Brkich Design Group

Work for a design studio specializing in working with small businesses.

Disciplines: Branding, Digital Ads, Print Design, Web Design, Project Management

Completion Date: Ongoing

Steve Stone Voiceovers

Having a new project come through for Steve Stone was always exciting at BDG. Steve is a voiceover artist that always loves abstracted, high-concept campaigns. Our most off-the-wall ideas were always his first choice. Brainstorming sessions for our next ad concepts were always wild, and it was a joy knowing that if we could execute on it, Steve would be sold.

The first campaign that I worked with Steve on was the result of him talking to us about portraying his voice as "a little fresh, and a little familiar" at the same time. We thought the idea of a fresh fruit could be interesting, using Steve's logo on the sticker you always peel off when you get home. I particularly like how the oversaturated colors in the fruit and the background make even something as familiar as an orange feel "unique."

Our next campaign with Steve, again, started with a conversation about what we wanted to convey to potential clients. This time, it was the unique personality that he brought to a project. Having worked with him, I can attest to this being a selling point of working with Steve. We discussed a variety of concepts, including one playing heavily on his first name, using the copy "A Great Perstoneality." We liked this idea paired with a goofy, memorable pet rock (or pet stone). Steve fell in love with the idea immediately, and after some iteration on exactly what the little guy looked like, it was all over for any other concepts for a bit.

In fact, Steve (and his clients) loved the pet rock so much, he wanted to take him into the rest of the campaigns he had signed on for with BDG. Our next discussion was around conveying how his voice is so often the perfect fit for his clients' events and projects, with the meeting after that focused on emphasizing just how unique Steve's voice and his work are. My favorite part about all of these "wild, crazy, and abstract" ad campaigns is how, at the end of the day, they all boil down to one specific point that we want to hit. These single-idea messages are the best way to execute on these high-concept ideas in a way that makes sense to the viewer.

"Fresh" ad campaign.

"Pet Rock" ad campaign.

"Perfect Fit" ad campaign.

Brighton Music Center

Brighton Music Center provides music lessons and service to western Pennsylvania with a long history in the area. They have a long working relationship with BDG, and came to us requesting some templates for social media graphics. Their branded elements were a bit sparse, with really just a logo and a particular shade of red to work with, so it was a good canvas on which to expand into some new elements. In these Canva templates, we reused the music staff in their logo as a unique border in various formats throughout the post graphics, and we put a focus on oldstyle serif fonts used in light weights for the typography.

BMC was really happy with these templates. After a few months of these templates being in their hands, we proposed a new brand expansion project to them. This would include an updated version of their existing logo in a variety of layouts, a new brand pattern, an updated color palette, updated typography, and style sheet that covered all of these items.

BMC had a serviceable logo, but it was difficult to use it in a variety of formats. For example, their social media profiles used a logo with no relation at all to their “actual” logo. This would be updated every year noting how long they had been in business. In addition, the smaller serif font in the logo was a skewed version of an upright, non-italicized font, which often distorts letterforms. We updated this font in all layouts of their logo that they would be getting with this expansion. We also included a version that included the year of their founding, eliminating the need to create a new, unbranded social media icon every year.

The typography and brand pattern both worked toward representing how BMC actively combines their storied history in Pennsylvania with a fun-loving staff and a modern, friendly approach to music. The typography combines the oldstyle serif from the logo with a clean, modern sans for body copy. The pattern uses several measures of Johannes Brahms’ "Intermezzo" to create a repeatable pattern with use cases as a background, a foreground, and a textured block of red. The color palette married the logo colors with a new deep brown and some other swatches that we used in their social media templates.

By the time BMC had the final style sheet in their hands, they were overjoyed with not only the work that we had done, but the thought process behind it. From initial meetings with them, it was clear that they were a fun-loving local group that wanted to bring a bit of their history to their current way of operating. Being able to help them do so visually was a blast to work on.

Canva template designs for a variety of post types.

Logo variations, brand patterns, brand colors, and typography in BMC's style sheet.

OT Toolbox Website

OT Toolbox provides occupational therapy activities and resources to therapists, teachers, and parents. One of the ways they do this is through subscription services that provide a variety of resources at two different tiers: Level 1 and Level 2.

Prior to our work on these subscription models, each downloadable item would be uploaded multiple times and manually linked everywhere that it would need to appear according to its material type, upload date, and a variety of other criteria. Not only was this confusing for the sole manager of the materials, but it made things very confusing for users to navigate, as well.

We proposed a filter-based solution that would benefit both the site admin and the end-user. Uploading a new tool to the site would only need to happen once, and users would be able to search for exactly what they needed using the new filters. The original design of the subscription services needed some work, as well. Overall it felt like a completely different site than the other pages on OT Toolboxes site. The subscription pages were also very dated overall. We took the opportunity to reintroduce elements of the main site, such as the solid blocks of color, the wavy, illustrated borders, and the unique heading font, back into the subscription services.

The client was blown away with the update, and ended the project excited to see how much these changes would help occupational therapists, educators, parents, and kids.

Various web pages that we designed for OT Toolbox's tiered subscription service.

The Live Donor Project

The Live Donor Project is an organization that helps match donors with recipients, provide support to both parties, and provide more information on the process as a whole. They initially purchased a Quick Launch Site with BDG, a product in which we use preset layouts to quickly design branded websites for clients. However, as we began onboarding, they also expressed interest in a branding package with us. They had a few self-made logos that they were unhappy with, but certainly nothing that they’d feel confident moving forward with.

The biggest challenge with TLDP’s branding was the turnaround time. We wanted to stay on-track for the Quick Launch Site to launch as we had originally planned. Because of that, we needed to have a general brand direction in place by the time they got the website’s content to us, roughly a week after starting work on their project. I was getting flashbacks to my 50 Days of Logos project!

TLDP's branding package also included a business card design and style sheet. To accomplish all of this on time, I delegated work on the website design to one of our talented designers, Amelia Markey, while I worked through the branded elements. I’d be able to get her the assets she’d need to move forward on the website, and we’d be able to split off to cover more ground on the rest of the project and have it finished on time.

The brief for TLDP’s branding had an overarching focus on key themes of community, life, support, and celebration that were relevant to their mission. Previous logos that TLDP had made themselves had used imagery of a tree, which I thought could be interesting to explore. Trees can represent life and the idea of bringing life to those around them, but I wanted to be sure that we avoided looking like a landscaping company. The concept that we landed on features heavily abstracted imagery of a tree using basic geometric shapes. These strong, flat lines bring a level of stability and trust to the brand, as well.

TThe typography and color palette both work together to create an inclusive, welcoming atmosphere, making sure everyone knows that they can provide the gift of life to a recipient in need. The business card design reinforced these elements, using the brand pattern as a block of “color” in a similar manner to how Amelia used it on their website. Before we knew it, we had the style guide out the door and the project complete. Everything ended up being a whirlwind of work, and I’m really proud of the work that we were able to put together, specifically as a team at BDG.

Business card design

Brand style sheet.

Logo shown in website designed by Amelia Markey.

Misc Items

Various promotional material for the Community College of Beaver County.

Quick Launch website for a t-shirt printing company.

Promotional postcards for various clients.