An online retailer specializing in gently pre-owned children's goods contacted RDQLUS for a bit of a brand makeover. The stigma of items "pre-owned" is that they are poorly treated, used or of lower value due to diminished quality—hence the need to sell them off at cheep-to-zero price-points. However, this company's model is completely the opposite. They specialize in high-end children's items easily consider to be couture or exclusive, and very limited-edition. Their inventory is such that there while there is an opportunity to give items life anew in someone else's employ, there is absolutely no desperation in the offering of said items.
The client wanted to have something that matched the status and elevated level of the very items that they looked to sell, so this nicely nudged the direction that we set about with naming & design. The aim was something solid, stout and strong, but classy enough to represent a fashion house. The name "PRÉCIEUX" is direct French translation for "precious." The tagline wraps the naming and titling up in a bow with a great play on words; "Precious Little Things"—a double-entendre for the items, or the children that the items are for.
Completely hand-crafted typography utilizes no fonts for a fully custom design, which borrows from the French roots of the name with hints of Deco Modern in clean vertical lines & edges, and that gentle arc to the lettering.
BESPOKE NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP RING
creative direction / concept sketches / design (in collaboration with Alex Rosh and Ashoori & Co. Jewelers)
In the late-90s and early 2000s, I was a world-class track & field athlete. My specialty event being the triple jump, in which I earned a world ranking, national ranking and back-to-back NCAA national championships at the University of South Dakota. At the time the program was very small and funds for traditions such as national championship rings were not plentiful. I didn't begrudge them any, but I had always vowed to someday design my own right to commemorate my accomplishments.
Finally—17 years after the fact—I set about designing a ring for my mantle. My sketches reflected a desire to have a ring that looked as if would have in the late '90s, yet had the size of a more modern championship ring. By way of social media, I had come into contact with a young professional jeweler by the name of Alex Rosh (@alexdiamonds/Instagram). With mutual respect for each other's work, we spoke of perhaps working on a project together which prompted me to ask, "can you produce a custom ring?" To which he answered quickly and absolutely, "yes!"
From concept to completion, this was one of the most ambitious and rewarding projects I've ever taken on. A friend & mentor of mine once said that we categorize ourselves as "graphic," "clothing," "product" designers, etc—reducing our own capacity to design anything outside of those bounds. If you can design one thing, you can design everything.
FELLOWSHIP OF CHRISTIAN ATHLETES
creative direction / brand consulting / design
The Fellowship of Christian Athletes is a vast global network of athletes, coaches & mentors, schools and families utilizing sports as a vehicle for the sharing of their message of faith, religious belief and good works. The organization itself is in its 60th year and was in need of an overhaul of their online presence. Even a tried & true, ages-old message needs to stay modern and viable as it's audience changes with age.
RDQLUS was brought on board as creative consultant to their internal marketing & technology departments to aid the process of reconfiguring the delivery of their messaging & information, as well as helping to design the initial wireframes, user-experience (UX) and the user-interface UI) and new look. The result is a more rich experience driven by bringing messaging to the forefront and allowing the user to self-select their journey & connection to the organization—not trying to over-sell or over-explain everything on first contact. Visually, a much more contemporary representation is achieved, and the organization made much more personal by telling the story through imagery and cropping to bring the subjects visually closer.
When your youth sports team's brand is on par with the D1 university in town (that they spent $200k+ for), that's RDQLUS. The 'West Omaha Wolves' are a youth sports organization serving young athletes as they strive to excel in healthy lifestyles, skill and healthy kind of competition.
Coach Jeff Cauble reached out to RDQLUS CREATIVE about creating a visual story for the Wolves, asking simply for something a bit more sporting and aggressive, while keeping in mind that his team is full of children, so teeth and gore will not be acceptable. So the idea was to give the squad a regal, strong and still wild "leader of the pack." It was equally as important to not pander down to the fact that this is a youth sports organization; they deserved an iconic look equal to the level of what is seen from the best, most recognizable collegiate sports teams.
To have an entire team of kids, coaches and even parents wearing the new logo proudly is a successful end to a project.
Revitalization of underdeveloped areas in urban centers is a hot-button topic and a very important to the communities in which it happens. When Chicago-based 'Brinshore Development' partnered with Omaha-area 'Seventy-Five North' with plans to revitalize an area in a crucial corridor of North Omaha NE, it was sure to be a promising venture. RDQLUS directed a top-to-bottom assessment for the new development.
First, an exhaustive naming exercise was conducted to find a name that was fresh, timeless and tied the new development to the history if the area. Starting with research into the geography and history of the area, careful consideration was given to the naming convention. From there, a brand pedigree was developed that will continue to inform the brand stance and messaging of not only the development but will serve to empower the community and very people who will live there. The identity system is built to be flexible in use, modern & stately—all without being dated. The brand story was naturally tied to the naming, but also served to establish the goals and socio-economic, educational and cultural aims of the new community development. Next, color theory and identity system design.
Next in the on-going project will come naming & sub-branded design in relation to community programs and endeavors spearheaded by the ownership and management of Highlander.
The added bonus—RDQLUS has roots in the area, as Steve G. grew up 2-blocks away from the newly planned revitalization & development.
TERENCE "BUD" CRAWFORD
identity system design / creative direction
When a champion calls on you and says they need you to do what you do, you step the game up. Terence "Bud" Crawford is the WBO Lightweight Champion of the World… and just so happens to be from my 'hood—North Omaha, Nebraska. This homegrown young man and his camp were referred to RDQLUS, and the task was build something iconic and worthy of a champion, that Crawford could own so that no matter the success or sponsorships to come, he and his camp would have control of is sports identity—something that many athletes lose to their sponsors when most logos and sub-branding is created inside their own ecosystem.
The idea is centered around the RDQLUS style of modernizing the classic monogram, with the added element of a play on visual form. The Champ's initials are "TBC" so weaving a 3-letter form together is a real challenge. But still, three letters wouldn't be iconic, memorable nor legendary enough for a pugilistic champion. What better way to tell the story and literally introduce pedigree into the mark, than to introduce him into the mark?
The solution is simple and elegant, while still stout and tough enough to represent a man in a combative sport. The "T" is formed by a stylized silhouette of Crawford himself. Custom Victorian–style letters are intricately wrapped around him to form the final 3-letter monogram that we internally mused was called his "Punchman" logo. The varsity style nameplate finishes off a modular system that offers multiple combinations without loss of brand equity.
Oh, and the three letters could also read "TCB"—taking care of business—which is exactly what this young champion is doing.
creative direction / brand development / design
Friend of RDQLUS, Dave Koenig is a tattoo & fine artist gaining national and international acclaim for his unique style and methods of working. Very atuned the benefits and need for brand building, Dave reached out to RDQLUS to craft a new brand to help bring his growing list of skills and offerings under a more marketable look and brand story. Having worked together before on various projects it was a pleasure to collaborate with him, working from his direct sketches and having early morning brand development sessions over coffee.
The result was the beautifully intricate "DK" crest. Crafted to tell a story all its own, it is modular with the flexibility to break apart—each piece telling a piece of the brand story and vibe.
CENTRAL MASS FILM FESTIVAL
creative direction / identity system & logo design
The Central Mass Film Festival—or "CMF2" as it is referenced in short—is an independent film festival organized to feature the best of indie cinema in the New England-area. Headquartered in Worcester MA, the committee had already begun to organize satellite events ramping up to the main festival in the coming year. RDQLUS CREATIVE developed an identity that would give an organized, confident stance, while still having a air of "indie cool" consistent with this genre.
Worcester is known regionally as "the heart of Massachusetts" and while we all love a good visual, the blatantly obvious is just plain no fun. Borrowing from the idea of light that streams from old analog reel-to-reel movie projectors and the fact that film festivals show multiple shorts and features on multiple screens at multiple times, the idea was to work in the heart iconography from the simple overlapping multiple projectors. The crossing of the projected images forms the heart directly above the name. The red & blue colors are a throwback allusion to the old 3-D glasses and the RGB nature of color film, while the grayscale and black & white pay homage to classic movie motifs.