Title: Identity Designed: The Definitive Guide to Visual Branding
Author: David Airey
Genre: Nonfiction, Business
Source: Free ARC from Rockport Publishing
Note: As stated under the Source (above), I received this book for free from Rockport Publishing via NetGalley. I pride myself on writing fair and honest reviews.
“Ideal for students of design, independent designers, and entrepreneurs who want to expand their understanding of effective design in business, Identity Designed is the definitive guide to visual branding.
Written by best-selling writer and renowned designer David Airey, Identity Designed formalizes the process and the benefits of brand identity design and includes a substantial collection of high-caliber projects from a variety of the world’s most talented design studios.
You’ll see the history and importance of branding, a contemporary assessment of best practices, and how there’s always more than one way to exceed client expectations. You’ll also learn a range of methods for conducting research, defining strategy, generating ideas, developing touchpoints, implementing style guides, and futureproofing your designs. Each identity case study is followed by a recap of key points.
The book includes projects by Lantern, Base, Pharus, OCD, Rice Creative, Foreign Policy, Underline Studio, Fedoriv, Freytag Anderson, Bedow, Robot Food, Together Design, Believe in, Jack Renwick Studio, ico Design, and Lundgren+Lindqvist.
Identity Designed is a must-have, not only for designers, but also for entrepreneurs who want to improve their work with a greater understanding of how good design is good business.”
Why did this book appeal to me? It’s focused on brand identity. Its importance and its development. Not only do I have a blog that I want to have a particular visual identity, but I’m also working on starting up an Etsy shop/handmade business. At this time, creating a strong and appropriate brand identity is of great importance to me. Since I have a nearly non-existent budget for brand development and marketing, I was hoping this book would give me some tools to use in designing that identity myself.
Was it what you thought it would be? No. Not at all. I’m sure it’s a wonderful book for people in the industry or people who just want to know how different brand design companies approach their business, but I was actually looking for something useful, something that would guide me in designing my own brand. Instead, it felt more like an inside look into business that are considered successful at brand identity design. It covers things like how they work with the client, what they charge for a project, how they divvy up the work, what their contract looks like. Each company talks about one project that they worked on, and images from the work they did – signage, advertisements, etc. – is included.
Thoughts? It wasn’t for me. The information wasn’t what I was looking for and none of the brand design aesthetics appealed to me, so it was quite a disappointment. However, the author works in the brand identity design field, so it’s fair to assume he is a subject matter expert. Given that, for the right audience, I’m sure it’s a brilliant book. That audience simply isn’t me.