find yourself. You basically are designer and client combined. Which definitely is a quite unusual situation. But along with the hard parts come some merits. Mainly the quick feedback loops you'll find yourself in. Besides the typical question you'll ask yourself while working on a design, the client part in you can give instant feedback on your decisions.
>Beware, you may even find yourself in a situation where you tell yourself to make the logo bigger.
These quick feedback loops make it possible to work out various design directions easily and then you are able to dive deep into the decision-making process resulting in your final design.
Colors (or lack thereof) and Typography
For my personal Identity I decided to stick with black and white. I knew from the beginning that I didn't want any color associated with my "brand". This was a purely personal decision, as I could see myself wanting to change the color every two weeks because I wasn't completely satisified with it.
Concerning typography I went with a sans-serif, serif combination. Proxima Nova is used as my main font used in the Logo and Headlines and Freight Text is used for body copy. The geometric yet slightly personal character of Proxima Nova were the main factors behind the decision to use the font.
Along with the Corporate Design came the portfolio website (the site you're currently on, if you didn't noticed by now). It was the first test for the Corporate Identity I developed for myself. Is the Logo applicable on the web (size and resolution)? Is the type legibile? These questions and more were asked during the design and development phase.
Talking about development, I decided to use Jekyll as a "CMS". With Jekyll I am able to manage my content easy and without any database structure behind the site which enabled me to keep it lightweight and thus very performant. Performance was a big factor and I constantly asked myself how fast would the site would load if I added this or removed that. I will explain the development details in a separate blog post for those of you who are interested.
Of course, if you're your own client you'll never be finished or completely satisfied with your work but you have to draw a line at some point and take a stand for what you designed. Always keep in mind of how you would work with an external client. Summing up, my Corporate Design turned out to be quite versatile and I'm really happy with the results I got when applying it to stationary as well as my website.