Renowned for delivering clear, elegant design solutions, award-winning London contemporary design studio SPIN formulated our HEYDAY brand identity. We spoke to the team on how this easy-drinking lager’s bespoke typography was created.
1. As a design-led brand, conscious of our modernist values, we were immediately drawn to SPIN’s reputation of delivering clear, elegant design solutions. Can you share your creative philosophy with us?
We don’t see ourselves as modernists so much as contemporary humanists – our aesthetic language veers from the minimal to the maximal, thinking is at the heart of what we do, and expressing this thinking visually.
2. We were delighted to hear back from SPIN within 20 minutes of initial contact – a positive response to a potential collaboration to formulate up-beat, eye-catching design for Heyday Lager – what immediately resonated with you about AND UNION’S brand identity?
There was obviously an appreciation of design. That, and beer!
3. What’s on the studio playlist when you’re conceptualising a project, and does it change when it comes time to execute on it?
Just as with our visual language we have extremely broad tastes in music – the only constant is our funky Friday playlist which features acts from Funkadelic, The O’Jays, Chic, Cameo, Parliament and Rick James.
4. How do you view the Information Age as creatives; is it beneficial to have a constant plethora of subject matter to view for inspiration at any given time, or has it led to more copying of ideas and even plagiarism?
We are in the age of sharing, which we really enjoy, there is some accidental copying and otherwise, but it was ever thus. There is no satisfaction or reward in copying, making it up is SO much more rewarding.
5. Tony, we absolutely have to ask you about what it was like living in a brewery during your formative years as a designer?
It was tiring and sticky – everything smelling of beer. It had its upside (free beer was a bonus), but visiting a pub is a LOT nicer than living in one. [Tony Brook is the creative director at Spin]
6 We’ve heard about the communal working atmosphere SPIN has created, first by moving premises to a ‘shed’ [a very smart one] in your back garden, and weekly preparation and sharing of meals together. What’s been the biggest benefit of this unconventional, but clearly effective way of working?
We talk about stuff, ideas often come out of conversation. It also enables us to create an intensely productive creative atmosphere. But mainly it’s just really nice to do (which is all the reward we need).
7. How did the Covid-19 pandemic impact studio life at SPIN, did everyone work remotely, and was creativity enhanced or stunted?
We worked remotely early on and it was okay but definitely wasn’t as good as working together!
8. SPIN has a hugely impressive portfolio of clients and projects – but what is your dream brand or assignment that you would like the studio to work on?
One with creative ambition – which is all the projects we work on – we are very, very fortunate.
MUBI by SPIN Studio
9. Have you reached a level where you no longer have to go ‘hunting’ for work, that is, do potential clients come looking for you?
Yes that’s probably true, clients tend to approach us and we are in a position where we can select who we work with, which is great.
10. Can you share some insights on how the bespoke typography was created for HEYDAY?
We tried a few different approaches, and settled for one that basically uses the geometric shapes that are part of the And Union logo and reconfigured them on a grid, but in a playful way. We liked how the shapes were reminiscent of bubbles going upwards and tried to bring that in through animation.
Aircord by SPIN Studio
11. HEYDAY was created as an easy-drinking, everyday lager with a twist – a cross pollination of British brewing expertise with German sentiment and ingredients. A refreshing chance to challenge the norm in both its taste profile and striking new identity. As designers, do you think it’s your responsibility to provoke and stimulate debate, or the less demanding route of giving the people what they want, and how does this affect they way you approach a new project?
We like to think we can challenge the status quo with every new project. Sometimes in a more provocative and sometimes in a subtle way. In order to be noticed or remembered we need to try to make something that is challenging – if we feel slightly uncomfortable at first then that’s a good thing. We aren’t really into easy listening design.
Hatched by SPIN Studio
12. When we finally get to share a laugh over a pint of icy cold HEYDAY, give us an indication of your perfect pub or venue, and the opening track to the playlist.
We like a traditional, independent, small and comfy neighbourhood pub.
Nothing fancy, pubs should be about community. Maybe a pool table overlooking a mountain range. Not too many people and a great jukebox playing Autobahn (Kraftwerk) or Street Hassle (Lou Reed) as a start…
Images Courtesy of Jake Greene and SPIN Studio