I was recently given the task of re-branding The Wet Spot Leeds, Leeds very finest burlesque night. I was truly honoured to be chosen to design for the Wet Spot, having been a fan of the night for some time and having spent my hen night at one of their shows last year.
The re-brand was more than a little daunting with such big shoes to fill in the shape of their previous artist Kev Grey, whose work I'm a big fan of. His hula girl poster for their Sept 18th 2010 show was given to me as a wedding gift by a certain Scarlett Daggers (We weren't able to make the Sept 18th 2010 show as that's the day we got married!) and is soon to be a framed feature in my bathroom.
Starting where another artist or designer left off is always a big challenge, especially with such a strong existing brand and style in place.....So where to start? At first I avoided looking at previous designs, trying to steer as far away from Kev's work as possible out of professional respect!
I was asked to design a new logo and an entire new look for the show, but to retain their bold monotone branding and bring in a highlight colour of red, so I went about experimenting with designs!
The first steps were the logo and the first figure drawing to adorn the first promotional flyers, posters and tickets. Ryvita Von Cheese, the organiser of the Wet Spot, hostess extraodinaire and burlesque beauty was to be the first portrait featured. After some pencil sketching we established that my more stylised figure drawings seemed to fall into the Wet Spot 'feel' incredibly well, with bold hand-drawn ink lines coloured digitally with simple block colours. An instantly retro look which works well in print.
Once the artwork style was established the rest of the branding fell into place, I brought in some tones of charcoal grey in to soften up the blacks and whites, with a cherry red used as a highlight only on the figure drawings. We settled on a 1950s cocktail/beatnik/ look with lots of bold shapes, atomic age stars, dots and lines. The overall style is bold enough and unique enough to stand up alongside their previous look and give them a new flavour, yet follows on nicely to give a sense of brand continuity
Personally I'm incredibly proud of the work we've created together so far, watch this space for more!
The Wet Spot Leeds Online
Ryvita Von Cheese - Hostess & Organiser of the Wet Spot Leeds