Inform Your Brand
Informing your brand. I put up here just to use as an example my logo at the moment and my logo has changed a lot of times over the years. But I wanted to talk about the different elements of it of when you talk about brand because a lot of people think their brand is your logo and your brand is really what you stand for. Everything ties into, I don't even want to call it a mission but just what you believe in as a designer and it informs everything else. So when you know that, you want to think about your brand image, so here we're talking about the visual, so color is very important and these happen to be colors that I respond to really strongly especially the orange. I think the orange is a vibrant and creative and again this is all about what I think because it's mine but someone else might interpret these colors differently. The blue I felt was a grounding because it's not a bright blue it's kind of this darker blue. And I thought it brought it down. The little plus is not in my l...
ogo, that's a little reminder that we have bonus materials even though it's kind of cool I might do something with that later on. So color is really key in terms of is it serious, is it playful is it colorful, you want to be careful not to use too many colors and then you also want to think about how does your logo or any graphics you do look in black and white as well because there may be situations where you need to put it in black and white. So after color you want to think form and what is the overall shape because sometimes your name might not be on it, so think can this shape represent you. My logo actually used to be a lot heavier I had different variations, all different looks I've been trying things and evolving over the years and I'm just feeling like I want simpler and cleaner and thin clean line. And I also like the idea of connecting things so it feels like it's connected and it's different paths and things like that. So it becomes a little abstract, that speaks to the type the kind of type you want to use that's very very important. Sometimes if we're not in the world of graphic design we might just defer to the default but you want to make conscious choices when you're looking at things what do you consider beautiful, what do you consider a reflection of what you want to do and then just getting back to why it's Calderin 3 this is incorporated into the brand too, which is there's a story behind that. And not everyone has to get that story immediately but once they learn that story all of a sudden the brand becomes this stronger thing, it becomes something that has a purpose, it has an origin story. So right here I'm actually... My full name is Jacob Calderin the Third and so the three is my way of doing that. When I was in high school I would do the third and it just sounded so obnoxious so I said no three, just as a symbol of honoring my father and my grandfather, it was just this way of me doing that. And again it can be very personal, it doesn't have to make sense to anyone else except you but you want to be able to tell that story and that is a part of your brand, that means something. And then the face of your brand. It could be you or it could not be you. So you want to ask yourself are you the face of your brand or for instance is it all about the models you choose. In advertising it's often about the models you choose and that's the imagery that goes out, but for some designers they are the brand so it's about how they live in their world. Tory Burch is a great example, she is her brand. So when you see her dressed in her clothes, she is living the life. Diane Von Furstenberg she is the face of her brand, it isn't about the models. I never think of a model first when I think of Diane Von Furstenburg, I think about her life, her history, her impact when she walks in the room, all those kinds of things.
Jay before we move on. I'm curious just to here where people might be with regard to their brand and just to thinking about it because I feel like there's a certain point where you're like should I have a brand, do I need to have a brand, I'm not there yet, so am I good enough to have a brand. Can you talk to that.
For that new person.
You already have a brand. You all have a brand, because you've been making choices your whole life about everything, about everything and how you do it, what you do. So what you're doing in this process is just editing and bringing it down to something that you think people are going to respond to and also that you want to share because you don't want to share everything right. So you want to figure out what is it about me, my life choices, what I find interesting, all those kinds of things and that starts to define your brand. A brand is kind of this huge buzzword where you think of corporations, it's not about that, it's about the small boutique or the designer who does costumes, it's like I can imagine having so much fun developing the imagery and the brand for what you want to do because there's so much to play with there. So you want to think about what will come across as you on your behalf and that's all it is because it can feel very very intimidating where you feel like oh this is this big fancy thing and like I said throughout my career I've had so many versions of a logo I'll put on my website or on my stationery or whatever it is or on my business card and I've evolved so that has evolved. At a certain point, if you have a big business that could end up being something that grows and kind of just holds on for a while, but don't be afraid to play with it and say this year I'm really loving this, next year I'm going to take that off or add something and again make it meaningful to you because within the context of everyday life for us who are in the front lines working making clothes and not just the big corporations, we're all interacting with people and we want to give them the tools to connect to us and that's all this is.
I really appreciate that the thought that it's just the tools for people to connect with us and to connect with us consistently and the freedom that it's okay for it to evolve and change because I know for myself with my brand it was like well I have to figure it all out before I can put it out there, then you don't put anything out there.
Exactly. And it's one thing at a time and then if it doesn't work you modify, you change you go in a different direction. So don't be afraid to do that especially when you're starting out and figuring it out because I think that process, I'm going to give you all officially including you people at home, permission to play with it like have fun with it, actually enjoy doing it because it can feel like a chore because we're so busy creating the clothes and we're saying the product. But today is really all about that next step after the product and it should be an extension of your product and view as a creative person so don't let it turn into a chore. So informing your brand, this speaks to what we're just saying about where do you pull from, so the brand message is important in terms of coming down to that, not necessarily the tweets that we mentioned but figuring out how to describe it. So you all mentioned different things about how you want to work and what's important to you. Margot for the theatrical experience, the historical experience, the local experience because you may not want to be traveling all over the world, even if you get the opportunities. So you want to ask yourself what is the message, is it like that homegrown, like home base home feeling like you know you have a solid, you're part of that community. And then also where does it get expressive in terms of what you want to specialize in. So that's where your message comes from that authentic place of what you're interested in. Fast slow these are just a couple of different approaches to fashion, we all know about fast fashion right, the H&M's of the world where clothes are produced, they come off the runway and a week later there's an interpretation of it on the sales floor. So that is a strategy, there's a lot of debate about whether that's good or bad we won't talk about that, but we'll talk about that you should talk about it in terms of personally making that choice. So you want to ask yourself what do I believe in. Again speaking to your brand, do I believe that fast fashion is good, do I want to push back and do slow fashion. My students always initially think oh I want to be a big business like Calvin Klein or Ralph Lauren and I say okay but you might want to think of (mumbles) who does slow fashion and community fashion or someone like (mumbles) Taylor who you have to wait three months for that suit. And it's more expensive, you sell less of them, but the process is part of what you're buying. Ethical issues, fair trade, things like that. Environmental impact, where does that play because fashion is a major culprit in that in impacting the environment. So again where do you stand, there's a big movement about sustainability and organics but not everyone is doing everything so you have to stake your territory around what you can actually do. If you do all organic fabrics, that's going to limit you in certain ways, so you have to ask yourself how am I minimizing my footprint and saying I'm going to do this, this is the part that I'm going to commit to. The art the theater and the wit. So when and are you the artist at any given point and all of you seem like you're definitely in fashion design I think we all have a little bit of the artist in us. The theater what does that feel like to you like when you're on stage so to speak, when you're in the public eye, what does that mean and when you're doing fashion shows and any kind of display and then wit. Do you have a sense of humor and we talked about Karl Lagerfeld, I don't know if he's trying to be funny but sometimes we can't help but think it's funny that someone is so bold. No holds barred. So you want to ask yourself where do you feel comfortable relaxing into that slightly funny part that slightly witty part. Moschino is a great designer for that because it's all about that, it's about doing funny things, fun things that are playful and that you can have fun with. It might be totally absurd but it's the most the cutest little thing and it's a conversation piece. And last but not least, where are you on the cutting edge. Because not everyone needs to be on the cutting edge. So ask yourself nope I'm not at that place where it's all about the latest thing or the coolest thing. McKenzie I think you're on the cutting edge so you're going to be in that place where you're pushing that envelope so you're going to say I'm going to have to keep up on things and that's going to be a part of your process to keep on that edge so that it's fresh and it's young and it's exciting and it's unexpected and new. So ask yourself (laughs) yeah. So you want to ask yourself where are you on that because you don't have to be right there you could be on a whole different place when it comes to that. And remember that there is a customer for every place, so you don't have to please everybody you're saying my customer isn't trendy, we remember the quote from yesterday right. Trendy just before tacky (laughs). So we have to be careful right. So we want to make sure that we own where we are on that process.
I'd like to just hear your response to that and if people at home are relating to where you are and how does that sound, what's your reaction to that because you were kind of like yeah.
It excites me, I don't know I like hearing that and I think I definitely get that just whenever I get any sort of commentary on either how I dress myself. I thought that was an interesting point you brought up just like how you present yourself says a lot about what you do and I think it's a good thing to hear especially when you get it from people who aren't quite in the same interest like fashion-wise as you. I don't know it's interesting to, I keep saying push limits, but I like messing with that stuff and a lot of times it doesn't work out, but a lot of times it does. So I don't know it's exciting.
Excellent. And just oh a little shout out to (mumbles) this is actually this really cool vest is all made out of recycled vests. So this speaks to how an ethical and environmental impact can be really cool, okay.