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April 18, 2022

A Happy Marriage

Nowadays, it is so easy to spot great copywriting with equally captivating graphic design. Those materials are so abundant. Just scroll down your Instagram, and only...only one scroll away you'll meet the first Instagram ad. Scroll down for a minute, you'll find four or five more (depending on how frequently you open this app). 

It is as if we are being indulged by visual beauty combined with eye-catching words. From the words which directly invite us to shop on an e-commerce site to proverbs with beautiful graphics or illustrations as its background… It’s no wonder that our fingertips immediately tap the like button.

All of that makes us think about how powerful visuals can be when combined with writing (both copywriting and descriptive/explanatory writing).

In what we've been through so far, visuals and writing are two things that can never replace each other. They complement each other. The brand guideline will not be understood if it only contains visuals;  it needs an easy-to-understand explanation of the concept or a user manual. Right?

Truly, a combination of visuals and writing is a “perfect marriage”.

The ultimate example of the 'marriage' between visuals and writing, in our opinion, is war propaganda. Indonesia itself has an interesting example of propaganda posters, where at that time Soekarno, the future first president, acted as the initiator (imagine if Soekarno was alive today, he might have become a great art director!). It can be seen from the propaganda poster (created in 1945) how the creators succeeded in capturing the essence of the message they had wanted to convey holistically.

However, from the example above, we also have to ask ourselves again: how do we, the ones behind it all, use our respective skills since what we create can be used for both positive and negative purposes?

But one thing for sure, whatever the purpose is, this marriage will last forever and evolve from time to time. 

A happy marriage.

September 17, 2021

Simplifying Things in A Complicated Way

When we see problems, many of us need to get answers in complex processes. Somehow, unconsciously we prefer that method; to deliver a solution in complicated ways. Some might have excuses such as, "because everything needs to be considered meticulously." Because there are many factors out there. Because there are so many possibilities to be included in the variables.

This situation can drive us to the point where we forget the essential part of solving the problem. The problem itself. We fail to see the urgency; we end up circling our own complex thoughts. We feel responsible to answer every question raised from the problem, but fail to find the most important question.

And if you think I am circling around by repeating similar things over and over again... Well, that's how it feels when we fail to address the essentials.

Is it not okay to have complex thinking?

The answer is yes, it is okay. But it can become a hindrance when we turn the complexity into an unnecessarily complicated process.

Complexity is what our brand strategists face every time we start to define the identity concept of a brand. Creating brand identity, of course, is not the same as solving a problem but quite similar. We have a set of questions to be answered in order to find the right brand voices and senses that will form a solid identity.

"The thing is...the process is not about ignoring your complex thoughts. It's about mapping possibilities that come into your brain, then putting those into the right channels," one of our brand strategists said, "I think complexity and --to some extent-- complicatedness is necessary for the process in finding brand identity concepts. Those two allow us to brainstorm wildly, to analogize, to connect one thing to another.

"Even though it is good to see things from bird-eye-view, we have to remember why we are here. To help our client create a brand that will grow. Therefore, those wild brainstorming and ideas need to be put in a context which relates to the brand."

Let them communicate

A good answer is an answer understood easily by its audience. If we were throwing questions as a scientist in a peer-to-peer review, we expected to hear the answer in some complicated, technical terms. But in daily life, people want simplicity. They want simple answers to their daily problems. They want something that they can relate to.

Simplifying things is a must for our audience. Here comes the hardest point. How do we simplify brand identity into relatable value? It lays on how we see the communication between the brand and its audience. Let's see from their perspective as if they were human beings.

If you were the audience:

Do you want to get through a complicated process to get your problem solved? Do you want to listen to your complete rambling with a frown on your face?

If you were the brand:

Do you want to get stuck with people that don't align with you? Do you want to give something that people do not like having?

By knowing what the brand's aims are in communication with their audience and vice versa, we will have a better comprehensive, holistic understanding of the identity concepts.

We might get overwhelmed a lil' bit (or a lot?) by the fact there are many options to explore for creating brand identity concepts. We might get lost in our own thoughts ("Definitely," said our brand strategist). But the highlight is: try to simplify our thoughts by learning to befriend with its complicatedness.

April 10, 2021

More Than Words

It was our first meeting ever to decide the editorial for the Journal when one of our designers brought out an interesting subject about the unexpected process behind designing a visual for the client. An ability to decide and choose keywords for the visual guideline itself. Yes, those seemingly harmful words could make our team quite frustrated.

"Always, it always takes time to find the words that will represent the whole concept of the brand visual guideline," said the designer.

The words, he continued, had to be simple. Easy to understand. And of course, had to be relatable for the common human beings (a.k.a did not sound as if it came from the academic textbook only a few people would comprehend).

"During my time in college, I was constantly reminded that to design visual communication we need to get back to 'how to say' and 'what to say'", he said, "Branding is all about keywords, which reflect what the brand will do and how will do it, how it will say and act... They're like humans!"

It occurred to me how our understanding of language as a form of communication is important in whatever field we work. When we want to convey a value or message to others in a written way, there are many words we can use. From verbs, adjectives, nouns to adverbs...such overwhelming possibilities...

And for him, to be a designer whose skill is to interpret his thoughts visually, finding the right words is like digging into an almost-alien world. At least, during his first time delving into this task.

The relationship between written language and visual symbols is really close in human civilization. Long before writing was invented, humans had recorded their daily life through paintings. Those prehistoric images of animals we can still find inside caves all around the world are proof of how we have advanced this far.

In the end, both are supporting each other. They cannot exist without one another. As my friend said before, branding is like humans. It requires integrated parts to be a whole being. Therefore, in this context, our branding keywords are more than a few words.

It represents the whole 'human being'. And if you look beyond its surface, hidden behind the façade is the process of becoming -- the layers of frustrations, learning, re-learning, discovery, and experiences.




PT POT Dharma Kultiva
Jl Pesantren № 39, Bandung—Indonesia
Get Direction Here
+62 811 224 4191




PT POT Dharma Kultiva
Jl Pesantren № 39, Bandung—Indonesia
Get Direction Here
+62 811 224 4191

© 2020 POT BRANDING HOUSE. All Rights Reserved.

© 2020 POT BRANDING HOUSE. All Rights Reserved.

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